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CNN’s Phil Mudd: How Does Trump Have Legitimacy to Slam Tlaib When He Gushes Over ‘Love Letters’ from Kim Jong Un?

Former CIA analyst Phil Mudd blasted the hypocrisy of President Donald Trump on CNN’s Outfront with Erin Burnett on Monday evening for his Twitter attack on Rep. Rashida Tlaib’s (D-MI) controversial comments about Israel, Palestine, and the Holocaust.

Tlaib, one of two Muslim women in Congress, has come under fire because of statements she made on a recent podcast that included a number of factual inaccuracies about the history of Israel and Palestine. Republicans in Congress have also singled out for criticism a snippet of the podcast where Tlaib awkwardly described a “calming feeling” about the Holocaust, which was part of a larger point she was trying to make about Jews escaping Europe and finally building a homeland in the Middle East. Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has defended Tlaib and claimed Republican attacks are part of a campaign to “misrepresent” what she said and “smear” the Congresswoman.


Trump’s post rang particularly hollow for Mudd, who pointed out that Trump just welcomed far-right Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban to the White House and praised the authoritarian leader for doing a “tremendous job.” Orban is virulent xenophobe who has cracked on immigrants coming into his country and has talked of building a race-based “European ethno-state.”

Orban is far from the only violent dictator that Trump has embraced, Mudd added:

“You’re going to go out and say you’ve got love letters from Kim Jong-Un, who murders his own citizens. You’re going to go out and say I’m reluctant to do anything about Saudi Arabia murdering somebody who writes for the Washington Post, you’re going to go out and have a love affair with Vladimir Putin, who was involved, as far as I can tell, in murdering oppositionists. I think he’s right to make some comments about the Congresswoman. I thought her words were inappropriate. That said, legitimacy is a problem when you hear the president say all these dictators, who not only sideline opponents, but murder them, I like those people. I don’t know how you have a legitimacy in going after the congresswoman with that in your background.”

Burnett agreed, noting the “utter hypocrisy” of Trump portraying Tlaib as antagonistic to Jewish people.

In fact, Trump has his own notable track record of anti-Semitic remarks and apologism. Perhaps most notable involved his comments in August 2017 that there were “very fine people on both sides” in response to a march in Charlottesville, Virginia by neo-Nazis and white supremacists, one of whom struck and killed a counter-protestor with his car. Trump has also trafficked in anti-Semitic stereotypes, by reportedly saying: “The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day,” and by posting an image of a six-pointed star atop a photo of a pile of money during the 2016 campaign.

Watch the video above, via CNN.

[image via screengrab]

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