Trump is now echoing the same antisemitic tropes used by the Nazis

Fréa Lockley

Donald Trump has accused Jewish-American people who vote for Democrats of “great disloyalty”. His words have caused outrage. And some people have pointed out that he seems to be directly echoing Hitler’s words against Jewish people.

“One of the most dangerous, deadly accusations Jews have faced”

Trump’s comments were the latest in his racist campaign against Democratic congresswomen Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar. He was recently branded a “bully” for encouraging an Israeli ban on them visiting occupied Palestine.

On 20 August, Trump said:

I think Jewish people that vote for a Democrat — I think it shows either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty.

Trump has closely aligned himself with Israel and its hard-right prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu since taking power. And as the Intercept noted, this is “the second time this year” that Trump has “invoked the anti-Semitic trope of dual loyalty”. In April, he referred to Netanyahu as “your prime minister” when speaking to a group of Jewish-Americans.

Tlaib and Omar, meanwhile, are outspoken critics of Israel’s brutal treatment of the Palestinian people.

Trump’s words triggered an immediate backlash. As one person noted, he spoke with chilling echoes of Nazism:

Ann Lewis and Mark Mellman of Democratic Majority for Israel called this attack:

one of the most dangerous, deadly accusations Jews have faced over the years. False charges of disloyalty over the centuries have led to Jews being murdered, jailed and tortured.

#DisloyalToTrump

The hashtag #DisloyalToTrump also started trending on Twitter as a result:

A group of Jewish people who’ve been taking consistent action against Trump’s anti-immigrant efforts spoke out:

Others, meanwhile, pointed out that antisemitic attacks are rising in the US. Yet Trump failed to condemn in a meaningful way the white supremacists who marched in Charlottesville in 2017:

https://twitter.com/koopy/status/1164086488038019072

Indeed, one recent poll showed that around 60% of Jewish-Americans blame Trump (at least partially) for recent antisemitic massacres. And there’s no doubt that Trump’s racism has emboldened far-right violence:

And his latest words mark a chilling turn:

Trump continues to “weaponise and politicise” antisemitism

Israel eventually agreed to let Tlaib visit her grandmother, who lives in the occupied West Bank, if she promised not to advocate boycotting Israel while there. But she declined the offer. And Trump’s response was vile:

Halie Soifer, executive director of the Jewish Democratic Council of America, said of this and Trump’s latest comments:

This is yet another example of Donald Trump continuing to weaponise and politicise anti-Semitism. At a time when anti-Semitic incidents have increased — due to the president’s emboldening of white nationalism — Trump is repeating an anti-Semitic trope.

A “pro-Israel, pro-peace” Jewish group, meanwhile, pointed out how swiftly Trump’s attacks on Tlaib and Omar turned against all Jewish people:

As The Canary has reported, the majority of Jewish-Americans oppose Trump. And J Street highlighted that most vote Democrat too:

Logan Bayroff from J Street also said:

It is dangerous and shameful for President Trump to attack the large majority of the American Jewish community as unintelligent and ‘disloyal’. A number of groups noted that accusations of disloyalty have long been made against Jews, including in Europe during the 1930s.

As The Canary previously reported, since coming to power Trump has enabled the kind of antisemitic conspiracy theories that have contributed to rising antisemitic murders. His racist rhetoric, meanwhile, has been emboldening the white supremacists behind many of these attacks.

But this latest attack has taken this up a notch.

When the US president starts to echo Hitler, then we must stand against it. Because if we don’t, the consequences don’t bear thinking about.

Featured image and additional reporting via Press Association

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