State dept. spokeswoman shows Jewish pride as German antisemitism rises

In May, Germany’s federal commissioner to combat antisemitism, Dr. Felix Klein, urged Jews in Germany not to wear kippot in certain areas of Germany.

By
June 6, 2019 02:49
1 minute read.
Morgan Deann Ortagus

Morgan Deann Ortagus . (photo credit: Courtesy)

Morgan Deann Ortagus, a spokeswoman for the US State Department, donned a Star of David necklace while speaking in Berlin during the Friday visit of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

According to The New York Times, “Morgan Deann Ortagus and Jonathan Ross Weinberger were married... by Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in her chambers at the Supreme Court in Washington” in May 2013. The Times wedding notice reported “That evening, Rabbi Kenneth B. Block led a Jewish ceremony at the Four Seasons Hotel in Georgetown.”


Ortagus’s display of her Star of David necklace comes amid rising antisemitism in Germany.

Last month, Dr. Felix Klein, Germany’s federal commissioner to combat antisemitism, urged Jews in Germany not to wear kippot in certain areas of Germany. Pompeo asked Merkel to outlaw all parts of the antisemitic terrorist organization Hezbollah, but Merkel has stubbornly refused.

The nearly 100,000-member Central Council of Jews in Germany made an urgent appeal to Merkel in late May to outlaw Hezbollah, but Merkel and Interior Minister Horst Seehofer rejected the appeal from Germany’s Jewish community.

In April, Pompeo named the former Fox News contributor Ortagus the new State Department spokesperson. “I am pleased to welcome Morgan Ortagus as our new State Department spokesperson,” he said at the time. “Morgan brings outstanding credentials and a record of public service to the position. She has worked her entire career in financial services, consulting and diplomacy.”

Ortagus, who has vast foreign policy credentials, is a Navy reserve office. She served as a spokesperson for US Agency for International Development under President George W. Bush in 2017, and later served as an intelligence analyst for the Treasury Department in president Barack Obama’s administration.

Her government experience has included stints in Baghdad and Riyadh in 2010.

The 36-year-old Floridian worked with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia “to curb illicit financial flows to and from the Kingdom,” according to a CNN report.

Samantha Vinograd, a CNN national security analyst, told CNN: “She spent over a year in Saudi Arabia as the deputy Treasury attaché and has a lot of expertise in the Middle East, on countering terrorism finance and intelligence.”

Vinograd worked with Ortagus during the Obama administration and is “ls a close friend and business partner of Ortagus,” wrote CNN.


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