In last night’s dose of Russia Deflection, Sean Hannity allowed Sebastian Gorka, Donald Trump’s questionable terrorism advisor and member of a Nazi-allied group, to suggest viewers should troll Susan Rice and her defenders on Twitter.
In a recent exposé, the Jewish Forward found that Gorka 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.”
None of that was mentioned to the viewers of the “we report, you decide” network.
Instead, Gorka likened Rice’s supposed unmasking of names (which we know almost nothing about yet) to a police state or banana republic.
“You’re supposed to be a professional,” Gorka said, which is ironic considering that, as Forward also reported:
Gorka’s credentials as an academic expert in terrorism have been widely questioned. His doctoral dissertation has been dissected by various academics who say he is not an expert in their field, has never lived in a Muslim-majority country, does not speak Arabic and has avoided publishing any serious, peer-reviewed academic research.
Of course, Hannity didn’t challenge a word.
So Gorka continued attacking Rice:
GORKA: I challenge your viewers right now to go to her Twitter feed and read her tweets after January the 20th and read her colleagues Ben Rhodes and Colin Kahl, K-A-H-L. You will see who these people really are. The mask was taken off. Just three weekends ago, Colin Kahl used the word “purge” with regards to people like myself and Steve Bannon and the other people in the White House who they think should not be there. “Purging” is the kind of word that Maoists use. That’s the kind of word that was used to get rid of people you politically disagree with, perhaps even in violent ways.
Of course, Gorka didn’t use the word “troll” or overtly suggest that anyone do anything more than read. But it's hard to imagine he wouldn't think that while they were there, Hannity viewers wouldn't leave a few well-chosen attacks. As of late last night, however, I did not notice a huge number of hate tweets on Rice's feed.
But Gorka seems to have a thing about people insulting him on Twitter.
A former colleague of mine at Liberal America wrote about the surprise phone call terrorism analyst and Gorka-critic Michael S. Smith received one night:
An irate Gorka demanded to know why Smith was firing off “half a dozen tweets about me” every day. Smith mused that Gorka had too much time on his hands if he thought he was “defeating jihad” by monitoring his Twitter feed. He was surprised that a senior White House official would call an American citizen at this hour to berate him.
Gorka then railed about Smith’s “incessant berating of my professional acumen,” and asked him how it would feel to be attacked by someone he’d never met face to face.
Ultimately, Smith agreed to come to the White House for a “face to face, man to man” talk. Smith warned Gorka, though, that he was prepared to express his “very serious concerns about our national security”–concerns magnified by what he saw as Gorka’s unfitness for his post. Late Wednesday, however, Gorka withdrew the invitation.
Watch Gorka on the April 5, 2017 Hannity, below. Then listen in to his phone calls with Smith and you might ask yourself: Is hanging out on Twitter the main activity of everyone in the White House?