Rudy Giuliani
Rudy GiulianiREUTERS

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who now serves as President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, excoriated billionaire hedge-funder and Democratic mega-donor George Soros, calling him an “enemy of Israel”.

Speaking with New York Magazine’s Olivia Nuzzi in an interview released Monday, Giuliani accused Soros of effectively orchestrating the ongoing Democratic effort to impeach President Trump.

“He put all four ambassadors there,” said Giuliani, “and he’s employing the FBI agents.”

The former mayor then accused Soros defenders of deflecting criticism of the billionaire’s influence in politics and his political positions with allegations of anti-Semitism.

“Don’t tell me I’m anti-Semitic if I oppose him,” said Giuliani, saying Soros is ‘hardly’ Jewish, an ‘enemy of Israel’, and a ‘horrible’ person.

“Soros is hardly a Jew. I’m more of a Jew than Soros is. I probably know more about — he doesn’t go to church, he doesn’t go to religion — synagogue. He doesn’t belong to a synagogue, he doesn’t support Israel, he’s an enemy of Israel. He’s elected eight anarchist DA’s in the United States. He’s a horrible human being.”

Earlier this month, Laura Silber, a spokesperson for Soros’ donor network, the Open Society Foundation, accused Giuliani of anti-Semitism.

“The anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and false allegations espoused by Rudolph Giuliani and his cronies are aimed at fomenting hatred, undermining democracy, as well as distracting from the impeachment process and the critically important national security and constitutional questions before Congress,” Silber told NBC.

Soros, an 89-year-old Hungarian-born Jewish immigrant to the US, is a frequent target both in the US and abroad by conservative critics over the array of progressive-Left causes he funds. Some on the far-right in the US and Europe have also targeted Soros over his Jewish heritage.

Following the article’s publication, NBC News asked Giuliani what he meant by his claim that he is “more of a Jew than Soros”. The former mayor responded by saying “I’m more Jewish than half my friends.”

Giuliani’s comments drew criticism, with ADL chief Jonathan Greenblatt – a former Obama administration advisor – accusing the former mayor of anti-Semitism for his New York Magazine interview.

“Opposing Soros isn’t what’s anti-Semitic,” Greenblatt tweeted. “Saying that he controls ambassadors, employs FBI agents and isn’t ‘Jewish enough’ to be demonized is.”

The American Jewish Committee also criticized Giuliani, tweeting: "No, Mayor, you're not 'more of a Jew than Soros'. You're entitled to your views and to denouncing his. But it is offensive to deny anyone's faith, and worse to endorse classically anti-Semitic conspiracy theories."