Anti-Semitic Cartoonists Don’t Belong at the White House

July 10 2019

Among those invited to a White House media summit tomorrow is the cartoonist Ben Garrison, much of whose work portrays President Trump in a heroic light, and the president’s enemies, or “globalists” more generally, in a grotesque light. A few of his illustrations traffic in anti-Semitism, sometimes subtly and sometimes unmistakably. Daniella Greenbaum Davis writes:

Consider [one] egregious specimen of Garrison’s work: General H.R. McMaster, the former national security adviser, and General David Petraeus, the ex-director of the CIA, are manipulated by their puppet master George Soros, who is himself guided by a greenish hand and arm labeled “Rothschilds,” the name of a Jewish family of financiers whose name has become a byword for Internet conspiracists.

This is classic anti-Semitic imagery, familiar from tsarist, Soviet, Nazi, and Arab-nationalist propaganda: government ministers as puppets of a shadowy Jewish conspiracy. Compare Garrison’s cartoon with the [anti-Semitic] cartoon from the New York Times [international edition] of Netanyahu and Trump, and we see how similar they are. Major political figures with tremendous power and influence are supposedly manipulated by Jewish hands. The takeaway—“Jews control the world”—is identical.

Garrison claimed that the cartoon had been commissioned by the “alt-right” blogger Mike Cernovich; the reason, allegedly, being that Cernovich feared McMaster and other recent appointees wanted to purge the administration of figures sympathetic to the alt-right. If this is true, it suggests a deployment of anti-Semitism not from conviction, but as a kind of cynical strategy.

As for the Jewish perspective, it may be tempting to refrain from criticizing an administration that has been exceptionally friendly to Israel. . . . Likewise, the White House may believe that in exchange for its support for the Jewish state, American Jews will give the administration a pass for signaling to a small but vocal segment of its base—through acts of a sort of wink-and-nod anti-Semitism—that it still shares some of their key worldviews.

UPDATE: As of this morning, July 10, the White House has told reporters that Garrison has been disinvited.

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More about: Alt-Right, Anti-Semitism, Donald Trump, Rothschilds

 

Will Tensions Rise between the U.S. and Israel?

Unlike his past many predecessors, President Joe Biden does not have a plan for solving the Israel-Palestinian conflict. Moreover, his administration has indicated its skepticism about renewing the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran. John Bolton nevertheless believes that there could be a collision between the new Benjamin Netanyahu-led Israeli government and the Biden White House:

In possibly his last term, Netanyahu’s top national-security priority will be ending, not simply managing, Iran’s threat. This is infinitely distant from Biden’s Iran policy, which venerates Barrack Obama’s inaugural address: “we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.”

Tehran’s fist is today otherwise occupied, pummeling its own people. Still, it will continue menacing Israel and America unless and until the internal resistance finds ways to fracture the senior levels of Iran’s regular military and the Revolutionary Guards. Netanyahu undoubtedly sees Iran’s growing domestic turmoil as an opportunity for regime change, which Israel and others can facilitate. Simultaneously, Jerusalem can be preparing its military and intelligence services to attack Tehran’s nuclear program, something the White House simply refuses to contemplate seriously. Biden’s obsession with reviving the disastrous 2015 nuclear deal utterly blinds the White House to the potential for a more significant victory.

To make matters worse, Biden has just created a Washington-based position at the State Department, a “special representative for Palestinian affairs,” that has already drawn criticism in Israel both for the new position itself and for the person named to fill it. Advocated as one more step toward “upgrading” U.S. relations with the Palestinian Authority, the new position looks nearly certain to become the locus not of advancing American interests regarding the failed Authority, but of advancing the Authority’s interests within the Biden administration.

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More about: Benjamin Netanyahu, Iran, Joe Biden, U.S.-Israel relationship