Last year in print and electronic media I pondered, exposed and commented upon Rep. Ilhan Omar’s anti-Semitic rhetoric, anti-Americanism, divisiveness, and tendencies toward bigotry.
While analyzing this ongoing horrid situation in my state is imperative, I wish I didn’t have to, but I will so long as she continues to supply it.
Despite a half-hearted apology last February saying she’s “listening and learning,” Omar instead doubled and tripled down on similarly insidious commentary throughout last year, with already more controversy to open 2020.
During a Jan. 8 news conference while Iranian bombs targeting American military sites flew in the sky, Omar audaciously remarked she “felt ill because of everything that is taking place. And I think every time I hear conversations around war, I find myself being stricken with PTSD.”
Yet in the same press conference, cameras caught Omar laughing while Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee speciously tried to score political points by discussing U.S. service members killed in the Iraq War.
Omar’s ludicrous analogy perturbed many of our nation’s veterans who sacrifice so much to keep Americans (and Muslims) safe.
But don’t take my word; my cousin, age 37 like Omar, served two tours of duty during the War on Terror. He texted me right away.
“I found her comments offensive and completely out of touch,” he told me, clearly frustrated. “Many soldiers I served with suffer from war-related PTSD after putting their lives on the line on a daily basis. I highly doubt her experiences warrant a similar feeling.”
Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN), a rising conservative star and military veteran just two years older than Omar, agreed. He said the first-term congresswoman’s comments were “offensive to our nation’s veterans who really do have PTSD after putting their life on the line to keep America safe.”
Banks also tweeted Jan. 10 that if Omar hates war, she should thank the Trump administration “for keeping us out of war with Iran, but instead her hate drove her, Pelosi and others to vote to tie POTUS’ hands & prevent our troops from defending themselves in the case of an attack.”
For background, Banks is not a person of “privilege” as his critics will immediately say, since that’s a common attack line when lacking facts.
He grew up in an Indiana trailer park while his father worked at an auto plant and mother cooked. With origins in rural Kentucky, Banks was the first college graduate in his family and joined the U.S. Navy at age 33 while serving in the Indiana legislature, deploying to Afghanistan in 2014.
We should not mock the plight of refugees, but Omar’s comparisons are a stretch. She moved to America as a child more than a quarter-century ago and comes from an educated family of civil servants and teachers. According to a glowing 2016 piece in the left-wing Minneapolis City Pages, Omar lived a “blessed life” in Somalia.
Additionally, her views of our country that fought to save her, allowed her family to settle in freedom, and jumpstart her political career just a few years after college graduation no less, remain backwards and appalling. Omar’s unrelenting rancor deserves opprobrium.
Last summer, she proudly crafted anti-Semitic policy by introducing a resolution supporting Boycott, Divest, Sanctions (BDS)—a rogue movement that the German parliament recently condemned as akin to Nazi campaigns targeting Jews.
Massive bipartisan opposition (398-17) defeated the execrable measure, and even prominent Democrats concurred that BDS “seeks a world where Israel does not exist.”
Additionally, in a now notorious March 2019 speech to the Council of American-Islamic Relations in Los Angeles, Omar claimed, “CAIR was founded after 9/11 because they recognized that some people did something and that Muslims in the U.S. were starting to lose access to our civil liberties.”
“Some people did something” and over 3,000 Americans were killed? Talk about minimizing the worst tragedy in American history. Incidentally, CAIR was founded in 1994. Omar, perhaps purposely, changed the date.
To put it kindly, Democrats struggled to condemn iniquitous comments about Israel and Jews from Omar and her squadmate, the noxious Palestinian propagandist Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) — she of the appalling “Holocaust gives me a calming feeling” rant last May and “Impeach the MFer” the evening of her 2019 inauguration — but Omar was conveniently not stripped of her Foreign Affairs Committee assignments, as many demanded, nor has she suffered any real punishment. Nancy Pelosi is not too brave.
It is thus no surprise that Omar and Tlaib support repugnant Bernie Sanders for president, a communist and the most anti Israel 2020 candidate. She’s also expressed a fondness for anti-Semitic socialist British politician Jeremy Corbyn, who failed massively in his December prime ministerial bid.
In fact, Omar maintains outsized influence in the Democrat Party and is one of their top fundraisers (does hate sell?), though her donations and incessant corruption have come under scrutiny.
Omar had at least nine violations of Minnesota campaign-finance law last year and, according to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, “a pattern of carelessness and/or self-dealing with legally restricted funds.”
In a June piece, which was the most read all of 2019, the paper’s editorial board reprimanded her:
“Omar’s political rise has been marred by a series of unforced errors, including intemperate remarks and tweets earlier this year that were widely perceived as anti-Semitic. Every month seems to bring a fresh problem. More is expected of her than the symbolism attached to her victory. Omar has a special obligation to be worthy of the trust so many have placed in her, including many still-new Americans who expect better.”
Even from a left-leaning newspaper, this excerpt is damning and not debatable. Never vetted before running for office, Omar continues refusing to answer questions or turn over documents that could debunk what she claims is conspiratorial.
Investigators with multiple federal agencies finally began reviewing the alleged crimes committed by Omar Jan. 17, mostly centering around her marital history. These include perjury; immigration, student loan and tax fraud; and, yes, bigamy.
As a resident of Greater Minnesota, I can confirm that Omar, who was rushed into her current role by identity politics-obsessed liberals, is disliked across the state. By now she’s probably even alienating voters in the provincial D+28 Fifth congressional district; yet the Somali Muslim somehow faces limited primary opposition and, unless the nascent-but-impressive campaign of Iraqi refugee and war journalist Dalia al-Aqidi catches fire, Omar should win re-election this fall.
Pres. Trump received just 19 percent of vote in 2016 in the radical urban fifth district, yet more than 50 percent in the rest of Minnesota.
This was fellow Muslim Keith Ellison’s seat prior, and he was infamously antagonistic to Israel and Jews. Sadly, a place with the largest Jewish population in the Land of 10,000 Lakes — and one of the largest in the Midwest — has been deemed “the anti-Israel seat” since 2007.
Patriots, freedom lovers and honest brokers should continue to expose extremists like Ilhan Omar. When recent weeks saw a massive amount of anti-Jewish attacks in New York (highest in three decades), with a 40 percent national rise to over 1,000 per annum, why are such reprehensibly un-American, anti-Semitic actions tolerated or excused?
A former school teacher and military historian, Ari Kaufman has worked as a journalist in various roles since 2006. He has lived in 11 states and currently resides with his wife in Minnesota.