A Conspiracy Theorist Said Israelis Love Trump Like He’s “Second Coming of God.” Trump Tweeted It.

“American Jews don’t…know what they’re doing or saying anymore.”

Andrew Harrer/ZUMA

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A day after accusing American Jews of “great disloyalty,” Donald Trump defended himself by paraphrasing a prominent supporter as saying that Jewish Israelis love the US president “like he’s the King of Israel” and the “second coming of God” but that American Jews “don’t know him or like him…It makes no sense!”

Trump was paraphrasing former Libertarian vice presidential candidate Wayne Allyn Root, a noted conspiracy theorist. Root, who is Jewish, is correct that Trump is extremely popular in Israel and unpopular among American Jews. But the outlandish tweets came against the backdrop of the president’s efforts to divide Americans over support for Israel, as he targets Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), the first Muslim women ever elected to Congress. Both have been vocal critics of Trump and the Israeli government.

Trump’s campaign against Omar and Tlaib has relied on outright racism, near-daily attacks on Twitter, and, most recently, an unprecedented diplomatic push to bar both Democratic congresswomen from entering Israel. “They hate Israel & all Jewish people!” Trump tweeted last week, less than an hour before the Israeli government announced that it would block entry for Omar and Tlaib.

Amid Trump’s ongoing smears against the congresswomen, Trump himself was widely accused of engaging in anti-Semitism Tuesday when he declared that Jewish Americans who vote for Democrats possess “either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty.”

“It’s unclear who POTUS is claiming Jewish would be ‘disloyal’ to, but charges of disloyalty have long been used to attack Jews,” Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, said in response to the remarks on Wednesday. “As we’ve said before, it’s possible to engage in the democratic process w/o these claims. It’s long overdue to stop using Jews as a political football.”

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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