Ilhan Omar says she was unaware of ‘tropes about Jews and money’
Rep. Ilhan Omar is drawing heat again — this time for claiming that she was unaware there are “tropes about Jews and money,” leaving an aide to Sen. Ted Cruz to declare: “Give me a break.”
Omar (D-Minn.), whom House Speaker Kevin McCarthy removed from the House Foreign Affairs Committee, was trying to defend herself in a CNN interview Sunday, from accusations that she has made anti-Semitic comments in the past.
”I certainly did not or was not aware that the word ‘hypnotized’ was a trope. I wasn’t aware of the fact that there are tropes about Jews and money. That has been very enlightening part of this journey,” Omar said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
“To insinuate that I knowingly said these things when people have read into my comments to make it sound as if I have something against the Jewish community is so wrong,” she continued.
Omar, the first Somali-American and one of the first Muslims elected to Congress, once compared the Jewish state to terrorist organizations like Hamas and the Taliban, and said the relationship between Israel and the United States is “all about the Benjamins.”
Omar’s explanation didn’t go over well with Twitter users.
“Ilhan Omar employed one antisemitic trope in 2012, after which she said learned all about antisemitism ‘from Jewish orgs. She then employed another one in 2019,” Avi Mayer, the former managing director of public affairs and senior spokesperson for the American Jewish Committee, said on the social media site.
“But she didn’t know there are tropes about Jews and money?” he said, linking to her appearance on CNN.
Steve Guest, special advisor for communications for Cruz, was incredulous.
“Democrat Rep. Ilhan Omar claims on CNN that she was ‘not aware that the word “hypnotized” was a trope’ and ’wasn’t aware of the fact that there are tropes about Jews and money.’ Give me a break. That’s BS,” he said on Twitter.
In 2012, Omar tweeted that “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel. #Gaza #Palestine #Israel.”
Hananya Naftali, a human rights activist, accused Omar of lying.
“Democrat Congresswoman Ilhan Omar is not only an anti-Semite but also a bad liar. ‘I didn’t know there were stereotypes about Jews and money.’ Spare me,” he said.
Dov Hikind, the former state assemblyman from Brooklyn, also spoke out against Omar.
“Ilhan Omar definitely learned a LOT about antisemitic tropes … Omar discovered that if she focuses on ‘Israel’ and ‘Zionists’ instead of ‘Jews’ she can promote the same blood libels and get away with it without looking like an overt neo-Nazi à la Kanye,” he said.
Along with Omar, McCarthy removed Reps. Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell, both Democrats from California, from their spots on the House Intelligence Committee.