Democrat Ilhan Omar Uses Anti-Jewish Smear About Money: ‘She Might as Well Call Us Hook-Nosed’

Ilhan Omar SOTU (Mandel Ngan / AFP / Getty)
Mandel Ngan / AFP / Getty

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) launched a new antisemitic volley on Twitter on Sunday, accusing a pro-Israel group of buying influence in Congress, and referring to an offensive Jewish stereotype that even fellow critics of Israel found abhorrent.

Omar began by re-tweeting Glenn Greenwald, co-founder of the Intercept, who has long been hostile to Israel.

Greenwald had criticized House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (D-CA) for his comments to Breitbart News Saturday and other outlets, accusing Democrats of double standards in their reluctance to punish Omar and other Democrats for antisemitic rhetoric when they had eagerly censured Rep. Steve King (R-IA) for racist language.

“Nancy Pelosi has not said a word,” McCarthy told Breitbart News Saturday. “So that means she’s supportive of these actions” by Omar.

Last month, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) promoted Omar to the House Foreign Affairs Committee, despite controversy about Omar’s past antisemitic rhetoric and her radical anti-Israel foreign policy views.

McCarthy told Breitbart News: “If [Pelosi] does not do something, we will take action on the floor.”

Greenwald tweeted in response that it was “stunning” that McCarthy and Republicans were defending Israel:

Rep. Omar responded, “It’s all about the Benjamins baby,” suggesting that politicians had been paid to back Israel.

Batya Ungar-Sargon, the opinion editor at the left-wing Forward — which is generally critical of Israel — tweeted in response that Omar’s remark was antisemitic. “That’s the second anti-Semitic trope you’ve tweeted,” she said, the first being Omar’s 2012 tweet alleging that “Israel has hypnotized the world.” Omar has acknowledged that the first tweet was offensive, but has refused to apologize for it, and has refused to delete it: it is still live as of this writing.

In response, Omar tweeted simply, “AIPAC!”, referring to the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee, an influential pro-Israel lobby group that is closely associated with the American Jewish community.

However, AIPAC is not a political action committee (PAC), and does not donate to, or endorse, candidates. The claim that AIPAC bribes Congress is a common antisemitic theme among extremists on both the left and the right.

Ungar-Sargon responded:

Other journalists on the left shared their shock and dismay at Omar’s tweet:

Politico contributing editor Joshua M. Seitz agreed with National Journal political reporter Josh Kraushaar that Omar’s statement was part of a “pattern” of antisemitic rhetoric.

Chelsea Clinton tweeted her condemnation of Omar’s rhetoric: “We should expect all elected officials, regardless of party, and all public figures to not traffic in anti-Semitism.”

Others were also livid:


At one point, Omar inadvertently retweeted a response by Zeitz in which he had declared: “She might as well call us hook-nosed.”

Ilhan Omar retweet (Screenshot / Twitter)

Ilhan Omar retweet (Screenshot / Twitter)

She later undid the retweet.

Update: Omar later retweeted a supporter who claimed she was merely “accurately describing” the “Israel lobby”:

Not only was Omar’s description of how AIPAC works inaccurate, but the term “Israel lobby” is itself a loaded one, often used in conspiracy theories alleging undue Jewish influence over the U.S. government.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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