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Trump Flashes God Complex: 'I Am the Chosen One': Doubles Down on `Disloyalty' Comments, saying that all Democratic Voters — Not Just Jews — are Against Israel

By JTA, World Israel News & Rolling Stone

"I am the chosen one," Donald Trump declared to reporters Wednesday on the White, looking toward the heavens. The president was reflecting on his trade war with China, insisting that it should have been launched long ago to curb what he characterized as China's theft of our wealth and intellectual property. "Somebody had to do it," Trump insisted. In another context, one might excuse the quip as mere puffery. But in the case of Trump, the president's pathological narcissism appears to metastasizing into a messiah complex. Earlier Wednesday morning the president tweeted out unhinged praise of his Middle East policies from the self-styled "conservative warrior" Wayne Allyn Root. Trump retweeted a post from Root that American Jews "don't even know what they're doing or saying anymore. It makes no sense!" Root was likely referring to that fact that polls show U.S. Jews overwhelmingly oppose Trump despite the president's track record of supporting Israel, including moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, recognizing the Golan Heights as Israeli territory, cutting aid to the Palestinian Authority, and tightening sanctions on Iran, which has threatened Israel repeatedly with annihilation. Pew Research found that 79% of U.S. Jews in 2018 voted Democrat for the House of Representatives. Root also complimented the president for his efforts on behalf of Israel. Root said Trump is "the greatest President for Jews and for Israel in the history of the world, not just America, he is the best President for Israel in the history of the world… and the Jewish people in Israel love him like he's the King of Israel. They love him like he is the second coming of God…" Israel's prime minister on Wednesday steered clear of Trump's comments questioning the loyalty of American Jews who support the Democratic Party, in sharp contrast to the tide of condemnation from Jewish critics who accused him of trafficking in anti-Semitic stereotypes. Binyamin Netanyahu's decision to keep quiet on the controversy reflected the importance of his close alliance with Trump — a relationship that has dented the bipartisan support Israel has traditionally enjoyed in Washington as well as Israel's equally important ties with the American Jewish community. With an eye on re-election, Trump has attempted to use his close ties with Netanyahu to win over Jewish voters, who overwhelmingly vote for Democrats. Critics say it is part of a broader strategy that has also targeted minorities and immigrants with sometimes racist rhetoric to try to shore up his base of white, working-class voters.


``Where has the Democratic Party gone? Where have they gone where they are defending these two people over the state of Israel?'' Trump told reporters in the Oval Office on Tuesday. ``I think any Jewish people that vote for a Democrat, I think it shows either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty.'' The comments triggered an outpouring of condemnations from Jewish American groups and Democratic lawmakers, who accused Trump of invoking anti-Semitic stereotypes by implying American Jews have dual loyalty to the United States and Israel. At a time of rising anti-Semitism in the U.S., some expressed fear that Trump's words could invite new violence against Jewish targets. But Netanyahu remained silent about the latest uproar. His office declined comment, while Yuval Steinitz, a Cabinet minister in Netanyahu's Likud party who is close to the prime minister, dismissed it as internal U.S. politics. ``We mustn't intervene in the elections and the political disagreements in the United States,'' Steinitz told Israel Radio. ``We have close supporters and friends in both parties, Democrats and Republicans, both Jews and non-Jews, and we embrace everyone and want everyone's support and friendship.'' This is not the first time Trump has been accused of making comments seen by some as anti-Semitic. On the campaign trail, he told Jewish Republicans in 2015 that ``you're not going to support me because I don't want your money.'' Following a march by neo-Nazis and white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 2017, he said there were ``very fine people on both sides'' after clashes between protesters and counterprotesters. On international Holocaust Day in 2017, Trump condemned the ``horror inflicted on innocent people by Nazi terror,'' without mentioning anti-Semitism or the 6 million Jews killed by the Nazis and their sympathizers. The alliance with Trump, who is popular with the Israeli public, has paid great dividends for Netanyahu. Over staunch objections from the Palestinians, Trump has recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital and moved the U.S. Embassy to the contested city. With strong Israeli encouragement, he withdrew from the U.S.-led international nuclear deal with Iran, and more recently recognized Israel's annexation of the Golan Heights, captured from Syria in the 1967 Mideast war. Trump, guided by a team of advisers with close ties to Netanyahu, has cut hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to the Palestinians and closed the Palestinian diplomatic offices in Washington. A series of decisions by Netanyahu, ranging from incendiary comments about Israel's Arab minority seen as racist, along with the cancellation of a mixed-prayer area at Jerusalem's Western Wall, have further alienated American Jews. Opinion polls in recent years have shown sharp differences in support for Israel among American Jews, with Republicans far more supportive than the Democratic majority. Shmuel Rosner, a senior fellow at the nonpartisan Jewish People Policy Institute in Israel, said he expected Netanyahu to keep a low profile because the relationship with Trump is too valuable. ``He believes that keeping his relations with Donald Trump is essential for Israel's well-being and safety,'' Rosner said. ``I don't think Israel is going to distance itself from a president whose policies and expression of views are favorable to Israel.'' Rosner said Netanyahu will likely try to assure Democrats that he values their support and reach out to American Jews, even though he said many Israeli leaders quietly believe that support from the Jewish American community is not what it should be. ``There's a complicated situation here for Israel to navigate,'' he said. ``Maybe the only way to fix this thing is to wait for a new president or a new prime minister or a new atmosphere.''

Amazon Launches Operations in Israel

By JTA
Amazon announced the launch of operations in Israel. The company set up a website in Hebrew, which talks about its local delivery services, in order to attract vendors. Amazon also is asking overseas businesses to warehouse their inventory in Israel and make arrangements with international shippers to deliver their products through local shippers. "We are currently working with sellers in Israel to help them sell worldwide with Amazon Global Selling," Amazon said in a statement. "Local Delivery is one aspect of Global Selling that looks to improve the opportunities for sellers in Israel to sell more effectively to customers in Israel who shop on Amazon.com."

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