Don­ald Trump’s Shab­bat sham­bles

The Jewish Chronicle - - FRONT PAGE - BY OR­LANDO RADICE

SOME OF US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s more ex­treme or­ders and con­ver­sa­tions have come on Shab­bat be­cause his more moderate Ortho­dox son-in-law Jared Kush­ner has not been around to ad­vise him, ac­cord­ing to re­ports in the US press.

Mr Trump’s travel ban on cit­i­zens of seven Mus­lim-ma­jor­ity coun­tries was signed late on a Fri­day, re­port­edly min­utes be­fore Shab­bat came in, when Mr Kush­ner was not avail­able.

The day af­ter­wards, on Satur­day, Mr Trump had an in­cen­di­ary tele­phone con­ver­sa­tion with Aus­tralian Prime Min­is­ter Mal­colm Turn­bull, be­rat­ing him for ask­ing whether the US was still pre­pared to take in 1,250 refugees from an Aus­tralian de­ten­tion cen­tre.

Mean­while, the pre­vi­ous week, just af­ter his in­au­gu­ra­tion ceremony, Mr Trump spent Fri­day and Satur­day set­tling scores over re­ports that the size of the crowd was smaller than at Barack Obama’s event, and on Satur­day or­dered his press sec­re­tary Sean Spicer to de­liver “al­ter­na­tive facts” about the level of at­ten­dance. An uniden­ti­fied source told Van­ity Fair about Mr Kush­ner’s fail­ure to in­flu­ence Mr Trump: “He wasn’t rolling calls on Satur­day when this hap­pened. To me, that’s not a co­in­ci­dence.” The source also said Mr Kush­ner was “f***ing furious” at his fa­ther-in-law for tweet­ing about a pro­posed wall be­tween Mex­ico and the US.

These rows have re­port­edly left far-right for­mer me­dia boss Steve Ban­non as the man with the most in­flu­ence on Mr Trump, who, it is said, trusts him more than any other ad­viser.

Mr Kush­ner is not only re­ported to be a mod­er­at­ing in­flu­ence on Mr Trump, but has sought to help the Pres­i­dent build bridges with other heads of state and busi­ness lead­ers — al­beit with mixed suc­cess.

In the row fol­low­ing Mr Trump’s state­ments about the Mex­ico wall, the Mex­i­can Pres­i­dent can­celled a meet­ing that Mr Kush­ner had helped ar­range.

The 36-year-old, who has been cred­ited with devising the Trump cam­paign’s dig­i­tal op­er­a­tions, re­port­edly bro­kered a meet­ing be­tween Mr Trump and Ru­pert Mur­doch and fa­cil­i­tated a gath­er­ing of Amer­ica’s top tech­nol­ogy CEOs at Trump Tower last month.

Mean­while, Jared’s wife, Ivanka, was re­ported to have been courted by China this week af­ter she was seen shak­ing the hand of the Chi­nese Am­bas­sador Cui Tiankai be­fore leav­ing the Chi­nese Em­bassy in a black SUV.

Ivanka later posted a video of her daugh­ter, Ara­bella, singing a song in Mandarin, and other footage emerged of Ms Trump lis­ten­ing to tra­di­tional mu­sic, ad­mir­ing crafts and play­ing with pup­pets at the em­bassy. Chi­nese state-run news­pa­per the Global Times said Ms Trump helped bal­ance her fa­ther’s “harsh pos­ture” and the ap­pear­ance “could be in­vig­o­rat­ing to the Chi

na-US re­la­tion­ship.”

Ivanka Trump and Jared Kush­ner take a stroll in New York


Rul­ing the roost: Trump andBan­non

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