Has Rep. Ilhan Omar officially gone too far? The Muslim Democrat claims the United States has committed “Crimes Against Humanity.”
Omar stated the United States was guilty of “crimes against humanity and genocide” under former President Ronald Reagan.
“In 1991, you pleaded guilty to two counts of withholding information to Congress regarding your involvement [in] the Iran-Contra affair for which you were later pardoned by George H.W. Bush,” she said at a hearing, Fox News reported.
“I fail to understand why members of this committee or the American people should find any testimony that you give today to be truthful,” she said.
The Iran-Contra affair involved senior Reagan administration officials secretly facilitating the sale of arms to Iran, which was the subject of an arms embargo, in the hopes of using those funds to support right-wing paramilitaries attempting to overthrow Nicaragua’s Sandinista government.
Abrams attempted to respond, but Omar said she was not asking a question and went on to criticize him for his 1982 testimony before the Senate in which he dismissed as “communist propaganda” reports about the El Mozote Massacre, where the Salvadoran army killed more than 800 civilians in 1981. The soldiers responsible for the massacre, the Atlacatl Battalion, had recently been trained by U.S. forces.
“That is a ridiculous question,” Abrams responded when Omar asked him if he thought the massacre was a “fabulous achievement.” “I am sorry, but I am not going to respond to that kind of an attack.”
Omar then asked if he would “support crimes against humanity or genocide if you believe they were serving U.S. interests as you did in Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua.” Abrams in the past had defended Guatemalan dictator Efraín Ríos Montt, who oversaw a campaign in which thousands of Guatemalans were either massacred or disappeared and who was later convicted of genocide. Omar, though, has also faced criticism for challenging the U.S. policy in Venezuela, and her questions appeared to suggest active U.S. opposition to Maduro, who has overseen a complete economic collapse in Venezuela, could spiral into “genocide.”
“I don’t believe this line of questioning is meant to be real questions and so I will not reply,” Abrams fired back.
But Abrams did suggest during questioning from others that military options are possible in dealing with Venezuela.
“When we say all options are on the table, that is because all options are on the table,” he said.
But he said that military action “is not the preferred route and not the route we’re going down.”