The rift between progressives and establishment Democrats exploded today over the issue of Israel and anti-Semitic rhetoric. Four House Democrats signed a letter to Joe Biden demanding more action to curtail a spike in hate crimes against Jews following the latest iteration of the Hamas war on Israel. The letter cites a number of reasons for the rise in attacks, but takes aim particularly at members of their own caucus for statements the four call “antisemitic at their core”:
“Displeasure” is certainly one word for it; another might be “disgust.” The letter doesn’t call out anyone by name, not even Marjorie Taylor Greene, the Georgia Republican clearly meant in the passage about equating mask mandates to the Holocaust. This passage doesn’t identify anyone by name or party either, but it’s very clearly aimed at members of The Squad and their allies in the progressive caucus:
We also reject comments from Members of Congress accusing Israel of being an “apartheid state” and committing “act[s] of terrorism.” These statements are antisemitic at their core and contribute to a climate that is hostile to many Jews. We must never forget that less than eighty years ago, within the lifetime of our parents and grandparents, six million people were murdered by the Nazis in the Holocaust because they were Jews. Israel has long provided the Jewish people with a homeland in which they can be safe after facing long centuries of persecution.
No one can possibly mistake who is meant in this passage from Josh Gottheimer, Elaine Luria, Kathy Manning, and Dean Phillips. Nevertheless, Seth Mandel isn’t too impressed by this effort:
Yes, but the rift over The Squad’s hateful rhetoric is now out in the open, at least. This comes at a very awkward time for Nancy Pelosi, who had probably hoped that Taylor Greene had provided enough of a distraction to keep the media at bay. This open letter undoes at least some of that strategy, although just how much of it is anyone’s guess. The media probably won’t rush to cover this accusation, in general anyway, although some outlets have been reporting on this rift for a while. For instance, the New York Post reported almost a week ago that Squad member Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez had intimidated pro-Israel Democrats into silence:
Jewish activists accused powerful Democrats in the New York congressional delegation of cowering to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other leftist House members of the “Squad” by failing to forcefully stand up for Israel during its fight with Hamas in the Gaza strip.
“Chuck Schumer? Who?,” a frustrated Michael Nussbaum, president of the Queens Council of Jewish Organizations, said sarcastically of the powerful Senate majority leader who represents New York.
“I’m surprised and disappointed. Members of the New York congressional delegation who have a lot of sway have not spoken out forcefully to defend Israel, and they have not denounced AOC or corrected her,” said Nussbaum. …
Nussbaum and other activists are seething that the New York pols who claim to be pro-Israel have been quiet and meek, giving Israel critics like AOC a leg up in the war of public opinion.
He argued they’re afraid of repercussions from AOC and the left if they speak up.
“A lot of Democrats are afraid of the AOC contingent. They’re sacrificing their principles to avoid primaries,” Nussbaum said.
Nussbaum finally got his wish today with this letter, even if it doesn’t name AOC specifically. We’ll see how much interest the media has in a Democratic civil war when it erupts, even as politely as this.
Jews Are Literally Being Singled Out And Attacked On The Streets
(Photo by ED JONES/AFP via Getty Images)
May 25, 2021
9:10 PM ET
A Jewish man was kicked in the back in Germany as three individuals walked by, barely batting an eye. Two Jewish boys were also accosted while walking down a New York City street. Anti-Semitism is in full swing with little acknowledgement from the media, politicians and so-called “Social Justice arriors.”
The New York Police Department (NYPD) was looking for three suspects Saturday regarding two anti-Semitic incidents in Brooklyn, according to NBC 4 New York. In one incident three men allegedly jumped out of a car in Borough Park and made anti-Semitic comments toward four Jews who were observing Shabbat. The group then banged on a synagogue door and kicked in a mirror on a car parked outside before fleeing in a car, according to the report.
The Department of Justice announcedSaturday that a Brooklyn man, Ali Alaheri, was charged for allegedly setting fire to a Yeshiva and a synagogue on May 19.The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) were called to investigate a possible hate crime on May 17 after video footage appeared to show an Orthodox Jewish man running for his life as two cars chased him through a parking lot.One video was taken from the point of view of one of the pro-Palestinian protesters, with the caption “This Zionist flipped us off for supporting Palestine. We went after him. Y’all some big ass p**sys bitches. You can run but you can’t hide.”
The LAPD responded to another call just one day later regarding an “assault with a deadly weapon” after Jewish diners were allegedly attacked by a pro-Palestinian mob.
Footage shows two individuals eating outside of Sushi Fumi in downtown Los Angeles when a group of pro-Palestinian individuals drive by and began shouting at the diners .
Subsequent video shows the pro-Palestinian individuals attacking the two Jews on the sidewalk before one of the victims tries to fight back. The unidentified victim was treated at a local hospital, the LAPD confirmed to the Daily Caller.
A 29-year-old Jewish man was beat down in the middle of Times Square Thursday. Videos posted to Twitter show a group of pro-Palestinian individuals beating the man, later identified as Joey Borgen, as bystanders try to help.
“He was going to a pro-Israel rally and wearing his yarmulke and he got ambushed,” Barry Borgen, Joey’s father, told the Daily Caller. “They climbed out of a van and basically pounded him into the street.”
“It’s open season on Jews,” Borgen added. (RELATED: Schumer, Pelosi Slow To Condemn Anti-Semitic Hate Crimes)
During another incident, pro-Palestinian protesters ripped an Israeli flag out of the hands of a pro-Israel activist before appearing to punch the victim in the stomach as he attempted to retrieve his flag.
Blocks away in the Diamond District, pro-Palestinian protesters were seen harassing Jews, screaming “Fuck you, you Zionists.”
Another video captured pro-Palestinian individuals throwing fireworks at Jews.
Meanwhile, a Jewish family was assaulted in South Florida while walking home from synagogue. A group of men drove by the family screaming things like “free Palestine, die Jew, F you Jew, I’m gonna rape your wife,” before an armed bystander stepped in and intervened, according to CBS 12.
Another video shows an Orthodox Jewish man standing on the street in Germany when a man walks up to him and kicks him in the back as at least three bystanders just walk past.
In another incident in Germany a 41-year-old Jewish man walked past three men before he was allegedly punched in the face and verbally assaulted, according to Fox News.
Meanwhile police in Illinois were investigating reports of vandalism at a synagogue last Sunday after the Persian Hebrew Congregation was left with a smashed window and a pro-Palestine flag and sign were left outside, according to ABC 7 Chicago.
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) saidanti-Semitic hate crime reports were up to 193 reports from 131 the week prior. Between May 7 and May 14 the group said there were more than 17,000 tweets using some variation of “Hitler was right.”
So why the spike in anti-Semitic crimes?
Jonathon Greenblatt, CEO of the ADL, said the surge in anti-Semitism followed from the conflict between Israel and Hamas.
“As the violence between Israel and Hamas continues to escalate, we are witnessing a dangerous and drastic surge in anti-Jewish hate. We are tracking acts of harassment, vandalism and violence as well as a torrent of online abuse.”
The U.S., and the entire world has adopted a numbness to anti-Semitism and an indifference towards hate crimes against Jews has become blatantly obvious over the past several days.
President Joe Biden waited days before condemning the nationwide attacks against Jews.
“The recent attacks on the Jewish community are despicable, and they must stop,” Biden tweeted Monday. “I condemn this hateful behavior at home and abroad – it’s up to all of us to give hate no safe harbor.”
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi also waited until Monday to condemn the hate crimes while Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer put out a single, brief tweet Friday, before again condemning the anti-Semitic hate crimes Monday.
The silence has been deafening, especially when you take into account hate crime data.
The FBI’s 2018 report Jewish Americans were 2.7 times more likely than black Americans to be the victim of a hate crime in 2018 and twice as more likely than a Muslim when data is adjusted for population size, according to AEI.
The trend has remained constant for hate crimes. Yet, so-called “Social Justice Warriors” have spent the past year protesting and rioting to show solidarity with black lives.
But with the recent documented spike in anti-Semitic hate crimes, no cities have seen wide-spread protests or riots; no cities have been burnt down, no towns were destroyed. In fact, few companies have come out in solidarity with the Jewish community.
Bret Stephens published an op-ed in The New York Times (NYT) that raises this as a complaint.
“If there’s been a massive online campaign of progressive ally ship with Jews, I’ve missed it. If corporate executives have sent out workplace memos expressing concern for the safety of Jewish employees, I’ve missed it. If academic associations have issues public letters denouncing the use of anti-Semitic tropes by pro-Palestinian activists, I’ve missed them.”
“It’s a curious silence. In the land of inclusiveness, Jews are denied inclusion.”
The rise in anti-Semitic crimes over the past several days coincides with violence in Israel and Gaza. Progressives, including politicians on the left, have fueled the fire with their anti-Israel rhetoric.
Actor Mark Ruffalo walked back an earlier comment in which he claimed in “hyperbole” that Israel was committing a “genocide.”
“I have reflected & wanted to apologize for posts during the recent Israel/Hamas fighting that suggested Israel is committing ‘genocide’. It’s not accurate, it’s inflammatory, disrespectful & is being used to justify antisemitism here & abroad. Now is the time to avoid hyperbole.”
Independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders even called for everyone to “tone down the rhetoric” on Sunday after CBS News’ John Dickerson noted “there are a number of liberals who use the word ‘apartheid’ to describe Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians.”
Progressives won’t speak up against the attacks because they think if they speak up against it they’re also speaking against anti-Zionism and they don’t want to look “pro-Zionist.”
An opinion piece published in The New York Times claimed the “flagrant public assaults on Jews – sometimes in broad daylight– [is] motivated by anti-Zionism.”
But the U.S., is thousands of miles away from Israel. Attacking Jews has nothing to do with anti-Zionism and everything to do with anti-Semitism.