Ilhan Omar

Somali-born and Muslim American Congresswoman Ilhan  Omar recently caused a storm by Tweeting “We must have the same level of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes against humanity. We have seen unthinkable atrocities committed by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban. I asked @SecBlinken where people are supposed to go for justice”. She was variously criticized by the Left and the Right for comparing the US and Israel with Hamas and the Taliban.

In short, progressive, anti-racist, anti-war and anti-colonialism people,  the Leftists, criticized Ilhan Omar for unfairly  implying a moral equivalence between  (a) the Indigenous Palestinian Hamas and the Indigenous  Afghan Taliban taking up arms to defend their countries  against foreign invaders (as is permitted in International Law), and (b) the serial war criminal, International Law-violating  foreign invaders, US-backed Apartheid Israel and the US, respectively.

In stark contrast, the mendacious, genocidally racist, and pro-war American Rightists (the Republicans and Democrats) in an Orwellian response (“war is peace, slavery is freedom, ignorance is strength and 2 plus 2 does not equal 4”) were indignant that Ilhan Omar was asserting the moral equivalence between (a) the assertedly “democratic” and “law-respecting” US and US-backed Israeli invaders assertedly bringing “peace” and “freedom” by war,  and (b) their Indigenous opponents who are classified by the US Alliance as “terrorists”.

Some of these Leftist and Rightist opinions are set out below.

(1). Leftist opinions.

Me. In my informed, anti-racist, pro-Humanity view,  Ilhan Omar was absolutely  correct in stating that everybody should be subject to International Law and the International Criminal Court  ICC) [1]. However Ilhan Omar was a bit unfair  in being seen to be comparing Hamas (democratically elected; modestly exercising national self -defence; in the last month Israelis have murdered roughly as many fellow Israelis, 11, as Gaza rockets have killed, 12) and the Taliban (another armed  national resistance group that by 2001 had banned smoking, alcohol and illicit drugs that  kill 8 million, 3 million and 0.2 million people, respectively, worldwide each year) with nuclear terrorist, genocidally racist,  serial invader, serial Occupier, serial  war criminal  and child-killing Apartheid America  and Apartheid Israel (key parties in the ongoing Muslim Holocaust and Muslim Genocide in which 32 million Muslims have died from violence, 5 million, or from imposed deprivation, 27 million, in 20 countries invaded by the US Alliance since the US Government’s 9/11 false flag atrocity that killed 3,000 people) [2-4].

Ali Abunimah (executive director of The Electronic Intifada ) agreed that Ilhan Omar was correct over application of International Law to everyone, but objected to her equating modest Palestinian self-defense with egregious Israeli colonial violence (2021): “Omar rightly challenges [US Secretary of State] Blinken over US opposition to the International Criminal Court investigation of these alleged “war crimes and crimes against humanity. “I would emphasize that in Israel and Palestine, this includes crimes committed by both the Israeli security forces and Hamas,” she says. “In Afghanistan it includes crimes committed by the Afghan national government and the Taliban.” In her spoken comments, Omar notably omits crimes committed by the United States… But it is deeply troubling that Omar – who has been raising election campaign money off her rhetorical support for Palestinians – describes Palestinian resistance and self-defense as “crimes against humanity” and equates it with Israel’s colonial violence… Israel’s list of atrocities is too long and well-known to repeat here. In addition to expelling 800,000 Palestinians during its founding, Israel has [violently] killed some 100,000 Palestinians and Arabs since 1948 – beginning decades before Hamas was established in 1988” [1].

Bassem Naim (the Hamas international spokesperson) praised Ilhan Omar’s  pro-Palestinian position but criticized  her over equating the victim and abuser: “She equated between the victim and the executioner when she treated the resistance of the Palestinian people, the Israeli crimes in Palestine, and the US aggression in Afghanistan as [on] an equal footing” [5].

 (2). Rightist opinions.

Nancy Pelosi,  House majority leader, Steny Hoyer, and other leading Democrats stated: “Drawing false equivalencies between democracies like the US and Israel and groups that engage in terrorism like Hamas and the Taliban foments prejudice and undermines progress toward a future of peace and security for all” [6].

Jewish Democrats, led by Representative Brad Schneider (D., Ill.) and including Jake Auchincloss, Ted Deutch, Lois Frankel, Josh Gottheimer, Elaine Luria, Kathy Manning, Jerrold Nadler, Dean Phillips, Kim Schrier, Brad Sherman and Debbie Wasserman Schultz: “Equating the United States and Israel to Hamas and the Taliban is as offensive as it is misguided. Ignoring the differences between democracies governed by the rule of law and contemptible organizations that engage in terrorism at best discredits one’s intended argument and at worst reflects deep-seated prejudice. The United States and Israel are imperfect and, like all democracies, at times deserving of critique, but false equivalencies give cover to terrorist groups. We urge Congresswoman Omar to clarify her words placing the U.S. and Israel in the same category as Hamas and the Taliban. The United States and Israel are imperfect and, like all democracies, at times deserving of critique, but false equivalencies give cover to terrorist groups. We urge Congresswoman Omar to clarify her words” [7].

Madison Cawthorn (Republican North Carolina Representative) attacking Ilhan Omar and  her fellow pro-Palestinian human rights sisters in the progressive Democrat “Squad”, Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Cori Bush and Palestinian American Rashida Tlaib: “Far-left Democrats have chosen terrorism over tolerant freedom. The Muslim Brotherhood is a purveyor of terror. Democrats are on the wrong side of history and it’s not even an argument” [8].

Mike Waltz (Republican Representative) in a statement announcing the introduction of a House  resolution to censure Ilhan Omar: “We cannot turn a blind eye to members of Congress openly defending terrorist attacks by Hamas against our close ally Israel nor their dangerous rhetoric which has contributed to anti-Semitic attacks across the country”[9].

(3). Objective comparison  of armed Indigenous resistance groups Hamas and the Taliban  versus serial invaders the US and US-backed Apartheid Israel.

Ilhan Omar herself was finally forced to retract somewhat  after this storm of criticism from  mendacious, anti-Arab anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, warmongering, war criminal  and genocidally racist US politicians, both Democrat and Republican: “[I’m not making] a moral comparison between Hamas and the Taliban and the US and Israel [and am] in no way equating terrorist organisations with democratic countries” [6]. In response to Ilhan Omar’s “clarification”, Nancy  Pelosi and Steny Hoyer  stated: “We welcome the clarification by Congresswoman Omar that there is no moral equivalency between the US and Israel and Hamas and the Taliban” [6].

I agree for once with these horrible and unrepentant American warmongers – there is no moral equivalency between the armed resistance of the national liberation movements of Hamas and the Taliban, and the nuclear terrorist, genocidal racist-run, genocidally racist, serial invader, serial occupier, serial war criminal, grossly human rights-abusing, pro-Apartheid rogue states of Apartheid America and Apartheid Israel.

Now I am a pro-peace, secular Humanist scientist, and my endless mantra is “Peace is the only way but silence kills and silence is complicity”. I readily  concede that religion is useful to billions of people around the world in the same way that poetry, literature,  art, dance and music are useful for human  self-realization, contentment and indeed joy. However as a secular Humanist scientist  I personally reject religion, and historicist Abrahamic religions in particular. After unexpectedly winning the 2019 Federal Election,  US lackey Australia’s fervently Pentecostal  Christian and Christian Zionist PM Scott “Scomo” Morrison (aka Scum-o, Skim-o, Scam-o and Scheme-o) declared that “I believe in miracles”– however as a  rational scientist  I don’t (sorry America, humans can’t walk on water, rise from the dead, etc).

Inspired by the greatest humanitarian minds  from Jesus to Gandhi and Martin Luther King, I  am opposed to violence, war, racism, homophobia, misogyny and all human rights abuse. Furthermore, I  love living in a relatively free, secular and internally peaceful society like Australia. I am against violence but recognize that International Law permits Indigenous inhabitants to defend themselves against murderous Invaders. Living as I do in a prosperous, peaceful,  middle class suburb in Australia, it would be impertinent of me to offer advice to Indigenous people fighting deadly Invasion and Occupation.

That said, it is useful to systematically, quantitatively and qualitatively explore the  blatantly obvious non-equivalence of Hamas and the Taliban (armed Indigenous national resistance groups) versus America and Israel (International Law-violating, and  genocidally racist  serial invaders and occupiers of other countries):

(1). Nuclear weapons possession: Hamas (0), Taliban (0), US (5,800-7,315), Apartheid Israel (90-400).

(2). Countries with territory invaded by Hamas (0), Taliban (0), US (72), Apartheid Israel (13).

(3). Countries with territory presently illegally occupied by the forces of Hamas (0), Taliban (0), US (4), Apartheid Israel (4).

(4). Countries presently being attacked by the  forces of Hamas (0), Taliban (0), US (7), Apartheid Israel (4).

(5). Countries subject to subversion by Hamas (0), Taliban (0), US (193), Apartheid Israel (193).

(6). Genocidal atrocities in which they have been involved this century: Hamas (0), Taliban (0 but note the persecution of the  Hazaras in Afghanistan), US (US Alliance invasion of 20 Muslim countries; leading US role in 240 million avoidable deaths from deprivation in the ongoing Global Avoidable Mortality Holocaust in the Developing World;  a world leader in a nuclear threat and a worsening Climate Genocide that may kill nearly everybody), Apartheid Israel (5 in the Middle East plus involvement  in genocidal atrocities elsewhere in Latin America, Africa and Asia).

(7). Foreign countries willingly or unwillingly hosting the forces of Hamas (0), Taliban (0), US (70), Apartheid Israel (4).

(8). Support for the  UN Treaty on the Prohibition  of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW): Hamas (yes), Taliban (yes), US (no), Apartheid Israel (no).

(9). Involved in actual  nuclear mass murder: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes; Hiroshima and Nagasaki, 200,000 killed), Apartheid Israel (no, but planned contingent nuclear weapons use in the  1967 War).

(10). Involved in massive state terrorism: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes), Apartheid Israel (yes).

(11). Gross violation of 15 major UN Conventions (e.g. Geneva Convention, Genocide Convention): Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes), Apartheid Israel (yes).

(12). High technology  army, navy, air force, space force and war industry: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes; the world leader), Apartheid Israel (yes; among world leaders).

(13). Annual per capita greenhouse gas pollution in tonnes CO2-equivalent per person per year: Hamas (Occupied Palestine, 9.1), Taliban (Occupied Afghanistan, 3.6), US (41.0), Apartheid Israel (20.2).

(14). Percentage of own children suffering from child abuse under  Hamas (?), Taliban (?), US (circa 50%), Apartheid Israel (50%).

(15). Percentage of  own children suffering from child sexual abuse under  Hamas (?), Taliban (?), US (17.5%), Apartheid Israel (17%).

(16). Potential victims likely to be killed this century by Hamas (circa 1,000), Taliban (circa 1,000), US (10 billion through Nuclear Holocaust or Climate Genocide), Apartheid Israel (10 billion through Nuclear Holocaust).

(17). Entrenched pathological mendacity: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes), Apartheid Israel (yes).

(18). Opposition to  Indigenous national self-determination: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes), Apartheid Israel (yes).

(19). Support for licit and illicit drugs that cause over 11 million deaths annually (smoking kills 8 million, alcohol 3 million and illicit drugs 0.2 million): Hamas (no), Taliban (no; notably, world-leading  peacetime abolition by the Taliban of smoking, alcohol and illicit drugs), US (yes; world’s #1 licit and illicit drug pusher), Apartheid Israel (yes; a major player in organized crime and the illicit drug trade).

(20). Threat to world peace: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes; major threat), Apartheid Israel (yes; major threat).

(21). Major contributor  to the ongoing Global Avoidable Mortality Holocaust (presently 7.5 million deaths annually): Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes; #1 in the world), Apartheid Israel (yes; #2 in the world because much of US foreign aid goes to Apartheid Israel as military aid ).

(22). Active (violent) murder of subject women and children: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes; see item #26), Apartheid Israel (yes; see item #26).

(23). Passive mass murder of subject women  and children through imposed deprivation: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes; see item #26), Apartheid Israel (yes; see item #26).

(24). Genocidal racism: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (yes; see item #26), Apartheid Israel (yes; see item #26).

(25). Pro-Apartheid: Hamas (no), Taliban (no), US (fervently yes), Apartheid Israel (fervently yes).

(26). People killed this century by violence and imposed deprivation by Hamas (circa 1,000), Taliban (circa 10,000), US (over 30 million Muslims), Apartheid Israel (100,000 Occupied Palestinians; goodness knows how many people killed in Israeli-backed  conflicts in Syria, Iraq, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Guatemala, Sudan, South Sudan and elsewhere in the Developing World).

(27) Contributor to 9 million annual air pollution deaths: Hamas (minimal), Taliban (minimal), US (yes; a major contributor), Apartheid Israel (yes, as an advanced carbon-based economy).

(28). Contributor to the biodiversity loss catastrophe in the present Anthropocene Era, to violation of sustainability, to speciescide, ecocide, and eventual omnicide and terracide: Hamas (minimal), Taliban (minimal),  US (a major contributor; with 4.5% of the world’s population it consumes 25% of the world’s annual resource exploitation), Apartheid Israel (massive contribution, especially by dominating  US policies; non-desert Palestine  has been substantially converted to a concreted over American suburb;  even the Dead Sea is dying).

(29). Based on massive theft: Hamas (opposed to theft), Taliban (opposed to theft), US (historically based on theft and genocide; global theft continues), Apartheid Israel (based on continuing massive theft and genocide).

(30). Humanity and the Biosphere are  existentially threatened by nuclear weapons (nuclear terrorism) and deadly climate change inaction (Climate Genocide)[10]: Hamas (negligible contribution),  Taliban (negligible contribution),  US (world-leading contribution as a world leader as both a nuclear terrorist and a climate criminal state), Apartheid Israel  (a world-leading contributor on a per capita basis as a nuclear terrorist, state and as a contributor to  egregious neoliberalism and  climate criminality).

Conclusions.

Ilhan Omar was correct in saying that everyone is subject to International  Laws. However she was rather unfair to the armed  national liberation movements of Hamas and the Taliban by asserting their moral equivalence with the nuclear terrorist, genocidally racist, serial invader, serial occupier, serial war criminal, grossly human rights-abusing,  International Law-violating, and pathologically mendacious Apartheid rogue states of the US and Apartheid Israel.

What can decent humanity do? Decent people throughout the world must (a) call out the mendacity, egregious theft, genocidal racism, nuclear terrorism, and planet-threatening neoliberal greed of Apartheid Israel and the Zionist-dominated US, and  (b) act peacefully  by urging and applying Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Apartheid Israel and all its individual, corporate and nation state supporters.

References.  

[1]. Ali Abunimah, “It’s time to change liberal discourse about Hamas”, Electronic Intifada, 10 June 2021:  https://electronicintifada.net/content/its-time-change-liberal-discourse-about-hamas/33376?fbclid=IwAR2ZYyWyo1Nc2jvTaD83DdL95ZRppzn-QulyrbYmJHerTLq01n55OsZKxGQ .

 

[2].  Gideon Polya, “US-imposed post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide”, Korsgaard Publishing, Germany, 2020 (see https://www.amazon.com.au/US-Imposed-Post-9-Muslim-Holocaust-Genocide/dp/8793987048) .

[3]. Gideon Polya, “Paris Atrocity Context: 27 Million Muslim Avoidable  Deaths From Imposed Deprivation In 20 Countries Violated By US Alliance Since 9-11”, Countercurrents, 22 November, 2015: https://countercurrents.org/polya221115.htm .

[4]. Gideon Polya, “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950”, G.M. Polya, Australia, 2007 (see: http://globalbodycount.blogspot.com.au/2012/01/body-count-global-avoidable-mortality_05.html  ); massively revised and updated 2nd edition to be published by Korsgaard Publishing, Germany in 2021.

[5]. “Hamas: it’s “unacceptable” that Ilhan Omar equated us with Israel”, Times of Israel, 13 June 2021: https://www.timesofisrael.com/hamas-its-unacceptable-that-ilhan-omar-equated-us-with-israel/ .

[6]. Martin Pengelly, “Nancy Pelosi rebukes Ilhan Omar for tweet on Israel, Hamas and Taliban”, Guardian, 11 June 2021: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/jun/10/ilhan-omar-democrats-harassment-silencing-israel-hamas-taliban .

[7]. Brittany Bernstein, “Jewish Democrats condemn Ilhan Omar for “Equating U.S. and Israel to Hamas””, Yahoo News, 10 June 2021: https://news.yahoo.com/jewish-democrats-condemn-ilhan-omar-132411176.html .

[8]. “Lawmaker’s post featuring Rep Ilhan Omar draws violent responses”, Al Jazeera, 20 May 2021: https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/5/20/lawmakers-post-featuring-rep-ilhan-omar-draws-violent-responses .

[9]. “Ilhan Omar may face censure for words on Israel war acts”, Al Jazeera, 15 June 2021: https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/6/15/omar-faces-censure-in-house-for-questioning-us-israeli-war-acts .

[10]. Gideon Polya, “Climate Crisis, Climate Genocide & Solutions”, Korsgaard Publishing, Germany, 2021  (see: https://www.amazon.com.au/CLIMATE-CRISIS-GENOCIDE-SOLUTIONS/dp/8793987285 ).

Dr Gideon Polya taught science students at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia over 4 decades. He published some 130 works in a 5 decade scientific career, notably a huge pharmacological reference text “Biochemical Targets of Plant Bioactive Compounds”. He has also published “Body Count. Global avoidable mortality since 1950” and “Jane Austen and the Black Hole of British History”. He has recently published “US-imposed Post-9-11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide” (2020)  and “Climate Crisis, Climate Genocide & Solutions” (2021). For images of Gideon Polya’s huge paintings for the Planet, Peace, Mother and Child see: http://sites.google.com/site/artforpeaceplanetmotherchild/  .


GET COUNTERCURRENTS DAILY NEWSLETTER STRAIGHT TO YOUR INBOX


 


Countercurrents is answerable only to our readers. Support honest journalism because we have no PLANET B. Subscribe to our Telegram channel


GET COUNTERCURRENTS DAILY NEWSLETTER STRAIGHT TO YOUR INBOX