Liberal American Jews Are 'Basically anti-Israel,' ex-Trump Aide Gorka Says

Jane Eisner, editor of The Forward, says Trump's former adviser is accusing the Jewish media organization of being anti-Israel and pro-BDS to divert attention from the fact that he was forced to leave the White House

Deputy assistant to President Trump Sebastian Gorka participates in the Conservative Political Action Conference on February 24, 2017 in National Harbor, Maryland.
ALEX WONG/AFP

Former White House advisor Sebastian Gorka said on Tuesday that liberal elements of the American Jewish community "have basically become anti-Israel." Gorka, who has been accused of ties to anti-Semitic and far-right groups in Hungary, an association he fiercely denied, and was dismissed from the White House last week, said this was "one of the saddest phenomena in modern American politics." 

Gorka made these comments during a radio interview with right-wing talk-show host Michael Savage. When asked about negative stories about him in the Jewish media organization The Forward, he replied that they were published because "in everything I've ever done, I've been a great friend of Israel and I have spoken with honesty about the threat of Jihadism to the United States." Some of the initial reporting about Gorka's political activity in Hungary was published by The Forward. 

During the interview, Gorka explained that his friends and supporters on the Jewish community's right told him that the attacks against him were part of a larger political trend involving American Jews. "They told me that this is one of the saddest phenomena in modern American politics - how the liberal elements of the American Jewish population have basically become anti-Israeli," Gorka said. This was, he said, "very tragic," stating that "the people who should be supporting the American-Israeli alliance the most have done so much to betray our great friendship with Jerusalem."

Gorka said The Forward was "reprehensible" and noted that it recently published a story, which was later retracted, about his son's high-school science project on river pollution. "They published 45 hit pieces on me in six months," he said. Gorka also said that senior figures in the website "support BDS and are pro-Iran deal." 

"Sebastian Gorka is now accusing the Forward of being anti-Israel and pro-BDS to divert attention from the fact that he was forced to leave the White House," Jane Eisner, editor of The Forward, said. "Our diligent reporting showed that he had questionable ties with anti-Semitic fascists in Hungary; never received security clearance for undisclosed reasons; and was criticized by many members of Congress, heads of Jewish organizations and upstanding journalists."

"For the record, the Forward does not support BDS and has supported the state of Israel since its inception. We gave a tepid endorsement of the Iran nuclear deal but so, it seems, does the Trump administration," Eisner added.