Rick-Wiles-anti-Semitism by the Forward

Far-Right Pastor Calls Impeachment A ‘Jew Coup,’ Begs Trump To ‘Wake Up’

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Jewish Twitter is erupting in anger over the latest incendiary video from an anti-Semitic website, this one asserting that the impeachment inquiry into President Trump was a “Jew coup.”

TruNews, the creator of the video, said YouTube had “banned us again” because of the “Godcast,” published on Friday. In it, the site’s founder, a non-denominational pastor named Rick Wiles, and Doc Burkhart, the site’s general manager, highlight Jewish Democrats connected to impeachment.

Outraged Jewish leaders and others called on Twitter, Apple and other platforms to ban TruNews as well, the latest flare in the ongoing wars over the boundary between free speech and hate crimes.

An account called Sleeping Giants posted, sardonically: “Great to know that @AppStore @Roku and @amazonfiretv distribute the TruNews app to spread this anti-Semitic garbage.”

Wiles and TruNews are well known to hate-watchers as purveyors of anti-Semitic, homophobic, Islamophobic and racist rants, as well as conspiracy theories involving lizards. Yet earlier this year the site scored a five-minute interview with Donald Trump Jr., and last fall the president himself called on a representative of TruNews at a news conference.

It is unclear whether TruNews has a White House press credential or regularly attends such news conferences or political rallies. The news conference where the site’s representative, who identified himself as Edward Szall, asked a question, was mainly about Trump’s embattled Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, and came on the same day the president met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel.

Szall’s was a softball question: “Can you give us any more preview of what this great deal, the peace deal — “ he began before Trump jumped in to answer. The Twitter account known as @elderofziyon, which is among the most active in denouncing the new TruNews video, demanded: “Why does the @WhiteHouse allow blatantly antisemitic organization @TruNews to be part of its @whpresscorps?”

In the new video, Wiles and Burkhart slow-walk through the years-long run-up to the current impeachment hearings, using Jewish publications like the Times of Israel and the Forward to buttress their warped assessment of the roles Jews have played. They itemize impeachment-related moves and comments by Democratic members of Congress including Adam Schiff, Tom Steyer, Elliot Engel, Elissa Slotkin, Nita Lowey, Brad Sherman, Elaine Luria and Steve Cohen, who are all Jewish.

“It’s a marching band of Jews calling for the impeachment of President Trump,” Wiles says. “Jews, who make up 2 percent of the population, and somehow they have this enormous influence.”

Wiles calls these Jewish politicians “seditious” and “domestic enemies,” and warns of “an American-style, Jewish-led Bolshevik revolution.”

At one point in the video, TruNews displays this visual guide to the Jews of impeachment that the Forward published Nov. 13, which demonstrates that players on all sides of the inquiry have Jewish connections. Wiles breezes by Jared Kushner, the President’s Jewish son-in-law and senior adviser, and pauses on Charles Kupperman, the former deputy National Security Adviser who filed a lawsuit asking whether he can testify in the inquiry.

“Here’s another Jew that Donald Trump appointed to the National Security Council who is now biting him,” Wiles says. “When are you going to wake up, when are you going to appoint Christians and not Jews. The Christians elected you, not the Jews. I don’t see any Christians, I just see treacherous, seditious Jews surrounding the president.”

He was hardly unaware that this would cause an uproar. “You and I are going to be smeared by the Jewish media and the Jewish attack dogs,” Wiles says at the start of the video. “We’re going to challenge the rules,” he adds. “We’ll see how long we stay on YouTube.”

Jodi Rudoren is Editor-in-Chief of The Forward. Follow her on Twitter @rudoren.


Jodi Rudoren

Jodi Rudoren

Jodi Rudoren became Editor-in-Chief of the Forward in 2019. Before that, she spent more than two decades as a reporter and editor at The New York Times. Follow her on Twitter @rudoren, email rudoren@forward.com and sign up here to receive her weekly newsletter, “Looking Forward,” in your inbox.

TruNews Pastor Rick Wiles Calls Impeachment A Jew Coup

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