Posted on: February 5, 2023 Posted by: Mitchell Plitnick Comments: 1

ReThinking Foreign Policy is one of 89 organizations that issued a joint statement in support of Rep. Ilhan Omar and condemning the party line House vote to remove her from the House Foreign Affairs Committee (HFAC).

For some background on what has been a relentless attack on Rep. Omar since she took her place in the House, check this piece out. Also see this one, which includes a lengthy Twitter thread by Lara Friedman detailing the bad faith nature of the attacks on Ilhan.

Finally, as a separate point which is my own and does not speak in any way for the other signers of this letter: As shameful an act as this was by Republicans, the half-hearted and bogus support by the majority of mainstream Democrats is almost as much the cause of this. They have failed to defend one of their own against scurrilous attacks that debase the suffering of Jews for centuries to maintain the defense of Israel’s apartheid policies. It’s shameful on every level and, personally insulting to me as someone who has been physically and verbally assaulted by real antisemites, who look an awful lot like these members of Congress on both sides of the aisle.

Here is the full text and list of signers of the letter.


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Friday, February 3rd, 2023

Joint Statement in Support of Representative Omar

The vote to remove Representative Ilhan Omar from the House Foreign Affairs Committee (HFAC), following the partisan decision to keep Reps. Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell off the House Intelligence Committee, lacked any legitimate justification and marks a disgraceful opening to the 118th Congress. In pressing ahead with the resolution of removal, Speaker McCarthy has robbed HFAC of a member of Congress committed to universal human rights, international justice and diplomacy, and the defense of democracy, while stirring up hate against a leading Black woman and Muslim member of Congress. We, the undersigned organizations, condemn this vote and affirm our intent to continue engaging with Rep. Omar as a leader in shaping U.S. foreign policy.

In the last four years, Rep. Omar has used her position on HFAC to center human rights and democracy, support critical humanitarian assistance to conflict-affected and disaster-stricken communities, combat hate and authoritarianism, and promote international justice. Her signature efforts include the Pathway to PEACE, a package of seven bills that would block arms sales to human rights-abusing governments, redirect funds from the Pentagon’s overseas slush fund to global peacebuilding efforts, and enhance congressional oversight of the executive’s sanctions authorities. She co-led the Combating International Islamophobia Act, which passed the House in 2021. She has led or co-led congressional letters expressing solidarity in defense of Brazil’s democracy, urging the creation of a Loss & Damage Finance Facility to help developing countries recover from climate catastrophes, and supporting the rights of migrants and refugees at every turn.

The partisan decision to remove her from HFAC as she becomes the first African-born ranking member of its Africa, Global Health, and Global Human Rights subcommittee is particularly egregious. Her formation of the U.S.-Africa Policy Working Group is an example of her willingness to push for a U.S. foreign policy that prioritizes partnerships with civil society and social movements. Her support for international accountability mechanisms, including the International Criminal Court, and close scrutiny of U.S. military operations in Somaliathe Sahel and elsewhere, are a needed corrective to policymakers who believe that the United States  should be allowed to play by a different set of rules, thereby trying to preserve the integrity of international laws and norms.

In addition to uplifting her substantive contributions to HFAC, we cannot let this moment pass without condemning the obvious anti-Black, anti-Muslim, and anti-immigrant sentiment behind this decision. Until this vote, Rep. Omar was the most senior Black woman serving on HFAC, in addition to being its second most senior Black member and its only Muslim member. Speaker McCarthy’s resolution is the latest in a line of attacks animated by unapologetic and vile Islamophobic smears that seek to marginalize Black and Muslim perspectives. Previously, these attacks have encouraged death threats against Rep. Omar. In addition to ginning up further hate, this latest vote is another in a string of efforts to silence her and others who share her background from determining and influencing key U.S. policies.

We vow to continue to engage with Rep. Omar on U.S. foreign policy, and we will work to ensure that policy discussions in Congress and throughout the country make room for her views and voice.


198 methods

Amazon Watch

America Indivisible

American Friends Service Committee

Americans for Indian Opportunity

Americans for Peace Now

Arab American Civic Council

Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance

Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project

Borderlands for Equity

Bridges Faith Initiative

Center for Economic and Policy Research

Center for Victims of Torture

Civic Ark


Colombia Acuerdo de Paz NGO

Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (CISPES)

Council for a Livable World

Council for Global Equality

Defending Rights & Dissent

Demand Progress Education Fund

Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN)

Demos Action


Foreign Policy for America (FP4A)

Foreign Policy In Focus

Freedom Forward

Friends of the Earth

Giniw Collective

Global Zero

Greenpeace USA

Hindus for Human Rights

Human Rights First


Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti

Institute for Policy Studies Climate Policy Program

Institute for Policy Studies, New Internationalism Project

Islamophobia Studies Center

Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ocean Futures Society

Jetpac Resource Center

Jewish Voice for Peace Action

Just Foreign Policy

Justice Democrats

Keystone Progress

Lansing Area Peace Education Center

Latin America Working Group (LAWG)

Libyan American Alliance


Mennonite Central Committee U.S.

Minneapolis DFL

Movement Voter Project

MPower Change Action Fund

Muslim Community Network

Muslim Counterpublics Lab

Muslim Public Affairs Council

Muslims for Just Futures

National Iranian American Council Action

National Priorities Project at the Institute for Policy Studies

National Religious Campaign Against Torture

Our Revolution

Pacifica Strategies

Pax Christi USA

Peace Action

Peace Action New York State

Physicians for Social Responsibility

Planned Parenthood Federation of America

Poligon Education Fund

Progressive Change Campaign Committee

Progressive Democrats of America

Project on Middle East Democracy (POMED)

Rethinking Foreign Policy

School of the Americas Watch

Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign

Social Security Works


South Dakota Voices for Peace

The Advocates for Human Rights (a Minnesota-based organization)

The Black Alliance for Just Immigration (BAJI)

The Black Hive @ M4BL

The People’s Justice Council

The Quincy Institute

Tunisian United Network


US Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO)

Win Without War

Wind of the Spirit Immigrant Resource Center

Women Cross DMZ

February 3, 2023

1 people reacted on this

  1. Given Rep. Omar’s history of supporting US imperialism and for the apartheid state of Israel, it perhaps shows how extremely right-wing the US political landscape is that she is being opposed by the Republican party. A week before the vote that removed her from HFAC, she placed a tweet on her official account: “It was a pleasure to talk with General Michael E. Langley, the sixth commander of US Africa Command about counterterrorism and diplomacy.

    Rep. Omar discussed the US military’s role in Somalia; the need to prioritize development and diplomacy in Africa; counterterrorism policy on the continent; and Global Fragility Act implementation. She also congratulated General Langley on becoming the first Black four star general in the history of the United States Marine Corps, and looks forward to continuing their productive conversation.”

    On the day of the vote, Rep. Omar signed onto a new resolution authored by Democratic Representative Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey and co-sponsored by some 30 Democratic House members “recognizing Israel as America’s legitimate and democratic ally and condemning anti-Semitism.”

    If this is the face of progressive Democratic socialism in the USA, it’s no wonder that there is no real opposition to the government’s imperialism.

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