The anger of many American Jews over Donald Trump’s remarks about American Jewry comes as no surprise to anyone. In a recent interview with an Israeli journalist, Trump quoted his father’s words that Jews used to have “a great love of Israel” but it had “dissipated over the years.” To this he added his own words: “I must be honest. It’s a very dangerous thing that’s happening. People in this country that are Jewish no longer love Israel.” He has said it before, and I think he is absolutely right when he says that the chasm between the State of Israel and American Jewry is very dangerous, not only for Israel, but also for American Jewry.
Many American Jews support anti-Israel movements such as BDS and Jewish Voice for Peace not only because they believe in the values that these entities purport to stand for. They support them because they are anti-Israel, and they are anti-Israel because they are ashamed of their own Jewishness. Every day, they move further away from Judaism until eventually they lose all connection to it.
When I say that they shun their Judaism, I am not talking about Jewish customs. I am sure many of them observe those, and still shun Israel. The shunning of Judaism has to do with rejecting the core of Judaism—the unity and mutual responsibility that Israel is obligated to show the world. Instead of caring for their brothers, they show concern for the enemies of their own tradition thinking that by doing so they are showing true Jewish values. Someone should tell them that their Muslim “friends” are not buying that. Muslims will not love them any better when they decide to wipe out the Jews.
This is the same type of Judaism that aroused the most intense hatred in the Nazis, and today’s American Jewry is going to great lengths to form a sequel. The few who understand this are moving out, some to Israel and others elsewhere. However, unless we unite above the chasms in our nation, there will be no safe haven for Jews.
When it comes to anticipating trouble, we have never been wise. We tend to bury our heads in the sand or sink into hubris and complacency. When trouble starts, it invariably gets worse and worse until there is a cataclysm. Only afterwards is there relief. It is all too bad that for all the times we have been through this scenario, we never seem to learn.
Former President Donald Trump wraps up his speech in Des Moines, Iowa, on Sat. Oct. 9, 2021