The Mis-Education of IIhan Omar

Ilhan Omar, the newly minted Congresswoman from Minnesota, seems more intent on denouncing Israel than strengthening America in the short two months she has been on the job. She started by recanting her stance on BDS soon after her election, and this week she has been busy tweeting about Jewish money influencing politicians to be pro-Israel.

What Omar either does not know or refuses to acknowledge is that the overwhelming majority of elected officials on all sides of the aisle support Israel because it is good for America.

I am curious is Congressperson Omar understands that the $3.5B aid package that the United States committed to Israel for the next 9 years, provides jobs in the United States. In fact, $3 Billion of that annual package is used for jobs and companies INSIDE the United States. Does Omar want to cancel that package and create that ripple of unemployment and negate gains for American companies like Caterpillar and Lockheed Martin and Intel?

Does Congressperson Omar know that unlike in Germany or Japan, Israel’s military and intelligence partnership allows the United States to have an ally in a region where, as a result, the US does not need to have a physical military base. Does Congressperson Omar know how many billions of dollars that saves the United States per year?

Does Congressperson Omar know that Israel has been a consistent ally in the fight against terror and in creating a democratic center with shared western values in the Middle East? What type of instability what America find itself within were Israel to not exist, God forbid?

Is Omar blind to the technology she wants to boycott and the medical advances that Israel has achieved and shared with its closest friend, the United States? Does she refuse to use Waze? Text message? A computer with an Intel processor? Cancer drugs or a Z-Pak?

Omar is hell bent on defaming and delegitimizing Israel. If she would only do her job, she would quickly learn that her actions will do more harm to America than any country she has in her crosshairs. Perhaps she should focus more on supporting the United States and in doing so, will realize the value a strong relationship with Israel affords our homeland.

About the Author
David-Seth Kirshner is the senior rabbi of Temple Emanu-El, a Conservative synagogue in Closter, New Jersey. He is the past President of the NY Board of Rabbis, President of the NJ Board of Rabbis and a Senior Rabbinic Fellow at the Hartman Institute. Rabbi Kirshner was appointed to the New Jersey/Israel commission and is a member of the Chancellor's Rabbinic Cabinet at the Jewish Theological Seminary.
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