Leila Shukri Adan: Ilhan Omar doesn’t speak for us

The Washington Free Beacon’s Adam Kredo reports “Ilhan Omar Named 2019 Anti-Semite of the Year.” Following a public nomination and voting period, the organization StopAntiSemitism.org recognized Omar for repeatedly spreading anti-Israel and anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. My friend Leila Adan ([email protected]) is shortly to announce that she is opposing Omar for the Fifth District DFL congressional nomination. She wants it to be known that Omar does not speak for the Fifth District’s Somali community. She writes:

It is with dismay that I read the article describing our congressional representative as the anti-Semite of the year. She brings unwanted attention and shame to the Fifth District by her views. Those of us in the Somali community see her words and deeds as a disgrace. She has put us on the map in all the wrong ways.

What mainstream media outlets do not know is that Omar is not representative of our community. She does not speak for us.

Our community includes Somalis who claim Jewish ancestry and live right here in Minnesota. They are an oppressed minority who came here as refugees. Rep. Omar is well aware of their history. She represents them as well.

Somalis are not anti-Semitic and we continue to see the path Omar is on as a danger to our community. We are a peace loving people who are grateful for all that has been done for us by the United States. We seek to understand whose agenda she is advancing. It is not ours. We would like to disassociate ourselves from her.

We respect our Jewish neighbors who have befriended us here. Israel is a democracy and an ally. Omar’s anti-Semitism is not organic to our community.

If Omar went to Congress to represent the issues important to the Fifth District, she has forgotten what they are. We are as baffled as you as to whose cause she is advancing.

The Democratic Party bears responsibility for letting Omar continue on her disgraceful path without speaking up. We are committed to restoring the relations between us and the Jewish community that Omar has done so much to damage. We will will not let her tarnish us; we will speak up to refute her.

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