Abrams Clearly Answers ‘No’ — Rep. Omar Says ‘I’ll Take That As A Yes’ Anyway
When asked whether he thinks the El Mozote massacre in El Salvador “was a fabulous achievement that happened under [the United States’] watch,” Democratic Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar listened as Elliott Abrams clearly said, “No,” then nodded her head and said, “I’ll take that as a ‘yes.'”
OMAR: “Do you think [the El Mozote] massacre [in El Salvador] was a fabulous achievement that happened under our watch?”
ABRAMS: “That is a ridiculous question.
OMAR: “Yes or no?”
— David Rutz (@DavidRutz) February 13, 2019
The testy exchange between Omar and Abrams took place during a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on Wednesday about the situation in Venezuela.
It began with Omar addressing Abrams by the wrong name: Adams. She then brought up his involvement in the Iran-Contra deal, saying, “I fail to understand why members of this committee of the American people should find any testimony that you give today to be truthful.”
The freshman congresswoman went on to describe the El Mozote massacre — nearly 1,000 killed by U.S.-trained and equipped forces — and followed with a query as to whether Abrams still believed, as he had said in the past, that the U.S. policy regarding El Salvador was a “fabulous achievement.”
“From the day that President Duarte was elected in a free election, to this day, El Salvador has been a democracy. That’s a fabulous achievement,” Abrams clarified. Duarte, who first ran for President of El Salvador in 1972, was elected on June 1, 1984. The El Mozote massacre, for reference, took place nearly three years earlier in December of 1981.
Omar doubled down, asking specifically whether Abrams viewed the massacre as a “fabulous achievement.”
“That’s a ridiculous question!” Abrams fired back.
“Yes or no,” Ilhan demanded.
Abrams threw up his hands and shook his head emphatically as he practically shouted, “No!”
“I will take that as a yes,” Omar responded.
CNN offered coverage of the contentious exchange but left out the fact that Omar, in an official committee hearing, openly disregarded a witness’ answer and substituted her own. (RELATED: Ilhan Omar Snaps At CNN Reporter: ‘Are You Serious?’)
Omar has been under increased scrutiny of late due to a series of comments that many believe were anti-Semitic in nature. Her recent accusations — suggesting that AIPAC was paying members of Congress to support Israel — led to rebukes from within her own party as well as calls from across the aisle for her to resign her seat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.