September 20, 2018

Julia Ioffe, meet the real Donald Trump

Back in February as the winds began to shift toward Donald Trump, they picked up  a distinct anti-Semitic odor.  It was more subtle then, like rotting jasmine in the night air, but if you inhaled deep enough, it really stank.

I wrote a column, “Donald Trump Has a White Supremicist Problem.”  This is what I sniffed: 

“White nationalist leaders including Jared Taylor and former Klansman David Duke have endorsed Trump. On Vanguard News Network, the largest white supremacist website, Trump is regularly referred to as “Glorious Leader.” Bloggers compare him to Hitler, treating him like the Second Coming of the Third Reich. In January, William Johnson, leader of the white supremacist American Freedom Party, paid for a series of robocalls in Iowa in support of Trump. Johnson convened a 2015 white power political event in Bakersfield at which Matthew Heimbach of the Traditionalist Youth Network gave a speech blaming Jews for destroying the white race.”

[Melania Trump: Ioffe ‘provoked’ anti-Semitic abuse]

As Trump has gained ground, he has not done anything — not a  speech, not a campaign strategy, nothing — to wash the stench off.  If anything, the same hate-filled, marginal voices that rose up to support him them feel even more empowered.

New evidence of that emerged this week in the vicious anti-semitic responses to a profile of Melania Trump.

Melania didn’t like the GQ journalist Julia Ioffee’s feature profile of her, and let it be known that she was suspicious of Ioffe's motives.  That mobilized the Trumpfers, whose Internet comments directed to Ioffe, who is Jewish, tell a story of rabid, unbridled, unchecked, and growing anti-Semitism, as documented in a Mediate column

“With Jews, you lose!” read one tweet, which featured a cartoon of a hook-nosed, money-grubbing caricature. 

@Gasthekikes tweeted to Ioffe, “Whacha doing kike? you sure will make a preeurdy lampshade then it's….” — and posted a mock poster of a movie, “Back to the Ovens.” 

(Question for @Gasthekikes, if you really did @gasthekikes, who would have written and produced “Back to the Future?”). 

It went on and on and on— with perhaps  the single most disturbing image tweeted to Ioffe being a cartoon of a Jewish-looking man on his knees with a bullet passing through his brain.  Trump 2016! 

Will Donald speak out?  Will his Jewish daughter and son-in-law at least publicly keep their mouths shut about this issue?  I don’t know. But it stinks.

Rob Eshman is publisher and editor-in-chief of TRIBE Media Corp./Jewish Journal. E-mail him at robe@jewishjournal.com. You can follow him on Twitter @RobEshman and Instagram @foodaism.