Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN)faced hundreds of protesters Saturday outside a Southern California fundraising event for the local chapter of a major advocacy group representing Muslim-Americans.
By: Adam Kredo
“Burn the Quran!,” “Ilhan Omar, go to hell!” and “Shame on you, terrorists!” were among some of the messages shouted outside a Woodland Hills hotel where the Minnesota Democrat spoke at a fundraiser for the Council of American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) of Greater Los Angeles, according to a report. The town is about 25 miles northwest of downtown L.A.
The protesters lined a sidewalk area, where they waved Israeli flags and denounced the freshman congresswoman over recent remarks that are blatantly anti-Semitic, the Los Angeles Daily News reported. Omar faced a storm of criticism from pro-Israel politicians and groups after her February tweet that said “It’s all about the Benjamins baby,” in reference to the support that some U.S. lawmakers have offered to Israel. She has also made other comments that are vehemently anti-Semitic. The atmosphere was a mix of dancing and music mixed with the vitriolic comments against Omar, the report said.
A handful of counter protesters also appeared outside the event to voice support for Omar.
The event at the fourth annual Valley Banquet, titled “Advancing Justice: Empowering Valley Muslims,” was sold out and closed to the public. The Los Angeles Police Department told City News Service that it had an unspecified number of officers working the event.
Her appearance was one of two political events in the region Saturday. In Los Angeles, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, a Democratic 2020 presidential candidate, visited a mosque to commemorate the victims of the March 15 mass shooting in New Zealand, the Los Angeles Times reported.
According to a report on the Washington Free Beacon web site, the content of Omar’s speeches, given to predominately Muslim audiences, remains unknown, prompting some of Omar’s critics to express concern about the type of rhetoric she is using before these paying audiences, particularly in light of the lawmaker’s repeated use of anti-Semitic tropes in public.
Omar recently spoke in Florida at a private event hosted by Islamic Relief, a charity organization long said to have deep ties to groups that advocate terrorism against Israel. Over the weekend, she will appear at another private event in California that is hosted by CAIR-CA PAC, a political action committee affiliated with the Council on American Islamic Relations, or CAIR a group that was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in a massive terror-funding incident.
Omar’s appearance at these closed-door forums is raising eyebrows in the pro-Israel world due to her repeated and unapologetic public use of anti-Semitic stereotypes accusing Jewish people of controlling foreign policy and politics. With Omar’s popularity skyrocketing on the anti-Israel left, it appears her rhetoric is translating into fundraising prowess.
It remains unclear what Omar has told these audiences in her private talks. Washington Free Beacon attempts to obtain video of past events were unsuccessful, and multiple local news and television outlets in the Tampa, Fla., area, where Omar spoke to Islamic Relief last month, confirmed they were unable to gain access to the closed door event.
Islamic Relief has come under congressional investigation for what lawmakers have described as its efforts to provide assistance to terrorist group such as Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood. The charity has been banned by some countries as a result of these ties.
In 2017, Congress sought to ban taxpayer funds from reaching the charity due to these terror links.
A representative from Islamic Relief declined to provide the Free Beacon with any material related to Omar’s appearance.
“The event was closed to the media. No materials are available,” the official said.
On Sunday, Omar will hold another meet and greet in Irvine, Calif., for CAIR-CA PAC. Those wishing to hear Omar speak are being asked to donate anywhere from $50 to $250 dollars, according to a flyer for the event.
The CAIR event also appears closed to the press. Free Beacon attempts to contact the organizer and obtain access were unsuccessful. Requests for comment on the nature of the speeches sent to Omar’s congressional office also were not returned.
CAIR, a Muslim advocacy group known for its anti-Israel positions, was named by the U.S. government as part of a large network of groups known to be supporting Hamas.
CAIR has been cited by the Anti-Defamation League, or ADL, for using its network of supporters to promote an “anti-Israel agenda.” (Fox News & WFB)
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