An Iranian journalist accused Rep. Ilhan Omar of joining critics who disparaged her after she wrote an article criticizing deceased Iranian General Qasem Soleimani.
Author and activist Masih Alinejad called out the Minnesota Democrat in a discussion with Fox News host Martha MacCallum on Friday, explaining how her op-ed for the Washington Post calling Soleimani a “warmonger” ignited a smear campaign against her.
(Video: Fox News)
“So why is she coming after you?” MacCallum asked on “The Story.”
Alinejad, who has been a vocal critic of the Islamic regime in Iran, said she believed it was due to her opinion piece titled, “Don’t believe Iranian propaganda about the mourning for Soleimani.”
“I criticized Soleimani and I said that many Iranians do not see him as a hero. They see him as a warmonger, as a war criminal. And that is why I got a lot of attacks by these Islamist lobbyists,” she said.
Alinejad added that Omar had “actually shared one of these defamatory articles against me” on social media.
But she noted that the troubling part is that she reached out to Omar on several occasions to get her to speak on different issues and show “solidarity” with others.
“One time, six women got arrested just because of protesting compulsory hijab. Another time, 29 women in Iran got arrested in one day because of protesting compulsory hijab, and I asked Omar to join us and show solidarity. She was silent,” Alinejad told MacCallum.
“And another time when my brother was taken hostage by the Revolutionary Guard, I reach out to her. Silence again,” she said. “My mother was interrogated for three hours just because of my activities. Again, she was silent. 1500 people got killed, she was silent. Right now, 176 people got killed in a suspicious situation in Iran, Ukrainian airplane — she’s silent!”
“Are you suggesting that she doesn’t care about the freedom that you are fighting for?” MacCallum asked, wondering if the Muslim congresswoman was siding with the Iranian regime.
“What I want to say is this: She broke her silence when I criticized the Islamic Republic,” Alinejad replied.
“I criticized President Trump in Washington Post about travel bans, separated me from my son in the U.K. I haven’t seen my son for two years. Why didn’t she attack me when I criticized President Trump?” she asked.
“But as soon I criticized the criminals of the Islamic Republic and I called them warmongers and call them terrorists, called them religious dictatorship, then the Islamic lobbyists here they attack us,” she added.
Alinejad posted a response to Omar on Twitter Friday, calling her out on choosing to “amplify a smear campaign” against her and to “repeat Islamic Republic propaganda against me.”
MPORTANT THREAD ⬇️⬇️⬇️
1-Earlier this week, Rep Ilhan Omar shared a defamatory article about me on social media by a Koch-Brothers funded “think tank” co-founded by a known sympathizer of the Iranian regime.
— Masih Alinejad ?️ (@AlinejadMasih) January 10, 2020
The journalist has also been actively sharing videos and reports allegedly coming from inside Iran where the citizens have, as she contended, been protesting against the government and celebrating the death of the Iranian general.
Since its arrival in power, human beings for the Islamic Republic have been mere numbers.
Every human being has a story, soul, and agency and should be appreciated as such.
In Iran, unless you’re affiliated with the regime, you have no value, according to the regime.
— Masih Alinejad ?️ (@AlinejadMasih) January 8, 2020
My piece in @washingtonpost about millions of Iranians not mourning the demise of #QassemSoleimani. For many he was a warmonger & terrorist.
Some Iranians compared the funeral services for Soleimani to those held for the Nazi leader Reinhard Heydrich…https://t.co/68JYTdH4DQ
— Masih Alinejad ?️ (@AlinejadMasih) January 6, 2020
Twitter users familiar with Alinejad slammed Omar for her silence as well as her alleged treatment of the 43-year-old correspondent.
Masih Alinejad is a great hero of our time, who has suffered and sacrificed for her cause.
It is striking that Ilhan Omar ignored her for this long, and when she finally chose to pipe up, it was to try to discredit Masih‘s work.
— Sarah Haider (@SarahTheHaider) January 10, 2020
It is curious that when it comes to protecting the rights of the oppressed people of Iran, the left is nowhere in sight.
— Ken Churchill (@kenchurchill4) January 10, 2020
Just because you wear a headscarf @ilhanMN it does not give you the authority to comment/tweet/retweet/spread falsehoods about Iranian women. @AlinejadMasih is one of the bravest people I know and despite the hardships and threats she soldiers on. What have YOU done?!
— NazeeMoinian (@NazeeMoinian) January 10, 2020
Deeply disappointed by #IlhanOmar who has repeatedly abandoned & now slandered feminists from the Islamic World, her non votes re Turkey/Kurds & Armenian Genocide have been equally unprogressive in every way. Male dissidents work for VOA but she targets a feminist.
— marjan moghaddam (@TheMarjan) January 10, 2020
We are with you Masih in your fight for human rights and freedom of your people. Her political and ideological agenda exposes a broken moral compass, which is very unfortunate.
— ((( XX ))) (@_tybek_) January 10, 2020
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