'No evil can overcome the spirit of the Jewish people'

US President delivers remarks at White House evening Hanukkah reception.

Arutz Sheva Staff , | updated: 03:48

Hanukkah candle lighting at the White House
Hanukkah candle lighting at the White House

US President Donald Trump spoke on Thursday night at the White House evening Hanukkah reception.

The reception was attended by Israel’s Ambassador to the US, Ron Dermer. Also in attendance was the family of Meadow Pollack, who was murdered in the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, this past February.

Trump said he is “proud that the Jewish faith is so deeply woven into the fabric of my family. It’s a great honor.”

Hanukkah commemorates “the triumph of the Jewish people in the face of terrible oppression. Hanukkah is the story of Jewish patriots who fought to reclaim their freedom more than 2,000 years ago,” the President continued.

“This year we light the menorah. We reflect upon the extraordinary resilience of the Jewish people in the face of centuries of oppression,” he added, noting the victims of the anti-Semitic massacre at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh.

“In the wake of these evil murders, Americans of all backgrounds have come together to express our unwavering determination to extract the vile poison of anti-Semitism from our world. Throughout history we have seen that no darkness can overcome the light of the Jewish faith and that no evil can overcome the unbreakable spirit of the Jewish people.”

Trump reiterated that his administration “will always stand in solidarity with our Jewish brothers and sisters, and we will always stand strong with our our cherished friend and partner, the State of Israel.”

“We are confronting the Iranian menace that threatens the United States and Israel and the civilized world,” he continued. “We must never allow Iran to obtain a nuclear weapon. We will not. They are constantly screaming, as loud as they can, ‘Death to America’, ‘Death to Israel’. It will not be our death, I promise you that,” he vowed.

Trump noted that on this date one year ago, the US recognized “the true capital of Israel and quickly moved the American embassy to Jerusalem.”

“Today we renew our resolve to defend religious liberty, to cherish the dignity of every child of God, and to always celebrate the extraordinary gifts that the Jewish people have given to America and to the world. I just want to say thank you very much. You are very special, great people,” said Trump, who also expressed pride at his son-in-law Jared Kushner.

“I am so proud to have Jared in our family with all of his relatives and all of our friends. It’s a great thing,” he continued.

The event was the second Hanukkah reception to take place at the White House on Thursday. At an earlier reception in the afternoon, Trump said, “Civilization is indebted to the Jewish people for their incredible contributions to art and science, history, culture and society. Since the founding of America, Jewish communities have uplifted every aspect of our national life. Today we renew our gratitude for those amazing blessings, and we reaffirm our unbreakable solidarity with the Jewish people.”