The ugliness emerging from the American left, that is; nor do I expect it to be over any time soon.
The secretive Democracy Alliance donor club – closely associated with George Soros and his MoveOn.org – has reportedly just concluded its first meeting since the presidential election. The Alliance, known as DA, is supported by a cadre of liberal/left wing activists committed to giving major funds ($200,000 annually, each) to select political organizations in an effort to pull the nation (and the Democratic party) left.
According to POLITICO, the group is concerned with planning “full-on trench warfare against Trump from Day One.” Some of their sessions looked at “thwarting President-elect Trump’s 100-day plan.”
One of the speakers at this hush-hush gathering was Rep.Keith Ellison (D-MN). The first Muslim elected to Congress, he is now headed towards the chairmanship of the Democratic National Committee. While Ellison moves politically within the establishment, broadly defined, Denis MacEoin of Middle East Forum has charged that “he consorts with groups and individuals that represent a threat to democracy and America.”
He has had connections with CAIR, and with the Muslim American Society, which is the American arm of the Muslim Brotherhood.
I will come back to Ellison.
It is unfortunate that the left/liberals with power and influence in the US have not chosen to take the advice President Obama delivered the other day:
While he has considerable differences of opinion with president-elect Trump, said Obama, since meeting him, he is convinced that Trump sincerely wants to be president of all the people. He urged Americans to give Trump a chance.
One of the ways in which the left fails to give Trump and his emerging administration a chance is by leveling extreme charges that discredit those who will be working with the new president. By extension, of course, this is intended to discredit the president himself.
Thus it was that Steve Bannon of Breitbart News – who has been chosen by Trump to be Chief Strategist in the administration – was accused of being an anti-Semite.
Last I wrote, when the charge had just emerged, I said that I had no indication that this was the case. But since then I’ve had the opportunity to do further research, and now feel compelled to come back to this to set the record straight with greater certainty.
At this point it is no longer a case of simply finding no evidence that he is an anti-Semite. I have discovered source after highly credible source that declares Steve Bannon a lover of Israel and a defender of the Jewish people. The charge of anti-Semitism is a calumny.
Consider some examples (all emphasis within quotes added):
 From David Horowitz, founder of the Freedom Center and editor of FrontPage Magazine:
“I have known Steve Bannon for many years. This is a good man. He does not have an Anti-Semitic bone in his body.”
 From David P. Goldman, pjmedia columnist and author:
“I know Steve Bannon, and have had several long discussions with him about politics. Steve is fervently pro-Israel, and it is utterly ridiculous to suggest that he is anti-Semitic. Other observant Jews who know Bannon, for example Joel Pollak, attest to his support for Israel and friendship for the Jewish people.
“The charges against Steve Bannon are a tissue of lies without a modicum of merit.
“Anyone can search the Breitbart Media archive for posts on Israel, Jews, and related topics, as I have, and determine that Steve Bannon’s hugely successful media platform is 100% pro-Israel. Not only that: Breitbart consistently reports on the dangers of anti-Semitism around the world. Not a single article appeared in Breitbart.com during the past two years that could not have appeared in Israel Hayom, the leading Israeli daily.”
 From Joel B. Pollak, Senior Editor Breitbart News:
“I have worked with Stephen K. Bannon, President-elect Donald Trump’s new chief strategist and senior counselor, for nearly six years at Breitbart News. I can say, without hesitation, that Steve is a friend of the Jewish people and a defender of Israel, as well as being a passionate American patriot and a great leader.
“…I am an Orthodox Jew…I believe myself to be a qualified judge of what is, and is not, anti-Semitic.
“It defies logic that a man who was a close friend, confidant, and adviser to the late Andrew Breitbart — a proud Jew — could have any negative feelings towards Jews. As I can testify from years of work together with Steve in close quarters, the opposite is the case: Steve is outraged by anti-Semitism. If anything, he is overly sensitive about it, and often takes offense on Jews’ behalf…
“Steve is a tireless, disciplined manager who demands excellence — and who seeks talent regardless of distinctions of race, gender, religion, sexuality, or any other kind…
“Andrew Breitbart anticipated the kind of attacks that Steve, and anyone else who is effective at opposing the left, would face…
“While being targeted is a badge of honor for Steve, lies are lies, and they deserved to be called what they are.”
From Bernie Marcus, co-founder of Home Depot and a board member of the Republican Jewish Coalition:
What is being done to Bannon is a “shonda” – a scandal: “nothing more than an attempt to undermine the incoming Trump administration.
“I have known Steve Bannon for many years. I have been shocked and saddened to see the recent personal attacks on Steve. Nothing could be further from the truth. The person that is being demonized in the media is not the person I know.”
“Bannon is a passionate Zionist and supporter of Israel…he opened a Breitbart office in Israel to ensure that the true pro-Israel story would get out.”
 From the Zionist Organization of America:
“ZOA’s own experience and analysis of Breitbart articles confirms Mr. Bannon’s and Breitbart’s friendship and fair-mindedness towards Israel and the Jewish people. To accuse Mr. Bannon and Breitbart of anti-Semitism is Orwellian. In fact, Breitbart bravely fights against anti-Semitism…
“Stephen Bannon joined ZOA in fighting the anti-Semitic rallies at CUNY by requiring his Breitbart reporters to call CUNY officials and Gov. Cuomo aides urging them to do something about it.”
I saved the ZOA endorsement for last, because I also want to note that ZOA is having its annual dinner next week, and Steve Bannon is scheduled to attend.
This, then, brings us full circle to Congressman Ellison and an article by Robert Spencer, “Do the Democrats Really Care about Anti-Semitism?” (emphasis added):
“When is anti-Semitism not anti-Semitism? When it comes from the Left, of course.
“President-elect Trump has enraged the establishment media by choosing Steven K. Bannon as his chief strategist, because Bannon, they claim on the flimsiest of evidence, is a white supremacist and an anti-Semite. Meanwhile, that same media is hailing Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) for announcing his candidacy for Chairman of the Democratic National Committee – despite Ellison’s very real links to Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, two groups that are outdone by no one in anti-Semitism…
“Hamas has declared: ‘Killing Jews is worship that draws us close to Allah.’ Ellison has spoken before several groups that have ties to Hamas. Does Keith Ellison also, then, think that ‘killing Jews is worship that draws us close to Allah’? No establishment media ‘journalist’ would ever dream of asking him that question, but it’s a fair one: Hamas repeatedly demonstrates genuine and murderous anti-Semitism, and Ellison has repeatedly shown himself willing and even eager to associate himself with Hamas-linked groups.
“That’s the real story of anti-Semitism in American politics this week. But the media propagandists are most certainly not going to pause in their hysteria over Trump and Bannon to take any notice of it. Their hypocrisy is obvious, their dishonesty unrelenting, and their moral authority absolutely nil.”
The flimsiest of evidence? That in a divorce proceeding some ten years ago, in the course of tension over child custody issues, Bannon’s wife claimed that he didn’t want their daughters going to the elite school under discussion because he didn’t want them to be with Jews. Bannon has denied this.
That leaves two other issues that are connected to what has been going on. The first involves the charge that, well, no, Bannon isn’t anti-Semitic, but the Breitbart website he managed serves as the “platform for the alt-right.”
There is just one problem with this charge. There is no evidence for it. For the site is consistently pro-Israel and critical of anti-Semitism. So certain is Breitbart of its position that, according to journalist Jeff Dunietz, citing The Hill, “Breitbart News is preparing a lawsuit against a ‘major media company’ over claims that it is a white nationalist website.”
Stay tuned on this one.
And the second involves one of the original sources of the charge that Bannon was an anti-Semite: ADL. The Anti-Defamation League is not what it once was.
The charge came from ADL’s Jonathan Greenblatt, who previously worked for the Obama administration:
“ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt condemned Bannon’s appointment and accused him of harboring anti-Semitic and white supremacist views. In a tweet, Greenblatt said that Bannon and ‘his alt-right’ are ‘hostile to core American values.’”
Since assuming his new position, Greenblatt has opened the door to far left organizations like JStreet and has assured them that ADL “shares your commitment to change.” He has also indicated himself ready to provide forums for anti-Israel groups.
Commentator Jonathan Tobin recently wrote, in an article entitled “The ADL takes sides against Israel,” that:
“From now on, ADL must be viewed as an ally of J Street and others on the left who make no secret of their partisanship…” (Emphasis added)
The issues that are being fought over in the US are profound. I see a multi-cultural, anything goes left threatened by the return to traditional values that the Trump victory represents. There is so much unspoken in this current battle over Bannon. So much that I cannot touch upon, at least not here or now. Although I certainly express great hope with that Trump victory.
It is time to switch gears.
Dear friends. Here in Israel we are in the midst of an anguished situation with regard to Jewish rights to Judea and Samaria, the imminent demolition of Amona, the power of the High Court, and a good deal more. All of which I have been hoping to address for days now. Please Heaven, I’ll be able to turn to this next time I post.
But with this anguish, with the various troubles that Israel must contend with, she is a very special nation. A nation to celebrate (and celebrate, I do).
And so I will end with a classic song by Yehoram Gaon, “Shalom Lach, Eretz Nehederet” – Peace to you, lovely country.
© Arlene Kushner. This material is produced by Arlene Kushner, functioning as an independent journalist. Permission is granted for it to be reproduced only with proper attribution.
If it is reproduced and emphasis is added, the fact that it has been added must be noted.