While most right-thinking people were condemning Donald Trump’s coddling of the American neo-Nazi movement in Charlottesville, the son of the Israeli Prime Minister was backing him all the way. Even more alarming than the fact that Trump took two days to issue a statement condemning “both sides” when it came to Nazis and anti-fascists, was that soon after he backed down and basically disowned what he had said.
There were, claimed Trump, “very fine people” among all the protesters. That was the President of the United States, remember, calling fascists “very fine people.” Not all of them are Nazis, he said as he blamed the “alt-left” for the violence. This is truly alarming stuff.
In reality, the white supremacist protesters came prepared for violence, in defence of a statue commemorating and celebrating racist violence. Robert E. Lee was a Confederate general, who fought a war in a failed attempt to preserve slavery, an institution that treated black people as property to be bought and sold. They yelled neo-Nazi slogans including “white lives matter” and “blood and soil”.
These violent, racist protesters then attacked anti-racist counter-protesters, assaulting people and, in one case, using a motor vehicle to carry out a terrorist attack by deliberately driving it straight into the crowd. The driver killed 32-year-old Heather Heyer and injured at least 19 others.
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Due to the massive boost that he gave to the neo-Nazis, Trump even came in for criticism from some Republicans. Indeed, the resultant storm seems to have contributed to the final departure of top White House advisers Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka. The latter is a sworn member of the secretive Vitézi Rend, a group loyal to the leader of the World War II Hungarian regime which collaborated with the Nazi Holocaust.
While it’s good that these two extremists have gone — from the spotlight, at least — it’s clear that Trump’s openly racist beliefs have not changed. Speaking to Politico, Gorka claimed that Trump has told him that the “Make America Great Again” agenda has not changed, and that he still wants Gorka to work with him outside the White House.
Furthermore, other insidious figures still hover around the US President as senior aides. Stephen Miller has long-standing links to Richard Spencer, a central figure in the so-called “alt-right” movement which was a key part of the violent pro-Confederate march in Charlottesville. Spencer calls himself a “White Zionist”.
Yair Netanyahu meanwhile, backed his father Benjamin in his support for Trump. Soon after Charlottesville, he posted on his Facebook page that while the neo-Nazis are a danger, “their breed is dying out” and, anyway, “the thugs of Antifa and BLM” are worse. The young Netanyahu claimed that anti-fascists and Black Lives Matter activists “hate” Israel and America and are “getting stronger and stronger and becoming super dominant in American universities and public life.”
Washington Post correspondent Ruth Eglash – who is married to a spin doctor who has worked for the Israeli government – apparently signalled her approval for Netanyahu’s Facebook claims by clicking “like” on the post.
All of this is yet another sign of the long-standing and apparently ever-growing alliance between Zionists and white supremacists. What’s more, some liberals also seem to find it hard to condemn Trump. Haim Saban, Hilary Clinton’s “favourite billionaire”, is a mega-funder of Israeli war crimes. Saban is a key funder of anti-Palestinian groups in the US and contributes toward Israel’s “war” on BDS, the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement.
Although telling the Hollywood Reporter that he disagrees “with the president with what appears to be a moral equivalence being drawn between the Nazis, who are shouting, ‘Kill the Jews,’ and the protesters who came to counter that statement,” he still does “not believe that President Trump is a Nazi or anti-Semite.” Black Lives Matter, meanwhile, “is clearly an anti-Semitic, anti-Israel group.”
It’s quite telling that, while condemning the neo-Nazi movement, and mildly admonishing Trump, Saban could not bring himself to say anything positive about the anti-fascists who turned up to counter the Nazis, putting their lives quite literally on the line to do so. Indeed, Saban very much seems to agree with Yair Netanyahu, the hard-right Zionist fanatic who thinks BLM and anti-fascists are worse than Nazis.
The lines are being drawn.
The thin veneer of “liberal” or “socialist” Zionism is being exposed for the sham that it is. A “socialism” that systematically expels and excludes Palestinians and other Arabs simply because they are the wrong kind of human being is no socialism at all. Zionism’s inherently racist nature is become increasingly clear, even to those who in a previous generation may have supported Israel.
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.