Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) is miffed. Apparently, Facebook has taken a rare departure from ensuring that only the most complimentary of ads regarding Democrats are displayed on its platform and allowed an organization to criticize the lawmaker for her stance on the hostilities between Israel and the Palestinians.
Omar’s office demanded that the social media giant remove an ad posted on its platform by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) that features the lawmaker’s face on Hamas rockets and says, “When Israel Targets Hamas Rep. Omar calls it an ‘act of terrorism.’”
Last week, Omar tweeted: “Israeli air strikes killing civilians in Gaza is an act of terrorism.”
She continued: “Palestinians deserve protection. Unlike Israel, missile defense programs, such as Iron Dome, don’t exist to protect Palestinian civilians. It’s unconscionable to not condemn these attacks on the week of Eid.”
Israeli air strikes killing civilians in Gaza is an act of terrorism.
Palestinians deserve protection.
Unlike Israel, missile defense programs, such as Iron Dome, don’t exist to protect Palestinian civilians.
It’s unconscionable to not condemn these attacks on the week of Eid. https://t.co/vWWQfMqBkT
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) May 10, 2021
The representative’s team claims that the ad misstates her tweet and could incite violence against her. Isi Baehr-Breen, Omar’s deputy communications director released a statement which read:
Given the number of threats of death and violence the Congresswoman receives on a near-daily basis, it’s not just irresponsible – its incitement. Facebook should immediately remove these ads which blatantly peddle both anti-Muslim hate speech and disinformation, and AIPAC should apologize.
Ready to be shocked?
Facebook told Rep. Omar to pound sand. The company stated that the ad did not violate its terms and conditions. The Washington Post reported:
Facebook spokesman Andy Stone confirmed the company determined the ads did not violate its policies. However, the social network does reject ads that its fact-checking partners determine are false, and the company told Omar’s office in an email exchange that this ad would be eligible for a fact check.
The Post seemed to be just as upset over the matter as Omar. “The exchange follows long-running criticism that Facebook and other social networks are not doing enough to protect women of color from hateful and inciting content online, even at the highest levels of political office,” the authors wrote.
On the other hand, AIPAC defended its ad, claiming it was “fair and accurate.” In a statement, spokesman Marshall Wittmann said: “It is not a personal attack but highlights her outrageous characterization of Israel’s efforts at self defense as ‘terrorism.’ Israel targets Hamas terrorists, not civilians.”
Other Democrats including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) also slammed the ad.
The Post also noted that “the controversy could further inflame tensions between Facebook and Democratic lawmakers, who say that social media company has failed to police its platform against known, viral falsehoods and refused to heed their cries about the real-world consequences of online speech.”
A more accurate translation of this statement would be: “Democrats are big mad at the Zuckster because he’s allowing people to criticize their leaders.”
These people are not concerned with truth and accuracy. If they were, they would take issue with the misinformation their activist media outlets peddle on the regular. But that would require a level of consistency, wouldn’t it?