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Trump ‘joked’ that Kushner ‘more loyal to Israel than to the US,’ book claims

Woodward/Costa book ‘Peril’ says former US president made comment about his Jewish son-in-law, evoking antisemitic dual loyalty canard, during White House meeting

US President Donald Trump, left, listens as Jared Kushner speaks in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, September 11, 2020. (Andrew Harnik/AP)
US President Donald Trump, left, listens as Jared Kushner speaks in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, September 11, 2020. (Andrew Harnik/AP)

A new book has claimed that former US president Donald Trump once said in a White House meeting that his Jewish son-in-law Jared Kushner was more loyal to Israel than to his own country, evoking a common antisemitic trope, according to a Thursday report.

Business Insider published what it said was an excerpt from Bob Woodward and Robert Costa’s new book, “Peril.”

“‘You know,’ Trump joked in another meeting, mocking his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who was raised in a modern Orthodox Jewish family and was working on Middle East peace, ‘Jared’s more loyal to Israel than the United States,'” the book reportedly says.

The report didn’t detail when or in what context the remark was made.

Kushner, married to Trump’s daughter Ivanka, was the president’s senior adviser on Middle East peace and was the chief architect of the administration’s Israeli-Palestinian peace plan, which was panned by the Palestinians as excessively favorable to Israel.

Trump has made similar remarks in the past that evoked the canard that American Jews are more loyal to Israel than to the US or have dual loyalty.

Peril by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa

In June, he said in an interview with the ultra-Orthodox magazine Ami that American Jews don’t love Israel enough, otherwise they would have voted for him in last year’s presidential election.

Speaking to US Jews in 2018, he referred to Israel as “your country,” a remark he has also made on other occasions.

Trump has also drawn rebuke for saying that Jews who vote Democrat are “disloyal.”

Over the past decade, Jewish voters have shown stability in their partisanship, according to data from Pew Research Center. Jewish voters identify with or lean toward the Democratic Party over the Republican Party by a roughly 2-1 ratio.

Last year, the Washington Post reported that Trump had told his aides that Jews “stick together” and are “only in it for themselves.”

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