The New York Post is taking criticism after publishing a front-page photo of the burning twin towers of the World Trade Center in an attack on Congresswoman Ilhan Omar.
The New York Post‘s front cover on Thursday made reference to remarks made by the freshman legislator from Minnesota during a gathering for the Council on American–Islamic Relations last month. Omar, the first-ever Muslim woman to serve in Congress, was making reference to the founding of the organization which she incorrectly stated came after 9/11 — CAIR was actually founded in 1994 — because “they recognized that some people did something and that all of us were starting to lose access to our civil liberties.”
While many interpreted the remarks as referencing a rise in Islamophobia and attacks on Muslims after 9/11, The New York Post and others saw it as downplaying the terrorists who attacked the World Trade Center as “some people” who “did something.”
Omar also came under attack from Fox News host Brian Kilmeade, who said, “You have to wonder if she’s an American first.” Kilmeade later took to Twitter to issue a clarification, saying he did not intend to question whether she was an American.
“I didn’t intend to question whether Rep. Omar is an American – I am questioning how any American, let alone a United States Congresswoman, could downplay the 9/11 attacks,” he wrote.
But many noted that the attacks on Ilhan Omar were out of place, and were purposely taking her words out of context. The Guardian noted that just before her remarks that “some people did something,” Omar recognized the existence of terrorism — and how terrorist acts have become intricately tied to the public perception of Islam.
Omar has been a popular target for the political right since having taken office. She was the subject of a documentary from right-wing personality Jacob Wohl, who claimed to investigate reports that she had married her brother for immigration purposes. During filming, Wohl showed pictures of himself wearing a bullet-proof vest, and claimed that he received death threats for his investigation. However, it was later revealed that said threats came from a Twitter account that Wohl, himself, operated.
Bomb threat on Rep Ilhan’s life
Man caught trying to kill Rep Ilhan
Rep Ilhan repeatedly condemns 9/11 terror & KSA extremism
•@nypost Cherry picks 4 words for Front Page hate to reinforce bomber & assassin
They’re trying to kill her???? pic.twitter.com/ISXBVNWp8U
— Qasim Rashid, Esq. (@QasimRashid) April 11, 2019
Ilhan Omar has faced real death threats of her own. As City Pages reported, her office received a call from a person who police identified as Patrick W. Carlineo. Carlineo reportedly threatened to shoot the congresswoman.
“Why are you working for her? She’s a f***ing terrorist,” he allegedly told Ilhan Omar’s office staff. “I’ll put a bullet in her f***ing skull.”
— Mehdi Hasan (@mehdirhasan) April 11, 2019