Qatari Media’s Promotion of Rep. Ilhan Omar is Alarming

Qatar's official media agencies report only in favor of Rep. Ilhan Omar while working to discredit her loud critics. (Picture: Supplied)

Minnesota Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar is being directly defended and promoted by Qatar’s official media outlets and news agencies. This is concerning to many Americans as they are left wondering why a foreign country feels the need to protect the interests of a US Representative in such an aggressive manner?

Qatar’s broadcasters have a history of airing AntiSemitic content and providing platforms to Anti-Western hate-preachers such as Yusuf al-Qaradawi who has repeatedly expressed his support for suicide attacks against innocent Israeli civilians, while calling for Jihad to “free Jerusalem”. In some instances, Qatar’s networks have violated their own code of ethics.

Some of the news agencies seen racing to defend Ilhan Omar’s regular controversial statements are also the leading platforms in promoting Islamic extremism and terrorism. Which in itself should be alarming to Ilhan Omar, as to why she is the focus of many of their sanitizing articles. Instead, Omar happily welcomes their praise by retweeting their content and appearing on their channels.

The following are three very concerning examples:

1- Al-Jazeera 

Al-Jazeera is the official Qatari state broadcaster, and is chaired by Hamad bin Thamer bin Mohammed Al Thani, the cousin of Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani; the Emir of Qatar.

Osama Bin laden was a regular face on Al-Jazeera, with the broadcaster providing him with plenty of airtime to voice his hatred against America and the Jewish people.

Terrorist Osama Bin Laden provided Al-Jazeera with Exclusive Interviews, his terrorism advocacy was not censored not retracted.

After 9/11, the NYT sent Fouad Ajami to Qatar in order to investigate the situation. In his report, He stated that: “The channel’s graphics assign him a lead role: there is bin Laden seated on a mat, his submachine gun on his lap; there is Bin Laden on horseback in Afghanistan, the brave knight of the Arab world,” and that “A huge, glamorous poster of Bin Laden’s silhouette hangs in the background of the main studio set at Al Jazeera’s headquarters in Doha, the capital city of Qatar.

The following video report reveals how Qatar’s Al-Jazeera guests issue orders of terrorism LIVE on air:

#AlJazeera; a voice of extremism and a platform for violent #terrorists

— 360 درجة (@360motions) August 15, 2019

Therefore, Americans have every right to be concerned about Al-Jazeera’s favoring of Ilhan Omar an its continuous attacks on the President of the United States.

Al-Jazeera echoes the statement of Rep. Ilhan Omar implying that there is an actual and official system of oppression in the United States of America.
Al-Jazeera’s search directory of ‘Ilhan Omar’ reveals articles in favor of the US Congresswoman, while ignoring her previous AntiSemitic statements.

If Al-Jazeera’s motives were to promote moderate Muslims while maintaining a balanced narrative, they would have also reported on Muslim voices critical of Ilhan Omar, such as onetime Miss Iraq Sarah Idan who is also a female, migrant, Muslim, and American who says “Ilhan Omar does not represent me as a Muslim and does not represent millions of Muslims in the Middle East”, but that wouldn’t fit Qatar’s narrative.

As Dr. Nervana Mahmoud rightly stated in a recent article: “Ilhan Omar is a new-generation Islamist Muslim who uses her faith to define her political identity.”

2- Middle East Eye, “Qatar’s Other Covert Media Arm”

The Middle East Eye seems determined to present Rep. Ilhan Omar as the female version of Nelson Mandela. But is it any different from Al-Jazeera? The answer is yes, they have different logos. That’s about it.

It says it’s independent and aims “to stand apart in coverage of the region by offering readers independently produced news”, yet Al-Jazeera’s Jonathan Powell was directly involved in the establishment of the Middle East Eye. Powell works for Al-Jazeera’s Chairman, the aforementioned Hamad bin Thamer Al Thani, who is Qatar’s ruler’s cousin.

Middle East Eye claims that Ilhan Omar symbolizes the struggle of black American Muslims, yet Ilhan’s own district and Minneapolis’ Somali community have been described by the FBI as the terrorist recruitment capital of the US.

A report from February 2019 reveals that “FBI stats show 45 Somalis left to join the ranks of either the Somalia-based Islamic insurgency al-Shabab, or the Iraq- and Syria-based ISIS combined. And as of 2018, a dozen more had been arrested with the intention of leaving to support ISIS.” and that Omar’s district, “With by far the largest Somali American population in the United States – estimates of up to 100,000 – the insular ethnic community in Minnesota offers a rich recruiting ground.”

Middle East Eye deliberately issues misleading and bias headlines to its articles in order to paint an exaggerated and heroic image of Ilhan Omar, even if it contradicts the facts and reality.

Middle East Eye is frequently defending Rep. Ilhan Omar and uses phrases such as ‘Islamophobia’ and ‘Hostile environment against Muslims’ while ignoring the Muslim critics of Ilhan Omar.

Furthermore, close examinations have revealed that Al-Jazeera’s connection to Middle East Eye also includes Jamal Bassasso, the former director of planning and human resources at Al Jazeera. He is sole director of MEE Ltd, the company that owns Middle East Eye. Bassasso also directed Samalink TV, the official and registered agent for the Hamas-controlled Al Quds TV.

These are not the only links between Qatar, Al-Jazeera, Middle East Eye and Hamas. In fact, Former Pentagon official Michael Rubin described the Middle East Eye as “Qatar’s other covert media arm”, and that it “acts far less as a traditional journalistic outlet and far more as an English-language front for Qatari-supported groups like the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas.”

His most revealing statement was that “the Middle East Eye has bolstered its content with “exclusive” access to Hamas, seemingly acting as the terrorist group’s preferred outlet to the English-speaking world.”

These matters only give more legitimacy to the one question: Why is such an outlet promoting a US Congresswoman?

The Middle East Eye is a Qatari and Hamas-linked outlet that is actively defending and marketing for Ilhan Omar in its articles, images and videos.

The Hudson Institute had also stated that: Muslim Brotherhood affiliates had launched the Middle East Eye in 2014 in order to supplement their message.

So, is promoting Ilhan part of the Muslim Brotherhood’s agenda?

Middle East Eye’s search directory of ‘Ilhan Omar’ reveals articles in favor of the US Congresswoman, while ignoring any legitimate criticizm directed towards her; revealing intentional bias.

This reality begins to make perfect sense when we shed light onto David Hearst, the editor in chief of Middle East Eye. Hearst has published several editorials on the Middle East Eye website glorifying and defending the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamism.

Rubin also revealed that the Hamas links to the Middle East Eye run very “deep”. A former official of Interpal, a United Kingdom-based charity designated by the US Treasury Department as a financial supporter of Hamas, registered the Middle East Eye website, he stated.

3- The New Arab

Of all the Qatari media outlets, I find The New Arab to be the most interesting news website. It was founded by Azmi Bishara, and owned by Qatar’s Fadaat Media.

Azmi Bishara fled Israel in 2007 to avoid facing charges of supporting terrorism, spying and passing government secrets to Hezbollah, a designated terror group (charges he denies). Since then, he has become a major personality in Qatar and one of The Emir’s closest men who is regularly seen with him in public.

Azmi Bishara is a close associate to the Emir of Qatar, Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani.

Theodore Karasik of the Gulf State Analytics research group says that “Bishara plays a key role in Qatar’s approach to the region and the world through media and research“, and a visit to his news website, The New Arab, it displays his agenda of support for Rep. Ilhan Omar.

The New Arab was founded by Azmi Bishara who is a close associate of the Emir of Qatar.

Prominent American Muslim journalist Dalia al-Aqidi has reached out to Ilhan Omar for an interview, but was immediately targeted by CAIR and shadow-banned by Twitter.

It seems that the media coverage of Rep. Ilhan Omar is carefully managed by Qatari news outlets, with the congresswoman refraining from appearing in any interview where her agenda could be questioned; even by fellow Muslims.

Qatar’s The New Arab refuses to acknowledge Rep. Ilhan Omar’s downplaying of 9/11, and continues to claim that the legitimate criticizm of Ilhan is a result of “Islamophobia.”

Additionally, all of the above news outlets have failed to report on Rep. Ilhan Omar’s lobbying for lighter sentencing of ISIS recruits, promoting ugly tropes about Jews and accusing them of “Dual Loyalty”, lashing out at a progressive female Muslim activist who sought her support by condemning Female Genital Mutilation,  her support for BDS, a Movement known for supporting convicted terrorists, among the many other outrageous remarks such as likening of boycotting Israel to the boycotts of Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union; but why would the the Muslim Brotherhood go against their own agenda?

My final thoughts are: If Al-Jazeera and Qatar’s Hamas-linked news websites started promoting me, I’d be worried, not proud.

About the Author
Imam Mohammad Tawhidi is a third-generation Iranian-born Australian Muslim imam and a publicly ordained Islamic authority who comes from a prominent Islamic lineage. His ancestors were the companions of Prophet Mohammad and played a significant role in the early Islamic conquests. He was born in the Holy City of Qum, Iran, into a spiritual family with a history of decades in the Islamic Seminary, and had memorised half of the Quran by the age of nine. Imam Tawhidi ended his relationship with the Iranian regime and continued his studies in the Holy Cities in Iraq. In 2014, ISIS conquered large parts of Iraq’s territory and murdered members of Tawhidi’s family. In 2015, Imam Tawhidi began to gradually call for reform within Muslim societies. His views have been broadcast on international media and have been met with both criticism and praise. He is seen as one of the main leading voices in the global movement of Islamic reform who has dedicated his life to ideologically tackling the spread of Islamic Extremism. Celebrated as the Imam of Peace, Tawhidi’s international activism against Islamic extremism has earned him a nomination for the 2019 Australian of the Year Awards.
Related Topics
Related Posts