The internal dispute over Omar’s comments on US foreign policy comes more than two years after it met with public opposition from both sides over comments considered anti-Semitic. Parliament’s parliament is vying Thursday to turn a dozen Democrats’ speeches into a political weapon against Omar, with leaders likely to plan action on the floor next week. But unlike 2019, Omar’s latest remarks do not provoke specific complaints of anti-Semitism from fellow Democrats.
Rather, her Democratic counterparts have challenged her “false equivalences” between the United States and Israel, on the one hand, and Hamas and the Taliban, on the other. A critical statement by 1
Omar later tweeted, “We must have the same level of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes against humanity.”
The comments sparked a heated debate among many Jewish Democrats, some of whom had previously challenged Omar’s remarks, which they described as anti-Semitic. Of the several dozen Democrats who took part in the discussions this week, 12 deputies signed the statement. These discussions were first reported by the Jewish Telegraph Agency.
“Equating the United States and Israel with Hamas and the Taliban is as offensive as it is wrong,” the 12 Democrats said in a statement, adding that “false equivalents provide cover for terrorist groups.”
A Schneider spokesman said Omar had not tried to call him and was unaware of attempts to contact other members. The spokesman also confirmed that the Democrats signing the statement did not call her actions anti-Semitic.
Several Republicans in parliament publicly condemned Omar’s comments earlier this week, with many in the party seeking to break a growing democratic schism over its foreign policy views. Republican leaders could pursue a resolution condemning it or removing it from committees when lawmakers return to Washington next week.
“Speaker Pelosi’s continued failure to address the problems in her parliamentary group sends a message to the world that Democrats are tolerant of anti-Semitism and sympathize with terrorists,” House minority leader Kevin McCarthy wrote on Twitter.
The GOP campaign group also said in a statement Thursday that Democrats should deprive Omar of its committees – as Democrats did this year to Marjorie Taylor Green after a series of inflammatory comments and actions by the controversial Republican from Georgia, including endorsing the assassination of President Nancy Pelosi.
However, many Democrats reject Green’s comparison to Omar. And one of Omar’s allies in the progressive alliance, known as the Squad, defended itself on Thursday morning.
“I’m tired of colleagues (both + Rs) demonizing,” tweeted Rashida Tlibe (D-Michigan), who was elected along with Omar in 2018 as the first lawmaker in Congress. “Their obsession with guarding her is sick. She has the courage to call for human rights abuses, no matter who is responsible. It’s better than colleagues who look away if it serves their policy.”
Representative Corey Bush (D-Mo.), Another member of the Squad, tweeted that “I’m not surprised when Republicans attack black women for human rights. But when Democrats are particularly hurt. We are your colleagues.” . Talk to us directly. Enough with anti-blackness and Islamophobia. “
On Wednesday night, Omar shared an excerpt of what she described as frequent threats she received when she spoke on human rights issues, posting on Twitter a message involving a number of racist and Islamophobic slanders against her.
This week is not the first time Democrats have met with a furor within their Omar political speech group. Arriving in Congress soon, some of Omar’s comments sparked complaints of anti-Semitism and a heated debate over how Democrats should punish her with a resolution. In one case in 2019, Omar suggested that pro-Israeli advocates have “loyalty” to Israel, which several Democrats say hints at painful decades of discriminatory tropes of Jews who show “double loyalty.”
Democratic leaders eventually drafted a resolution condemning hate speech in any form, indirectly rebuking Omar, a move that angered several Jewish Democrats who wanted to condemn it directly.
Melanie Zanona contributed to this report.