Top Democratic leaders on Thursday decried Rep. Ilhan Omar's comments that compared the actions of the United States and Israeli government to Hamas and the Taliban.  

A statement rebuking Omar's claims came from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's leadership team while also thanking her for clarifying her statements. The decision was a sharp contrast to how it dealt with the previous major uproar over the Minnesota Democrat's comments on Israel.

In less than 24 hours after Omar's Democratic colleagues criticized her, the unified statement from the top six Democratic leaders of the house was issued. The statement Pelosi's team released said some of the representative's statements drew false equivalencies.

Shortly before the leadership response, Omar issued a clarification of her comments after she attended a hearing with Secretary of State Antony Blinken. In a post on Twitter, she summed up her statements as "unthinkable atrocities" that U.S., Hamas, Israeli, Afghanistan, and Taliban officials committed.

Harsh Criticism

After Omar's statement, a dozen Democrats immediately criticized her statements, which forced Omar to quickly denounce her claims of her colleagues' heinous actions. The tension within the caucus eased by Thursday afternoon despite some of Omar's allies still unsettled by her statements, Politico reported.

Muslim women in Congress have no access to freedom of speech and the benefit of the doubt did not exist for them as well, Rep. Rashida Tlaib said in a post on Twitter. She criticized the House Democratic leadership, saying they should be ashamed of themselves when dealing with Congresswomen of color.

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New York Democrat Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez criticized the top Democrats for their handling of the situation, arguing the attacks against Omar were a "mischaracterization" and were dangerous. Skipping private conversations and directly attacking the representative was indirectly putting her in danger, Ocasio-Cortez added. 

On Thursday, Rep. Ayanna Pressley and Cori Bush expressed their support of Omar and her viewpoint, Fox News reported.


Omar's statements called out administrations to have the same level of accountability and justice for the victims of crimes against humanity. Her statements come a few weeks after the chaos in the Middle East stopped with a ceasefire and reports of anti-Semitic attacks on American Jews.

But talking about the United States in the same sentence as mentioning Hamas and the Taliban group did not sit quietly among fellow Democrats. On Wednesday, the statement from other lawmakers argued Omar's statements were offensive and misguided.

They said the representative ignored the major differences between democracies following the rule of law and organizations that rely on terrorism. The statement added false equivalencies actually gave cover to terrorist groups worldwide.

Omar later issued a statement on Thursday calling out those that attacked her comments, saying they were of islamophobic nature. She argued many of her so-called colleagues were always quick to call on for her support and are now condemning her, demanding clarifications and not just calling her.

Later on, Omar also said she planned to question Blinken about incidents presented to the International Criminal Court (ICC). However, she reassured she was not equating terrorist organizations with countries implementing democracy, BBC reported.

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