Politics To Go

No, Frank Bruni, Trump Isn’t ‘dissing the Jews’


New York Times columnist Frank Bruni wrote a column on Sunday that asked the question, “Why Does Donald Trump Keep Dissing Jews?” But I have a better question, “Why do liberals who have no idea what they are talking about pretend they are speaking for the Jews?”

Based on his writing, it seems that Frank Bruni is not a fan of any faith. But one thing is for sure, the closest that Bruni’s ever been to understanding what being Jewish is about was his experience as a restaurant critic for the Times. Complaining about food has been a Jewish tradition since biblical times.

Bruni’s lack of knowledge about anything Jewish is dreadfully obvious in the column published on Sunday about President Trump dissing Jews. Consider his first example of the “Trumpian” dissing of my fellow “members of the tribe.”

“He [Trump] declined to pay his respects at a Holocaust memorial in Warsaw that other American presidents routinely visited.”

Before we address the ignorance of that statement, allow me to correct Bruni’s narrative. The memorial in Warsaw is not a Holocaust memorial, but a tribute to the 1944 Warsaw Uprising (not the Jewish uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto in 1943).

 President Trump was in Poland for a total of 16 hours; while he couldn’t go to the memorial, he sent one of his closest advisers, his daughter Ivanka, who also visited a museum dedicated to the history of Jews in Poland. While she was visiting those sites, the president was preparing for a speech that laid out his vision for the role America and the entire west in the world. After that speech, he left for Hamburg and the G20.

The Trump administration has screwed up on a number of things important to Jews, but they were “screw-ups” rather than deliberate attempts to “diss” the Jews (as the Obama administration did on a regular basis). This writer strongly criticized President Trump when a press release for Holocaust Remembrance Day referred to all the victims of the Holocaust without mentioning Jews specifically. 

Bruni complained that the president’s tour of Israel’s incredibly moving Yad Vasham two months ago was a quickie — he laid a wreath and left. Again, Bruni criticizes President Trump based on what Bruni believes is important. Unlike his predecessor, President Trump delivered public speeches criticizing Palestinian violence without blaming it on Israel. And privately there are reports that he “lost it” during a meeting with Palestinian President Abbas over Abbas’  inciting terrorism.

Bruni brings up other isolated mistakes, like when the president criticized Jake Turx, an Orthodox Jewish reporter for Ami Magazine. In the middle of a press conference in which the president was already pummeling the press, Turx asked a legitimate question about anti-Semitism in America. The POTUS mistook it as another charge of anti-Semitism against him and reacted with great nastiness.

The Times columnist may have labeled it “Dissing the Jews,” but what he was really trying to suggest is that President Trump is an anti-Semite. For Trump to be an anti-Semite he would have to hate his daughter Ivanka, his son-in-law Jared Kushner, and their three children. The president is not an anti-Semite.