For those of you who have always regretted not reading the classic “1984,” fear not: you are living it.
In George Orwell’s classic of life under an all-encompassing totalitarian regime, the concept of Doublespeak was an integral aspect of communication.
With Doublespeak, what was conveyed was the opposite of what was. It was the ability to create a reality that was not only fashioned out of whole cloth, but at complete variance with actual reality.
Or, as Groucho Marx famously said, “Who are you going to believe? Me, or what’s right in front of your eyes?” Indeed.
It was hard not to conjure up the specter of both Orwell and Groucho in reading the reactions to President Trump’s speech before the IAC (Israeli American Council) convention just recently. For close to an hour Trump extolled the US Israel relationship and touted his own very deserved credentials as a great friend of Israel.
The reaction has been universally breathtaking. Those who appreciate Trump’s unprecedented steps to show support for Israel, find him to be a Heaven-sent ally and friend. His solicitude for the Jewish community was further demonstrated this week as Trump signed an Executive Order extending Title VI Civil Rights protection to Jews on university and college campuses that receive federal funding.
This new applicability of the Civil Rights Act to Jews on campuses is expected to be a major tool for Jewish groups to utilize as lawfare or the threat thereof against university administrators who have been remiss, negligent or downright complicit in the harassment and discrimination of Jewish students on their campuses.
Somehow, though, for Left Wing Jews, all of this friendship, empathy and solicitude has been interpreted as nothing less than anti-Semitism on Trump’s part. They see in his Trumpian staccato and Twitter-like banter nothing less than anti-Semitic tropes in which Trump is effectively conflating Jews with dual loyalty, and an obsession with money.
The accusations would be riotous if they weren’t so sincerely spiteful. The reality was actually quite the opposite: Trump feels so comfortable around Jews, especially those who actually like him, that he talks to them as friends.
At one point, Trump told the crowd that he knows there are a lot of real estate people in the group and that real estate people are “killers.” Of course, he was including himself in the depiction. This is the kind of talk friends do all the time. Yet to the finger pointing crowd, it was saying that all Jews are of a certain way – ruthless, money hungry, whatever.
This is the stuff of safe space snowflakery. You have to be kidding. But of course, kidding, levity, and familiarity are strictly forbidden in the dour world of the Progressive elite.
Trump’s admonition to Jews to love Israel more was taken as a recognition of dual loyalties, rather than what it clearly was, which was a gentle rebuke to Liberal Jews to not be so critical of Israel and its government and its policies.
If Trump had announced a cure for cancer from the stage, Left Wing Jews would have seen it as a sop for the drug industry, especially Teva, which is based in Israel.
All of this absurdity is reminiscent of pinkwashing. Here the fact that Israel is an undisputed oasis for gays in the Middle East is seen not as an expression of empathy and respect for human rights, but as a calculated diversion from the oppression of the Palestinians.
The fact that hundreds of Palestinian homosexuals have found respite and safety in Israel is lost on those who have crafted a water tight narrative of evil.
Trump is evil, Israel is evil, and Trump’s assistance to Israel is a conspiracy of evil.
I will repeat that, as it itself sounds Orwellian. Somehow, Trump’s embrace of Israel is a manifestation of anti-Semitism, in the sense that Israel is a denial and contradiction of what Left Wing Jews have decided that Judaism is about.
If Judaism is about social justice, tikkun olam, then Israel is its antitheses, steeped as it is in particularism, nationalism, traditionalism and a desire to nurture the values of a distinct People.
While it has not yet been pronounced in such few sentences, this is the underlying sentiment on the Jewish Left regarding Israel. And Trump, the best American Presidential friend the State of Israel has ever had, is the enabler, facilitator of that betrayal of Judaism. Trump is thus anti-Semitic.
Forget the fact that Trump grew up with Jews, working with his father in Brooklyn, that the apple of his eye, his daughter Ivanka, is now an Orthodox Jew, that his go-to guy for more than we know, Jared Kushner is the same.
It doesn’t matter. Trump is an anti-Semite in liberal eyes. And George Orwell would have been tickled pink by all the self-righteous condemnation of a friendship that is right there in front of our eyes.
The author is the Chairman of the Board of Im Tirtzu and a Director of the Israel Independence Fund.