Special interview:
'Without U.S. influence, Jews in Europe could be in danger'

President of Conference of European Rabbis discusses how Trump presidency could affect the status of Jews in Europe.

Yoni Kempinski ,

Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, President of the Conference of European Rabbis
Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, President of the Conference of European Rabbis
Eli Itkin

The Conference of European Rabbis on Monday kicked off its annual conference, being held this year in Minsk, Belarus.

Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, President of the Conference of European Rabbis and the chief rabbi of Moscow, spoke to Arutz Sheva on the sidelines of the conference and related to the election victory of Donald Trump in the United States, which he called a “new world order”.

“I’m not discussing what Mr. Trump said during his campaign, which might have been a little bit exaggerated. I’m discussing his comments after his election and his phone call with the correspondents of The New York Times,” the rabbi continued.

In that conversation, said Rabbi Goldschmidt, Trump indicated that the relations between the U.S. and its allies would change significantly under his presidency and the United States would “demand payment to help other countries to protect themselves.”

“If this happens, it means that the whole relationship with the United States, which has for many years expounded the idea of American exceptionalism, if this component is no longer a part of U.S. foreign policy – it will impact the lives of many minorities all over the world,” he opined.

Israel “might benefit from a Trump presidency” but “Jews who live as a minority in other countries might have a different view on that,” explained Rabbi Goldschmidt. This is because without the influence of the United States, “the situation of the Jews in different countries is going to be much more dependent on their governments, on their societies, and there is going to be much less input from the outside.”

He pointed out that Trump’s victory has also empowered the radical right in Europe not just with regards to Jews but specifically with regards to anyone viewed as a “stranger”.

“These parties were founded by very open anti-Semites with strong ties to Nazi collaborators during World War II, and we are fearful for the position of Jews in Europe once this is the future power of Europe,” said Rabbi Goldschmidt.