‘Denial and deflection’ are Republicans’ typical response to Trump’s 'hateful' anti-Semitism: journalist

‘Denial and deflection’ are Republicans’ typical response to Trump’s 'hateful' anti-Semitism: journalist

Former President Donald Trump’s anti-Semitism was very much on display when, during a recent interview, he told Israeli journalist Barak Ravid that American Jews “don’t like Israel” and repeated the trope that Jews control the media. This was hardly the first time Trump has made anti-Semitic remarks, and journalist Wajahat Ali — in an op-ed published by the Daily Beast on December 22 — emphasizes that whenever Trump defames Jews, Republicans respond with either “denial” or “deflection.”

“Trump had previously assured people that he’s ‘the least anti-Semitic person that you’ve ever seen in your entire life,’” Ali explains. “Of course, he also tweeted an image of Hillary Clinton’s face on top of a pile of cash next to the Star of David, ‘joked’ that his son-in-law Jared Kushner, who is Jewish, is ‘more loyal to Israel than the United States,’ and complained that American Jews who vote for Democrats show ‘great disloyalty’ to Israel.”

Trump has long been full of contractions where Israel and Judaism are concerned. On one hand, Trump boasts about the fact that his once-Presbyterian daughter, Ivanka Trump, is a convert to Judaism and that he has a Jewish daughter, a Jewish son-in-law and Jewish grandchildren. On the other hand, he says overtly anti-Semitic things and is totally unapologetic about it.

Ali, in his op-ed, not only calls out Trump’s anti-Semitism, but also, anti-Semitism in general in the Trumpified Republican Party of 2021.

Ali writes, “Maybe Trump’s hateful comments reflect a modern conservative movement that has gradually mainstreamed anti-Semitic conspiracies that create and inspire violent terrorists targeting Jews, yes, but also, Muslims, immigrants of color and Black people…. We’re all ‘invaders,’ according to the vicious Replacement Theory spewed almost nightly on Tucker Carlson’s top-rated Fox News show without any pushback from corporate sponsors or media institutions.”

The journalist continues, “GOP elected officials, such as (Rep.) Marjorie Taylor Greene, who blamed Jews for using space lasers to start wildfires, and (Rep.) Paul Gosar, who is the friend of White nationalist and Holocaust denier Nick Fuentes, openly endorse the theory as well. It’s the cornerstone of the QAnon movement, a national security threat, whose supporters are now running for office as Republicans.”

According to Ali, MAGA Republicans often respond to anti-Semitism in predictable ways.

“Despite all this evidence of blatant antisemitism,” Ali explains, “Republicans nonetheless have been able to avoid being labeled anti-Semitic despite bathing in it nearly every day though a simple five-step plan: (1) deny, (2) project, (3) deflect — those first three steps, by the way, are straight out of Roger Stone’s ‘rules’ to ‘admit nothing, deny everything, launch counterattack’ — (4) praise Israel, and (5) attack Ilhan Omar…. The GOP has perfected projection, where they pivot and blame Democrats for all their sins and vile deeds.”

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