Connect with us

RSS

Biden Compares Hamas Attack to Holocaust in Antisemitism Warning

US President Joe Biden and Speaker of the US House of Representatives Mike Johnson (R-LA) hold photographs of Holocaust victims on the day he addresses rising levels of antisemitism, at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Annual Days of Remembrance ceremony, at the US Capitol building in Washington, US, May 7, 2024. Photo: REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein

US President Joe Biden warned on Tuesday that the threat of antisemitism is growing in the United States, including on college campuses, as his support for Israel‘s military campaign against the Hamas terror group in Gaza divides Democrats and alienates some young voters.

In a speech honoring the 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust, Biden joined a heated American debate about Jewish security, Zionism, free speech, and support for Israel, in the country with the largest Jewish population after Israel.

Addressing a bipartisan audience at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum’s annual commemoration, he warned of the risk that the truth about the systematic killing of Jews during World War Two would be lost.

“‘Never again’ simply translated for me means: Never forget. Never forgetting means we must keep telling the story, we must keep teaching the truth,” Biden said at the US Capitol’s Emancipation Hall. “The truth is we’re at risk of people not knowing the truth.”

Biden spoke seven months to the day after Hamas, the Palestinian terror group that rules Gaza, attacked Israel on Oct. 7, killing 1,200 people and kidnapping over 250 others as hostages in what he has called the deadliest day for Jews since the Holocaust.

“This hatred [of Jews] continues to lie deep in the hearts of too many people in the world and requires our continued vigilance and outspokenness,” Biden said.

“Now here we are, not 75 years later, but just seven and a half months later, and people are already forgetting … that Hamas unleashed this terror,” he said. “I have not forgotten, nor have you. And we will not forget.”

Biden’s speech came amid growing opposition, including from his administration, to Israel’s response to the Oct. 7 massacre. The Jewish state has waged a military campaign against Hamas in Gaza aimed at freeing the hostages and incapacitating the Islamist group to the point that it can no longer pose a major threat to the Israeli people. The Israeli war effort has sparked protests in the US demanding that universities and Biden withdraw support for Israel.

Biden acknowledged Americans’ right to protest and demonstrate, but didn’t mention the deaths in Gaza.

“We know scapegoating and demonizing any minority is a threat to every minority,” Biden said. “There is no place on any campus in America for antisemitism, hate speech or threats of violence of any kind.”

On Tuesday, Israeli forces seized the main border crossing between Egypt and southern Gaza as they prepared a possible offensive aimed at eliminating Hamas terrorists.

Biden said his commitment to Israel was ironclad, even amid disagreements with the country’s government. The US government has been holding up several shipments of weapons to Israel, a source told Reuters on Tuesday.

ANTISEMITISM, HATE CRIMES JUMP

Law enforcement and advocacy groups report a sharp rise in antisemitic attacks in the US since Oct. 7.

“Antisemitism is reaching crisis levels in our country,” said Carol Ann Schwartz, national president of Hadassah, a women’s Zionist organization that has been consulted by the White House.

Biden, who is in a tight race for the White House with Republican rival Donald Trump, pledged to unite the country.

He said he was inspired to run by then-President Trump’s response to the 2017 Charlottesville, Virginia, white nationalist rally, where marchers chanted, “Jews will not replace us.” Biden now governs a country no less divided than when he took office in 2021, most statistics show.

The FBI reported a 36 percent increase in anti-Jewish hate crime incidents between 2021 and 2022, the latest year for which data is available, as well as a jump in crimes against Black Americans and gay men.

More recently, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) released a report showing antisemitic incidents in the US rose 140 percent last year, reaching a record high. Most of the outrages occurred after Oct. 7, during the ensuing Israel-Hamas war in Gaza.

On college campuses specifically, the ADL report found that antisemitic incidents rose 321 percent, disrupting the studies of Jewish students and leaving them uncertain about the fate of the American Jewish community.

Meanwhile, antisemitic incidents have also skyrocketed to record highs in several other countries around the world, especially in Europe, since the Hamas atrocities of Oct. 7.

CAMPUS PROTEST POLITICS

Trump has sought to exploit Democratic divisions over Israel‘s response and widening college protests to improve Republicans’ lot with Jewish voters, who traditionally vote Democratic.

Police crackdowns on some campuses have given ammunition to Trump’s claim that US cities are under siege from violent crime, illegal migration, and out-of-control leftist policies. Trump’s Republican Party has argued that the protests are driven by antisemitism.

“Jewish Americans are realizing that the Democrat Party has turned into a full-blown anti-Israel, antisemitic, pro-terrorist cabal,” said Karoline Leavitt, a Trump campaign spokesperson.

Biden has asked the Department of Education to provide colleges with examples of antisemitic discrimination that could lead to a federal civil rights investigation, and technology firms to determine the best ways to monitor antisemitism online.

About seven in 10 US Jewish voters support Democrats, while three in 10 are Republican-aligned, according to the Pew Research Center.

The US House of Representatives passed a bill last week that would apply the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism, which has been adopted by dozens of governments and hundreds of civic institutions around the world, to enforce federal anti-discrimination laws on college campuses.

To help clarify its definition, IHRA provides 11 specific, contemporary examples of antisemitism in public life, the media, schools, the workplace, and in the religious sphere. Beyond classic antisemitic behavior associated with the likes of the medieval period and Nazi Germany, the examples include denial of the Holocaust and newer forms of antisemitism targeting Israel such as demonizing the Jewish state, denying its right to exist, and holding it to standards not expected of any other democratic state.

Critics have argued the widely adopted definition is vague and infringes on freedom of speech, including the ability to criticize Israel.

The post Biden Compares Hamas Attack to Holocaust in Antisemitism Warning first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

RSS

Hate crimes in Toronto are predominantly antisemitic—and the numbers continue to rise: TPS security and intelligence commander

Antisemitic hate crimes continue to account for more than any other category of reported hate crimes in Toronto, according to the head of Toronto police intelligence. Superintendent Katherine Stephenson of Toronto Police Service (TPS) confirmed the ongoing spike in hate occurrences during a presentation at Holy Blossom Temple on May 29, where she addressed 350 […]

The post Hate crimes in Toronto are predominantly antisemitic—and the numbers continue to rise: TPS security and intelligence commander appeared first on The Canadian Jewish News.

Continue Reading

RSS

‘Israel Is Not Jewish People,’ New York Times ‘Daily’ Guest Really Wants You to Know

Anti-Israel protesters outside Columbia University in Manhattan, New York City, April 22, 2024. Photo: USA TODAY NETWORK via Reuters Connect

When producers from the New York Times podcast “The Daily” posted on social media looking for “Jewish students who represent a range of feelings and experiences, from being enthusiastically pro Palestinian to enthusiastically pro Israel, and everything in between,” I replied, “This is a trap! They’ll use the ‘pro-Palestinian’ (the polite term they use for the ones who want to wipe Israel off the map) ones to make it sound like the Jewish community is divided and give listeners the illusion that the anti-Israel protests aren’t antisemitic.”

Sure enough, the Times podcast episode that finally aired, headlined, “The Campus Protesters Explain Themselves,” included three students.

Mustafa Yowell, of Irving, Texas, said his mother was from “Nablus, Palestine” and described himself as a Palestinian Arab. He’s a student at the University of Texas, Austin who complained to the Times that “two IDF [Israel Defense Forces] soldiers had infiltrated the campus.” By “IDF soldiers” he meant Israeli students at the university who had, like many Israelis, served in the army before college.

The second student interviewed, Elisha Baker, a student at Columbia University, described himself as a proud Zionist and a graduate of Jewish day school.

And the third student, Jasmine Jolly, a student at Cal Poly Humboldt, described herself as the daughter of a Catholic father and “of Ashkenazi descent on my mom’s side.” Jolly showed up at protests with a sign that said “in honor of my Jewish ancestors, I stand with Palestine.” Jolly also chanted “there is only one solution, intifada revolution.”

“There’s nothing that has come across to me as antisemitic if you are able to pause and remember that Israel is not Jewish people and Zionism is not Jewish people,” Jolly explained to the Times audience.

Jolly read an email from her Jewish grandfather claiming, “Israel is an increasingly apartheid state.”

This is just such a misleading view of reality on campus and in American Jewish life. Even polls like Pew that use an expansive definition of who is Jewish find overwhelming Jewish support for Israel and negligible support for Hamas, including among younger Jews 18 to 34.

In reality, a lot of the anti-Israel protesters aren’t even Palestinians; they are European or Asian students or white or black Americans who either have been brainwashed by their professors or who have underlying, pre-existing antisemitic attitudes. Few of them have been to the Middle East and many of them are ignorant about basic facts about it — remember the Wall Street Journal piece, “From Which River to Which Sea?

“The Daily” episode made it crisply concrete, with the Times representing Jews as being split 50-50, with one normative Jew and one Jew chanting “there is only one solution, intifada revolution.” That’s ridiculous, yet a similar approach contaminates other Times coverage of the Jewish community, misleadlingly portraying American Jewry as deeply divided rather than unified around the goals of getting the hostages back, eliminating the threat of Hamas, and making American college campuses safe for Jewish students.

The Times was at this game well before Oct. 7, 2023, proclaiming “the unraveling of American Zionism” and trotting out old chestnuts such as the Reform movement’s Pittsburgh Platform of 1885 and the New York Times‘ favorite Jew, Peter Beinart.

I find myself rolling my eyes at such depictions, but there is clearly some audience for them among the Times readership and top editorial ranks. The Times executive editor, Joe Kahn, told Semafor’s Ben Smith in a May interview, “I’m not an active Jew.” Maybe the New York Times can sell sweatshirts: “Inactive Jew.” Who, exactly, is supposed to find that distinction between “active” and “inactive” Jews reassuring? Maybe they can put it on top of the front page in place of “All the News That’s Fit to Print”: “Edited by someone who wants the public to know he’s not an active Jew.”

Of all the moments to choose to distance oneself publicly from the Jewish people, this is sure quite one to choose.

This “Daily” episode seems calculated to appeal to the inactive Jews, and to others who want justification to believe it’s not antisemitic to set up on Passover and falsely accuse Israel of genocide. It’s nice for the Times to include a Zionist voice on the program, but he wound up sandwiched in between a Palestinian and an “only one solution, intifada revolution” person. It’s fairly typical for the New York Times these days, but it isn’t pretty.

Ira Stoll was managing editor of The Forward and North American editor of The Jerusalem Post. His media critique, a regular Algemeiner feature, can be found here. He also writes at TheEditors.com.

The post ‘Israel Is Not Jewish People,’ New York Times ‘Daily’ Guest Really Wants You to Know first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

Continue Reading

RSS

Palestinian Islamic Jihad Releases Second Video of Israeli Hostage Sasha Troufanov

Israeli hostage Alexander (Sasha) Trufanov as seen in an undated propaganda video released by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror group on May 30, 2024. Photo: Screenshot

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group on Thursday released a second propaganda video this week featuring Israeli hostage Alexander (Sasha) Trufanov, 28, who was kidnapped by Palestinian terrorists during Hamas’ Oct. 7 massacre across southern Israel.

In the video, Trufanov says he is doing well and criticizes Israel’s prime minister and government in remarks that were likely scripted by his captors.

There was no information about when the video was filmed. However, Trufanov refers to Israel’s decision on May 5 to order the local offices of Qatar’s Al Jazeera satellite news network to close, indicating he may have been filmed in the last few weeks.

The latest video came just two days after Islamic Jihad, an Iran-backed Palestinian terrorist group in Gaza, released its first video featuring Trufanov.

The 30-second undated video shows Trufanov, an Amazon employee, identifying himself and saying that he will soon discuss what has happened to him and other hostages in Gaza.

Similar videos have been released by terrorists groups in Gaza. Israel has lambasted them as psychological warfare meant to torture the Israeli public, especially the families of the hostages being held in Gaza.

Trufanov’s mother said after the first video was released that she was happy to see her son after all this time, but it was “heartbreaking” that he had been a hostage for so long.

“Seeing my Sasha on my TV was very cheering, but it also breaks my heart that he’s still been in captivity for so long,” she said in a video released by the family. “I ask everyone, all the decision-makers: Please do everything, absolutely everything, to bring my son and all the hostages home now.”

Hamas-led Palestinian terrorists abducted over 250 people during their Oct. 7 onslaught. Sasha was kidnapped alongside his mother, grandmother, and girlfriend. All three women were released as part of a temporary ceasefire agreement negotiated in November. His father, Vitaly Trufanov, was one of the 1,200 people killed during the Hamas massacre.

“The proof of life from Alexsander (Sasha) Trufanov is additional evidence that the Israeli government must give a significant mandate to the negotiating team,” the Hostages Families Forum, which represents the families of the hostages, said in a statement.

More than 120 hostages remain in Gaza, which is ruled by Hamas. Islamic Jihad is a separate but allied terrorist organization in the Palestinian enclave. Both are backed by Iran, which provides them with money, weapons, and training.

Negotiations brokered by Qatar, Egypt, and the US to reach a ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas in Gaza have been stalled for weeks.

Trufanov was an engineer at the Israeli microelectronics company Annapurna Labs, which Amazon owns.

The post Palestinian Islamic Jihad Releases Second Video of Israeli Hostage Sasha Troufanov first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

Continue Reading

Copyright © 2017 - 2023 Jewish Post & News