Rep. Ilhan Omar

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Rep. Ilhan Omar

Postby Belligerent Savant » Mon Feb 11, 2019 10:42 pm

.

https://forward.com/opinion/419117/no-i ... out-aipac/



No, Ilhan Omar Is Not Anti-Semitic For Calling Out AIPAC



Who knew that he whose name must not be spoken was Benjamin? Apparently not Representative Ilhan Omar, the brave Muslim congresswoman from Minnesota who stated an inconvenient truth when she wrote, “It’s all about the Benjamins baby” over reports she was to be “punished” for her criticisms of Israel that include support of BDS.

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According to a Haaretz story, House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy threatened to “take action” against Omar and Michigan Representative Rashida Tlaib for unspecified statements against Israel, comparing them to Republican House member Steve King who the GOP minority recently stripped of committee assignments over his support for white supremacism.

After Batya Ungar-Sargon (this story’s editor - small world!) and Chelsea Clinton amplified Omar’s tweet, the congresswoman was swept into controversy and again accused of anti-Semitism, as she had been for posting during military action against Gaza in 2012 that Israel had “hypnotized” the world.

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Like “hypnotized,” Omar’s comment on “Benjamins” was said to employ the anti-Semitic trope of secret Jewish control. Much has been written about this awful demonization of Jews, about how it has been repeatedly used to falsely depict one of history’s most marginalized and oppressed peoples as all-powerful.

The problem is, all lobbies, by definition, are designed to exert secret control over policy, using money. That’s what they do.

And so, unless you want to deny that there even is an Israel lobby, it can’t be off limits to point out that it works in secret and uses money to bring about policy outcomes.

Now, it’s quite true that not all pro-Israel lobbying is Jewish these days. Much of it now comes from evangelical groups and other entities that tend to favor US intervention abroad, and who see strategic importance in Israel.

But it’s also true, almost a cliche in political analysis, that American voters pay little or no attention to foreign policy. So, even as polls continue to show general support for Israel (though now polarized by party, and crumbling among Democrats and younger voters), few voters would be very upset or even notice if the US stopped doing the practical things we do for Israel: $38 billion (a lot of “benjamins”) in military aid, protection at the UN from international accountability and, under Trump, official support for territorial annexation.

For crucial decades before the rise of Christian Zionism, the lobby that produced wall-to-wall congressional support for Israel was AIPAC. Like Omar, academicians Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer were slandered as anti-Semites for merely writing about “the Israel lobby,” though this is no longer tenable and the critics have mostly backed off.

But if you were in the right audience, AIPAC was very up front about its influence. In 1988, at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco — yes, representing the Dukakis campaign at an AIPAC luncheon is a thing I have done in this life — I heard an AIPAC speaker boast unabashedly about AIPAC’s vast influence. In recent cycles, he said, AIPAC had punished enemies of Israel in Congress, like Senator Charles Percy of Illinois, who had lost his 1984 reelection after criticizing Israel’s settlements and Lebanon invasion.

But now it was time to reward Israel’s friends, he told the crowd. Lobbies, he joked in what became a widely repeated saying, are like mushrooms: they grow best in the dark; you will not hear about all our successes.

No one called him anti-Semitic.

And it cannot be anti-Semitic to say that a lobby that spends large sums of money and boasts (at least to its own supporters) of its influence, is influential through money. (If you think members of Congress don’t care about “benjamins,” you haven’t watched any of them dance for a $5000 PAC check like it’s “Goodfellas” and Joe Pesci is shooting at their feet.) Israel also exerts influence in the donations of wealthy individuals like Sheldon Adelson who has given the GOP a reported $100 million and was rewarded by Trump with the Jerusalem embassy move.

It’s AIPAC, not the evangelicals, who made the Israel Anti-Boycott Act a legislative priority and got 292 House and 69 Senate cosponsors from both parties to place protecting Israel from criticism above their own constituents’ constitutional rights to free speech.

Not all these Congress members hate the First Amendment — many just thought it would be no biggie to sign on to a bill AIPAC cares about. And it was AIPAC who helped force a different anti-BDS bill, S.1, to the Senate floor three times this winter in the midst of a government shutdown.

New members like Omar and Tlaib are shaking up Congress like it has has never been shaken. This includes criticisms of Israel that have been almost entirely suppressed in our political conversation.

There are plenty of Jews, like me, whose beliefs are voiced by Omar, not AIPAC. And this time, we will not let our leaders be taken down by accusations that they are anti-Semitic for supporting Palestinian rights, including BDS, or for calling attention to the influence wielded behind the scenes by lobbies like AIPAC.


Peter Feld is political director of The Insurrection, a digital strategy firm in New York, and a writer. His writing has appeared in the New York Observer, Gawker, Radar, Ad Age, and the New York Post.

This story "Ilhan Omar Is Not Anti-Semitic For Calling Out AIPAC" was written by Peter Feld.


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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby Grizzly » Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:18 am

Oh, god... not another Clinton ffs....
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby seemslikeadream » Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:38 am

Take action against this Kevin....oh wait you think this and all the Muslim hate he spews day in and day out is just fine because he’s your guy

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It’s all about the benjamins for you Kevin McCarthy


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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby MacCruiskeen » Tue Feb 12, 2019 3:03 pm

Stunning and brave. Standing strong.

Ilhan Omar Verified Account @IlhanMN 23 hours ago

Listening and learning, but standing strong

Image

https://twitter.com/IlhanMN/status/1095046561254567937


Standing strong. Brave and stunning.

What else is on TV?
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby elfismiles » Tue Feb 12, 2019 3:43 pm

Published on Monday, February 11, 2019
by Common Dreams
As Omar 'Unequivocally' Apologizes, Critics Rip Democratic Leaders for Trying to 'Silence Criticism' of AIPAC
"What the congresswoman said is very uncontroversial," noted journalist Glenn Greenwald. "Everyone knows AIPAC is an extremely intimidating lobby, just like the NRA is. There's nothing wrong with pointing that out."
by Jon Queally, staff writer
https://www.commondreams.org/news/2019/ ... ng-silence


Opinion
No, Ilhan Omar Is Not Anti-Semitic For Calling Out AIPAC
Peter Feld / February 11, 2019
https://forward.com/opinion/419117/no-i ... out-aipac/
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby seemslikeadream » Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:17 am

McCarthy published the tweet one day after a bomb was sent to George Soros’s house. McCarthy has yet to apologize for it.

Not only did he not apologize, he was rewarded by being chosen the minority leader.

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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby RocketMan » Wed Feb 13, 2019 9:53 am

It's a-MAHZING, how it somehow always turns out that the young , Muslim POC (Ellison, Omar) are always the most bigoted ones... It's almost as if an entire society is projecting... :shrug:

And the fucker McCarthy... preaching about anti-semitism. GRWEAFSGSDFGdfbdfsbdfsgbsdfbdfsb. :wallhead:

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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby MacCruiskeen » Thu Feb 14, 2019 6:39 pm

Ffs, is anyone really convinced by this embarrassingly bad theatre, this Triumph of the Crap Spectacle?

On Edit: see here:


https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=4Mutu-P7_NA

It's an appalling performance. Ilhan Omar carries on like a foolish giggly 14-year-old, reading clumsily off a script, stammering, stumbling over her words (she clearly has not the slightest clue what Abrams was actually responsible for, nor even what Iran-Contra actually was; she can hardly even pronounce it), smiling at him ingratiatingly, pretending he was only responsible for one massacre, and -- worst of all, really inexcusably -- not only letting him off the hook ("Thank you, I give up my time." :ohno:) but AGREEING WITH HIM that the USA has the best interests of South America at heart.

Ilhan Omar is 37/1/3. Thirty-fucking-seven (and one-third). Check it out. She's three years older than Martin Luther King was when he led the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.

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Could Elliot Abrams himself possibly have chosen a more feeble and incompetent "opponent"? She whacked him good and hard on the shin with her teddybear. Ouch. How can he possibly recover from such a blow?

Maybe he did choose her.

- What else is on TV?
Last edited by MacCruiskeen on Thu Feb 14, 2019 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby Belligerent Savant » Thu Feb 14, 2019 9:20 pm

.
Which performance are you referencing, Mac? Did I miss a vid clip?

That aside, I maintain my cynical interpretation of these storylines. Pandering to the armchair observer, with pantomimes suggesting strong positions against injustice. AOC and Omar may be the current zeitgeist's efforts to replace the chasm left behind by Jon Stewart's Daily Show: providing the younger demographic with a vicarious means to feel and express indignation without having to actually, you know, do anything.
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby MacCruiskeen » Thu Feb 14, 2019 9:29 pm

Bel Sav, I mean her cringeworthy staged & scripted 4-minute kayfabe wrestling match with Abrams.


https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=4Mutu-P7_NA
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby MacCruiskeen » Thu Feb 14, 2019 9:57 pm

(Apologies, posting on a tablet, it's orrible.)
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby Grizzly » Fri Feb 15, 2019 12:13 am

I maintain my cynical interpretation of these storylines. Pandering to the armchair observer, with pantomimes suggesting strong positions against injustice. AOC and Omar may be the current zeitgeist's efforts to replace the chasm left behind by Jon Stewart's Daily Show: providing the younger demographic with a vicarious means to feel and express indignation without having to actually, you know, do anything.


^^^So much this!

They've got the game locked in... I remember when reading relatively recently that they found a formula to chart busting pop songs. That what we've been exposed to for the last four or five years, isn't an organic expression of art, but a cash cow formula to analog sameness theory of top ten hits! Same same ... same as above, synthetic and melded plastica; clinical, systemic, and god-damned, methodical. Thus, not alive, not dynamic, not breathing with wonder and creativity and free expression, but a god-damned template of status quo pretending to be ....
what? reward with no pay off?
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby Belligerent Savant » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:33 am

.

Luring the below cross-posts over here:


MacCruiskeen » Thu Feb 14, 2019 8:19 pm wrote:It was an entirely scripted "confrontation". I mean, she was literally reading from a script*, probably off a laptop screen, and ostentatiously helpless without it (or even with it)

So Ilhan Omar has just achieved the seemingly impossible: she has made Elliot Abrams look good. She has rehabilitated Elliot.fucking.Abrams, who spoke the truth, probably for the first time in his miserable life: "That is not a real question." Damn right it wasn't. WWE. WWF. Kayfabe. A charade.

And that's how you pass an audition for the Democratic Party.

*Who wrote that script?



RocketMan » Fri Feb 15, 2019 8:12 am wrote:I'm usually pretty acidic myself but I have to defend Rep. Omar here. Sure it wasn't a thundering performance, but it's a good start. Her agreeing with Abrams at the end I hadn't noticed, that was a mistake for sure. But she did bring the issue forward in a reasonably forceful manner and she didn't let Abrams lecture her, cutting him off. As for these "giggly" and "smiling" comments, they just smack of male chauvinism, sorry.

You really think a lot of people on the Hill are prepared to say things like "El Mozote massacre" and "raped and killed women and children" to Elliot fucking Abrams's face like that? She's a young freshman who was born in Somalia for chrissakes. She's just getting started.

As for "REHABILITATED" Elliot Abrams? WTF, I want some of what you're smoking...



JackRiddler » Fri Feb 15, 2019 8:50 am wrote:.

Those comments are incredibly unfair to Omar, who is under a serious propaganda attack just like the one pulled on Corbyn and Labour. Interestingly, it's showing a lot of backfire. DSA and many other supporters on the US left have been unconditional in calling this out as bullshit, no apologies. (Corbyn, Momentum and Labour are all incredibly wimpy when attacked with bogus anti-Semitism charges; are they therefore the staged fake opposition?) Such charges are usually more effective as a weapon of political assassination than Polonium 212. Her "unequivocal apology" was a decent jiujitsu that reinforced the point about money in politics. She seems to have found just the right time to start a frank discussion about AIPAC, almost as if it is okay to say it is a big lobby that dispenses a lot of money to get its way with politicians. Shocking!

If we apply the rather insane standard of what MLK was doing at her age, then obviously all of us suck big balls. Everyone is a big cowardly fake. I give up. By the MLK standard, I am totally embarrassed by everything I've ever done -- basically nothing -- except for the extramarital affairs. I really have no right to ever say or do anything again. At least Omar's doing a bit better than me.

English is obviously her second language -- though she is plenty good -- and political history is clearly something she's still learning, which is fine. Whatever her age, what counts is that she's learning it right, because she's interested in exactly the right issues. She hit Abrams on the right points, whether or not it was a polished performance in your eyes, or whether or not she read from a prepared text. (So what?!) Giggling is a well-known response to nervousness. (These critiques seem to boil down to the fact that she is not a theater professional.)

The echo in the media was effective. In no version of reality has Abrams been "rehabilitated"!!! On the contrary, many younger people are hearing about him and learning about his criminal history for the first time, and this is good. It's pretty clear Abrams and Omar meant different things with their concluding "agreement" as her time ran out. The bit about yielding the remainder of her time is the boilerplate invocation at the end of almost every statement ever made in Congress.

You don't have to like her. You don't have to like the strategy of running progressives within the Democratic Party, the leadership of which of course stood up to applaud Trump's attack on "socialism" among all the rest of their bad moves. You can reject these as false hopes that in the end will reinforce the status quo. But if you find yourself stretching your personal attacks implausibly, and throwing the kitchen sink at Omar and AOC, at the same time this is the 24/7 activity of Foxnews and Sinclair and the Koch-guided bots on the NYT comments, it's okay to ask yourself why.

MacCruiskeen » Thu Feb 14, 2019 8:19 pm wrote:*Who wrote that script?


*We may never know but I wish I had a net worth to bet in full that it was... her staff.

.


I'll take my cynic's hat off for a bit to acknowledge the salient points raised by RocketMan and JRiddler, above. Part of the reason I started this thread is because, regardless of ultimate outcome or impetus, it's a good thing that AIPAC is being called out. Minimally, in an ideal scenario this activity sparks additional curiosity or passion in others to delve into these topics further. Who knows, perhaps the U.S.-based proles have their own Yellow Vest Movement brooding beneath the surface..

[/places cynic's hat back on]
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby Belligerent Savant » Tue Feb 26, 2019 4:38 pm

.

Cross-post, as it pertains to Omar (and the more pressing situation in Venezuela)

Note to Mods: perhaps we should rename this thread, "RI Thread About Ilhan Omar" so that it covers more bases than Israel lobby-related content.



[It appears I can't include the photo upload RocketMan included in the above quote/cross-post, so I'll re-share it below]
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Re: OMAR vs. AIPAC/ISRAEL LOBBY

Postby Elvis » Tue Feb 26, 2019 8:53 pm

Belligerent Savant wrote:Note to Mods: perhaps we should rename this thread, "RI Thread About Ilhan Omar" so that it covers more bases than Israel lobby-related content.


You're the OP, I'll change it to whatever you like. But how about simply, "Ilhan Omar" or "U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar"?

(I never understood why an RI thread needs to identify itself as such.)


on edit: best to PM edit requests, I might have missed this if I was in a bigger hurry. ::: hurries off :::
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