Former US President Donald Trump sparked debate in Israel and among American Jews after he criticized American Jews for what he argued was their insufficient praise of his policies toward Israel.
He also urged them to support him in the next presidential elections, stating that he was the “best” US president for Israel and the Jews.
“No President has done more for Israel than I have,” Trump wrote on his Truth Social account before adding that it was somewhat surprising that “our wonderful Evangelicals are far more appreciative of this than the people of the Jewish faith, especially those living in the United States.”
“Those living in Israel, though, are a different story,” Trump said, adding that he received there the “highest approval rating in the world,” and went on to say he could “easily be” elected a prime minister.
Trump then called on US Jews have to get their act together and appreciate what they have in Israel “before it is too late!”
Several Jewish organizations slammed Trump’s remarks.
Head of the American Defamation League Jonathan Greenblatt accused Trump of “Jewsplaining.”
“We don’t need the former president, who curries favor with extremists and antisemites, to lecture us about the US-Israel relationship. It is not about a quid pro quo; it rests on shared values and security interests. This ‘Jewsplaining’ is insulting and disgusting,” he wrote.
“Support for the Jewish state never gives one license to lecture American Jews, nor does it ever give the right to draw baseless judgments about the ties between US Jews and Israel,” the American Jewish Committee tweeted. “And to be clear, those ties are strong and enduring.”
The Jewish Democratic Council of America similarly lambasted Trump’s remarks.
“American Jews got their act together in 2020, when 77% supported Biden. This won’t change because Jews view Trump and ‘Make America Great Again’ candidates as extremist-aligned threats to our security, democracy and values, as epitomized by this antisemitic screed,” tweeted Halie Soifer, head of the Jewish Democratic Council of America. “This has nothing to do with Israel.”
Politicians in Israel refrained from explicitly commenting, but Israeli media reported that Trump’s statement was “embarrassing to Israel.”
According to Haaretz newspaper, Israeli officials fear the consequences of these negative statements “because they encourage forces hostile to Israel and Jews to justify their hostility, promote a boycott of Israel and carry out antisemitic attacks on Jews.”