In recent weeks, as part of its mission of tracking contemporary manifestations of Jew-hatred worldwide, the CAM Antisemitism Research Center has monitored a series of incidents targeting the Jewish community of San Diego, California.
Since the end of June, there have been five reports of antisemitic incidents in the city, including verbal and physical harassment of Jews, as well as the distribution of hateful flyers.
On June 30, there was a report of a man driving around San Diego and shouting from his window “Jews did 9/11.”
— StopAntisemitism (@StopAntisemites) June 30, 2023
The following week, antisemitic flyers, promoting conspiracy theories meant to incite hatred of Jews, were distributed by members of the neo-Nazi Goyim Defense League (GDL) in the San Diego neighborhoods of San Carlos, Santee, and Del Cerro.
“I was crying when I first saw these because it breaks my heart [that] people can be so cruel,” a local Jewish resident named Adele told CBS 8 San Diego.
The GDL has been behind a nationwide flyering campaign over the past two years, and has perpetrated a series of other public antisemitic provocations.
At a meeting of the San Diego County Human Relations Commission on July 18, Commissioner Khaliq Raufi said he had read “a few verses” from the Book of Deuteronomy, which he called “the book of Jews,” and he claimed “it states go kill Palestinians.”
Update: Khaliq Raufi has now resigned from his position on the San Diego County ‘Human Relations’ committee after his antisemitic tirade claiming Jews are being taught to kill Palestinians in our Synagogues.
— StopAntisemitism (@StopAntisemites) July 27, 2023
The American Jewish Committee (AJC), Anti-Defamation League (ADL), and Jewish Federation of San Diego issued a joint response, saying, “Hateful statements toward any group are never acceptable. Silence is not an option. We are appalled that the commissioner’s statement was made in a body established ‘to promote positive human relations, respect and the integrity of every individual regardless of gender, religion, culture, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age or citizenship status.’ This statement is representative of the historical and false accusation of modern blood libel/antisemitic tropes, which have led to horrific violence, destruction, persecution, and massacres of Jewish people and communities.”
Raufi ultimately resigned over his antisemitic rant.
On July 24, a 65-year-old visibly-Jewish man was attacked at a 7-Eleven convenience store near San Diego State University’s Chabad House.
The victim had his tzitzit ripped, and antisemitic and anti-Israel slurs were directed at him.
The San Diego Police Department (SDPD) said the assault was being treated as a hate crime.
“SDPD stands united with our community against bigotry and aggressively investigates these types of incidents,” a police spokesperson stated.
ANTISEMITISM | A 65-year-old Jewish man was attacked in “broad daylight” on July 24 at a 7-Eleven just blocks away from the Chabad center at San Diego State University.https://t.co/UJPqqyfY0e
— Jewish News Syndicate (@JNS_org) July 27, 2023
Two days later, on July 26, San Diego experienced another antisemitic flyering incident, this time in the Allied Gardens neighborhood.
The flyers were left on car windshields on Zion and Archwood streets.
“We won’t get into what the flyers say,” SDPD Lieutenant Adam Sharki commented. “We won’t amplify any message of hate. The flyers are inflammatory. They are racist and bigoted, and nasty. The police department doesn’t stand for it or any hate incident.”
San Diego Police collected multiple flyers off car windshields Wednesday with Anti-Semitic messages. Police found them on Zion and Archwood streets in the Allied Gardens area. https://t.co/JHtA3KeKuG
— CBS 8 San Diego (@CBS8) July 27, 2023
The CAM Antisemitism Research Center’s weekly monitoring of antisemitism incidents data can be followed at: combatantisemitism.org/research