White House

Don’t Blame Trump for Christchurch

President Donald Trump talks to reporters as he departs from the White House in Washington, D.C., March 8, 2019. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)
The gunman alone perpetrated this repulsive slaughter.

I  do not recall hearing President Donald J. Trump urge anyone to enter a mosque and gun down Muslims. Still, Trump’s critics — whose volcanic rage makes Vesuvius resemble Old Faithful — hold him responsible for March 15’s mayhem in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Police say that an Australian white supremacist opened fire inside two local mosques, killing 50 worshipers and wounding some 50 more. Yet, somehow it’s all Trump’s fault — his detractors argue.

 Senator Tim Kaine (D., Va.) said: “The president uses language often that’s very similar to the language used by these bigots and racists, and if he’s not going to call it out, then other leaders have to do more to call it out.”

 “Time and time again, this president has embraced and emboldened white supremacists,” said Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.). “Instead of condemning racist terrorists, he covers for them.”

 CBS’s Late Show host Stephen Colbert claims that “Trump has trouble showing love for things that are not him, and he has a particularly bad record with Muslims in this regard.”

 MSNBC national-security analyst Ned Price said, “This is a president who has given plenty of rhetorical ammunition, I think, to terrorists like this.”

 “He is showing that it is okay to be bigoted. It’s okay to treat others in a hateful manner,” Hoda Hawa of the Muslim Public Affairs Council said of Trump on CNN. “What we saw in New Zealand was a manifestation of that exported hate and of that exported bigotry.”

 “When people of such influence and such stature are endorsing such a hateful, evil ideology, it emboldens those who will go out and do something really evil and nasty, like what happened in New Zealand,” said musician John Legend.

These scathing attacks raise this philosophical question: If the president of the United States speaks, and the Trump-loathing media and his critics ignore his words, has he made a sound?

In fact, President Trump has praised Muslims at home and abroad. He has denounced white supremacists. And he has embraced the two groups whom Klansmen, neo-Nazis, and their ilk detest the most: blacks and Jews. This news may shock most Americans, since anti-Trump journalists conceal these facts like classified data.

 “With the rising of tonight’s moon, I send my greetings and best wishes to all Muslims observing Ramadan in the United States and around the world,” Trump’s holiday greeting stated last May 15. “Ramadan reminds us of the richness Muslims add to the religious tapestry of American life.” Trump also hosted a June 6 iftar dinner for Muslim U.S. officials and Islamic diplomats. Trump welcomed his guests in Arabic: “To each of you and to the Muslims around the world: Ramadan Mubarak.”

During Trump’s maiden international voyage to Saudi Arabia, he met numerous Islamic counterparts.

“I chose to make my first foreign visit a trip to the heart of the Muslim world,” he said in a major address in Riyadh on May 21, 2017. “To the leaders and citizens of every country assembled here today, I want you to know that the United States is eager to form closer bonds of friendship, security, culture, and commerce.”

But what about the “Muslim ban?” That policy, endorsed by the U.S. Supreme Court, bars travelers from terror-wracked countries whose governments cannot or will not help American officials screen their citizens at our borders. Those nations (initially Iran, Iraq, Sudan, and Syria; eventually Libya, Somalia, and Yemen) were dubbed “countries of concern” by . . . the Obama administration.

Trump unbanned Chad, Iraq, and Sudan after they tightened security. He later restricted North Korea and Venezuela — neither one a Muslim hotbed.

 In a speech two days after an August 13, 2017, white-nationalist v. Antifa melee in Charlottesville, Va., Trump said: “Racism is evil. And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”

Trump also said: “To anyone who acted criminally in this weekend’s racist violence, you will be held fully accountable. Justice will be delivered.”

Some condemned Trump for observing violence on both sides. However, journalists and cops confirmed this fact.

As conservative luminary Gary Bauer recalls, Trump also said that August 17 that there were “very fine people” on both sides, including those who peacefully protested against the KKK and neo-Nazis. Trump added: “I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists — because they should be condemned totally.” He also called them “rough, bad people.” Instead, those whom Trump called “very fine people” were those who had a permit and were “protesting very quietly the taking down of the statue of Robert E. Lee.”

In the wake of Christchurch, a journalist asked Trump if he considered white supremacism a growing global threat. “I think it’s a small group of people that have very, very serious problems,” he said. “It’s certainly a terrible thing.” It’s hard to see how dismissing these losers as “small,” “terrible” people with “very serious problems” emboldens them.

 Trump likely mortified white nationalists when he asked for black votes in 2016 in Detroit and Flint, Mich., and at a charter school in Cleveland. “What the hell do you have to lose?” Trump pleaded with black voters at rally after rally. Early in his tenure, Trump welcomed several dozen presidents of historically black colleges and universities and opened a White House office to assist them. He has strengthened school choice, signed criminal-justice-reform legislation, launched opportunity zones, and boasted of the record-low unemployment that blacks have enjoyed on his watch. This surely nauseates white supremacists.

 But didn’t Trump’s anti-Semitism unleash another shooter’s onslaught that killed eleven Jews at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue?

Let’s review this one more time.

When Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, converted to Orthodox Judaism, married Jared Kushner (an Orthodox Jew), and then reproduced, Trump did not disown her. Rather he made Ivanka and Jared two of his closest advisers. Trump’s Jewish grandchildren also are the first to enjoy the White House as presidential blood relatives.

Trump is the first sitting chief executive to visit the Western Wall, Judaism’s holiest site, in Jerusalem — the Israeli capital to which he moved America’s embassy, from Tel Aviv. Trump signed the Palestinian-terror-thwarting Taylor Force Act. On Thursday, Trump recognized Israeli sovereignty over the previously Syrian Golan Heights. Just this afternoon, Trump hosted at the White House Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, arguably the world leader with whom he is closest — personally and strategically. Sitting beside the commander-in-chief, Netanyahu said in the Oval Office, “We have never had a greater friend than President Trump.”

Donald Trump is a friend of Jews and Israel, not an anti-Semite, no matter how often his scheming enemies lie through their teeth about this.

Indeed, despite anti-Trump lies to the contrary, the Tree of Life murderer opposes Trump.

“For the record, I did not vote for him nor have I owned, worn or even touched a MAGA hat,” he stated via Twitter. Using particularly ugly language, he continued: “Trump is a globalist, not a nationalist. There is no MAGA as long as there is a kike infestation.”

Trump’s alleged anti-Semitism really deserves a proper burial, once and for all.

 But wait. What about the Christchurch shooter invoking Trump’s name? The gunman’s 74-page manifesto mentions Trump only once beyond the table of contents. Regarding support for Trump, he wrote: “As a symbol of renewed white identity and common purpose? Sure. As a policy maker and leader? Dear god no.”

That’s hardly a ringing endorsement.

Trump haters also insinuated that the killer is a right-winger to whom anti-Muslim violence comes naturally — yet another slur against conservatives. The shooter’s comments expose his beliefs as more left than right.

He wrote that “conservatism is corporatism in disguise, I want no part of it.” He added: “Conservatism is dead. Thank god. Now let us bury it and move on to something of worth.”

He further explains, “[I] consider myself an Eco-fascist by nature. The nation with the closest  political and social values to my own is the People’s Republic of China.”

The communiqué discusses “eco” thrice and the “environment” 18 times. “The environment is being destroyed by over population,” he claims. “Kill the invaders, kill the overpopulation, and by doing so save the environment.” Rather than pinning the Christchurch killer on Trump, perhaps the environmentalist Left should claim this assassin as one of their own.

If liberals consider this unfair, perhaps we all can agree on this: A wicked gunman fatally shot 50 Muslims in New Zealand. He alone perpetrated this repulsive slaughter. This atrocity’s victims and their grieving survivors deserve far better than to serve as lava in the Left’s latest anti-Trump eruption.

Michael Malarkey contributed research to this opinion piece.

Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News contributor and a contributing editor of National Review Online, and a senior fellow with the London Center for Policy Research.

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