WASHINGTON, DC — Antisemitic slurs by U.S. lawmakers are making the United States a weaker ally to Israel and damaging America’s credibility in Middle Eastern nations involved in efforts by President Donald Trump’s administration to achieve peace between the Jewish republic and Palestine, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told lawmakers.
In recent days, members from both parties, including House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel (D-NY), have blasted Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) for antisemitic slurs. However, the secretary did not name the Minnesota Democrat.
Pompeo did condemn antisemitic remarks by U.S. lawmakers as “abhorrent,” during a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing. Although Rep. Omar belongs to the panel, she was not present at the time that Pompeo made the remarks.
Pompeo’s comments came in response to queries from Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) who asked:
We’ve seen the rising level of anti-semitism across our country and even in our own government institutions. Several high-profile individuals have spouted off anti-Israel rhetoric that has had to be countered with condemnation resolutions by the House. The administration is currently attempting to craft a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians…do these statements damage our standing with Israel and make us a weaker ally? And Secondly, do these types of anti-semitic acts and rhetoric damage the United States’ credibility in the Middle East nations that will be involved in the final agreement?
The secretary of state responded:
I think the answer to both questions is yes and anti-semitic language is abhorrent regardless of the U.S. diplomatic outcome, but yes it makes it more difficult undoubtedly. …Language used by members of Congress matters. These countries all around the world are listening to you all they’re watching. They’re watching to see if this a whole of United States government process. They’re watching voices even if sometimes those voices are outliers. They don’t always know what to make of it.
Noting more Jews identify as Democrat, the mainstream media have been countering U.S. President Donald Trump’s assertions that antisemitism is growing among Democrat-elected officials and Jews are leaving the party.