Bernie Sanders and other Democrat presidential candidates have spoken out in support of Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar following her comments on the Israel lobby.
Sanders expressed his fears, in a statement, that the house resolution brought against Omar could stifle criticism of Israel’s government policies, and he suspected she was being targeted to shut down debate.
New: Bernie Sanders speaks out against Ilhan Omar treatment. "What I fear is going on in the House now is an effort to target Congresswoman Omar as a way of stifling that debate. That's wrong.” pic.twitter.com/L9AWvwgbsz
— Daniel Marans (@danielmarans) March 6, 2019
He went on to say:
“Anti-Semitism is a hateful and dangerous ideology which must be vigorously opposed in the United States and around the world. We must not, however, equate anti-Semitism with legitimate criticism of the right-wing, Netanyahu government in Israel.”
Senator Elizabeth Warren expressed her concern for Omar’s welfare, saying that she felt this attention could “put her at risk”.
Senators Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, and Elizabeth Warren speak up for Rep. Ilhan Omar and against the stifling of honest debate on Israel/Palestine. The tide is shifting. They said a change is gonna come and it’s here. ??#IStandWithIlhan
— Linda Sarsour (@lsarsour) March 7, 2019
Candidate Kamala Harris called for an open and respectful debate on Middle East foreign policy.
She went on to say:
“Branding criticism of Israel as automatically anti-Semitic has a chilling effect on our public discourse.”
Sanders has previously spoken out on the subject of Israel, criticizing Hillary Clinton during a Democratic primaries debate in 2016 for not mentioning the Palestinian people in her speech to AIPAC.
We're witnessing a huge change in our society. Our political leaders are becoming less afraid to speak out against Israeli policy and it's because of our grassroots movements. This is winning.#WeStandWithIlhanhttps://t.co/Fei6L8hZWY
— IfNotNow? (@IfNotNowOrg) March 6, 2019
He also went on to say that Israel’s attack on Gaza in 2014 was “disproportionate” and that Palestinians should be treated with “respect and dignity” by both the US and Israel.
This comes as Jewish Americans have signed and published an open letter in support of Omar, and condemned the accusations of anti-Semitism leveled against her.
(MEMO, PC, Social Media)