Probably The Most Powerful Jewish Couple in the World



Ivanka and Jared Kushner are probably the world's most powerful Jewish couple.

Whereas Benjamin Netanyahu is a vastly more mature statesman and head of state, and so the most powerful Jewish man, the Kushner/Trump couple, now with senior (if unsalried) jobs and titles in daddy's White House are poised for global influence.

Jews have long memories and so various historical prcedents come to mind.

Most immediately, with Purim just passed, Mordechai and Esther could be en equivalent couple.

Queen Esther used her family position of power (one of many wives to the King) to obtain influence, and following that, her uncle Mordechai's position as Prime Minister, to save the Jewish people from genocide. Not much is known about their wider influence in the Persian Empire, but a mention is made in the Book of Esther of levying taxes (boo, hiss).

Less sympathetic is the model of the "Court Jew". During the Middle Ages, due to the ban on usuary (money lending) in the Christian world, Jews were required to help finance Governments. The good side is this arrangement gave otherwise persecuted and downtrodden Jews unprecedents access to the powers of their day, for both personal and national advantage. The down-side was that endebted or fickle royals could become incentivised to curtail that influence. An infamous case in point was Joseph Oppenheimer, who exterted formidable power under Duke Karl Alexander, but, on the Duke's passing, was charged with corruption and treason and hanged (more here).

In American history, Henry Kissinger as Secretary of State and before him Henry Morgenthau, Roosevelt's Secretary of the Treasury, were perhaps the most influential Jewish politicians in US history.

However, neither of these operated as a 'couple', in the sense of Ivanka and Jared.

So, somewhat aghast, and searching for precedent, I wish the Kushner's behatzlacha raba/every good fortune in their lofty positions of influence and potentially of power in the new US Government.

May they serve the American and Jewish Peoples for a blessing.

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