Rep. Ilhan Omar, who has been labelled by critics as an anti-Semite, said she was “proud to stand with the son of a Jewish refugee.”
By United with Israel Staff
At a rally for Bernie Sanders held at the University of Minnesota on Sunday night, US Rep. Ilhan Omar endorsed the Democratic presidential hopeful, emphasizing that he is Jewish.
“I am proud to stand with the son of a Jewish refugee who survived genocide,” the Muslim congresswoman said. “The acknowledgment of pain and suffering is personal for both of us.”
Omar, whose anti-Israel rhetoric has resulted in a persistent anti-Semitism scandal, is a supporter of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS). In September, Omar admitted to having a problem with the very “existence” of Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during an interview with CBS.
Perhaps in recognition of Omar’s anti-Semitism problem, Sanders took to the stage and said, “People say that Ilhan and I make an odd political couple. But in fact, there is really nothing odd about it at all.”
He also praised Omar as an “extraordinary girl who, 30 years in the past, was in a refugee camp in Kenya.”
Sanders, himself, upholds the right of Americans to boycott Israel. Just last week, he called Israel’s government “racist” at the J Street conference, where anti-Israel Palestinian speakers took the stage. He also said that US aid to Israel should be redirected to Gaza. Since 2007, Gaza has been ruled by the Hamas terror group, which seeks the total destruction of Israel and wastes massive amounts of foreign aid waging war on Israeli civilians.
Former US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley criticized Sanders’ comments on Twitter.
“Just when you thought Bernie Sanders couldn’t get any more radical, he outdid himself,” tweeted Haley. “He wants to take money we give to Israel to defend itself from terrorists, and give it to Gaza, which is run by terrorists? Unreal. Why isn’t every other [Democratic presidential] candidate saying he’s wrong?”
Three of the four members of “The Squad,” a group of of anti-Israel congresswomen, have publicly endorsed Sanders. The only hold-out is Massachusetts Rep. Ayanna Pressley.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib, who also endorse BDS, support the presidential hopeful. All three women have made controversial statements about Israel.
An estimated 10,000 supporters attended the Minnesota rally. Sanders is presently in third place as the Democratic presidential candidate, behind former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren.
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