February 3, 2022
THIS WEEK’S GLOBAL ANTI-SEMITISM REPORT
This week, Amnesty International published a mendacious report declaring Israel an “apartheid” state, drawing rebuke from Jewish organizations across the globe, who called out its reliance on antisemitic double standards. Amnesty’s long record of hostility toward the Jewish state further undermined the already dubious credibility of its findings.
American actress and TV personality Whoopi Goldberg was suspended by ABC for two weeks over comments she made on “The View” in which she said the Holocaust involved “two groups of white people” and was not about race. Goldberg issued an apology, but subsequent remarks raised further questions about her understanding of why she was wrong.
Just days after the world commemorated International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Nazi swastikas were spray-painted on Union Station in Washington, D.C., and multiple synagogues and Jewish-owned business in Chicago, Illinois. Mayor Muriel Bowser expressed solidarity with the DC Jewish community, calling the Union Station graffiti a “disturbing sight.”
The Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM) launched a campaign to show support for French-Tunisian Imam Hassen Chalghoumi after he revealed that he and his family had faced threats from radical Islamists over his call for Holocaust commemorations to be respected.
CAM also congratulated Ambassador Mario Búcaro — a CAM Advisory Board member — in his swearing-in as the new Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Guatemala.
Meanwhile, Tuesday marked the 20th anniversary of the beheading of kidnapped American Jewish Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl by Al Qaeda terrorists in Pakistan. Among his last words were, “My father is Jewish. My mother is Jewish. I am Jewish.” May his memory forever be a blessing.
This week’s global antisemitism report highlights 49 new media reports of antisemitic incidents. The total includes 25 (51.0%) from the far-right, 11 (22.4%) from the far-left, 7 (14.3%) with Islamist motivations, and 6 (12.2%) unidentifiable in nature.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
CHICAGO SYNAGOGUES, JEWISH BUSINESSES VANDALIZED OVER THE WEEKEND; PERSON OF INTEREST IN CUSTODY
By NATE RODGERS
Several Chicago synagogues and Jewish businesses were targeted by vandals, and one man was assaulted over the weekend, according to Chicago police. CPD says a person of interest is in custody, and officers are working to gather evidence to support charges for the acts of vandalism. Alderwoman Debra Silverstein of the 50th ward called public safety meeting Monday night. Mayor Lori Lightfoot and the local police district commander answered questions. “When this community, our Jewish brothers and sisters are threatened, we are all threatened and we have to regard it exactly that way,” said Mayor Lightfoot.
WHOOPI GOLDBERG APOLOGIZES FOR HOLOCAUST RACE COMMENT — BUT DOUBLES DOWN IN SAYING JEWS ARE NOT A RACE
By SHIRA HANAU
Whoopi Goldberg apologized for upsetting people by starting a debate on Monday over whether the Holocaust was “about race,” writing that she is “sorry for the hurt I have caused.”
But in an appearance that aired that same night on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” she elaborated on some of her views on the Holocaust that will likely continue to generate controversy.
On “The View,” a show that Goldberg co-hosts, she said “the Holocaust isn’t about race,” but rather about “man’s inhumanity to man.” As she explained in an apology that she tweeted that evening, and on Colbert’s show, the statement brought on a torrent of criticism and accusations of antisemitism. She wrote in a tweet that she should have said the Holocaust “is about both” inhumanity and race, quoting Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt in the process.
“The Jewish people around the world have always had my support and that will never waiver. I’m sorry for the hurt I have caused,” she wrote.
JENRICK TELLS MPS OF ‘JEWISH ZIONIST WIFE’ DEATH THREAT LETTER
By LEE HARPIN REPORTER
Ex-Cabinet Minister Robert Jenrick has revealed he recently received a letter telling him to “teach his ‘Jewish Zionist wife’ to ‘put out fires’” – adding the sender had “intended to burn our house down and cremate our children.” Opening Thursday’s Holocaust Memorial Debate in Westminster Jenrick gave the personal insight into modern day anti-Jewish hatred as he spoke in the House of Commons. At the end of a debate in which 40 MPs across all parties spoke, Jenrick said the Jewish prayer – Oseh shalom bimromav – telling parliamentarians he was reciting it “in honour of the six million souls who perished in the Holocaust.”
HRC ALARMED BY CANADIAN ANTI-ISRAEL DETRACTOR’S ANTISEMITIC CONTENT & HARASSMENT ON TIKTOK
By MIKE FEGELMAN
Just days after International Holocaust Remembrance Day, HonestReporting Canada is alarmed to see that a Canadian anti-Israel detractor, Firas al-Najim, used his TikTok account comprised of 8,281 followers, to spew antisemitism and to intimate Jews. In a video entitled: #StopPalestinianHolocaust, al-Najim says that: “On the Holocaust Remembrance Day, we want to talk about the Palestinian Holocaust that is happening every minute and every hour inside the holy occupied land of Palestine that they call Israel.” He went on to say that : “Jewish Rabbis… say that Zionists are using the Holocaust Remembrance Day to play a victim role so they can occupy Palestine and hurt the Palestinians…“
LEAFLET WITH ANTISEMITIC CONTENTS FOUND IN MUNICH
By RIAS BAYERN
On January 29, a man found a “Federal Government Against Adaptation” (“Bundes gegen Anpassung”) leaflet in the mailboxes of a residential building at the Olympiadorf in Munich. According to the newsletter, the “Corona dictatorship” is in some ways “worse than its historical predecessors” because it embraces the world and has a “technological propaganda mechanism” that “Goebbels could only dream of.” ‘Vaccine skeptics’ will be treated “so filthy and disturbing” that “it will remind you of the Jews of the Third Reich.” However, the movement of the vaccine skeptics was “raised and organized” by “Soros’s secret man” to realize the evil intentions of the “thread pullers”.
FRENCH-TUNISIAN IMAM RECALLS DEATH THREATS FROM ISLAMISTS AFTER HE CALLED FOR RESPECT OF HOLOCAUST COMMEMORATIONS
A French-Tunisian imam known for promoting interfaith ties revealed this month that he and his family having been facing threats from Islamists for years, ever since he called for Holocaust commemorations to be respected in 2005. In a France 2 TV interview, Hassen Chalghoumi — the 50-year-old imam of the municipal Drancy mosque near Paris and president of the Conference of Imams of France — recalled, according to a translation by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), “I made a solemn appeal to respect the memory of the Holocaust, to also think about what people did to their fellow human beings, the consequences of racism, hatred, antisemitism. But unfortunately, my words were misunderstood. Two days later, they ransacked my house.”
OTHER WORLD NEWS
GREECE – NOTES WITH AN ANTISEMITIC MESSAGE WERE THROWN IN ELEFTHERIAS SQUARE
Notes with antisemitic content were thrown by unknown people in Eleftherias Square, in the Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust and the Liberation of Auschwitz, where they laid wreaths at the monument next to the square. They wrote the following: “Not in historical amnesia. Not in hypocrisy. Mossad killed him. New martyr Christodoulos! The square to be named after him. Apollonios.”
THE MIDDLE EAST
TURKISH MEDIA PUBLISHED ‘JEWS, FREEMASONS’ ANTISEMITIC CONSPIRACY
By SETH J. FRANTZMAN
Turkish pro-government media published an article alleging that “Jewish influence behind the scenes” was involved in the “Armenian deportation,” an allegation appearing to assert that Jews were linked to the Armenian genocide. Turkey’s government and its pro-government media denies the Armenian genocide. Most Turkish media supports the country’s far-right AK ruling party and some Turkish media often publish antisemitic articles. The recent anti-Jewish article seems to contradict claims that the Turkish media has been told to reduce its antisemitism as Ankara seeks reconciliation with Israel.
ANTI-ZIONIST STUDENTS AT UCHICAGO URGE BOYCOTT OF CLASSES ON ISRAEL, ISRAELI FELLOWS
By Dion J. Pierre
An anti-Zionist student group at the University of Chicago implored students to boycott courses about Israel and Israeli academic fellows. “Don’t take sh*tty Zionist classes,” UChicago Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) said in an Instagram post. “Support the Palestinian movement for liberation by boycotting classes on Israel or those taught by Israeli fellows. By attending these classes, you are participating in a propaganda campaign that creates complicity in the continuation of Israel’s occupation of Palestine.” The group accused university courses that aim to educate students about Israel of “controlling the narrative” to erase Palestinians, and presenting the Israel-Palestine conflict “as a conflict between two equals in an effort to legitimize its existence.”
ANALYSIS & OP-EDS
STUDIES & STATISTICS
PA HASN’T REMOVED HATEFUL CONTENT FROM TEXTBOOKS, PRODUCING WORSE CONTENT
By BEN ZION GAD
The Palestinian Authority (PA) has reneged on an agreement with the EU to revise its academic curriculums in 2021 and has instead promoted new academic materials that feature hateful language and violent imagery, a January 2022 report by The Institute for Monitoring Peace and Tolerance in School Education (IMPACT-se) discovered. Despite a roadmap created in tandem with the European Union to ensure new textbooks produced in 2021 would be free of hate – the PA has not removed the troubling content from its textbooks, which are used to educate public school children in PA-administered regions.
HOLOCAUST EDUCATION PROGRAM EXAMINES THE PORTRAYAL OF JEWS AND THE HOLOCAUST IN VIDEOGAMES
GOVERNMENT & POLICY
CZECH FOREIGN MINISTER SAYS A NATIONAL STRATEGY TO COMBAT ANTISEMITISM IS IN THE WORKS AND ROMANI PEOPLE ALSO FACE HATRED ONLINE
By ROMEA CZ
The Czech Foreign Affairs Ministry, the Czech Interior Ministry, other ministries and Jewish organizations are preparing a national strategy to combat antisemitism. It will focus on education, on the fight against hate speech on the Internet, and on legislation. Czech Foreign Minister Jan Lipavský (Pirates) made the announcement in a video post commemorating the Day of Holocaust Remembrance. “Remembering the tragedy of the Holocaust and bearing witness to it teach us to better recognize dangerous tendencies that turn toward terrible ends,” the chief diplomat said. According to Lipavský, research on antisemitism and extremism in the Czech Republic shows the country has a relatively low number of recorded incidents with an antisemitic subtext.
‘HATE HAS NO PLACE IN OUR CITY’: ADAMS ADDRESSES PLANS TO COMBAT RISING ANTI-SEMITIC CRIMES IN NYC
By ISABEL SONG BEER
New York City Mayor Eric Adams delivered a leadership briefing during a meeting held by the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York (JCRC-NY) on Feb. 1. Mayor Adams’s leadership remarks and comments addressed how his administration will move forward in collaboration with the Jewish community in order to combat the rising level of anti-Semitic hate crimes reported in the city. Since 2020, hate crimes targeting the Jewish community in New York State have skyrocketed. In 2020 alone there were 121 reported anti-Semitic hate crimes, and in 2021 there were 179 reported crimes – a nearly 50% increase.
EMBRACING MEMORY: US STATE DEPARTMENT ENVOY NOTES NEW INITIATIVE, TAKING PAGE FROM ISRAEL IN HOLOCAUST
TIKTOK IS CONFRONTING HOLOCAUST MISINFORMATION, BUT ANTISEMITISM PERSISTS
By AMANDA SILBERLING
In honor of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, TikTok launched a portal on its Discover page this morning, intended to educate users about the historic catastrophe, as well as the ongoing threat of antisemitism. The platform also hosted a similar portal last year. When users navigate to the Discover page on the TikTok mobile app, they will see a clickable banner acknowledging International Holocaust Remembrance Day. This directs them to a page with three educational TikToks from Jewish creators, including a 98-year-old Holocaust survivor who makes TikToks with the help of her great-grandson.
The Combat Antisemitism Movement is a non-partisan, global grassroots movement of individuals and organizations, across all religions and faiths, united around the goal of ending antisemitism in all its forms. Since its launching in February 2019, 360 organizations and 355,000 individuals have joined the Combat Antisemitism Movement by signing the campaign’s pledge. The CAM Pledge draws upon the IHRA international definition of antisemitism and its list of specific behaviors used to discriminate against the Jewish people and the Jewish State of Israel.