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December 9, 2016 / 9 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Republican Party’

Report: Trump Circle Furious over Liberman’s Leftward Pull on Settlements

Friday, November 18th, 2016

President Elect Donald Trump’s associates are enraged over a statement Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman made this week, suggesting Israel must cool its heels over Trump’s election and approach him with modest proposals regarding settlement construction. Speaking to political reporters on Wednesday, Liberman said, “If we receive confirmation of the Bush-Sharon understandings, we should grab it with both hands.”

The Bush-Sharon understandings recognized the need for construction to support the growth of the existing population in Judea and Samaria inside the settlement blocks — but no launching of new settlements.

According to Makor Rishon, Trump’s people were aghast at the very fact that Liberman was shooting his mouth off before meeting, never mind coordinating anything with them. And they were even more upset for the fact that the defense minister chose to “pass Trump on the left,” as one Trump aide put it.

Several key Trump officials have said that the Israelis have not yet digested the window of opportunity the last election has opened, adding that, should Israel ask for it, the new administration would even consider supporting annexing those settlement blocks, never mind building there.

Shomron Regional Council head Yossi Dagan, who supported Trump’s election and is in contact with the transition team, warned that Liberman is “drying out 200 thousand residents who live in areas outside the settlement blocks.”

“The message the defense minister has delivered to the new administration is horrendous, especially since any first year Poli-Sci student knows that the Trump people or on the outs with the Bush line of the Republican party,” Dagan added. “The Bush family didn’t vote for Trump, and contrary to them, the Trump people support a united Jerusalem and construction across Judea and Samaria.”

“This is why the president elect’s people pulled their hair out when they heard what Liberman said,” Dagan noted.

David Israel

Impotent Rage About Trump Directed at Steve Bannon

Tuesday, November 15th, 2016

It didn’t take haters of president-elect Trump long to shift their negative energy away from Trump and instead focus it towards an easier target: former Breitbart editor-in-chief and newly named Trump’s chief strategist Stephen Bannon.

Trump won the election, he isn’t going anywhere and people, especially liberal Democrats who have been lulled by eight years of validation, are angry. Also greatly peeved are the traditional establishment conservatives who refused to back the aggressively non-intellectual Donald Trump. It was not only shocking but personally insulting to many of the elites that the “loser” actually won. Much better to throw word-bombs at a liberal for four years than to have to eat crow – picking feathers out of one’s teeth is never fun.

So when the president-elect filled his first two positions and one of the two was an establishment stalwart, Republican National Committee chair Reince Priebus as chief of staff, heads swiveled and the keyboards pointed towards the second, the easier target, Bannon.

Bannon has been decisively labeled “an anti-Semite,”  and “alt-right,” and therefore “racist.” The anti-Semite charge has been traced back to claims made by an ex-wife during divorce proceedings. The most inflammatory thing she claimed he said is he didn’t want to send their girls to a school with “too many Jews.” But they did send their girls there. Bannon denies the charge. That’s it for evidence of anti-Semitism.  Really? Words uttered in a custody battle?

Anyone remember the claim that Hillary Clinton referred to one of her husband’s Jewish staffers as a “[expletive verb deleted] Jew [expletive noun deleted]”? Of course it was never proven that she said that – same with Bannon’s alleged anti-Semitic remarks – but it was repeated and rumors about it persisted, yet none ever rose to the level of a disqualifier for public office, let alone for an advisory role.

Since we can’t know the truth about whether Bannon uttered what was attributed to him by his ex-wife in a custody battle, what do people who know or worked with Bannon have to say about whether the man is an anti-Semite?

David Goldman, the economist and author who used to write under the pen name Spengler, wrote from personal experience that he was confident Bannon is not anti-Semitic. Writing on his Facebook wall, Goldman responded to a post on a conservative news site which blasted Bannon for promoting  “anti-Semitism,” “racism” and “white nationalism.”

Goldman did a Google search of the site.

I looked through roughly a thousand articles and found nothing but pro-Israel, pro-Jewish articles that might well have appeared in Israel Hayom. There is not a shred of evidence–not a single article–that supports [John] Podhoretz’ allegation that Bannon and Breitbart aid and abet anti-Semitic views.

Earlier in the day Goldman took the Financial Times to task for the same kind of evidence-free accusation.

“I know Steve Bannon, and have had several long discussions with him about politics. I first met him when he approached me at a conference to tell me that he liked my writing, which is unabashedly Zionist,” Goldman posted.

Goldman responded to an email query with:”I discussed Israel with him on a couple of occasions and he is a gung-ho pro-Zionist conservative.”

Joel B. Pollak is senior editor-at-large at Breitbart News and an Orthodox Jew. He has worked with Bannon for years and in response to the brouhaha wrote a column on Monday, “Stephen K, Bannon, Friend of the Jewish People, Defender of Israel.”

Pollak elaborated on his full-throated defense of Bannon in a telephone call late Monday evening. “Steve Bannon is the best friend Israel has ever had in the White House,” Pollak said. “Under Bannon, Breitbart has expanded to open a Jerusalem bureau, and it consistently posts positive stories about Israel.”

So what about the charges of anti-Semitism? Pollak laughed. “I won’t tell you which ones, but during the [Republican] primary I had to repeatedly talk Steve off a ledge when he became irate that one or more of the contenders made comments Steve interpreted as anti-Semitic.” If anything, Pollak explained, “Steve is overly-sensitive to statements by others he thinks are anti-Semitic.”

No one claims Bannon is a pussycat. Several people who spoke out against the anti-Semitism claim willingly described Bannon as “tough” or “difficult” or “as hard-[expletive deleted]as they come,” but no one has come forward with any basis for calling Bannon anti-Semitic.

What about the claims of Bannon promoting Breitbart as a refuge for alt-right views?

Pollak explained that saying Breitbart promotes “alt-right” because Breitbart contains reporting on the alt-right is “like saying CNN promotes Black Lives Matter because CNN reports on the BLM movement.”

Indeed, there are articles about the alt-right on Breitbart. The most expansive one is co-written by the alleged icon of the alt-right, Milo Yiannopoulis, “An Establishment Conservative’s Guide to the Alt-Right.”

In a 5200-plus word article Yiannopoulis and his co-author Allum Bokhari debunk myths while creating a taxonomy of the alt-right movement.

Much of the alt-right, the two explain, focuses on community-building and values lifestyles. The “prankstering” or outrageous “memes” appear to be the source of much misunderstanding about the movement, which the two explain is even more hilarious to the alt-righters who practically choke on how those they aggravate “get played.”

But then there are the “1488ers,” who are just a small segment of the movement. Yiannopoulis and Bokhari explain:

1488ers are the equivalent of the Black Lives Matter supporters who call for the deaths of policemen, or feminists who unironically want to #KillAllMen. Of course, the difference is that while the media pretend the latter are either non-existent, or a tiny extremist minority, they consider 1488ers to constitute the whole of the alt-right.

Those looking for Nazis under the bed can rest assured that they do exist. On the other hand, there’s just not very many of them, no-one really likes them, and they’re unlikely to achieve anything significant in the alt-right.

Yiannopoulis also said that “he is too pro-Israel” even for non-1488er alt-rightists to include him in their movement. The same is surely true for Breitbart itself, and for Bannon.

So the scary bogey-men of the alt-right is a fringe element of a fringe element, about which Breitbart runs articles, just – to quote Pollak – as CNN runs articles about the recent attention-grabbing movement on the left, Black Lives Matter.

Similarly, of the recent anti-Trump protests many involved were just dispirited Hillary fans, while a few called for violent revolution and there was even a sign held by one protester advocating “rape Melania.”  Should all Clinton-voters be condemned? Should Hillary Clinton?

The blogger Jeff Dunetz wrote for Breitbart for several years. Although he never met Bannon, Dunetz wrote a column on his own blog on Monday, with a commonsense title: “If Steve Bannon is an anti-Semite, Why Can’t I Find Any Anti-Semitism?” Dunetz remarked on a column written by David Horowitz which ran at Breitbart. In that column Horowitz referred to longtime neocon leader Bill Kristol as a “renegade Jew” for refusing to support the Republican Party nominee, Donald Trump. But Horowitz – a Jew – wrote the column, not Bannon.

It is true that the Horowitz column ran at Breitbart, but that does not make Breitbart or Steve Bannon any more anti-Semitic than the New York Times running a column written by Mahmoud Abbas makes that paper a Holocaust-denier. And just because the Democratic Party endorsed the Black Lives Matter platform does not necessarily make it or its standard bearers anti-Israel or anti-police, although the BLM certainly is the latter and has officially charged Israel with being an Apartheid State and committing genocide.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Wikileaks: DNC Strategy Was to Push Trump to Front of Republican Line

Thursday, November 10th, 2016

It appears that pushing into the limelight an esoteric, buffoonish, self-absorbed candidate so he would win the Republican presidential nomination — was the Democrats’ strategy from the start, their surefire way of propelling Hillary Clinton to the presidency.

“We need to be elevating the Pied Piper candidates so that they are leaders of the pack and tell the press to [take] them seriously,” states an April 7, 2015 email memo from the Democratic National Committee, exposed by Wikileaks. At the time, the “pied pipers” were Ted Cruz, Donald Trump, and Ben Carson.

If you were wondering how come Donald Trump received so much free media exposure for months and months, why every comic in North America used him for fodder, and why he was consequently able to knock off his rivals so effectively — part of it, of course, had to do with his bombast personality and on-screen shenanigans, but part of it was supported by the opposition.

Under the heading “Our Goals and Strategy,” the memo stresses that “the goal of a potential HRC campaign and the DNC would be one-in-the-same: to make whomever the Republicans nominate unpalatable to a majority of the electorate.”

“We don’t want to marginalize the more extreme candidates, but make them more ‘Pied Piper’ candidates who actually represent the mainstream of the Republican Party,” the memo recommends.

The memo outlines three strategies to make this happen: “1) Force all Republican candidates to lock themselves into extreme conservative positions that will hurt them in a general election; 2) Undermine any credibility/trust Republican presidential candidates have to make inroads to our coalition or independents; 3) Muddy the waters on any potential attack lodged against HRC.”

It was a sound strategy, which most of us believed had worked as we all entered election day 11/9. “Most of the more-established candidates will want to focus on building a winning general election coalition,” says the strategy memo, suggesting that “more will need to be done on certain candidates to undermine their credibility among our coalition (communities of color, millennials, women) and independent voters.”

But while pointing out just how “outrageous” Trump, Cruz and Carson are as choices for the presidency, they also had to be mainstreamed, to help them gain the GOP primary votes. “In this regard,” says the memo, “the goal here would be to show that they are just the same as every other GOP candidate: extremely conservative on these issues.”

The DNC’s purpose in pushing up the most extreme, outrageous GOP candidate had to do with the party’s fears regarding Hillary Clinton’s own shortcomings. An email from Mandy Grunwald, a media advisor for the Democratic Party, that was forwarded to John Podesta, sums up the results of a focus group and lists Clinton’s vulnerabilities. Here’s the abridged version:

“Out of Touch – Should we add that HRC hasn’t driven a car in thirty-five years?

“Cronyism, foreign governments, I would name some of the countries, particularly those in the Middle East.

“Wall Street. ‘When HRC recently spoke to bankers at Goldman Sachs, instead of holding them accountable for their activities that crashed the economy, she told them that banker bashing was foolish and had to stop.’

“Obama’s Third Term. I would add ‘We need a new direction.’

“Ineffective. ‘Clinton flew all over the world, but she can’t name a single major accomplishment she made as Secretary of State.'”

To be able to win with so many strikes against her, Clinton’s people felt she had to go up against a rival who would make a fool of himself and become the brunt of a million jokes. The strategy worked, winning Clinton the popular vote in 2016 – but not the election.

David Israel

Jewish Numbers Grow in Congress, Republicans Take Both Houses

Wednesday, November 9th, 2016

The number of Jewish lawmakers has grown in the U.S. House of Representatives from 19 to 23 in the wake of Tuesday’s election in the United States.

There are now two Jewish Republicans in the House, and five Jews in total who were newly elected. A Jewish Representative from Florida is stepping down to retire as well.

In the U.S. Senate, the number of Jews has dropped from nine to eight.

The GOP has swept both houses and for the first time in many years, the United States government will be controlled nearly entirely by the Republican party.

In addition, a former Navy SEAL became the first Jewish governor of Missouri, also from the Republican party.

Hana Levi Julian

Republican HQ in Orange County, North Carolina Firebombed, With Threat on Adjacent Wall

Tuesday, October 18th, 2016

GOP electoral campaign headquarters was firebombed overnight Sunday (Oct. 16) in Orange County, North Carolina, setting afire not only furniture but also bipartisan relations in the state.

Dallas Woodhouse, executive director of the North Carolina Republican Party, called the incident “a horrific, horrific act of political terrorism,” in an interview with ABC News.

North Carolina is one of the swing states in the upcoming U.S. presidential election, and the race between GOP candidate Donald Trump and Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton is getting tighter by the minute.

Both candidates condemned the attack.

In addition to the Molotov cocktail that torched the headquarters, local authorities said in their statement, posted on the website of the town of Hillsborough, that the vandals had also left a message for the campaign workers.

Spray-painted on an adjacent building was a swastika, and the threat, “Nazi Republicans leave town or else.”

The building sustained heavy smoke damage and “some fire damage,” according to the most recent statement from local officials. “The flammable substance appears to have ignited inside the building, burned some furniture and damaged the building’s interior before going out on its own. No damage estimates are available at this time,” the statement said.

The Hillsborough Police Department said in a tweet that evidence was still being processed, but that local police was receiving help from ATF, FBI, SBI and the OCNC Sheriff.

“We’re so grateful that no one was hurt and that no buildings in the [nearby] complex were destroyed,” Hillsborough Mayor Tom Stevens said. “I have every confidence in the joint effort of our law enforcement agencies to find and prosecute the perpetrator of this reprehensible act.”

A tip line phone number “routed directly to voice mail” that “does not record callers’ phone numbers” was listed on the town’s website.

Hana Levi Julian

Trump Promising Netanyahu Jerusalem Embassy, Wants Advice on Building Fences

Sunday, September 25th, 2016

The Trump campaign press release following the meeting Sunday between Benjamin Netanyahu and the GOP presidential candidate stated that Trump told Netanyahu “a Trump administration would finally accept the long-standing Congressional mandate to recognize Jerusalem as the undivided capital of the State of Israel.” The statement also said Trump “agreed that the military assistance provided to Israel and missile defense cooperation with Israel are an excellent investment for America,” and “there will be extraordinary strategic, technological, military and intelligence cooperation between the two countries,” should Trump be elected.

Trump emphasized that Israel is a “vital partner of the United States in the global war against radical Islamic terrorism.” According to the statement, the nuclear deal with Iran and ways to defeat ISIS were also discussed, as well as “Israel’s successful experience with a security fence that helped secure its borders.”

A short while before Sunday’s meeting between Benjamin Netanyahu and Donald Trump, the GOP presidential candidate and indefatigable tweeter tweeted: “Looking forward to my meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu in Trump Tower at 10:00 AM.” The meeting lasted an hour and twenty minutes behind closed doors, and the two did not speak to the press before or after.

The Prime Minister’s office released a laconic statement saying, “Netanyahu presented to Trump Israel’s positions on regional issues related to its security and discussed with him Israel’s efforts to achieve peace and stability in our region.” The PM’s office also said that Netanyahu thanked Trump for his friendship and support for Israel. The meeting included Israeli Ambassador to the US Ron Dermer and Trump’s son-in-law, Jewish businessman, investor and political operative Jared Kushner.

Netanyahu was scheduled to meet next with Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, who has already committed to inviting the Israeli PM to her White House as soon as she’s sworn in. Clinton is on the record as supporting the nuclear deal with Iran, but repeats her commitment to Israel’s security. In an interview with Israel’s Channel 2 TV, Clinton said “Trump should worry every Israeli, regardless of his positions on Israel.”

The two meetings were arranged when a senior Netanyahu official told reporters after his meeting with President Obama that he hadn’t been approached by either candidate for a meeting while he’s in the US, but should they invite him he’d be delighted to accept. A day later the invite came from the Trump campaign, followed by one from Hillary.

Monday night the world will follow with bated breath the first presidential debate between the two candidates. Many Israelis have reported setting their alarm clocks (or apps) to wake them up at 4 AM Tuesday, to watch the Monday at 9 PM match.

David Israel

Netanyahu to Meet Trump and Clinton in NYC

Saturday, September 24th, 2016

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to meet with the presidential candidates from both political parties in the United States on Sunday, following his meeting last Wednesday with U.S. President Barack Obama.

He’ll meet first with GOP candidate Donald Trump, and then with Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, according to a source in the prime minister’s office (PMO).

“The meeting was first agreed to with the Trump people, and then we immediately reached out to the Clinton camp for balance,” said a PMO source.

Netanyahu has said he has no intention to get in the middle of the electoral campaign in any way. Four years ago, he was severely criticized for what appeared to be his perceived support of GOP candidate Mitt Romney, an old friend who visited Jerusalem during the campaign and discussed Obama’s foreign policies.

Not so the New York Times, whose editorial board on Saturday endorsed Clinton for president in a pointed article in which the paper’s management said bluntly, “In any normal election year, we’d compare the two presidential candidates side by side on the issues. But this is not a normal election year.”

The Times went on to list what it considers her finest moments and achievements, among them, “efforts to strengthen sanctions against Iran, which eventually pushed it to the table for talks over its nuclear program, and in 2012, she helped negotiate a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas.”

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/netanyahu-to-meet-trump-and-clinton-in-nyc/2016/09/24/

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