Steve Bannon — The Latest Victim of Malicious Attack From the Alt-Left
The alt-left is at it again. This time they are using their Internet and media echo chamber to malign Steve Bannon, concocting a narrative that is false but endlessly repeated by their soldiers in the never-ending campaign to discredit conservatives and members of the Trump camp. Playing the race card in all its variations has become the modus operandi of the liberal/left political world.
Mr. Bannon, who has been appointed chief White House adviser and political strategist for Mr. Trump, has been a staunch and reliable friend of Israel’s, and hired a host of Jewish journalists throughout his leadership at the conservative Breitbart news magazine. His ardent support for the Jewish state has remained consistent, even as many liberal Jewish organizations were condemning Israel and spouting fashionable anti-Israel criticisms emanating from the Left.
Like Mr. Trump before him — who for four decades was known as a champion of Israel’s; was generous in charitable contributions to it; and easily hired Jews and routinely accommodated their religious Sabbath needs — Mr. Bannon began to be accused of being anti-Jewish when he came on board the Trump Express to install a patriotic and politically conservative legislative approach at odds with the liberal agenda.
The Anti-Defamation League this week accused Mr. Bannon of antisemitism because, in its words, he is associated with nationalistic movements and antisemitic white supremacist groups. I have seen no credible evidence that he is associated with any antisemitic groups, though he, like me, is an American nationalist. In the ADL’s founding years, its mission was to combat antisemitism, but in the last few decades it, like some other establishment Jewish organizations, appears to have become an ideological arm of the Democratic party, viewing all of American life through the prism of a neo-leftist agenda no longer rooted in classical liberalism.
Thus, for them, as seen in their publications, the innocuous term “western values” becomes a code phrase for the exclusion of non-whites, and the term “America First” becomes a racist one. To most Americans, however, putting America and its citizens first is the most natural thing a nation should try doing — whether in relation to employment, security or pride in its historic outlook and values, in this case our founding principles and Judeo-Christian ethos.
While the ADL considers the predilection towards nationalism a disguised attempt to exclude or persecute Jews and others, to most sane people, nationalism amounts to an expression of pride in one’s country and her values, which in America’s case is something to be proud of indeed. Loving one’s country and its western values, or having pride and finding comfort in one’s ethnicity or race (even if white) are not disqualifying features in a human being.
Those who see in American individuals proud of their Christian faith or their European ancestry people to be feared are themselves either very insecure or harbor a bigotry and discomfort with those in the majority. Truth be told, in liberal establishment organizational circles, the feeling is that nobility and fair-mindedness reside only in minority communities, while the majority, in this case Christians and whites, are automatically suspect unless they prove otherwise, with advocating liberalism and cultural self-effacement as their only redeemable options.
The new head of the ADL, Jonathan Greenblatt, is a former member of the Obama administration. Like so many leaders of today’s establishment Jewish organizations, he is a high-level advocate for the leftism characteristic of the George Soros agenda. This is in spite of Soros having called his collaboration with the Nazis in Hungary during WWII “an exciting and happy time for me.”
Like so many others, some non-observant, secular Jewish leaders have replaced their Judaism with liberalism, giving it transcendence above all else, making it their new religion and calling. In fact, Greenblatt and the ADL have recently become eager and severe critics of Israel’s necessary defense policies — and this may be indicative of an alarming trend in the secular Jewish community of abandoning Israel when supporting it implies a conflict with the socialism and multi-culturalism it holds dearer and which has become divine-like in these circles.
After the election showed that many Orthodox Jews voted for Mr. Trump because of years of humiliating anti-Israel bias in the Obama administration — as well as Obama’s and Mrs. Clinton’s enabling and masterminding of Iran’s catapult to nuclear power — many Jewish liberals have begun speaking of their desire to “forget Israel’s needs if it makes the liberal agenda harder to realize: vote liberal, for the liberal agenda reigns supreme above all else.”
During the 2012 Democratic Party Convention, there were tremendous boos when support of Israel and Jerusalem as Israel’s eternal capital was proposed. This was orchestrated, as seen on TV, by hundreds of delegates. Indeed, the Black Lives Matter movement has also spoken in rabid anti-Jewish and anti Israel terms. The ADL has not denounced them and remains their defender, just as have Clinton and Obama. The ADL and the Reform Jewish movement knew full well of Obama’s association with Rev. Wright, Rashid Khalidi and Al Sharpton, all of whom are known for antisemitic statements. Yet, regardless of the preponderance of anti-Israel leading lights on the Left, and thousands of anti-Jewish people found in the Democratic party, the ADL and the Reform denomination retain their affiliation and affection for the left-wing community, ignoring its blatant antisemitism.
The Jewish members of the alt-left are eager to turn neutral and positive phrases into antisemitism and cast friends like Bannon and Trump (the latter with religious Jewish grandchildren) into figures to be feared, jeered at and demonized as “deplorables.” Why? Because they have sold their souls to the ideology of leftism and class warfare. It has become their identity. Their power resides in the Democratic party, and power is a powerful aphrodisiac.
These organizations have not accepted, nor will genuinely accept, the results of the election. They will try to stop Trump’s policies and thwart the will of the people they consider inferior and non-educated, by tarring and discrediting Trump’s appointees as racist and antisemitic. They are setting up tribunals that label their opponents “hate-mongers,” when it is they themselves who are behaving in a bigoted and hateful fashion. Too many are whipping themselves up into hysteria, based on prejudicial presumptions they themselves have created over the years. We should no longer allow them to impugn good, patriotic individuals.
Unlike what the ADL, the alt-left and the Reform Jewish movement claim, the American people voted for Mr. Trump not out of racism or antisemitism, but because they and their families had become voiceless and ignored, with legitimate needs that for decades were dismissed by the elites — and now, finally, are championed by Mr. Trump and his newly appointed adviser, Steve Bannon. May God bless them and their work for America.
Rabbi Aryeh Spero is author of Push Back: Reclaiming our Judeo-Christian Spirit.