Omar stresses Bernie Sanders’ Jewishness: ‘Honored to stand with son of Jewish refugee’
The pro-BDS congresswoman said she is “honored to stand with the son of a Jewish refugee who survived genocide.”
By World Israel News Staff
On the heels of Rep. Ilhan Omar’s (D-Minn.) endorsement of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) for the presidency in the 2020 election, the Muslim congresswoman told a campaign rally on Sunday in her state that she was “honored to stand with the son of a Jewish refugee who survived genocide.”
Introducing the senator at the gathering, which reportedly drew just over 10,000 people, Omar added that “the acknowledgement of pain and suffering is personal for both of us.”
She proclaimed: “I am excited for President Bernie Sanders.”
“People say that Ilhan and I make an odd political couple. But in fact, there is really nothing odd about it at all,” said Sanders.
“Ilhan and I share a common link as the descendants of families who fled violence and poverty, and who came to this country as immigrants,” the presidential hopeful added.
Similarly, Sanders tweeted on Nov. 4: “I know where I came from. My father, whose family was wiped out by Nazism, came to the U.S. from Poland at 17 without a nickel in his pocket. Like @IlhanMN, I believe that ‘my destiny, your destiny, the destiny of workers around the world are linked together.'”
Omar, for her part, tweeted in response: “I know where I came from. My family fled war and displacement in Somalia. I sat for years in a refugee camp with no running water with the hope of a better life in America. My destiny, your destiny, the destiny of workers around the world are linked together.#BerniesBackInMN.”
The support of the anti-Israel pro-BDS Omar for the Sanders campaign comes amid the senator’s repeated criticism of the “racist” Israeli government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his assertion that leveling such criticism is not anti-Semitic, noting that he himself is Jewish and spent time on a kibbutz.
At a J Street conference in Washington last week, Sanders proposed immediately diverting some of the American aid to Israel to the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip instead, even though Hamas is classified by the U.S. as a terror organization.
His cooperation with Omar now is in stark contrast with comments he made in April seemingly distancing himself from her as the Minnesota congresswoman was being criticized for her usage of anti-Semitic tropes in her criticism of Israel and the AIPAC lobby group in Washington.
“I’ve talked to Ilhan about twice in my life,” he told a Fox News-hosted town hall meeting back then, as he also maintained that Omar is not an anti-Semite, just someone who needs to do a “better job in speaking to the Jewish community.”