Ilhan Omar – Why i Deleted Tweet About Dad “Nur Said”
Rep. Ilhan Omar deleted a tweet referring to her father as Nur Said — evidence that reveled that her ex-husband, Ahmed Nur Said Elmi, is her brother.
A spokesperson for the Minnesota Democrat said the name in the tweet was only a nickname.
“Nur Said means ‘Happy Light’ and it’s been her dad’s nickname since he was a kid. He has a public page with the same name. She isn’t deleting it for the disturbing and hateful reasons that are being implied … ” the statement said.
But other details contradict that explanation.
“Happy Father’s Day to my aabo Nur Said, I am forever grateful to Allah for giving me the best father a … ” the June 2013 tweet, which was deleted early Tuesday morning, said.
In Somalian culture, the father’s name becomes part of the son’s last name.
There are at least two contradictions with that explanation, which will be stated below;
1. Nur Said means “happy light” in Arabic, but Somalis speak the Somali language, not Arabic. Somali and Arabic do not even use the same letters.
Nur Said is a common name in Somalia, said to the DCNF the Executive Director of the Shaul M. Gabbay Global Research Institute. It is unlikely that a foreign expression would refer to someone who occurred to be a name in the local language, but who was not the name of the person, he continued.
“Unlikely [it would be] used not as a name,” Gabbay, a former professor of international studies at the University of Denver, said.
“Somali is official and most of the population speak it,” he told the DCNF. He said that Arabic is also listed as an official language, but “almost no young know it or even of it.” He pointed out that it was more commonly understood in the 1950s and ’60s because of “Arab radio popularity then.”
It is unclear when Omar’s father was born.
But, according to City Pages’ profile, Omar’s grandfather was a high-level government official in the administration of Siad Barre, who in 1969 led a newly independent Somalia with a sense of nationalism and self-identity. Such a person “most likely would use Somalian” in his household, Gabbay said.
2. Ilhan Omar’s sister listed Nur Said Elmi as her father’s name on her marriage certificate.
Leila Elmi’s 1997 marriage certificate shows that she lived in Camden, a neighborhood of London, and was 24 years old that year. It shows that her father’s name was Nur Said Elmi.
Omar’s ex-husband Elmi’s Facebook page, which the Daily Caller News Foundation archived June 23, shows he was attending the Haverstock School as a 12-year-old in the same neighborhood during that time period. The profile was deleted after the DCNF linked to it in a previous story.
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