December 12, 2016

Trump and Jews: Vigilant Optimism

Trump and Jews: Vigilant Optimism

There are worrying signs but we should judge President-elect Trump on his time in office, says Jack Rosen, President of the American Jewish Congress.

As Julius Caesar once said: “It is easier to find men who will volunteer to die, than to find those who are willing to endure pain with patience.” Today, we all make decisions quickly, snap judgements in the heat of the moment based on our biases and instincts, and not necessarily on the full facts. Waiting, giving ourselves that chance to assess a new reality, is as difficult as ever.

We have witnessed one of the bloodiest elections in living memory. Many things were said in the heat of battle, many inappropriate, some shocking, others outrageous. President-elect Donald Trump and his team must be held to account for some of his comments, but we also owe it to our country to take our time and see future actions before rushing to judgement.

Within days, we have already seen President-elect Trump change his mind from some of his most hardline proposals. The idea that he would look to prosecute Hillary Clinton seemed far-fetched at the time and so it has proven. There have also been re-assessments when it comes to policy areas such as Obamacare, NATO and others. It may be hard, but it is in all our interests to give Donald Trump a chance before writing him off, along with his administration and by extension our democracy.

However, we can’t duck the fact that Jews in the U.S. are wary of the President-elect. A wave of anti-Semitism has seeped into the public consciousness and has infiltrated both sides of the political debate. Whilst this type of abuse is common across parts of Europe, we have been privileged to live in a society where Jewish people haven’t just been accepted but have also been embraced. But, this election shows that people are rejecting mainstream political ideas. The rise in anti-Semitic incidents cannot be treated as a coincidence and must be taken seriously.

We all know that there are significant challenges posed by Trump’s election to the Jewish community. His pre-election commercial, which referred to “those who control the levers of power in Washington and for the global special interest,” had worrying anti-Semitic overtones. This was present during the campaign and became more intense in the last few weeks. Further concerns have been raised about the President-elect’s appointment of Stephen Bannon as chief strategist. But we would be wrong to jump to conclusions, and the administration’s actions over the next few months will give us a clear idea as to how they intend to behave in office.

That is not just a Republican problem, Democratic Representative Keith Ellison, who is widely considered a frontrunner to become chairman of the Democratic National Committee, formerly defended Minister Louis Farrakhan, a spokesman for the religious group Nation of Islam which espouses anti-Semitism. As the public look for change, fringe voices are going to become part of the mainstream.

The early signs are that the President-elect will tackle the problem. His son-in-law, Jared Kushner, has already leapt to Trump’s defence and pointed to 25 occasions where he has denounced the KKK. We need to be prepared, if Trump’s administration, or any political leader, does not take steps to quash anti-Semitism, we need to call them out and hold them to account.

Our society has seen waves of immigrants from all over the world, living together, side by side, with people of other backgrounds and faith. I fully expect President-elect Trump as a New Yorker to not only realize this, but to embrace it. He has lived in the most diverse city on earth all his life. He has become a part of its culture and is aware of how our society works. I could not imagine that he would not want to take that inclusivity forward and ensure it is part of his administration.

Trump’s pre-election promises about Israel signify that he will take a very different approach to the country than the current Obama administration. He has promised to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and seems set on creating stronger ties with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu. When I met with the Israeli leader last week, we recognized both countries are at the forefront of innovation and technology.

An ever closer bond between the two countries will be beneficial to both parties. On Iran, Trump has made it clear that he is willing to challenge the nuclear agreement that is currently a direct threat to both the USA and Israel. While we cannot ignore domestic issues, making progress in the Middle East could set a positive tone for Trump’s relationship with the Jewish community.

We cannot be complacent. There are worrying signs. However, we should judge our new president on his actions in Office and not on the tone of his campaign. The jury is still out as to what his long-term relationship with the Jewish community will be, but I choose to look forward with optimism rather than knee-jerk criticism.

2.33 avg. rating (56% score) - 3 votes
Jack Rosen
Jack Rosen is the Chairman of the American Jewish Congress, an association of Jewish Americans who are committed to ensuring the survival and security of Israel, and protecting Jewish communities around the world. Mr Rosen also founded the Council for World Jewry, an organization within the framework of the AJC. Rosen is very active in government and political affairs, as well as a number of public interest organizations. He and is also Chief Executive of a New York Real Estate firm, Rosen Partners LLC.
  • Shadow Warrior

    Hammond is continuity Brown. He is a hand-wringing lefty looking for clever wheezes to raise more tax in ways that people don’t immediately notice.

  • captainslugwash

    I predict the Budget will attempt to show the Left how caring the Tories are, and it will be funded by screwing over the working man.
    If Corp Tax comes down, I bet Divi tax will be going up.
    I would love to be wrong.

  • skynine

    We really need to look at tax credits, in particular in work tax credits that encourage people to work part time to preserve the benefits. 45% of women work part time and I would hazard a guess that tax credits are the main cause. This leads to low pay, low skill work in supermarkets and the retail sector including coffee shops. The government needs to get back to the employer paying people to do a job for economic reasons rather than to get onto the tax credit ladder. Like all government benefits it distorts the market and diverts government expenditure into non productive areas.
    The refrain that the government has cut expenditure is not true, it increases every year as more and more goes into welfare.

  • MrVeryAngry

    fat chance

  • MrSauce

    So, when wouldn’t we want a ‘budget for growth’?

  • Rob

    I note that the UK Government has just slapped on a 25% tax charge for anyone moving abroad and wishing to move out their private pension from the UK.

  • SonofBoudica

    The Remoaners will do their utmost to sabotage the Government’s negotiating position. They do not want a successful outcome; they want a failure. They want to be able to scream “Told you so!” from the rooftops.

  • EnglandLaments

    Thank goodness for Andrew Neil, the one media hack who scares the pants off the established politicians. He was spot on with Heidi Allen!

  • joshuafalken

    I had a very long, hard, studied and considered look at the hope, care and aspirations of all Europeans, before I voted to get the UK out of the toxic grasp of Brussels.

    The European Union and it’s charge of “ever closer union” has borrowed and spent its way to oblivion, whilst enslaving the working and middle classes in debt.

    The central control mantra of the unaccountable Brussels ruling elite, delivered through a mixture of socialism, globalism and corporatism is entirely responsible for the populist revolt by the millions of “Just About Managings” across Europe.

    We must remember the ultimate goal of socialists, globalists and corporatists is control, not prosperity. see—-not-prosperity.

    Social equality and economic growth always fail under central control and fighting against the Brussels doctrine on behalf of all Europeans is why I voted for Brexit.

    Britain has a long history of helping Europeans depose tyrants and Brussels is just the latest incarnation.

    Britain is the most racially advanced and accepting society on the planet. We welcome those in need and those that can help us with open arms and a smile; that will not change.

    We are also one of the most innovative, talented and open societies in the world, which why everyone wants to live here. However, we cannot fit everyone in, so we have to have clear, balanced and fair immigration policy which is where the arguments start between the monetarists and humanists will never be reconciled.

    I thought long and hard before coming to the conclusion that leaving the EU was in the best interest of all Europeans, as Brussels is toxic and cannot be reformed from within.

    Also, I find it insulting that people who voted Remain have insufficient faith in British ingenuity, compassion and skill to get a good deal for us and see the Europe that we love get a better deal from Brussels and the reform that European people deserve. and

    The politics of left verses right are dead because neither have delivered the promised economic growth and social mobility for anyone, but themselves. The populists are not selfish per-se, they just want to take back control of their own destiny that left/right politicians have freely given away and/or exploited for their own ends. In my constituency, the local residents group are taking over the councils as politicians ignore voters, so Westminster should beware of the well-organised, local resident independents at the next election. This is a peoples revolution which should be shouted from the rooftops, but liberals remained deafened by the socialist, globalist and corporatist “vested interests” that have spectacularly failed us and are obediently crying foul and fake.

    There will be an initial unpalatable inflationary cost to fighting globalism and rolling back central control that few appear to have factored in, but dismantling failed left/right vested interests should eventually free libertarian socially-conservative capitalism from the shackles of TBTF corporatism to feed economic growth and social mobility.

  • agdpa

    The EU usually makes the wrong decision – on immigration, on freedom of movement, on the euro, on the Ukraine, etc. etc. Little hope it will get Brexit right.

  • brownowl

    Eh? Reference please!

  • Neil2

    Sod caring. Screw the spongers and breeders. Kill HS2. Stop all “green” subsidies. Slash “foreign aid” and walk away from the EUSSR with immediate effect.

  • Rob
  • John C

    What a confused article. It conflates surveillance by the security services with poor defences against fraud.

  • John C

    Err, it’s the UK that’s leaving the EU, not vice versa.

  • John C

    Me, now. ‘Growth’ is a manic obsession.

  • La Face Nord

    Mr Redwood – are you aware of the Biased BBC website? It’s been exposing their agenda for a long time, but I imagine you’ve been well aware of the BBC’s agenda for quite some time…

  • Contact Rvtech

    The post is great

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