Omar seeks to make clear feedback after Jewish House Democrats accuse her of evaluating US and Israel with Hamas and Taliban

Jewish House Democrats condemn Omar for comparing US and Israel with Hamas and Taliban

“On Monday, I asked Secretary of State Antony Blinken about ongoing International Criminal Court investigations,” Omar mentioned in an announcement. “To be clear: the conversation was about accountability for specific incidents regarding those ICC cases, not a moral comparison between Hamas and the Taliban and the U.S. and Israel.

“I used to be by no means equating terrorist organizations with democratic nations with well-established judicial methods.”

The clarification comes days after Omar prompted a public rift among Democrats when she tweeted Monday that “we’ve seen unthinkable atrocities dedicated by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban.”

“We will need to have the identical stage of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes towards humanity,” she wrote, including a video of herself questioning Blinken during a House hearing Monday.

On Wednesday, the group of Jewish House lawmakers, including House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler, argued that “equating the United States and Israel to Hamas and the Taliban is as offensive as it’s misguided.”

“Ignoring the variations between democracies ruled by the rule of regulation and contemptible organizations that have interaction in terrorism at finest discredits one’s meant argument and at worst displays deep-seated prejudice,” the group mentioned in a statement.

They continued, “false equivalencies give cowl to terrorist teams.”

Omar’s views on Israel and Palestinian rights have often put her at crossroads with fellow Democrats, and GOP members often highlight her stance to justify calls for her removal from committees. The dispute between Omar, a progressive from Minnesota, and the group of House members who pushed back on her comments underscores the fracture throughout the Democratic Party over Israel coverage, persevering with after a recent, violent days-long conflict within the area.

House Democratic leaders mentioned in an announcement Thursday, “We welcome the clarification by Congresswoman Omar that there isn’t any ethical equivalency between the U.S. and Israel and Hamas and the Taliban.”

But, they also said, “drawing false equivalencies between democracies just like the U.S. and Israel and teams that have interaction in terrorism like Hamas and the Taliban foments prejudice and undermines progress towards a way forward for peace and safety for all.”

Omar, who is Muslim, had initially called her colleagues’ Wednesday statement “shameful” and accused them of using Islamophobic tropes.

“It’s shameful for colleagues who name me once they want my assist to now put out an announcement asking for ‘clarification’ and never simply name. The islamophobic tropes on this assertion are offensive. The fixed harassment (and) silencing from the signers of this letter is insufferable,” she wrote on Twitter.

Jeremy Slevin, a spokesman for Omar, said that the congresswoman had reached out to the group ahead of their statement release to offer clarification, but calls were not returned.

Omar also shared a threatening, profanity-laced voicemail her office received, adding that “each time I communicate out on human rights I’m inundated with loss of life threats.”

Fellow progressive Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York mentioned in a tweet Thursday, “Pretty sick & uninterested in the fixed vilification, intentional mischaracterization, and public focusing on of @IlhanMN coming from our caucus.

“They have no concept for the danger they put her in by skipping private conversations & leaping to fueling targeted news cycles around her.”

Democratic Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan strongly criticized the assertion by House Democratic leaders, saying in a tweet, “Freedom of speech doesn’t exist for Muslim women in Congress. 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.”

Omar additionally mentioned she was citing an open case within the International Criminal Court towards Israel, the US, Hamas and the Taliban, which she argued “isn’t comparison or from ‘deeply seated prejudice’.”

In March, the chief prosecutor on the ICC announced plans for a proper investigation into alleged battle crimes by Israel within the Palestinian territories, prompting an offended response from Israeli leaders. Alleged battle crimes by Palestinian militant teams like Hamas will even be investigated, however Israeli officers have mentioned they consider the courtroom is working outdoors the scope of its mandate, questioning its de facto assertion {that a} Palestinian state exists beneath worldwide regulation.
The ICC has additionally previously authorized an investigation into alleged battle crimes and crimes towards humanity dedicated in Afghanistan by US armed forces, the CIA and the Taliban.

Israel and the United States will not be signatories to the Rome Statute which established the ICC in 2002, so the courtroom’s investigation and any eventual ruling carry much less weight.

In a House Foreign Affairs listening to Monday, Omar had requested Blinken concerning the Biden administration’s opposition to the ICC pursuing these investigations.

“I haven’t seen any evidence in either cases that domestic courts both can and will prosecute alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity,” Omar mentioned to Blinken Monday, including, “So in both of these cases, if domestic courts can’t or won’t pursue justice and we oppose the ICC, where do we think the victims of these supposed crimes can go for justice?”

Blinken replied that the US and Israel each have the mechanisms to make sure accountability in conditions the place there are considerations about use of pressure and human rights abuses. He added that the administration continues to consider that the ICC’s jurisdiction is inappropriate, absent a Security Council referral or request from the state itself.

Republicans have typically condemned Omar’s views, and National Republican Congressional Committee spokesperson Mike Berg mentioned Tuesday that “every House Democrat should condemn Omar’s disgusting comments.”

In February 2019, Omar was forced to apologize after members from each events accused her of anti-Semitism for utilizing an anti-Semitic trope.

The Democratic Party’s place has historically been in assist of Israel, however progressives, together with Omar, have been important of the Israeli authorities over its remedy of Palestinians. Omar additionally supported the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions motion, a nonviolent activist marketing campaign that goals to place financial and political strain on Israel over its actions towards Palestinians, together with calling for an finish to Israeli occupation of the West Bank.

This newest dustup between Omar and her Democratic friends follows the latest battle between Israel and Hamas-led militants in Gaza. Israel and Hamas agreed to a ceasefire on May 20, after greater than every week of violent battle that left tons of of individuals useless, most of them Palestinians.
Following the violence within the Middle East area, the number of reported anti-Semitic incidents greater than doubled in May in comparison with final 12 months, in keeping with the Anti-Defamation League.

This story and headline have been up to date with extra data Thursday.

Source’s Ryan Nobles, Manu Raju, Amir Tal, Andrew Carey, Paul LeBlanc and Angela Dewan contributed to this report.

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