#STANDWITHILHAN: Dems Put Off Resolution Singling Out Rep. Ilhan Omar Over Israel Lobby Criticism

(WASHINGTON, D.C 03/06/2019)—American Muslims for Palestine is thrilled to announce that your efforts in support of Rep. Ilhan Omar have led to a decisive victory on Capitol Hill. After receiving fierce pushback, Democratic leaders have decided to indefinitely postpone a sham anti-Semitism resolution that would unofficially condemn Rep. Omar for her legitimate criticism of the Israel lobby. [READ NYT "Democrats Put Off Anti-Semitism Resolution After Fierce Backlash"]

Together, Muslims, Christians, Jews, human rights activists, concerned citizens, and people of conscience who proudly stated that they #StandWithIlhan, sent a loud and clear message to lawmakers that they will not allow her to be muzzled and smeared for opening a critical discussion on the political influence of AIPAC and other Zionist lobby groups.   

This morning, AMP participated in a press conference in front of the Supreme Court as part of a coalition of several human rights and social justice groups to express support for Rep. Omar, who has come under vicious attack by Zionist politicans and groups for her courageous criticism of the Israel lobby. [WATCH VIDEO OF PRESS CONFERENCE HERE]

After the delegation hand delivered a joint statement in support of Rep. Omar to Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office and visited Rep. Omar in a show of solidarity, this afternoon Sen. Bernie Sanders publicly condemned efforts by Democratic leadership to rebuke her for her criticism of the Israel lobby. [READ Huffington Post, "Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris Condemn Effort To Rebuke Ilhan Omar"]  

In a statement, Sen. Sanders said, “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,” Sanders said in a statement on Wednesday. “Rather, we must develop an even-handed Middle East policy which brings Israelis and Palestinians together for a lasting peace. “What I fear is going on in the House now is an effort to target Congresswoman Omar as a way of stifling that debate,” he continued. “That’s wrong.”

Sen. Sanders echoed what many opponents of the resolution have said, that these false accusations of anti-Semitism were being used to shut down critical debate in Washington. Rep. Omar, who has already proven herself to be one of the most progressive and anti-imperialist politicians in our history, has also been a target herself of Islamophobic, sexist, and racist smears, as well as alarming calls to harm her. We are heartened to see a growing number of Democratic leaders, including those who were initially drafting the resolution against her, now expressing concern for the safety of Rep. Omar and condemning Islamophobia and bigotry from the right. 

But make no mistake: these politicians are changing their tune and the political discourse is shifting in our country thanks to our collective efforts. This is YOUR victory, but the work must not stop here.

Please continue to call your lawmaker to ensure that Congresswomen Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib are supported, and to make sure that no sham resolutions be used again to stifle legitimate criticism of Israel or its lobby here in the U.S. 

Once again, we thank everyone who called, wrote letters, tweeted, and participated in the campaign to #StandWithIlhan! You're sending an important message that anti-Zionism is NOT anti-Semitism, and that speaking out against atrocious Israeli policies and the bullying of Israel lobby is every American's constitutionally-protected right to free speech. 

•    Keep up the campaign to support Rep. Ilhan Omar—and Rep. Rashida Tlaib for that matter! Let them know that you support their courage in the face of this onslaught. Rep. Omar's office number is (202) 225-4755. Rep. Tlaib's number is (202) 225-5126. 

•    Call Nancy Pelosi's office at (202) 225-4965, House Majority Whip Steny Hoyer’s office at (202) 225-4131 and Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Rep. Eliot Engel's office at (202) 225-2464 to continue expressing support for Rep. Omar and to dissuade them from singling her out in shameful capitulation to the Israel Lobby. Tell these lawmakers that criticism of Israeli policies and the pro-Israel Lobby is NOT anti-Semitism and to stop conflating the two!