Unlike past presidential candidates, Donald Trump has refused to release his tax returns, making it difficult for voters or reporters to vet his claims about his wealth or charitable giving. Today, however, Washington Post reporter David Fahrenthold uncovered at least one philanthropic pledge that Trump failed to uphold:
In 2007, Donald Trump promised a donation to the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces, a U.S.-based charity that provides aid to Israeli military personnel and the families of fallen Israeli soldiers.
He didn’t pay, a spokesman for the charity said Thursday.
Instead, another person — whom the charity did not name — paid off Trump’s promise, according to Ryan Greiss, the spokesman.
Reportedly, the unmet pledge was for $250,000. This isn’t the first time Fahrenthold has caught Trump reneging on his charitable commitments. In January, Trump skipped a Republican primary debate and instead held an event to raise money for veterans. He claimed to have collected $6 million for the cause, including $1 million of his own money. But in May, Fahrenthold reported that this figure was exaggerated and that Trump still had not donated much of the proceeds to veterans. After the report ran, Trump finally turned over the cash.
Trump’s truancy regarding his Israel pledge joins an ever-expanding litany of less-than-inspiring actions and ambiguities when it comes to the Jewish state. In recent months, Trump has said that Israel should be compelled to pay back defense aid it received from America, insisted he’ll be neutral on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and claimed Saddam Hussein “killed terrorists” when the Iraqi dictator in fact terrorized thousands of Israelis and paid millions to the families of Palestinian suicide bombers.
Through this all, Trump and his steadily shrinking circle of Jewish supporters have repeatedly proclaimed him to be the most “pro-Israel” candidate in the presidential race. Which begs the question: if this is pro-Israel, what does anti-Israel look like?