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& # 39; I know which intolerance looks like & # 39; Ilhan Omar takes his turn in the spotlight American News



Ilhan Omar made history in January when she became the first Somali American and one of the first Muslim women to be sworn in the US Congress.

Part of a historically different recruitment of candidates elected in the middle class in 201

8, hijab-wearing Minnesota has become one of the faces of change in Donald Trump's America, a country she entered as a 12-year-old refugee.

But in less than two months, she has also found herself at the center of the controversy and is counting on the study that accompanies the national spotlight.

This week, Omar was forced to apologize for comments that democratic leaders said contained "anti-Semitic troops and harmful accusations". Days later, her intense grilling of Elliott Abrams, a Trump official and long-standing figure, began again.

Omar emerged as a key bogeyman for Republicans who inexorably attacked her views on Israeli-Palestinian relations. [19659006Kongresvrouwenundbevteerdethehemsagdeatdetvarproblematiskogufølselig]

Logan Bayroth, J Street

"Kingmate Ilhan Omar has quickly created a reputation for himself as a young, bold and progressive willing to go on and challenge some of Washington DC's sacred cows, powerful interest groups and conservative godfathers like Elliot Abrams, "said Wajahat Ali, a New York Times opinion writer and commentator.

"Therefore, her diverse base chose her why she continues to inspire progressives and it is a testament to what they expect from her – demanding accountability, supervision, and calling all out unapologetically."

But Ali added, "she "Learn it goes both ways". He also noted that Omar's brush with controversy "shows that she is a little green and needs to feel more sensitive to her language".

"She apologized, it seems like she's getting it," he said. "But there is also a measure of her because she is a Muslim and a black woman. Let's not fool ourselves."

Since his rise to Congress, Omar's positions over Israel, one of America's closest allies, have shaken controversy to break with the long-standing tradition in Washington.

Omar has supported the boycott, dispatch and sanction, or BDS, designed to push Israel to finish the West Bank. She has said that she "almost chuckles" when American politicians maintain Israel as a democratic example. But a recent tweet that suggests that US support for Israel is motivated by political donations invited backlash from both parties.


Ilhan Omar grills Trumps Venezuela envoy over past – video

"It's about Benjamins, baby," Omar tweeted in response to a Republican leader vowing action against her and Rashida Tlaib, another Muslim congresswoman, over their criticism of the Israeli government.

The comment claimed the $ 100 bill, which contains Benjamin Franklin, and led a Jewish journalist to ask Omar, who she thought was "paying American politicians to be pro-Israel". She pointed to the US Israeli Public Affairs Committee or Aipac, an influential pro-Israel lobby group that did not contribute to political campaigns, but financed training trips to Israel for members of Congress and staff.

Following a charge of party leaders Omar apologized "unequivocally" and said she did not intend to continue Jewish stereotypes. She nevertheless argued for her that the lobbyist's "problematic role" in the US policy should be resolved.

On Friday, Omar gave his first conversation since the controversy and told his hometown newspaper, the Star Tribune of Minneapolis: "I know what intolerance looks like."

She added: "What has been detrimental to this whole process for me is knowing that I could be someone who could use language that causes evil to others. "

Omar's efforts to make changes to her comments were rejected by the Republicans who burst press releases linking others Democrats with her in an attempt to label the whole party as anti-Semitic.

Trump said Omar should resign while Vice-President Mike Pence said she should at least be removed from the Foreign Affairs Committee. These allegations called for accusations of hypocrisy.

In 2017, after white supremacists marched in Charlottesville, Virginia among other slogans, "Jews will not replace us", and after a counter-protest was killed, the president declared that there were "very fine people on both sides". In the 2016 election, he defended his campaign's use of the image with Hillary Clinton's face over a six-point star and a pile of $ 100 bills.

Critics were also quick to note that the Republicans only recently punished Steve King, an Iowa representative with a long history of making obvious racist remarks.

Logan Bayroff, Communications Director at J Street, a Progressive Pro-Israel Group, said the Omar & # 39; s comments were a "dangerous oversimplification and political weapon" of current issues.

"The Magistrate apologized for the things she said it was problematic and insensitive," he said. "And yet from the right and republican side of the time there is a desire to try to exploit these controversies so as not to address issues of anti-Semitism and not to promote a better political debate or outcomes, but to score political points." 19659025] "It Wasn't a Question"

Omar's tensions with Abrams, Trump's envoy to Venezuela, fell into a similar trap. At a meeting of a foreign ministry in the committee, Omar Abrams pushed over his past, including his role in the Iran-Contra scandal and support for brutal governments in Central America.

  Elliott Abrams meets by protesters as he testifies to the Foreign Ministry Committee.



Elliott Abrams meets by demonstrators as he testifies to the Foreign Affairs Committee of Parliament. Photo: Jim Lo Scalzo / EPA

"Abrams," she said, "in 1991, you were guilty of two counts of reluctant congressional information on the Iran-Contra case, which you were later pardoned by President George HW Bush. I do not understand why members of this committee or the American people should find some testimony you give today to be truthful. "

When Abrams tried to respond, Omar shot back:" It was not a question. "

Conservative condemned Omar's treatment of a veteran American diplomat who has long advised prominent Republicans. The Progressives celebrated Omar's question mark, which became viral as a rare example of a Washington elite member being commissioned.

Patrick Iber, a professor of history at the University of Wisconsin, said it was "perfectly appropriate" to press Abrams on his work in the Reagan years.

"The Reagan Administration policies in Central America were responsible for really great violence and suffering, and Abram's role in confirming that human rights progress was made by US-backed regimes," said iber. "It essentially meant that he disqualified and disapproved of evidence to the contrary, including the terrible massacre at El Mozote in El Salvador."

Phil Gunson, a researcher and political analyst for the Crisis Group, said it would be "unthinkable" not to raise Abram's past in a hearing focusing on another controversial Latin American political issue over which he has control.

"In that regard, I think Omar was entirely entitled to remember that this is a public official with a record to lie to the congress," he said. [19659003] Although Gunson found Omar to be "uninformed" about the situation in Venezuela, and how it differs from Guatemala and El Salvador in the 1980s, he said it was required by lawmakers to ask hard questions about officials, tasked with overseeing US policy.

"In view of his previous record, I am not encouraged that the man the Trump administration chose to monitor the restoration of democracy in Venezuela is Elliott Abrams," Gunson said.

Nevertheless, Omar's position has left Democrats in Congress split with some disclosure of concerns over the rhetoric and tone of congressmen.

But the house speaker Nancy Pelosi after meeting with Omar to counter the excuse of his tweets and the latter signaled that it was time to move on – at least f or now.

"A new congressional member apologized for her remarks," Pelosi told CNN CNN . "It took [Republicans] what, 13 years to see Steve King?"


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