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Spencer interviewed; Ivanka Trump

Richard Spencer tells Israeli TV he is a ‘white Zionist’

Conservative activist Richard Spencer told an Israeli TV interviewer that he was essentially a “white Zionist”. Spencer made the comment to Israel's Channel 2 recently in response to charges of anti-Semitism on display at the rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Published: August 28, 2017, 12:32 pm

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    “As an Israeli citizen, someone who understands your identity, who has a sense of nationhood and peoplehood and the history and experience of the Jewish people, you should respect someone like me who has analogous feelings about whites,” Spencer said. “I mean, you could say that I’m a white Zionist in the sense that I care about my people. I want us to have a secure homeland that for us and ourselves just like you want a secure homeland in Israel.”

    The interviewer, Dany Cushmaro did not respond to Spencer’s claim. Ethno-national views held by whites are widely rejected by Israelis and Israel-supporters.

    Cushmaro had pushed Spencer to explain why some protestors chanted “Jews will not replace us” and other “anti-Jewish slogans”. Spencer responded that the alt-right movement had a right to free speech and added that Jews were overrepresented in left-wing American politics.

    “The fact is, Jews, let’s be honest, Jews have been vastly overrepresented in the historical left. Jews are vastly overrepresented in the left right now. They’re vastly overrepresented in what you could call the establishment, that is, Ivy League-educated people who really determine policy, and white people are being disposed from this country,” he said. “So some in the crowd were making a statement. This is a free country. People are allowed to speak their mind.”

    Spencer also said president Trump should investigate why the city’s Mayor Michael Signer, a Jew, and Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe “allowed chaos to reign” while most protestors were “peaceful”.

    He said it was not yet clear whether Fields had committed murder when he rammed his car into Antifa protesters, but that he would condemn “absolutely reject” his actions if they were proved to be “malicious” after a “fair trial”. James Fields killed one woman and injured at least 19. Two police officers also died when their helicopter crashed while monitoring the rally.

    President Trump said at a news conference after the rally in Charlottesville ended in violence, that not all the participants in the rally were white supremacists. But Trump’s statements were met with leftwing outrage, including by Jewish and Israeli leaders and Republicans. Spencer tweeted praise for the president’s word instead, calling them “fair and down to earth”.

    Rabbi Emeritus Haskel Lookstein and his successors Rabbi Chaim Steinmetz and Rabbi Elie Weinstock, sent a letter to members of New York’s Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun in New York, riling against Trump. Rabbi Lookstein oversaw Ivanka Trump’s conversion to Judaism in 2010.

    The rabbis said: “We are appalled by this resurgence of bigotry and antisemitism, and the renewed vigor of the neo-Nazis, KKK, and alt-right.” The letter continued: “While we avoid politics, we are deeply troubled by the moral equivalency and equivocation President Trump has offered in his response to this act of violence.”

    karin@praag.org

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