Reprinted from Gush Shalom
The same kind of face. The same chin thrust forward, to produce an impression of force and determination.
The same way of speaking. One sentence and then a pause, waiting for the mob to shout approval.
Yes. Unmistakable. I saw it in my early childhood. On newsreels.
Benito Mussolini. Rome. Piazza Venezia. The Duce on a balcony, The huge mob down below in the piazza. Delirious. Applauding. Shouting until they were hoarse. A mass orgy of mindlessness.
This week I saw and heard it again. This time on TV.
THERE WERE differences, of course.
Presidential candidate Donald Trump was speaking in Washington DC, the modern successor to ancient Rome.
The Duce was bald, and therefore always wore a fanciful hat especially designed for him. The Trump wore his trademark orange hair, very carefully arranged by himself (according to his butler).
Mussolini spoke Italian, one of the world's most beautiful languages, even coming from the mouth of a dictator. Trump spoke American English, a language that even its most ardent admirers would not call melodious.
But the largest difference was the character of the audience. The Duce spoke to a Roman mob, a late successor to the ancient Roman plebs who, not far from there, had cried for blood in the arena.
Trump spoke -- unbelievably! -- to an assembly of mostly elderly, wealthy and well educated Jews.
Jews, for God's sake! People who secretly believe that they are the most intelligent on earth! Delirious Jews, shouting, clapping, jumping up and down after every sentence, as if possessed.
WHAT HAS happened to these Jews?