In an interview with Wolf Blitzer yesterday, Donald Trump refused to condemn the anti-Semitic abuse that his supporters hurled at journalist Julia Ioffe after she wrote a profile of his wife, Melania, in GQ.
Ioffe, who is Jewish, received calls from “people playing Hitler speeches” and was told that she “should be burned in an oven, told she should be shot in the head, received a call inquiring about overnight casket delivery, and sent Photoshopped images of her in a concentration camp uniform.”
Trump said that he didn’t read Ioffe’s article, but nevertheless attacked it as “nasty” and claimed that it portrayed his wife as a “party person” — when, in fact, it described her as a “homebody.”
He went on to say that journalists “shouldn’t be doing that with wives,” which is an absurd statement coming from the candidate who threatened to “spill the beans” on Heidi Cruz and attacked her appearance.
When Blitzer asked him if he would condemn the “anti-Semitic death threats” from his fans, Trump said he wouldn’t condemn them. “I don’t have a message to the fans,” he said, before once again criticizing Ioffe about an article that he never read.
— The Situation Room (@CNNSitRoom) May 4, 2016
Coincidentally, on the same day that Trump said he wouldn’t condemn his fans for hurling anti-Semitic threats at a journalist, former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke hailed Trump as a “white knight” for his white nationalist cause, saying that it is now up to his fellow white nationalists to “give Trump the space” to eventually begin attacking the “Jewish supremacists” who Duke believes control American society.
Today, the Anti-Defamation League released a statement saying that Trump “can and should speak up now” against Duke. “If not, his silence will speak volumes.”
His silence on the Ioffe incident, however, already has.
In response to remarks by white supremacist David Duke that opposition to Donald Trump shows that “Jewish supremacists” are “the real problem” — as well as a barrage of anti-Semitic comments by a minority of Trump supporters on social media, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) called on Mr. Trump to make unequivocally clear anti-Semitism has no place in presidential politics or American society.
“David Duke’s latest remarks – smearing Jews and Jewish Republicans specifically – are as unsurprising as they are hateful. The onus is now on Donald Trump to make unequivocally clear he rejects those sentiments and that there is no room for Duke and anti-Semitism in his campaign and in society,” said Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL CEO. “Mr. Trump can and should speak up now. If not, his silence will speak volumes.”
A former KKK Grand Wizard and one of the nation’s most recognizable white supremacists, Duke previously expressed support for the Trump campaign, saying to his white listeners that a vote against Trump was “treason to your heritage.”
Yesterday on his radio program Duke went a step further, blaming Republican Jews for attempting to block him from becoming the nominee, and expostulated: “I think these Jewish extremists have made a terribly crazy miscalculation, because all they’re going to be doing by doing a ‘Never Trump’ movement is exposing their alien, their anti-American, anti-American majority position. … They’re going to push people more into an awareness that the neocons are the problem, that these Jewish supremacists who control our country are the real problem, and the reason why America is not great.”