Update: Since publication of this story in the Forward on Thursday, two things have happened:
There has been the traditional muddying of the waters when controversial trump-related matters arise, with comments from various sources that on their face seem to put the basic matter to rest, but never directly address the question on the table. Or don’t address the question at all: neither the White House nor Gorka will talk about it.
The major news media have shied away, at least for the moment, because of their unwillingness or inability to look through muddy waters stirred up in trump-related matters. In many cases, this doesn’t go to journalistic high-mindedness or objectivity, but to weakness and timidity, and in this case, to having been scooped (or alternatively to having sat on the story).
Following the first story, the Forward has gone on to publish multiple stories, including this excellent summary from the following day, March 17. Please read in its entirety:
This from the Forward:
EXCLUSIVE: Nazi-Allied Group Claims Top Trump Aide Sebastian Gorka As Sworn Member
Sebastian Gorka, President Trump’s top counter-terrorism adviser, is a formal member of a Hungarian far-right group that is listed by the U.S. State Department as having been “under the direction of the Nazi Government of Germany” during World War II, leaders of the organization have told the Forward.
The elite order, known as the Vitézi Rend, was established as a loyalist group by Admiral Miklos Horthy, who ruled Hungary as a staunch nationalist from 1920 to October 1944. A self-confessed anti-Semite, Horthy imposed restrictive Jewish laws prior to World War II and collaborated with Hitler during the conflict. His cooperation with the Nazi regime included the deportation of hundreds of thousands of Jews into Nazi hands.
Gorka’s membership in the organization — if these Vitézi Rend leaders are correct, and if Gorka did not disclose this when he entered the United States as an immigrant — could have implications for his immigration status. The State Department’s Foreign Affairs Manual specifies that members of the Vitézi Rend “are presumed to be inadmissible” to the country under the Immigration and Nationality Act.
Gorka — who Vitézi Rend leaders say took a lifelong oath of loyalty to their group — did not respond to multiple emails sent to his work and personal accounts, asking whether he is a member of the Vitézi Rend and, if so, whether he disclosed this on his immigration application and on his application to be naturalized as a U.S. citizen in 2012. The White House also did not respond to a request for comment.
But Bruce Einhorn, a retired immigration judge who now teaches nationality law at Pepperdine University, said of this, “His silence speaks volumes.”