It is not just President Obama and the Democratic National Committee condemning Mike Huckabee’s claim Saturday that President Obama is marching Israelis to “door of the oven.” It is also the Anti-Defamation League and the National Jewish Democratic Council.
Obama, commenting from Ethiopia, said that “We have robust debates, we look at the facts. We just don’t fling out ad hominem attacks like that because it doesn’t help inform the American people.”
Of course, that is exactly what Republicans do.
DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz had this to say:
From questioning President Obama’s religion to questioning whether or not President Obama loves America to asserting President Obama isn’t an American, we thought we had seen everything from the Republican Party and its presidential candidates.
But now, the most liked Republican presidential primary candidate Mike Huckabee said that President Obama is marching Israelis to “the door of the oven.” This rhetoric, while commonplace in today’s Republican presidential primary, has no place in American politics. Cavalier analogies to the Holocaust are unacceptable. Mike Huckabee must apologize to the Jewish community and to the American people for this grossly irresponsible statement.
The NJDC had words just as strong for the Republican candidate, attacking his “callous disregard” of Holocaust victims:
Far, far too often, this organization has found itself forced to denounce poiticans for invoking the Holocaust in inappropriate and offensive ways. These comments by Gov. Mike Huckabee, however, may be the most inexcusable we’ve encountered in recent memory.
In our eyes, it is almost pointless to demand Gov. Huckabee apologize for his remarks, although he certainly should. This was not a random, off-the-cuff remark, and the Jewish community deserves better than to hear a false apology that we doubt will stop the former Governor from offending again in the future. What we do demand is that Gov. Huckabee’s fellow Republican presidential candidates denounce his offensive statement at once. Republicans have fallen over themselves to speak out against Donald Trump’s outrageous rhetoric on immigration and veterans. Will they now do the same and speak out against this unacceptable attack against President Obama that smears the memory of Holocaust victims, as they did when Trump attacked Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)? Or will they stand by in silence and implicit approval? We call on every candidate to condemn Gov. Huckabee’s disgusting statement and to show where they truly stand.
The ADL’s national director Jonathan A. Greenblatt was equally blunt:
Whatever one’s views of the nuclear agreement with Iran – and we have been critical of it, noting that there are serious unanswered questions that need to be addressed – comments such as those by Mike Huckabee suggesting the president is leading Israel to another Holocaust are completely out of line and unacceptable.
Greenblatt added that,
To hear Mr. Huckabee invoke the Holocaust when America is Israel’s greatest ally and when Israel is a strong nation capable of defending itself is disheartening. The great tragedy of the Holocaust saw the Jews of Europe without allies and without power at the worst possible moment.
Barak Ravid, of Tel Aviv’s conservative Haaretz, tweeted,
— Barak Ravid (@BarakRavid) July 26, 2015
Mike Huckabee thinks his rhetoric will be welcomed by Jews. It is not. It is just another example of Republican extremism run amok, of a complete, Palinesque disregard for facts or feelings.
Huckabee should be ashamed, and he owes President Obama, the American people, and particularly Jews all over the world, an apology.
Nobody will receive one, of course, because for the GOP and Religious Right, Mike Huckabee has just become the victim.
Image from Mike Huckabee via Twitter