Don’t blame candidates for their supporters.
The incoming Trump Administration has publicly committed itself to a policy of strong support for Israel, both diplomatically and militarily, including over the existential threat posed by a future Iranian nuclear weapons capacity –– but apparently, for Bradley Burston, it is Charles Lindbergh and xenophobic American isolationism all over again (‘Trump’s Win, the Greatest Victory for anti-Semitism in America Since 1941,’ Nov. 9). Burston mentions neo-Nazi David Duke and his ilk supporting Trump. Where, then, was Bradley Burston when anti-Semitic black supremacist Louis Farrakhan and his ilk were happy at Barack Obama’s election? Did he decry Obama’s election on this ground?
The truth is that neither Barack Obama nor Donald Trump can control who endorses them and therefore cannot be judged by them. They can only be judged on their policies and conduct. Burston writes, ‘We should have known that Jewish organizations who are in the pocket of pro-Trump billionaire Sheldon Adelson, like the Zionist Organization of America – which charges leftists with anti-Semitism nearly daily – would do nothing about this.”Really? Only last year, Burston himself admitted we had been “uncompromising and unflinching” in criticizing statements about Jews by Trump supporter Ann Coulter.
Two points of correction: 1. Sheldon Adelson supports us because he agrees with our views. We have not altered our views in any way to attract his support; and 2. Over the years, we have been critical of the policies and statements of both Democratic and Republican presidents. We will continue to so where we see it warranted, as anyone who follows our record will know, irrespective of who holds the presidency or who financially supports a presidential candidate.
Morton A. Klein
National President, Zionist Organization of America
This letter was published by Haaretz and may be found here.