There is an old anti-Semitic accusation against Jews. They are not truly loyal to their country. They are loyal to each other, creating a second loyalty.
Who believes Jews have competing dual loyalties? Donald Trump? Ilhan Omar? Is it anti-Semitic to believe Jews have dual loyalty?
Donald Trump got himself in a little trouble. Only a little. After all, he says so many things that cause trouble.
“I think Jewish people that vote for a Democrat — I think it shows either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty,” Trump told reporters during an Oval Office meeting with the president of Romania.
Ilhan Omar got in more trouble. She was described as repeating the claim that Jews have dual loyalty.
Omar was responding to a tweet from New York Congresswoman Nita Lowey when she said the following:
“I should not be expected to have allegiance/pledge support to a foreign country in order to serve my country in Congress or serve on committee.”
Lowey had been criticizing Omar for suggesting that pro-Israel groups were pushing lawmakers to “pledge allegiance to a foreign country.”
The claim of Jewish dual loyalty precedes nationalism. Jews in Christian countries were seen as disloyal to the Prince or the King or the State because the State was a Christian place. By definition, Jews were loyal elsewhere.
Now, in the twenty-first century, here in America, is there something wrong with American Jews who don’t demonstrate loyalty to a Jewish state? Or is it anti-Semitic for Donald Trump to say that? Is it an anti-Semitic canard for a Member of Congress to complain that others (presumably Jews) are pressing her to be loyal to a Jewish state? What if those who are press her are Evangelical Christians?