A representative of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) claimed that a widely condemned tweet by U.S. congresswoman Ilhan Omar had no “anti-Semitic meaning.”
Two weeks after freshman Democratic lawmaker Ilhan Omar landed in hot water for accusing a pro-Israel organization of paying off elected officials to support the Jewish state, Robert McCaw, Director of Government Affairs at the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), commented that his organization fails to see the anti-Semitism in such comments.
“CAIR supports Representative Omar and her efforts to highlight the lobbying efforts of [the American Israel Public Affairs Committee],” McCaw commented, according to a website called Citizen Truth.
“CAIR does not feel there was any anti-Semitic meaning in her Tweets, but due to the brevity some took it as such,” he added. According to the Citizen Truth report, “McCaw would thank Representative Omar for standing firm in her willingness to speak out concerning the influence in Washington D.C. organizations like AIPAC.”
CAIR, for its part, has been accused of harboring ties with the Hamas terror group and the Muslim Brotherhood organization. Its director, Hussam Ayloush, tweeted last year that the Middle East would be better off if Israel were “terminated.”
After Omar tweeted that support for Israel is “all about the Benjamins,” quoting rap lyrics that refer to one hundred dollar bills, she was roundly condemned by members of her own party. U.S. President Donald Trump also recommended that she resign from Congress.
Following the incident, New Jersey Rep. Josh Gottheimer tweeted, “For nearly two weeks, Rep. @IlhanMN has avoided meeting with me to discuss why anti-Semitic tropes like these are hurtful to so many Americans. There is absolutely no place for this rhetoric in Congress — or anywhere.”
“There is no place in our country for anti-Semitic comments. I condemn them whatever the source,” tweeted Florida Rep. Donna Shalala. “To suggest members of Congress are ‘bought off’ to support Israel is offensive and wrong.”
Meanwhile, New York Rep. Max Rose said in a statement, “At a time when anti-Semitic attacks are on the rise, our leaders should not be invoking hurtful stereotypes and caricatures of Jewish people to dismiss those who support Israel.”
Omar’s all-about-the-Benjamins tweet follows other anti-Semitic activity on Twitter, including a 2012 post in which she declared, “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel.”
Earlier in the month, anti-Semitic hate-preacher Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam rushed to Omar’s defense, commenting, “Sweetheart, don’t apologize.”