Explaining Trump

The rabbinic principle is shetikah ka-hoda’ah: Silence is concurrence.

Why has the JT fallen down on the job, by not reporting President Donald J. Trump’s latest snub of worldwide Jewry? The AP story was “Trump Speech Takes Place …” at Polish uprising monument, but, unlike all former presidents and vice presidents visiting Warsaw since 1969, he skipped paying respects at the Jewish one. For this same event, the July 5 JTA headline read,  “Trump Skips Ghetto Monument on Warsaw Trip; Jewish Leaders Slam ‘Slight.’”

His Jewish son-in-law notwithstanding, it is clear that the calamity of the Holocaust is a source of palpable discomfort and consternation for the 45th president of the United States. How so? Here’s one possible explanation. Recall presidential candidate Trump’s gleeful trashing of former prisoner of war Sen. John McCain’s combat record: “I like people who weren’t captured.”

For Trump, observances are to honor winners/victories, not losers/defeats. And so for  Trump, Holocaust commemoration is a contradiction in terms: Losers, because they lost, rightly deserve oblivion,  never remembrance.

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