Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar took to Twitter to defend herself against “dangerous propagandists” who attempted to crash one of her town halls on Thursday. During the event, people in the crowd called her a “warmonger” over her continued support for Ukraine.
Omar addressed the protesters during the event and again on Twitter, where she defended sending money to Ukraine as it battles against Russian forces.
“I am sorry, you all aren’t ‘anti-war protesters,’ you are dangerous propagandists who are literally making a mockery of the anti-war movement,” she wrote in a pair of tweets.
She added: “I have never had the pleasure of responding to [Russia’s] ridiculous internet disinformation in person before. Thank you for the opportunity”
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Omar said the money Congress has sent to Ukraine is for the country’s own defense and should not constitute promoting war. Critics disagree and say it pushes the U.S. and the world closer to nuclear war.
“I am amazed at the nerve that some people have to not be upset with the country literally waging war, but at the country defending itself and those helping them do that,” the Minnesota Democrat added.
And: “I was even told by one of these people tonight, ‘it’s America that started the Russia war,’ seriously wtf.”
Congress has approved multiple funding packages to help Ukraine since Russia first invaded on Feb. 24, totaling billions of dollars.
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In March, Omar seemed to express reservations over the “consequences” of sending military supplies, weapons, and missile defense systems to Ukraine, as it would result in an outcome that is “unpredictable and likely disastrous.”
“The consequences of flooding Ukraine with a billion dollars in [American] weapons, likely not limited to just military-specific equipment but also including small arms + ammo, are unpredictable & likely disastrous,” she tweeted on March 8. “[Especially] when they are given to paramilitary groups without accountability.”
In a follow-up tweet, she reiterated Ukraine’s right to defend itself.
“I support giving Ukraine the resources it needs to defend its people, I just have legitimate concerns about the size and scope,” Omar added.
Her comments echoed those she made a month prior when she rejected the proposed Ukraine Defense Bill. At the time, she said the funding to Ukraine “escalates the conflict without deterring it effectively.”
“With a very soft trigger, it vaults Ukraine overnight into the third highest recipient of U.S. security assistance and weapons sales in the world,” she wrote in Feb. “The consequences of flooding Ukraine with half a billion dollars in American weapons, likely not limited to just military-specific equipment but also including small arms and ammo, are unpredictable and like disastrous.”
She added: “It is very likely that what will actually be in front of us for a vote will include some of these drastic and dangerous arms sales and sanctions implemented immediately, removing any possibility of deterrent and giving away crucial leverage our diplomats should be used to secure a peaceful resolution. Instead of spending $500 million on weapons, we should be centering civilian needs with refugee and humanitarian assistance.”
“When the United States says it champions human rights, democracy, and peace, we should mean it,” Omar concluded the letter. “I am committed to doing everything I can to support diplomacy and peace on behalf of my constituents, especially Ukrainian Americans and those with families in Ukraine, but I cannot in good conscience support a bill that places militarism and economic warfare over the urgent needs of both Ukrainian and Russian civilians. For those reasons, I plan to vote NO on the Ukraine defense package.”
But, more recently, on Oct. 24, Omar co-signed a letter to President Joe Biden applauding his “commitment to Ukraine’s legitimate struggle against Russia’s war of aggression” while calling for an end to the war.
Some Democrats and Republicans both have voiced concerns over sending funds to Ukraine to defend itself without a plan to end the fighting.