Archive for February, 2017


The Atlantic »

Why Is Trump Silent on Islamophobic Attacks?

February 27, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Last week President Trump condemned attacks against American Jews, which is good. So why won’t he condemn attacks against American Muslims? Why is there so little political pressure on him to do so? Numerically, the problem appears roughly similar. In the ten days following Trump’s victory, the Southern Poverty Law… Read the Rest »

The Forward »

Is Donald Trump Too Ignorant To Deal With Israel And The Middle East?

February 20, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

For almost two decades, American presidents have supported a Palestinian state alongside Israel. Last week, Donald Trump questioned that commitment, thus potentially changing the course of Middle Eastern and Jewish history. Why did he take this momentous action? The most plausible answer is that he’s too ignorant to understand the… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

Why Trump Can’t Answer Questions About Anti-Semitism

February 17, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

The most bizarre and unsettling moment in President Trump’s bizarre and unsettling press conference this Thursday came near the end. Trump, who had been insulting the journalists questioning him for more than 90 minutes, declared that, “I want to find a friendly reporter.” Then he spied Jake Turx of the… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

American Institutions Are Pushing Back Against Trump

February 15, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Nothing Donald Trump has done since becoming President is particularly surprising. The attacks on judges and the press, the clash of civilizations worldview, the ignorance of public policy, the blurring of government service and private gain, the endless lying, the incompetence, the chaos—all were vividly foreshadowed during the campaign. The… Read the Rest »

The Forward »

How Bibi Played Us On The Iran Deal — And We Let Him

February 15, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Almost two years ago, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu went before Congress to denounce President Obama’s nuclear agreement with Iran. The deal, he warned, “could well threaten the survival of my country and the future of my people.” Then, in the closing moments of his speech, Netanyahu addressed the late… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

The Anti-Anti-Trump Right

February 13, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Several weeks into the Trump presidency, one can divide the reaction among conservative commentators into three categories.

The Forward »

What If Jared Kushner Were Muslim And Helped Ban Israelis From America?

February 9, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Let’s try a thought experiment. A blatantly anti-Semitic candidate runs for president. In a CNN interview, he declares that “Judaism hates us.” He falsely accuses American Jews of cheering on terrorist attacks against the United States. He calls for “a total and complete shutdown of Jews entering the United States.”… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

For Trump, ‘We Have a Lot of Killers’ Isn’t a Criticism

February 6, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

In an interview that aired on Sunday, Bill O’Reilly alleged that Vladimir “Putin is a killer.” Donald Trump replied, “We have a lot of killers. Well, you think our country is so innocent?” Journalists reacted with disbelief. During the Obama administration, conservatives sometimes suggested that, in his heart, President Obama… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

Milo Yiannopoulos Tested Progressives—and They Failed

February 3, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Among the many terrifying questions that Donald Trump’s presidency poses is this: How do you oppose an indecent leader while still behaving decently yourself? When it comes to the habits of deference extended to previous presidents, I’m fine with breaking the rules. If Democrats want to oppose all of Trump’s… Read the Rest »

The Atlantic »

How Trump Wants to Make America Exceptional Again

February 2, 2017 | post a comment | Philip Johnson

Daniel Drezner argues in The Washington Post that Donald “Trump’s brand of nativism could be the death knell for American exceptionalism.” I disagree. American exceptionalism is not a set of enduring national characteristics that a president can undermine. American exceptionalism is a story that America’s leaders tell about what makes… Read the Rest »