THE ANGRY ARAB: Why Ilhan Omar is a Dangerous Woman for the US

Washington doesn’t like its Muslims or Arabs to take pride in their heritage or oppose the Israeli occupation, writes As’ad AbuKhalil.

By As`ad AbuKhalil
Special to Consortium News

Washington was not expecting the arrival of Reps. Ilhan Omar or Rashida Tlaib.  The nation’s capital has seen Arabs and Muslims before but they were not like these two new assertive and defiant members of Congress. 

The White House, under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, hosted Iftar dinners for Ramadan and invited a variety of Muslims (including of course the Israeli ambassador because he is wildly popular among the world’s Muslims), but they were of a different brand.  The Bush administration even employed Muslim Arabs or Muslim-born Americans who preached Bush’s doctrine to anyone who would listen in the Middle East. 

But those were different Arabs. They were the “non-threatening” Arabs who made Westerners feel comfortable in their racism and bigotry.  The Arabs who are welcomed in the halls of Congress are usually mimics of the late president of Egypt, Anwar Sadat, and the current king of Jordan. They are the type of Arabs who praise Western wars and downplay Arab anger at the long record of Israeli occupation and aggression.

Sadat, Carter and Israel's Menachem Begin at the White House in 1979 after signing Egyptian–Israeli Peace Treaty. (Wikimedia)

Sadat, Carter and Israel’s Menachem Begin at the White House in 1979 after signing Egyptian–Israeli Peace Treaty. (Wikimedia)

Some of those Arabs in D.C. are employed as correspondents for Gulf-regime media. Some had even received their training at the research arm of the Israeli lobby, while others work for racist Congress people.  They are the kind of Arabs who are paraded before Western audiences to show them that there are Muslim Arabs who are exceptions: the ones who are willing to insult other Arabs and Muslims, and who tell tales about how they were saved from the terrorism of the religion or the culture of the region.

But Minnesota’s Ilhan Omar and Michigan’s Rashida Tlaib are different. The Muslims whom Washington has been used to receiving from Lebanon or from Gulf embassies are Muslims who are embarrassed about their religion and about their culture. They are the Muslims who apologize day and night for the terrorism of Muslims, as if all Muslims are responsible for the crimes of the few. (The blaming of all Jews for the crimes of Israel is certainly anti-Semitic—just as the blaming of all Muslims for the crimes of the few Muslims is  Islamophobic.)  

Ilhan Omar, from the second she entered Congress, has made her audience feel uncomfortable, and the press has had a hard time dealing with her.

Acceptable Extremism

Acceptable and subservient Muslims or Arabs are allowed to hold extremist views and to express hatred and hostility to Jewish people as long as they don’t offend Israel or Western governments.  Anwar Sadat’s background as an anti-Semitic Nazi was never an issue for Israel or Western Zionists. In fact, Stuart Eizenstat, Jimmy Carter’s domestic policy advisor, downplays the Nazi sympathy of Sadat and attributes it dismissively to anti-British sentiments, in his recent book, “President Carter.”

And when Mahmoud Abbas, the president of Palestine, agreed after the assassination of Yasser Arafat to serve Israeli occupation interests, his anti-Semitic past (his PhD dissertation in Moscow contained Holocaust denial) was also forgiven. The Saudi regime, the largest—by far—purveyor of anti-Semitic propaganda among Muslims in the last century is also forgiven.

It is not about anti-Semitism, as evidenced by Israeli alliances with evangelical Christians and European far-right groups. Zionists object to anti-Semitism—real or concocted as is the case with Omar—when there is criticism of Israel and calls for boycott, divestment and sanctions on Israel, or BDS. 

Ilhan Omar also doesn’t look the part. Westerners prefer whiskey-drinking Muslims who are willing to mock fellow Muslims, and who are willing to denigrate Palestinian political aspirations for the amusement of the Zionist think-tank crowd in D.C.

Omar: Not the Beltway type. (Twitter)

Omar: Rule breaker. (Twitter)

And what is rarely mentioned about Ilhan Omar is that she wears the veil.  At least in France, where Islamophobia has become the national secular religion of the republic, the hostility to the veil has become unmasked at all points of the political spectrum, left, right and center.

Hostility to the veil has been less vocally expressed in D.C. (veiled Muslim women have numerous stories of harassment and abuse to tell). But Congress had to change its rules to allow Omar to wear the veil under its roof, even though exceptions to the longstanding hat ban had reportedly been made for the wearing of yarmulkes.

It would have been less irksome for Omar’s haters if she did not wear the veil.  Westerners prefer Muslims to be atheists or non-practicing Muslims. (In the second teaching position I held at Tufts University, the most senior member of the department of political science once rushed to my office and asked me hurriedly: “You are not Muslim, are you?” I said: “Well, I am from a Muslim family but I am personally an atheist.” He said: “Oh, that is good,” and left.) 

Unacceptable Candor

And Omar speaks in a refreshingly candid language that does not stick to the rhetorical clichés of D.C. politicians. 

Omar's declaration after winning election. (Twitter)

Omar’s declaration after winning election. (Twitter)

By contrast, New York’s Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has learned to censor herself. Ever since she was attacked for previous remarks she had made about Palestinians, Ocasio-Cortez has resorted to speaking in the vague generalities that U.S. diplomats also use to avoid the wrath of Israel and its supporters.  She no longer seems to even utter the word Palestine. She has become too aware of the price to be paid. 

Omar and Rashida Tlaib have also supported BDS, which is the biggest sin, as far as Israel and AIPAC are concerned.  The U.S. has made it very clear that BDS has emerged as the second danger to Israel after the threat of military resistance to Israeli occupation and aggression. 

The endorsement of BDS by two members of Congress bestows official legitimacy on a movement that Israel has been desperately trying to paint as an anti-Semitic reincarnation of Nazism.  But this has been the history of Israeli propaganda: all enemies of Israel, communists, Arab nationalists, Palestinian nationalists, rightists, leftists, have been labeled as anti-Semitic. Even the secular Arab nationalist leader, the late Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt, was accused of anti-Semitism by Israel when none of his speeches ever contained an anti-Semitic word.

Tlaib during her campaign. (Wikimedia)

Tlaib during her campaign. (Wikimedia)

And now, the U.S. Congress, which sat silent about the wave of Islamophobia unleashed during and after the Trump campaign, suddenly sees the need to issue a proclamation against religious bigotry and racism. 

It is a bitter irony that the U.S. Congress has, for the first time, condemned Islamophobia in a statement widely understood to be an attempt to discipline the first Muslim American female member of Congress.  The resolution had nothing to do with ostensible congressional outrage against Islamophobia. (Since Sept. 11, many members of Congress have become vocal anti-Islam bigots, as is U.S. President Donald Trump, who advocated a ban on all Muslim visitors to the country). The reference to Islamophobia was added to appease those new progressive members of Congress and the African American members who protested against a very selective standard of outrage.

Weeks after Omar’s election to Congress, the Zionist lobby succeeded in turning her into a caricature. They inserted the word “Jewish” every time she spoke against support for Israel (she did not once refer to Jews in her discourse about Israel and its supporters).  

The word “trope” is now a convenient tool to turn someone’s criticisms of Israel into grotesque anti-Semitic hatred.  Even the progressive Michele Goldberg, one of the few refreshingly courageous columnists in The New York Times, insisted that Omar resorted to anti-Semitic “tropes.” 

The Israeli lobby and the government want to send a clear message through the mistreatment and abuse of Ilhan Omar: that progressive members of Congress, especially if they are Muslim Arab women of color, won’t be allowed to express their views on Israel without mobilizing the entire AIPAC machinery in Congress against them.

Ilhan Omar is indeed dangerous. She has broken taboos, along with her colleague Rashida Tlaib.  She is dangerous to the hegemony imposed on the nation’s capital by the supporters of Israel (and evangelical Christian, not Jews, are now the most fanatical Zionists in U.S. politics).  Because Omar is seen as dangerous, the abuse  won’t end. It has just started.

As’ad AbuKhalil is a Lebanese-American professor of political science at California State University, Stanislaus. He is the author of the “Historical Dictionary of Lebanon” (1998), “Bin Laden, Islam and America’s New War on Terrorism (2002), and “The Battle for Saudi Arabia” (2004). He tweets as @asadabukhalil

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89 comments for “THE ANGRY ARAB: Why Ilhan Omar is a Dangerous Woman for the US

  1. John Barker
    March 22, 2019 at 11:53

    Ilhan Omar is brave and righteous. Her detractors are the enemies of America they would have her be.

  2. david powers
    March 17, 2019 at 22:26

    these young guns are hopefully going to start showing their support for Tulsi

  3. Tim
    March 17, 2019 at 20:47

    Good summary about prejudice, our elected officials and Israeli power. What shall we do?

  4. Maliki
    March 15, 2019 at 09:13

    Muslems are the ones to be blamed for their mayhem that is constant against westerners .

  5. Wooza
    March 15, 2019 at 08:58

    Angry Arabs who preach hate should be the ones to feel guilty for this mass murder. Inciting is a dangerous business that some times will bring out the unhinged .

  6. S.M. de Kuyper
    March 14, 2019 at 19:54

    Very fine post, very hopeful too as appalled I read breaking actual news each day to read of the US committing suicide on a daily basis globally ever since US approved 9/11, Approved to remove all US law and to start WW111. Constitutional Law is toast.

    • Tim
      March 17, 2019 at 20:50

      Yes S.M., It is toast indeed.

  7. Gregory Herr
    March 14, 2019 at 17:28
  8. Tim Chambers
    March 14, 2019 at 17:18

    How is it possible for an Arab or Palestinian to be considered anti-Semitic? Arabs and Palestinians are Semites, just as Jews are. They are descendants of a people who spoke the Semitic languages. It would be more appropriate to call them NIMBYist. Not quite the same thing. The lands the Zionist Jews were granted in the Middle East had been settled by Palestinians and occupied by the British before being granted by the British to the Holocaust survivors, without the agreement of the Palestinians.

  9. HITCH
    March 14, 2019 at 15:13

    If being anti pedophile makes me anti catholic, Omar is anti-semitic.Only an ignoramus would blame the masses for the actions of the leadership.Netanyahu proudly admitted to Bill Mayer( when asked why Israeli wars are over so quickly) that “we have you”. the USA does most of their dirty work. Trumps America first looks more like Saudi Arabia,Israel and billionaires first to me.

  10. Deniz
    March 14, 2019 at 11:53

    To Lidia;

    Obama was probably a CIA concoction and Sanders foreign policy voting record is definitly a cause of concern.

    But, reality is important. What makes you think that if Stein were to be elected to presidency, that she would not be just as susceptable to the systematic corruption, bribery and threats as Sanders, or anyone else for that matter? Given the enormity of corruption in DC, a Stein election would also inevitably disappoint, nobody can take on the Banks, AIPAC, Big Oil, The MIC. The Media, The Bush Clinton cabal, let alone the assortment of “think tanks” in DC.

    Do you think Stein is the Messiah that will stand up to all that? Sanders does have power and is a Senator who frequently stands against those interests, however imperfectly.

    • Deniz
      March 14, 2019 at 16:37

      Upon further research into the actual voting records of Sanders, I found that I was incorrect, his voting records are not really a problem.

      Sanders, in fact, has the least pro-Israel, most pro-Palestinian voting record in the Senate according to an analysis done by If Americans Knew. https://israelpalestinenews.org/where-do-your-congress-people-stand-on-palestine-israel/
      The survey results can be found here: https://israelpalestinenews.org/senate-scoreboard/

      The one item of in your argument that may have some grounding in fact is that Sanders has come out strongly as characterizing Assad as a brutal dictator (as has Gabbard by the way). I attributed to this more to the vice grip on thought that is typical of DC, than his actual beliefs, but I am not a mind reader.

    • Skip Scott
      March 15, 2019 at 07:47

      Stein would have the same problems anybody would have with TPTB. Character assassination and/or actual assassination being at the top of a very long list. Until we undo the Deep State power structure, which will probably take a revolution, nobody stands a chance.

    • Tiu
      March 15, 2019 at 18:41

      IMO – Unfortunately a revolution in the US against the banking and political system would be a major step to solving many “problems” gripping the world today, whether that problem is debt, terrorism, declining living standards, pollution, industrialisation/de-industrialisation or a host of other such issues.
      Even more unfortunately a revolution in the US against the banking and political system would most likely be swiftly transformed into a civil war between the various fractures that have been embedded by the social planners through most of the 20th century.

    • Tim
      March 17, 2019 at 20:53

      Truly

  11. Trina Darlington
    March 14, 2019 at 11:32

    FINALLY AN HONEST/PRECISE ARTICLE with regard to Rep. OMAR!! Thank you sincerely for your contribution to REALITY/FACT-BASED-JOURNALISM. Please continue to grow this INCREDIBLY-IMPORTANT-MEDIA-RESOURCE. Presently I am on disability; however look forward to a sizable donation when back to work

  12. Yasmine Nasser-rafi
    March 14, 2019 at 07:28

    “Antisemitism* is a mind control trigger word to restrict liberty, with the evil intent to sign punitive unConstitutional legislation into law. To make unenlightened Constitution illiterate populace to give in to this human law and that human law and bow to Unconstitutional laws. Idolization of individuals, groups, or a nation based on ethnic background, race, religion enslaves a nation: God has said in every age ,” thou shalt not have any gods before me”.

  13. Rick Patel
    March 13, 2019 at 17:46

    Ilhan Omar is America’s Sweetheart. The craven, corrupt US government needs 100 more brave women like her in Congress.

    • Hank
      March 13, 2019 at 18:24

      We as a nation should not be too concerned about anyone trying to spread truth. What we should be concerned about are those who try to PREVENT the spread of truth!

    • DH Fabian
      March 13, 2019 at 18:29

      We already have plenty of racists in government, and certainly don’t need one more.

    • Deniz
      March 13, 2019 at 22:45

      You know perfectly well that AIPAC is central to the corruption in politics and the war industry.
      Her comments have nothing to do with 99% of Jewish people, who as far as I can tell want no part of it.

    • Skip Scott
      March 14, 2019 at 10:19

      DH is a hit and run troll for the Zionists. I have never seen him reply to any criticisms. I think he knows he doesn’t have the ammo.

    • Ray Raven
      March 16, 2019 at 08:28

      Yes, and they all swear allegiance to AIPAC.

    • Tim
      March 17, 2019 at 20:54

      Amen

  14. March 13, 2019 at 15:59

    I completely agree with your analysis of the current political climate in our country. I am not anti-Jewish nor anti-Arab. I am pro-American meaning tha I support our “ideals” of justice, equality and human rights. I find my voice rchoed in representatives like Ms Omar. Please keep up the fight to preserve our values.

  15. Jay
    March 13, 2019 at 15:23

    lidia:

    “To back Sanders the Zionist/backer of USA imperialist wars is NOT “progressive” either”

    To call Sanders a backer of imperialist wars is a gross misrepresentation of Sanders’ well established record.

    He was the only major party progressive candidate in 2016. But of course he had the nomination stolen from him.

    Stein was not someone who had any chance of winning the election, Sanders would easily have beaten Trump.

    • lidia
      March 14, 2019 at 00:54

      No, to whitewash Sanders pro-imperialist war record is a gross misrepresentation of a truth – ie a lie. Should I list all the imperialist crimes he voted for, if one is banned in Google?
      And to be a major party progressive candidate means to be “progressive” imperialist. Major parties are but the same tool of imperialism with different labels.

  16. Anonymot
    March 13, 2019 at 14:22

    In early 1961, just before the Bay of Pigs CIA fiasco, I was commissioned by the Readers Digest to do an article about an anti-Castro guerrrilla group headed by the 2 Rey (sp?) brothers. One functioned inside Cuba, the other was based in Miami raising funds and promoting the anti-Castro movement. I spent about 1 1/2 months with them. It was a fascinating story, but for here it’s abrupt end is what’s interesting.

    The brother in Miami had been a Minister under Castro. They had fought together in the mountains to oust one of America and the Miami based Mafia’s favorite fascist dictators, Batista, but the brothers were fighting to install socialism and Castro installed communism and they fell out. In April, I was told told that the other brother was coming out to finalize a plan that would fell Castro’s government. They were certainly the strongest guerrilla movement since WW II in Europe, but the CIA was devoted to block them and make all anti-Castro action theirs alone.

    I would be allowed to sit in on that meeting. I remember 6 or so men present and they were convinced that with one blow, Castro would fall, because their troops would move into action. The blow? The destruction of the Island’s electric power system.

    Half way through the meeting one of the brothers was called out. He came back, ashen-faced and announced that the CIA’s Bay Of Pigs invasion had just begun. Their plan was over.

    • lidia
      March 14, 2019 at 00:57

      It shows (if the story is a true one) the real nature of these “anti-Castro socialists”.
      Nothing really surprising here – CIA had(?) on its payroll a lot of “non-authoritarian leftists” .

  17. March 13, 2019 at 14:16

    Amazon just banned professor Kevin MacDonald’s incendiary book “Culture of Critique.” The book contains some misinformation along with some very provocative points. The most controversial passages involve his argument that most Jews encourage diversity and legal and illegal immigration as part of a “group evolutionary strategy.”

    Amazon taking it upon itself to ban books should make every free-thinking citizen shudder at the disconcerting overreach.

  18. Paul G.
    March 13, 2019 at 13:07

    It is so satisfying seeing the desperate corporate Democrats squirm in that sea of conformist and compromised slime that masquerades as a “democratic” political system. I hope you get indigestion Nancy and Chuck.

  19. Virginia
    March 13, 2019 at 12:40

    It’s interesting that James Mattis talked about the price he paid everyday with CENTCOM working with Arabs because of the perceived bias by the US for Israel (paraphrase). See minutes 40:00 to 44:00 to hear how aligned are his views to Rep. Omar’s comments at:
    https://www.aspeninstitute.org/videos/james-mattis-centcom-review-turmoil-mideast-southwest-asia-its-implications-american-security/

    Btw, Sadat was not a Nazi nor a fascist. He terminated the recording of conversations between ordinary citizens and had these inherited-from-Nassar records destroyed; he instituted moderate socialism under his government; his contest with Israel had to do with Egypt’s humiliating defeat at Israel’s hands suffered in 1956 and 1967 which he “corrected” to a great degree by the October war of 1973; and his over-arching goal was to have a free and happy Egyptian people and peace for all the world. His autobiography, IN SEARCH OF IDENTITY, tells the story of an extraordinary and inspired life.

  20. Mike
    March 13, 2019 at 12:01

    An informative article. Thank you. Cheers for Tliab and Omar might be premature. I have nothing against them personally. But those screams your hearing are Political Islam invading the Body Politic. If your not able to look at the UK, France and Germany for examples of a culture and religion that does not assimilate, you will see it here soon enough. Israel does much that is wrong and some things that are actual human rights abuses and war crimes.
    I don’t think groups created and supported by the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas are the answer.
    I don’t think candidates supported and fronting for the Brotherhood and CAIR should be in the US Congress.

    • rosemerry
      March 13, 2019 at 16:53

      You have chosen two examples of organizations you claim should not be supported. Do you approve of all the others that are able to buy the “elected” reps in the US Congress?

    • lidia
      March 14, 2019 at 00:51

      The Zionist apartheid colony in Palestine IS a war crime/crime against humanity itself.
      And the author is NOT a supporter of Hamas or MB – he is an atheist leftist. But for Zionists to blame Hamas/MB is a pure chutzpah.

  21. March 13, 2019 at 10:15

    I linked to this article. I cannot provide the URL in the body of this comment but your form invites me to include it and link it to my name on this post.

  22. JeffB
    March 13, 2019 at 09:34

    Omar, and to a lesser degree Talib, are the Dems worst nightmare. The Democrats have been forced to adopt members that actually believe the rhetoric the Party has used to divide the country. We know Nancy and Chuck only believe enough of their own narrative to appeal to the discontented left – for votes. They don’t actually want to upset the Current World Order. But now, they’ve empowered the slice of their constituency that might really act on the views with which they threaten the rest of the populace. I have no doubt Omar represents her community of Somali-born refugees and admire her speaking for them. Talib may have no such deep seated beliefs but when paired with Omar, she looks principled. Sometimes opportunity comes in a scarf, sometimes in a paycheck. Either way, timing is everything.

  23. David G
    March 13, 2019 at 08:09

    Lurking just out of sight is the fact that Netanyahu may have permanently damaged Israel’s heretofore impregnable position in Congress by so openly siding against Obama and with Trump.

    The actions of the Congressional Dems in the recent dustup – from Omar’s refreshing clarity to the unreconstructed devotion to Israel of her chief critics – may not reflect any shift in their individual politics, but the way the censure effort fizzled is a possible early sign of a changed landscape.

    There are many issues on which the Dems and Repubs are identical, and there are some on which they differ: if Israel moves even part way along that continuum toward becoming a partisan issue, the consequences will be huge.

    This is still in its incipient stage, if indeed it is happening at all, but the rush that Netanyahu has enjoyed by openly partying with the Repubs and alienating the Dems this decade could have a long hangover.

  24. Nathan Mulcahy
    March 13, 2019 at 07:16

    Let me be very clear. I support BDS. I also vehemently oppose and criticize Israel for (1) being in violation of 66 UN Security Council resolutions, (2) for illegally annexing occupied Palestinian territories, (3) for committing war crimes, as recently as the recent Gaza protests, (4) for being an apartheid state (as President Jimmy Carter would agree), etc.

    According to our sold-out Congress and the presstitutes from corporate media that makes me an Anti-Semite. That’s their problem. BDS. Boycott Israel.

    • Steve Naidamast
      March 13, 2019 at 12:39

      Bravo! I am in good company then!

    • Guy
      March 13, 2019 at 15:17

      I also support BDS and it has nothing to do with Jewish people .It has to do with zionism and it’s criminality .
      The crux of the issue is the machinations of the zionists to equate Jewishness with zionism. It is a ruse .Do not be fooled .
      Murder is murder and no amount of obfuscation will make it otherwise. The Palestinian people are supposed to be under the care of the Israeli state under UN international law but instead are being murdered by them .

    • Dan
      March 13, 2019 at 20:29

      Under the care of the Jewish state? The Palestinians have the right of self-determination. Israel is Zionism. You cannot support Israel as a Jewish state and not be Zionist. Israel is also insane, and getting more so by the day:

      https://israelpalestinenews.org/israels-rule-of-the-rabbis-who-preach-genocide-fuels-holy-war/

    • lidia
      March 14, 2019 at 00:48

      Guy means that occupiers by law are obliged to protect occupied people – ie Palestinians. Of course, this “law” is just a sham.

    • sig
      March 13, 2019 at 21:09

      Totally agree! Thank you.

  25. Malthazar
    March 13, 2019 at 01:51

    Once again, the Angry Arab falls victim to his fallacious idea that “evangelical Christian, not Jews, are now the most fanatical Zionists in U.S. politics.”

    Wrong again, sadly; or at best misleading. While they may bark like mad dogs, the fundamentalist goobers, like Pavlov’s dog, only bark on command. They do not conceptualize or initiate the line of attack. That job belongs to dishonest Zionist media members and lobby apparatchiks. But once AIPAC and the rest of the Zionist apparatus have signaled their position, the goobers begin barking in a mad frenzy.

    The Christian goober Zionists are useful idiots. They add muscle, but are not the decision-makers.

    • OlyaPola
      March 13, 2019 at 03:23

      “While they may bark like mad dogs, the fundamentalist goobers, like Pavlov’s dog, only bark on command.”

      Perhaps some nuances of Mr. Pavlov’s work are not perceived by you.

      The dogs did/do bark on encouragement/stimulation including but not restricted to the stimulation of expectation/ silence and hence commands are rarely required since “learned behaviours” facilitate some assay of complicity.

      Mr. Milgram’s work also was/is subject to limited perception.

      “The Christian goober Zionists are useful idiots.”

      The resort to facilitating useful foolery is practising better manners and more sustainable than killing those rendered useful fools, although the opponents appear not to agree. which may be illustrated by exploring the questions:

      1. Whatever happened to Mr. Bandera?

      2. Whatever happened to Mr. Mitrone?

    • Dan
      March 13, 2019 at 20:32

      Exactly. The Christian Zionists have no power. The power lies with the Jewish Zionists via their control of the narrative. And we know how they control the narrative.

  26. mrtmbrnmn
    March 13, 2019 at 00:03

    The courageous (and clever) Ilhan Omar checked so many important identity boxes on the Dementedcrat shopping-for-votes “list” – woman, woman of color, Muslim, African, refugee, immigrant, Constitutionally elected representative(w/o Putin’s help), Midwesterner, mother, young(!) – when she truthfully called them out for their AIPEC sycophancy & “Benjamin”-grubbing, they didn’t know whether to
    s**t or go blind. Hoist with their own “identity” petard. It was a pleasure to watch them squirm.

  27. Maria S Calef
    March 12, 2019 at 21:00

    Here is a honor to the greatest level have the two female Muslim of USA Congress; Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar.

  28. Deniz
    March 12, 2019 at 20:04

    Sanders, wisely, came out with a strong show of support for Omar. Let’s hope that resonates with the black community so there will be a united progressive front going into the elections.

    • lidia
      March 13, 2019 at 02:06

      Sanders is a Zionist, so NOT, he NOT came out with a strong show of support for Omar.
      Not mentioning Sanders support for USA imperialist crimes

    • Deniz
      March 13, 2019 at 10:21

      Sanders positions are more nuanced than what you are suggesting. I also dont see any other candidate with a shred of integrity that has a chance to beat Trump. Venezuela is a clear indicator that Trump has lost whatever fight was in him, which means that he will be owned by the neocons for the next 6 years and is already a failed presidency. On a practical level, I just dont see how Sanders could be worse than Trump. I would rather see Gabbard as president, but I find that scenario highly unlikely.

    • Anonymot
      March 13, 2019 at 14:30

      Gabbard, absolutely, yes, but as you say, she has little presidential chance, because Hillary hates her for pulling out of Hillay-owned DNC to back Sanders. And hateful Hillary still owns the DNC thanks to Deep State.

    • lidia
      March 14, 2019 at 01:02

      Yeah, USA “progressives” always choose to back a “progressive” imperialist, because it is “realistic”.
      Obama was as much a criminal as Bush-jr. And Dems duped once these who believed in Sanders’ chance, and Sanders himself said not a word against this.

  29. evelync
    March 12, 2019 at 17:53

    Representatives Omar and Tlaib are refreshing critics of wrongheaded policies that do not serve anyone well, IMO, except perhaps Cold War ideologues and MIC benefactors.
    Fairness and justice in domestic as well as foreign policy, standing up for oppressed people is the responsibility of all of us.

    As Glenn Greenwald wrote on The Intercept, Representative Omar’s comments were not anti Semitic… that’s just an excuse to brush the truth under the rug – her comments pointed to policies supported by a lobbyist bought U.S. Congress and that serve powerful financial interests.

    These spirited women are welcome in our Congress by me and others who understand that we have to fight to have policies debated in the public sphere and not allow fear mongering to shut down an open debate.

    • David Schadeberg
      March 12, 2019 at 21:10

      Here, here!

    • Tiu
      March 13, 2019 at 01:32

      Not so sure about your “standing up for oppressed people is the responsibility of all”. That one has been miss-used frequently as an excuse to intervene or back one side against another e.g. Syria and Libya, the “right to protect” doctrine etc., and load-up the intervening countries with massive war debts and the intervened countries with war debts plus re-building expenses. Israel was founded on the canard of “standing up for oppressed people” – previous generations were told they needed their own homeland after all the persecution they had allegedly been through.
      Perhaps if citizens’ could convince their politicians to focus on domestic issues before foreign issues there might be better results. If it were possible for the Middle East (and other regions) to be left alone to sort out their own problems, those problems would be solved sooner.
      The big thing to try to prevent is the New World Order, the One World Government. The people behind that are just waiting for issues to ride us all to being under their control, and it’s working because people buy the issues – “global warming” being a good example.

    • Guy
      March 13, 2019 at 15:22

      So well said.

  30. Ronald Donald
    March 12, 2019 at 17:47

    Good article. Just a correction: Omar isn’t an Arab, she is an African Somali who practiced Islam. Equally problematic for westerners who want see Africans as grateful recipients of western charity and as good blacks who can used as tropes for deriding African Americans (the bad blacks).

    • March 12, 2019 at 19:21

      Somalia is a member of the Arab League, and thus its citizens are considered Arab.

    • Tiu
      March 13, 2019 at 01:42

      I believe Somali origins are from what is now Yemen.

    • lidia
      March 13, 2019 at 02:08

      Arabs are not “race” but a language-culture-historical group.
      Just like Jews are a religious group, not “race”.

  31. neal
    March 12, 2019 at 17:23

    Grrat article. Typo in paragraph 18 sentence 1 “Nazim” instead of Nazism? Naziism?

  32. Jack Hudson
    March 12, 2019 at 17:11

    They are more a danger to themselves and their families than they are the women of the US.

    They are all quite aware in the Holy Book they claim as the center of truth they would be shut up and put in a corner somewhere as a slave to men.

    Of course, only in a Christian Nation are you permitted to voice your views in such a way even from the Halls Of Congress.

    So speak on ladies.

    • dave
      March 12, 2019 at 21:51

      Except she *wasn’t* permitted to voice her views. She’s being censured, remember? Do keep up.

    • Jack Hudson
      March 13, 2019 at 05:48

      That has to be the most ridiculous reply I’ve ever heard in my life. Being Censured, yet has the media projecting their views across the entire nation.

      Best for you to stay in your bubble.

    • lidia
      March 13, 2019 at 13:27

      Yeah, and “media” lie about her views, of course.

    • lidia
      March 13, 2019 at 02:10

      Yeah, Nazi Germany was a great Christian nation too. They had a deal with Pope and “God is with us” written on their belt buckles.

    • Jack Hudson
      March 13, 2019 at 05:45

      Yeah, and Pol Pot and Stalin were Godless and responsible for how many millions of deaths in comparison?

      Thought so.

    • ronnie mitchell
      March 13, 2019 at 13:13

      There is NO other Country in all of modern day history going back to the beginning of the US that has killed more people than the USA.
      Stalin, Pol Pot (US is responsible for his reign) or Hitler can’t match the record of the USA when it comes to the number of people killed..not. even. close. Nor the number of Countries invaded/destroyed.
      We can toss in Vietnam and N. Korea alone to match Hitler and that is just a tiny fraction of the numbers killed overall , add to that the Philippines, the South American Countries we overthrew to install dictators who would not be able to do such massacres out in the open (like the soccer stadium) without the open support (and arms) of the USA.
      The late William Blum has quite the list …https://williamblum.org/essays/read/overthrowing-other-peoples-governments-the-master-list

      I put the date on the following because just like Mr. Blum’s list many more have been added since those dates (we don’t stop) and I shouldn’t have to list all the ones since 2013 as it should be fresh in your mind, it certainly is to the victims’ surviving family, friends and associates.

      The US Has Invaded 70 Nations Since 1776 –
      Make 4 July Independence From America Day

      By Dr Gideon Polya

      05 July, 2013
      https://www.countercurrents.org/polya050713.htm

    • lidia
      March 13, 2019 at 13:25

      USA and UK had helped Pol Pot, by the way.
      And USA and UK are NOW mass-murdering and torturing.

    • rosemerry
      March 13, 2019 at 17:02

      Jews a religious group???Judaism is well hidden in people like Netanyahu and his ilk.

      I notice Florida’s new “antisemitism” law is also pretending that criticising Israel is somehow a hatred of the Jewish religion. As if criticising the cruel, violent, illegal behavior of Pompeo or Pence is criticism of Christians!!!

    • lidia
      March 14, 2019 at 01:06

      As a matter of fact Zionists are often even not religious, Ben Gurion had written letters in Sabbath, for ex. So, their claim to Palestine as a “Jewish state” is even more false than many think.
      Many religious Jews had seen Zionism as a heresy and were right from Judaism’s POV. Even now Neturey Karta and others are anti-Zionists.

  33. KiwiAntz
    March 12, 2019 at 16:44

    They (Saudi Arabia=Theocratic Sunni Kingdom comprising Whahhabi Muslims, sponsors of Terrorism) may be SOB’s, but they are our SOB’s? Yes ,you can be Muslim as long as your our Muslim SOB’s, according to the American Political Elite, but you must be the acceptable type, as the article highlights, being the type that doesn’t rock the Zionist boat? The one abiding fact that I get from this article is this?? Wherever you find Chaos, disorder, disharmony & contention that leads to conflicts & Wars, there you find the suffocating presence of the American Empire? It’s a given! This Empire is like the deadly AIDS virus, infecting everything & everyone it comes into contact with!

  34. March 12, 2019 at 16:39

    Ilhan Omar is something of a miracle.

    She has the face of the Madonna. Which I think makes it far more difficult to attack her with any credibility.

    She proudly wears her hijab. Which I think is a wonderful statement against all the ignorant haters out there.

    And she speaks the truth – not prejudice, not hate, but the truth.

    Of course, truth, and especially on the subject of Israel, is almost unheard of in Washington.

    • Gregory Herr
      March 12, 2019 at 21:00

      I’m glad you put it that way, John. She is something of a miracle. She carries and speaks truth with dignity and intelligence. Elliot Abrams meets Rectitude.

      And yep, “especially on the subject of Israel”…
      Did you catch the way Omar managed her “apology” for “hurt feelings” over one substantive acronymical tweet… the hurt feelings, and Nancy, in all their glorious fatuousness.

  35. Joe Tedesky
    March 12, 2019 at 16:22

    Another thing that’s different other than these new Muslims in DC is the Jewish Voices for Peace are finally getting some notice. The rise of the other Jew who isn’t about ‘mowing the lawn’ in Gaza is a beautiful thing. It is long overdue that these reasonable Jews get some attention. Representative Ilhan Omar is to be congratulated for her standing tall against the establishment.

    https://mondoweiss.net/2019/03/palestine-solidarity-effective/

    • dave
      March 12, 2019 at 22:42

      Execllent point.

      As the author points out, the most ardent Zionists in the US these days are evangelical Christians, not Jews. He might also have mentioned white supremacists. (I think some of them actually describe their political philosophy as “White Zionism”.)

      It’s important to emphasize this distinction, because once people begin to appreciate the full extent of Congressional subservience to Israel, there could be a genuinely anti-Semitic backlash against Jews.

    • Joe Tedesky
      March 13, 2019 at 06:52
    • Guy
      March 13, 2019 at 15:31

      Reminds me of the book by Alan Hart ” Zionism the Real Enemy of the Jews”
      So true and this is why the younger generation of Jews are starting to realize this.

  36. Peter VE
    March 12, 2019 at 16:03

    NPR fell right in line. Mara Liasson said Rep. Omar referred to Jews in two separate “reports” on Friday’s ATC and Saturday’s Weekend Edition. Of course, the transcripts of her reports are not available on line. Quelle surprise

    • neal
      March 12, 2019 at 17:28

      Yeah, they have been especially garbage under Trump. They hammered Omar and also cheer the Venezuela Coup with as much fervor as any news organization. The propaganda has gotten much easier to spot in it’s craven exaggeration.

    • AnneR
      March 13, 2019 at 08:50

      Frankly, I do think that NPR (almost as much a state propaganda medium as the BBC given that some of its funding comes from the Federal govt) has been an Orwellian shill for a long time. Perhaps always. After all, before the WWW where might we have obtained alternative viewpoints, heard other voices, other positions, not just the governmentally, ruling elite preferred ones? And the Beeb – much vaunted though has historically been – please! Fully state funded (something it *never* mentions even as it constantly *reminds* listeners that Russian/Chinese media is “state” run). (So controlling were the ruling elites of the Beeb when I was young, back in the 1940s and 1950s, that only one non-received pronunciation [think aristo voices] voice was ever allowed on the radio and then only as a “compere” for a midday music program. He was from Yorkshire, in the NE of England. If for voices (and accents, let alone dialect), then how much more so for the worldview to be conveyed to the bewildered herd?

      NPR and the BBC (and all the other MSM) work as much, if not more, by omission than committing anything to speech (except when the choice of words in order to vilify the presently despised). So all but nothing about the Islamophobia (and racism?) surrounding Ilhan Omar and her position on Israel and her support of Palestinians (and concomitantly the complete silence on the really existing criminality of Israel’s actions toward the indigenous Palestinians since 1947), only programs or pieces on the supposedly growing “anti-semitism” that her remarks, views express.

      Meanwhile – how many Brits or Americans have heard a dicky bird on either of these media about: the Windrush generation? the Chagos islanders and their winning of their case in the International court followed immediately by the British government’s refusal to accept the verdict? Where are the discussions about these travesties of British justice, of human rights – and in both cases deliberately conceived and enacted?

      The Windrush generation’s denial of British residency/citizenship (some 50+ years of their being invited to come and live in the UK from the Caribbean islands) because, according to the then Tory govt, they couldn’t prove that they had legally entered the UK. And that after that govt had deliberately destroyed the paperwork – now there’s a stellar piece of racism set in motion by – the Maybot when she was Home Secretary.

      The Chagos Islanders – the UK (with pressure perhaps and certainly support of the US) evicted these people (between 1967-1973) from their own island homes in the Indian Ocean in order for the US to build and maintain a military base there, on the largest island, Diego Garcia. (These islands were already in dispute – between Mauritius and the UK.) The Islanders did not want to leave their homes and they have sought to return, but been refused all along. Last month the ICJ ruled in the Islanders favor – and the UK govt (just like the rogue US govt when it suits its purpose) refused to recognize the ruling. So the Islanders remain dispossessed.

      Given these behaviors and the fact that the US itself is a nation state constructed on the lands of indigenous peoples it dispossessed, ethnically cleansed, slaughtered, viewed as “primitive,” is it any wonder that, aside from any interests of the US corporate-capitalists, the US (and almost equally the UK) supports Israel’s existence, as an apartheid, ethnic cleansing (still, some 70 years later, ongoing) state? That it condones everything and anything that Israel does and says while condemning the righteous statements and pro-Palestinian positions of Ilhan Omar and (I imagine) Ms Tlaib?

  37. March 12, 2019 at 15:37

    I would elaborate a bit on the danger represented by several women — I would add Tulsi Gabbard. The think tank and media discourse of ideas is conducted in two stages. In stage 1 ideas are sorted into “mainstream” and “fringe”. The wackiness of the fringe is then taken as an axiom (tropes etc.) and the “serious discussion” is restricted to “mainstream”.

    So if you have members of Congress that are sufficiently good looking and articulate that they cannot be invisible who express “fringe ideas” then you got a headache. For example, major networks interview them, and “tropes” seep into mainstream, and without convincing arguments why these tropes are wrong, it can lead to a calamity. Look what happened to the “impractical idea of single payer system of providing medical care”. Businesses opposed to that idea have turnover in trillions of dollars and they managed to keep the mainstream discourse in a vise. But now even calling an idea “socialist” does not suffice to dismiss it.

    Gabbard is against the idea that it is OK to classify some government as “regimes”, and then the only sensible discussion is what is the best way to eliminate them. Just economic sanctions, or crippling sanctions, organizing coups, sending the troops — and what should be done when they do not fall. She propagates a trope that this is imperialistic hubris that results in misery abroad, poverty at home, “we could spend those trillions on our communities”, even in the case of most vile governments on earth, in Syria and Venezuela.

    Ilhan dealt with the trope that Israeli lobby is too powerful. And this idea is pretty dangerous if allowed in the mainstream because it is relatively subtle. After all, it is OK to be proud how powerful it is, like telling an anecdote how “I could collect signatures of 95 Senators in 24h”, what is not OK is to add “too”, after all, there is never too much of a good thing?

    This particularly applies to governments that believe in this power, and conclude that the best way to achieve their goals is to go along with it. This explains why Malaysians hire American Jewish lobbyists with AIPAC experience, why Gulfie monarchies and Egypt cooperate with Israel, and why “central Europeans” cooperate too. Thus good Arabs that As’ad writes about believe in the “trope” in a good constructive way.

    • dave
      March 12, 2019 at 22:47

      I think Gandhi said something like: “First they ignore you, then they mock you, then they attack you, then you win.”

      We’re getting to the “attacking you” phase now. Good!

  38. Jay
    March 12, 2019 at 15:20

    It’s a stretch to call Michelle Goldberg of the New York Times “progressive”.

    She didn’t back Bernie Sanders in 2015/16. (She wasn’t writing for the NY Times back then.) She backed the rightist Hillary Clinton.

    Her pretense that Rep. Omar engaged in an “an anti-Semitic trope” is to be expected.

    • lidia
      March 13, 2019 at 02:13

      To back Sanders the Zionist/backer of USA imperialist wars is NOT “progressive” either.
      Jill Stein could be called progressive candidate

  39. Yasmine
    March 12, 2019 at 15:06

    Rashida Tlaib has been much less courageous than Ilhan Omar though.

  40. Charles Misfeldt
    March 12, 2019 at 13:54

    I hear truth to power coming from Omar and Tlaib, I hear nothing but Zionist, dominationist, garbage coming from the pro Israel, pro Saudi Arabia crowd.

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