On Tuesday, Jordan Schachtel of Conservative Review reported about a little-known 2017 closed-door meeting in New York City between a then-obscure Minnesota state representative and an infamously repressive Islamist dictator. As Schachtel notes, the private meeting took place with a United Nations backdrop.
About a year and a half ago, on Sept. 18, 2017, a relatively unknown Minnesota state representative flew to New York City to hold a closed-door meeting with the president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who was in town for the 72nd U.N. General Assembly. This meeting of now-Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., with Mr. Erdogan, the despotic ruler of Turkey, went almost entirely unreported, as it was not open to the press and Omar was not a high-profile figure. Since then, photos of the meeting surfaced on social media, but it largely appeared that there was no report detailing what happened during the hour-long meeting.
But one local Minnesota paper that covers the Somali community did receive access to the Erdogan-Omar meeting. That publication is the relatively obscure Tusmo Times, a Somali paper that covers the Twin Cities metro area. Abdirahman Mukhtar, its founder and editor, wrote a story in the Somali language discussing the meeting. For reasons unknown, the piece has since been deleted by the Tusmo Times. However, a copy of the report was obtained from archive.org’s Wayback Machine and translated by One Hour Translate.
The story makes clear, through photos and text, that Omar led the Minnesota-based Somali delegation (which included her non-politician husband, who is seen next to her in photos) that met with Erdogan. …
Speaking to the Tusmo Times, Omar said, according to the translation, that she met with Erdogan for about an hour and that the two discussed issues involving Omar’s native Somalia and issues for Somalis in Minnesota. She thanked Erdogan for Turkey’s support for the Rohingya people in Myanmar. The two also discussed investment and trade between Turkey and Somalia. The meeting ended with Erdogan asking Omar to voice her support for Turkey.
Although the underlying Tusmo Times piece has since been deleted, Omar has not yet deleted her tweet about the meeting with Erdogan.
Under Erdogan today, Turkey has become the number one jailer of journalists in the entire world. Although the modern Turkish state was founded by the famously pro-secularization Atatürk following the post-World War I demise of the Ottoman Empire, Turkey under Erdogan — though it remains a NATO state — has abandoned its secularist history and has drifted quickly toward Islamism.
Erdogan has worked hard to position himself as the Muslim world’s number one supporter of the Palestinian-Arab cause — a task perhaps made easier by the reform-minded current Saudi leadership’s desire to downplay Palestinian aspirations in order to curry clandestine favor with Israel and thereby better work to jointly thwart the two nations’ mutual enemy, Iran. Today, Erdogan’s Turkey staunchly supports the Hamas Sunni supremacist terrorist regime in the Gaza Strip. Under Erdogan, Turkey has also greatly warmed its ties with Qatar — a tiny peninsular nation that disproportionately funds much of the Middle East’s Sunni Islamist extremism.
As Schachtel also notes, Omar tweeted one month after her meeting with Erdogan to thank him for delivering aid to Somalia following bombings in Mogadishu.
“Turkey airlifts injured Somalis from Saturday’s attack. This is the most humane way anyone can show they #standwithMogadishu,” Omar tweeted at the time.