Donald Trump wasn’t good for America. In contrast, he was a good president, even a very good one, for Israel. As an Israeli, had I been asked who I’d prefer in the White House, I’d reply, albeit with slight hesitation, Trump.
On the other hand, had I been living in the United States, I’d most likely not have voted for him. His pranks, antics and especially the lunacy that has taken hold of him during the coronavirus pandemic, leave no doubt as to the disaster he has brought on his country.
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Just as I have difficulty understanding how balanced, thinking, educated people can ignore Benjamin Netanyahu’s failures, so too I cannot understand Israelis (who belong, more or less, to the same political camp) who support Trump almost without any reservations.
It’s no easier for me to handle the Israelis delighted by Trump’s fall, as though this president, who did more for Israel than any other president before him, were Haman, the wicked. It’s most regrettable that they cannot overcome their ideological position and the political-emotional dissonance gripping them, to leave some room for an elementary moral quality, the virtue of gratitude.
Every elector won by Joe Biden was immediately greeted with cheers in most American television studios. Even Fox network, which blindly supports Trump, couldn’t hold back the rage over its darling’s delusional, violent declaration of victory. But what is this joy doing on Israeli television screens? Why have we seen broad smiles every time another state was painted blue? What are the sentiments that bring about the same gloating here, too?
One of the main reasons for this ingratitude is their instinctive identification with their colleagues in the leading American and European news channels. But this is a secondary reason. The main one is what’s troubling: deep down, most of the editors and anchors oppose, some even resent, the essence of the goodness showered on us by Trump. Recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and transferring the embassy there; Recognizing Israel’s sovereignty in the Golan and of course, the essence of the “deal of the century” – Israel’s right to implement Israeli law and justice in the settlements in Judea and Samaria and the Jordan Valley.
Especially interesting was the bitter response in these circles to the recent peace agreements. Had those dramatic events taken place during the term of a Democratic president, and had the Israeli prime minister belonged to the right camp, the volume and force of the celebrations would have blown the roofs off the television channels and newspaper offices.
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Thanks to the subversive Channel 11 (“This is Lebanon”, “Tehran” and now “Valley of Tears”), the evangelist issue has been brought to public awareness. Suddenly sworn agnostics and Epicureans are worried about the Armageddon in store for us in the apocalypse. Their contributions are contaminated, their love is conditional. Among those horrified by this day of judgment you can find hundreds – some say thousands – of Israelis who make a living from providing services to NGOs, research centers and “charity organizations” whose main function is to slander Israel around the world.
“Gratitude” is a basic term in Judaism. It appears in the books of the sages and in the modern era’s rabbinical religious authorities’ writings. So, we must treat Trump with gratitude and no less the evangelists and other non-Jewish groups, and there are many of them, working to deepen the Jewish people’s hold on the Land of Israel.
But the media establishment, although it has diversified somewhat recently, is spearheading the opposite narrative – one that vilifies the lovers and praises and glorifies the haters.