Gorka Timeline: What We Knew And When We Knew It

Sebastian Gorka, President Trump’s deputy assistant, and his chief adviser on counter-terrorism, has worrying ties to the Vitézi Rend — a far-right Hungarian group who were close allies of the Nazis in World War II. Born in Britain to Hungarian parents, he became a naturalized American citizen in 2012 after marrying Katherine Cornell. Here are the events of the last six weeks — his public appearances and the emerging story of his affiliation to the Hungarian far right.

Timeline

January 19 : Inauguration
Sebastian Gorka, a little-known academic, celebrated the Trump inauguration with his wife, heiress Katherine Cornell. He was wearing a distinctive outfit and a medal that was later revealed to be from the Vitézi Rend, a far-right Hungarian group.

January 29 : Holocaust-Remembrance Sensitivity Is ‘Asinine’
After President Trump’s statement on Holocaust Remembrance Day unaccountably avoids mentioning Jewish victimhood in the Shoah and is condemned by Jewish groups across the spectrum, Gorka is sent out to defend the statement. He calls criticism “asinine.”

January 30 : Appointment
Gorka is announced as Deputy Assistant to the president and chief adviser on counter-terrorism.

February 7 : Your Attacks Are ‘Fake News’
Again sent out to talk to the press, former Breitbart editor Gorka told syndicated conservative talk-show host Michael Medved that the administration would continue to call media who attack the president, “fake news.”

February 12 : Nazi-Ally Medal
Eli Clifton reports at Lobelog that Gorka’s outfit at the inauguration included a medal from the Vitézi Rend, a far-right Hungarian group allied to the Nazis during World War II, whose members are presumed banned from America.

February 13 : Widespread Questions
The Forward, and many other sites, amplify the question: “Why was he wearing a medal signifying membership in a Nazi-allied group?”

February 14 : No Comment, Video At Breitbart, No Comment
After refusing to comment on the questions raised by Lobelog, Gorka makes a video for Breitbart to talk about the medal which he explains was his father’s. Lobelog asks him to explain why he would choose this offensive way to honor his father. No comment.

February 24 : Close Ties To Hungarian Far Right
Lily Bayer, writing in the Forward, reveals that while Gorka was in Hungary from 2002-2007, he was closely and repeatedly linked with far-right groups. He again avoids questions about his affiliations by talking about his parents’ traumatic experiences at the end of the war.

March 16 : A Lifelong Member Of Nazi-Allied Group?
Lily Bayer interviews three top members of the Vitézi Rend who say that Gorka swore an oath to be a lifetime member. They refer to him as vitezi to signify he is a member. Gorka, after repeated request for direct or indirect comment, releases a terse statement from the White House which addresses none of the questions of his affiliation with the group.

March 16 : Gorka’s Immigration Status
If Gorka were a member of the Vitézi Rend and did not declare it, he would be in material breach of immigration law, according to retired immigration judge, Bruce Einhorn.

Author

Dan Friedman

Dan Friedman

Dan Friedman is the executive editor and whisky correspondent of the Forward. But when he’s not doing that, he’s writing a book about the rock band Tears for Fears.

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Gorka Timeline: What We Knew And When We Knew It

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