By Arab News
By Dalia Al-Aqidi *
Recent statements by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy have angered the progressive left-wing movement in the Democratic Party and some Islamist groups that use nonprofit organizations as a front for implementing questionable political agendas. McCarthy vowed that if he were selected speaker of the House, he would remove representative Ilhan Omar from her seat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
“Last year, I promised that when I became speaker, I would remove Rep. Ilhan Omar from the House Foreign Affairs Committee based on her repeated anti-semitic and anti-American remarks. I’m keeping that promise,” McCarthy tweeted on Nov. 21.
The controversial representative did not wait long before she began defending herself in her usual way by playing the role of victim and raising the Islamophobia card. That is her standard method of facing any criticism and observation. She ignores the fact that she was initially not qualified to be a member of a critical committee whose role is to shape the foreign policy of this great country.
Her principal qualification prior to her position was a meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in New York in 2016, which the Council on American-Islamic Relations — CAIR — facilitated for some unknown reason. That was two years before her Congressional bid.
“From the moment I was elected, the Republican Party has made it their mission to use fear, xenophobia, Islamophobia, and racism to target me on the House Floor and through millions of dollars of campaign ads,” Omar’s statement read.
While there are many American Muslims, Somalis, Blacks and Arabs in the Republican Party, Omar falsely accused it of ginning up fear and hate against Somali Americans and anyone who shared her identity, according to the statement.
Before one reviews some of her anti-American foreign policy positions that harmed the country itself, it is important to see who was standing behind Omar repeating her narrative portraying her as a freedom and human rights fighter against “American tyranny.”
A statement issued by CAIR — known for having an executive director, Nihad Awad, who is very close to the Muslim Brotherhood — called on members of Congress to reject what it described as an “unjustified and hypocritical threat.”
Despite the Islamist organization’s claim that the GOP was racist and Islamophobic, it admitted in the same statement that Republican candidates had made surprising gains among Muslim voters during this midterm election. “Members of Congress should not be silenced for daring to consistently speak out against human rights violations, whether committed by our nation’s adversaries, allies, or even our own government,” CAIR said.
The Islamists were right in this paragraph; one of the foreign affairs committee’s prominent roles is to point out human rights breaches anywhere around the world. However, Omar did not condemn the killing of Iranian female and male protesters for the sake of human rights.
She dared to compare women risking their lives in Iran to the American protesters against abortion. She dared to compare the Iranian regime’s hostilities against its people to the US police trying to implement law and order and stop the burning and destruction of government and private properties.
Iranian state-owned news network Press TV came out in her defense by interviewing the editor of Pan-African News Wire, Abayomi Azikiwe, who said that McCarthy’s announcement was an attempt to further criminalize African Americans and Muslim Americans in the US.
Omar was outraged by the killing of the brutal terrorist Qassem Soleimani, who murdered hundreds of her fellow Americans and thousands of innocent victims in Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.
Why did the so-called “human rights fighter” decline to vote in favor of a resolution recognizing the massacre of Armenians by Ottoman Turks as genocide?
The US representative seems fascinated by the radical Islamists and their ways of achieving their hidden political agendas, even if they affect the interests of the country she is supposed to protect.
These are among the many reasons why McCarthy is right in suggesting that Omar should be removed from the Foreign Affairs Committee; maybe then she would serve the constituents that voted her in and attend to their needs.
• Dalia Al-Aqidi is a senior fellow at the Center for Security Policy.