Republicans and Donald Trump attempted to discredit key witnesses in connection with the indictment investigation against the president, claiming that they had dual loyalty or dual loyalty to United States, since they were born abroad.
This decision sparked condemnation as a fanatical tactic that decried diplomats and American career leaders as potentially disloyal to their country of adoption, as they were not born in America.
The attacks mainly concerned the Ukrainian Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, the expert of the Ukrainian National Security Council Alexander Vindman and the ex-security expert of the White House, Russia, Fiona Hill.
Trump called the "bad news" Yovanovitch, born in Canada. Hill, who was born in Britain, told congressional investigators that the charges against Yovanovich were linked to a "mishmash of conspiracy theories … an idea of an association between her and George Soros".
Hill also said that far right conspiracy theories asserted that she was herself "a mole of Soros in the White House, colluding with all kinds of enemies of the president and, you know, various irregularities "resurfaced after his testimony before the House Intelligence Committee. has been announced.
Having connections – real or imagined – with Soros, a billionaire philanthropist of Hungarian origin who survived the Holocaust, has become a "whistle" for antisemitic abuse.
The attacks on Vindman – who was born into a Jewish family in Ukraine and fled the Soviet Union with his family at the age of three, and then settled in Brooklyn – were particularly visceral . Vindman is also a decorated American veteran who served in Iraq.
The Fox & Friends TV host, Brian Kilmeade, for example, said about Vindman: "We also know that he was born in the Soviet Union, that he emigrated with his family . He tends to feel simpatico with Ukraine. "
Former Republican Congressman Sean Duffy told CNN: "It seems very clear that he is extremely concerned about Ukrainian defense. I do not know if he is worried about American politics … We all have an affinity with our homeland, our country of origin. Twitter, Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, said about Vindman: "An American government employee who reportedly advised two governments? No wonder he's confused and feels pressure. "
The attacks on the trio's characters reflect an anti-immigrant – and often anti-Semitic – belief that foreign-born American officials maintain dual loyalty to some outside the country. While immigrants to the United States – including those in the former Soviet Union – may have family or cultural ties, many Americans like to be Americans, experts at the Guardian said.
"The theme of dual loyalty is a common thread in American history." Immigration played an important role for North Americans, "said Alan Kraut, a history professor at the University of Toronto. 39, American University and member of the Jewish Studies group of the school. Faculty.
In the early years of US life, people questioned the alleged allegiance of others to France or Britain. During the Second World War, the internment of Americans of Japanese origin resulted from the mistaken belief that they constituted "a risk to national security because they were accused of having a double loyalty, "Kraut explained. Americans of Irish descent have sometimes been perceived, because of the strength of their Catholic religion, as having allegiance to the pope.
Since 1948, the claim of "double loyalty" against American Jews is generally to say that they "have a double loyalty to Israel more than the United States."
"Antisemites use the accusation of dual loyalty to fuel anti-Semitism," Kraut said. "Although it may be some sort of downgraded to say, somehow," the Jews are an inferior race ", it's not downgraded to say" the problem of the Jews in America [is] double loyalty.
Kees Boterbloem, professor and director of history studies at the University of South Florida, said of Vindman, "I have no doubt that he and his twin brother are absolutely loyal to the United States," especially since country in which they were born. Soviet Union – no longer exists.
"How can you be faithful to something that is no longer there?", He said.
Alina Polyakova, a member of the Brookings Institution and a specialist in Ukraine, Russia and Europe, said that there remained an antisemitic narrative that Jewish immigrants were "never totally" part of their new country.
"Certainly, [Vindman’s] the parents would have known exactly the same thing because of their Jewish identity. They were not "really" Ukrainian. They were not "really" Russian They were not "fully" citizens of the Soviet Union, "she said.
The attacks were mentioned during last week's hearings.
George Kent, Assistant Secretary of State for Ukrainian Politics, concluded his initial statement with a resounding defense of his colleagues.
"I would like to conclude my opening statement with an observation about some of my fellow officials who have been the subject of a personal attack," said Kent to the House Intelligence Committee, naming Yovanovich, Vindman and Hill.
"Masha, Alex and Fiona were born abroad before their families or themselves chose to immigrate to the United States. All made the professional choice to serve the United States as public servants, thereby helping to shape our national security policy, especially with Russia. And we and our national security are the best. "