TEL AVIV – The news media in recent days has been hyping remarks made by Steven Goldstein, executive director of the largely unknown Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect, repeatedly accusing President Trump and his administration of anti-Semitism.
Unreported by much of the news media is that since taking over the Anne Frank Center in June, Goldstein has used the organization that bears the name of one of the most discussed Jewish holocaust victims as an anti-Trump political platform.
Goldstein found his way into the news cycle after he appeared on CNN to accuse the Trump administration of anti-Semitism while engaging in a heated exchange on the subject with network commentator Kayleigh McEnany.
“Our president is creating an incubator of hatred,” he claimed. “When you don’t respond to anti-Semitism as well as Islamophobia and racism in real time, when you wait days and sometimes a week to respond to attacks, you are sending a signal to the haters.”
Goldstein further took to Facebook where he charged the Trump White House evidenced “the worst we have ever seen” as far as “the anti-Semitism coming out of this administration.” He claimed that Trump’s condemnation of anti-Semitism earlier this week was “too little, too late.”
The President’s sudden acknowledgement is a Band-Aid on the cancer of Antisemitism that has infected his own Administration. His statement today is a pathetic asterisk of condescension after weeks in which he and his staff have committed grotesque acts and omissions reflecting Antisemitism, yet day after day have refused to apologize and correct the record.
Make no mistake: The Antisemitism coming out of this Administration is the worst we have ever seen from any Administration.
Goldstein’s remarks have been picked up by scores of major news outlets, many of which utilized the Center’s name in the title of the articles despite the organization’s relative obscurity.
“Anne Frank Center: Anti-Semitism has ‘infected’ Trump administration,” reads a CNN headline.
“Anne Frank Center: Trump’s anti-Semitism response ‘too little, too late’” a headline at The Hill relates.
The Independent newspaper utilized the headline, “Anne Frank Center accuses Donald Trump of anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial.”
When he took over the Anne Frank Center, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) profiled Goldstein as explaining that he plans to run the organization like a lean political campaign.
The JTA, a respected Jewish news agency, described the Center as a “relatively obscure Holocaust memorial organization.”
“I don’t view my work through the laid-back prism and slower cadence of a not-for-profit organization,” Goldstein said. “I’m an intense campaigner. I don’t see us as competing [with the Anti-Defamation League]. I believe deeply in partnerships.”
Indeed, Goldstein wasted no time after Trump took office, making news on January 26 for blasting the president’s executive order to temporary halt the refugee program as using “national security as a guise for racism.”
The Anne Frank Center’s twitter account, which Salon.com reported is manned by Goldstein, has been utilized to unleash repeated attacks on Trump.
In one of many strangely worded Tweets, the Center called Trump’s policies “evil.” Another branded Trump a narcissist.
Here is a small sampling of a few other recent anti-Trump tweets:
— AnneFrankCenter(US) (@AnneFrankCenter) February 2, 2017
WE CONDEMN BOTH THE EVIL POLICIES OF PRESIDENT TRUMP AND THE SEXISM AIMED AT MELANIA TRUMP. "President Trump's… https://t.co/tCslEgXbrW
— AnneFrankCenter(US) (@AnneFrankCenter) February 14, 2017
— AnneFrankCenter(US) (@AnneFrankCenter) February 22, 2017
— AnneFrankCenter(US) (@AnneFrankCenter) February 22, 2017
PREJUDICE BY AMERICAN PRESIDENTS KNOWS NO PARTISANSHIP – AND WE CONDEMN IT ALL.
This weekend marks the 75th… https://t.co/uzbhfSPyLv
— AnneFrankCenter(US) (@AnneFrankCenter) February 20, 2017
Some of the Center’s tweets opposed Trump’s plan to build a barrier along the porous U.S.-Mexico border:
— AnneFrankCenter(US) (@AnneFrankCenter) February 15, 2017
One tweet utilized the memory of Anne Frank to call her a Syrian refugee.
— AnneFrankCenter(US) (@AnneFrankCenter) February 9, 2017
Writing at the Daily Caller earlier this week, columnist and Jewish historian David Benkof charged that “Goldstein is not a Holocaust expert, and the Anne Frank Center (a separate group independent of Amsterdam’s Anne Frank House) is not a serious player in the world of Holocaust memory.”
Benkof said of the Center under Goldstein’s leadership:
Of late, it has become a sham organization that is largely a one-man shop to promote Goldstein’s aspirations to be, as he proclaims himself, a “civil rights leader.” Armed with a great organizational title; incendiary but ready-to-print quotes; and a gullible media slavishly lapping it all up, Goldstein is finding tremendous success. (He could not be reached for comment.)
The JTA reported that Goldstein backed Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign:
Goldstein backs presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. In April, he wrote on Facebook that “sometimes you compromise to forge consensus, but sometimes you don’t to stand your ground. Knowing when to do which is the art of the revolution. That’s Hillary Clinton’s gift.”
Prior to taking over the Center, Goldstein was an LGBT rights activist who reportedly called himself “the Harvey Milk of New Jersey,” referring to the famed American politician and gay civil rights activist.
Goldstein founded a group called Garden State Equality, which campaigned for gay rights laws in New Jersey and was involved in activism that led to the state in 2013 allowing same-sex marriage. His campaigns were portrayed in the 2015 movie “Freeheld,” in which he was portrayed by actor Steve Carell. The movie was based on a 2007 documentary of the same name.
Meanwhile, Yossi Dagan, chief of the Samaria Regional Council in Israel, hit back against the statements from Goldstein and the Center.
“With all the due respect which I have for the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect, it seems that someone here is confused,” Dagan stated.
“While the State of Israel is under attack from every direction because it is the state of the Jews. While Jews are being killed here only because of their Jewishness, while the UN security Council finds it necessary to specifically and obsessively condemn the State of Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East, also with profoundly anti-Semitic motives, the center of the Anne Frank House finds time to attack the leader who is the greatest supporter of Israel and the Jewish people ever elected president of the U.S., Donald Trump,” he continued.
Aaron Klein is Breitbart’s Jerusalem bureau chief and senior investigative reporter. He is a New York Times bestselling author and hosts the popular weekend talk radio program, “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio.” Follow him on Twitter @AaronKleinShow. Follow him on Facebook.
With research by Joshua Klein.