Ilhan Omar Backs Down After Criticism From Jewish Democrats For Her Comparison Of U.S. And Taliban, Hamas

Representative Ilhan Omar backed down Thursday, issuing a statement clarifying remarks in which she appeared to equate the United States and Israel to the Taliban.

Representative Ilhan Omar backed down Thursday after being criticized by Nancy Pelosi and Democrat leadership, issuing a statement clarifying remarks in which she appeared to equate the United States and Israel to the Taliban and Hamas.

“To be clear: the conversation was about accountability for specific incidents regarding those ICC (International Criminal Court) cases, not a moral comparison between Hamas and the Taliban and the U.S. and Israel,” Omar said Thursday.

“I was in no way equating terrorist organizations with democratic countries with well-established judicial systems.”

Former President Donald Trump last year authorized sanctions against the ICC after the group gave the green light to a probe into alleged war crimes committed in Afghanistan by the United States military.

“The United States will continue to use any means necessary to protect our citizens and our allies from unjust prosecution by the International Criminal Court,” former White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said at the time.

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Backlash Over Ilhan Omar’s Initial Statement

Ilhan Omar (D-MN) created controversy with her initial statement on Twitter in which she shared a video of herself questioning Secretary of State Antony Blinken about the ICC.

“We must have the same level of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes against humanity,” she captioned the tweet. “We have seen unthinkable atrocities committed by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban.”

A caucus of Jewish Democrats discussed condemning Omar for her comments, with a dozen ultimately putting their name to a statement doing so.

“Equating the United States and Israel to Hamas and the Taliban is as offensive as it is misguided,” the statement reads in part, before accusing Omar of making comments that provide “false equivalence” and “give cover to terrorist groups.”

Omar was initially defiant, accusing the Democrats of engaging in “Islamophobic tropes” and “constant harassment.”

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Squad Member Defiant

Ilhan Omar changed her tune shortly thereafter, however.

“Omar backed down,” according to The Hill, “issuing a more nuanced statement that explained that she was speaking about specific human rights investigations.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), along with Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC), and others on her leadership team issued a statement thanking her for the clarification.

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But, they warned, making “false equivalencies” between the United States and the Taliban is unacceptable.

“Drawing false equivalencies between democracies like the U.S. and Israel and groups that engage in terrorism like Hamas and the Taliban foments prejudice and undermines progress toward a future of peace and security for all,” the statement reads.

“We welcome the clarification by Congresswoman Omar that there is no moral equivalency between the U.S. and Israel and Hamas and the Taliban,” it concluded.

Representative Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), who has staunchly defended Omar, kept up her attacks on Democrats daring to hold her colleague accountable for the controversial statements by branding them racists.

“Freedom of speech doesn’t exist for Muslim women in Congress,” Tlaib tweeted. “The benefit of the doubt doesn’t exist for Muslim women in Congress.”

“House Democratic leadership should be ashamed of its relentless, exclusive tone policing of Congresswomen of color.”

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