MINNESOTA (Yaakov M / VINnews) — After antisemite Ilhan Omar was removed from the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Jeremy Slevin, her “token” Jewish senior staffer, posted to Twitter.
“No matter how many lies, smears and hate come her way this Jew is proud to be a part of Team Omar today and every day,” the tweet said.
No matter how many lies, smears and hate come her way this Jew is proud to be a part of Team Omar today and every day pic.twitter.com/BYm0ta7Idw
— Jeremy Slevin (@jeremyslevin) February 3, 2023
As a proud Jew and proud friend of @Ilhan, I don't need any of my Republican colleagues to defend me against anti-Semitism. Ilhan Omar should not have been removed from the Foreign Affairs Committee. pic.twitter.com/TOsjfZXLTH
— Jan Schakowsky (@janschakowsky) February 2, 2023
Slevin rightfully faced intense backlash for defending his boss, a vicious antisemite. Slevin has worked for Omar since the day she began Congress, and is now her senior communications director.
In an interview with “Roll Call”, Slevin claimed that being critical of Israeli policy does not make someone antisemitic. However he ignored Omar’s many tropes and hateful comments which go way beyond criticism of policy.
He was asked the following: “The congresswoman back in 2019 said she was “grateful for Jewish allies and colleagues.” Did you have conversations with her about her tweets and whether you found them harmful, or helping her understand why others found them harmful?”
Slevin replied, “Certainly — I’ll leave it at that. We have an open and honest relationship.”
He added, “She’s obviously apologized for that specific comment, but I know that she is someone who cares a lot about Jewish safety and building relationships and solidarity with different faith movements. Because there is this divide-and-conquer campaign right now to pit religious minorities against each other.”
He tried to excuse Omar by pointing to the “bigotry” she is a victim of, saying: “One thing that’s important to remember is that she is also on the receiving end of a lot of vitriol and bigotry. And there are also a lot of really harmful Islamophobic tropes that are almost routine in political discourse.”
He continued his defense of Omar, saying, “It’s dangerous to conflate criticism of any government — be it Israel, the United States, Iran, Saudi Arabia, you name it — with criticism of a religion or hatred of that religion.
There are Jews who fully support Netanyahu and the Israeli government. There are Jews who are extremely critical of the Israeli government and Israel as a state. That doesn’t make any of them any less Jewish. I think there are really complex and legitimate reasons that Jews have a connection to that land. But none of that justifies smearing people who criticize Israel and its government. They’re still just as Jewish even if they’re critical. And the same goes from people who are non-Jews. No government is above criticism, whether it’s Israel, the United States or anywhere else.”
What Slevin ignores and condones is that Omar has invoked multiple antisemitic tropes for many years. She is a BDS supporter who has equated the Israeli government with Hamas and other terror groups. And she has shown sympathy to radical Islamic terrorists repeatedly. And her apologies are phony and staged.
Omar’s disdain for Jews goes way beyond criticizing Israel or disagreeing on policy. She is objectively and categorically a very dangerous Jew hater.
The real question is why the Democrats even nominated Omar to the House FA Committee in the first place.
“Israel has hypnotized the world,” Omar tweeted in 2012, “may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel.”
She later claimed that she wasn’t aware that accusing Israel of using hypnotic powers of evil might be offensive, then apologized for “unknowingly” using an “antisemitic trope”.
In February 2019, Omar alleged that American support for Israel was “all about the Benjamins”.
When Democratic leaders and Jewish organizations condemned her, she again did the apology routine and again weakly pleaded ignorance.
Her claim that Jews buy the allegiance of American politicians triggered more Democratic condemnation. In case anyone doubted that she really did think this way, she added that she “should not be expected to have allegiance/pledge support to a foreign country in order to serve my country in Congress or serve on committee”.
Then in March 2019, the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives took the unusual step of issuing a motion of censure.
The Democrats watered it down from a condemnation of Omar’s anti-Jewish statements to a condemnation of all forms of bigotry, including Islamophobia.
It is sad that Mr. Slevin seems to play the role of “trophy” Jewish staffer to whom Omar can point and claim that not all Jews are overly sensitive to her “innocent” criticism of Israel.