Melania Trump is one of the quietest First Ladies in modern memory, and there’s not much doubt as to why that is. Why would she – a woman who is probably still stunned to find herself in this position in the first place – want to subject herself to the furious and outrage-filled media that has tried to destroy her husband for nearly two straight years? It’s no wonder she wants to spend most of her time in Trump Tower; it takes a rare breed of human to withstand the kind of ongoing punishment that the president has to deal with.
But on an overseas trip with the top officials of the administration this week, Melania perhaps found someone who understood the disorienting plight of America’s First Family: Sara Netanyahu, the wife of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In a conversation picked up by a hot mic, Mrs. Netanyahu told Mrs. Trump that their situations were much the same.
“You know, in Israel all the people like us,” said Mrs. Netanyahu on the tarmac at Ben Gurion Airport on Monday. “The media hate us but the people love us. Like you.”
“We have a lot in common,” Melania agreed.
President Trump’s ongoing give-and-take feud with the media has been well-documented, but Israeli’s Netanyahu is nearly Trump-level when it comes to bickering with his opponents in the media. He has said on numerous occasions that they are biased against him and his right-of-center Likud Party, and he has prevailed against multiple press-drive investigations that have tried to push him out of office in favor of a moderate.
From the Times of Israel:
He has forgone press conferences and interviews, and has tried to reshape the media landscape in Israel. Like Trump, he has taken to social media to lambaste the press.
He recently pushed to have the state-run Israel Broadcasting Authority shut down and replaced with a new corporation, only to reverse course once the emerging personnel of the new body did not seem favorable enough to him.
Netanyahu, like Trump, has also lashed out at specific reporters. He took one newsman to court for reporting that Sara Netanyahu kicked her husband out of the car on a busy highway in a fit of rage. Last year, after acclaimed investigative TV journalist Ilana Dayan reported on mistreatment of the prime minister’s staff, she read a 6-minute rebuke from Netanyahu on the air in which he called her a “left-wing extremist” and slammed her credentials.
See, the American press would love for voters to believe that Trump is a historical, unique, and monstrous enemy of democracy just because he doesn’t put up with the media’s nonsense. It’s simply not true. Conservatives – especially those who have a strong, hardline agenda – are this way with the liberal press in democracies all over the world. Perhaps Trump is a bit more colorful about it than most; but then again, his media coverage is quite a bit worse than most.