“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 group, including Rep. Brad Schneider (D-Ill.) said in a joint statement.
“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,” they added.
Omar earlier this week shared footage of her questioning of Secretary of State Antony Blinken during a congressional hearing. She had asked Blinken about how alleged victims of crimes could get justice if the International Criminal Court (ICC) was not involved.
“I know you oppose the court’s investigation in both Palestine and in Afghanistan. I haven’t seen any evidence in either case that domestic courts both can and will prosecute alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity and I would emphasize that in Israel and Palestine this includes crimes committed by both Israeli security forces and Hamas. In Afghanistan, it includes crimes committed by the Afghan national government and the Taliban,” she said.
“So in both of these cases, if domestic courts can’t or won’t pursue justice, and we oppose the ICC, where do we think the victims of these supposed crimes can for justice?” she added.
Blinken said that the ICC lacked jurisdiction to take up the cases, adding that absent a United Nations Security Council referral or a request by the state itself, “that’s not appropriate.”