THIS WEEK’S GLOBAL ANTISEMITISM REPORT
This week, the Combat Antisemitism Movement held an exclusive briefing with European Commission Coordinator for Combating Antisemitism and Fostering Jewish Life Katharina von Schnurbein. The briefing offered an insider’s view on the first-ever EU Strategy to Combat Antisemitism and Foster Jewish Life, during which Coordinator von Schnurbein stated emphatically, “By fighting antisemitism, we fight for democracy, and for Europe.”
In the United States, an African-American woman was arrested after dousing a Jewish school in Brooklyn with gasoline and lighting it on fire. Police in New York are also searching for two men wanted for a drunken antisemitic assault on a Jewish man in which the attackers yelled, “Jews shouldn’t exist…Islam faith is the most purest.”
Ahead of the third anniversary of the Tree of Life synagogue shooting, Neo-Nazi flyers extolling Hitler were posted on a California synagogue. Meanwhile, the DC chapter of the progressive environmentalist Sunrise Movement boycotted a voting rights rally over the participation of “Zionist groups” – namely three mainstream liberal Jewish organizations representing millions of American Jews.
On campus, three Massachusetts colleges experienced antisemitic vandalisms, including at Northeastern University Hillel – where a mezuzah on a building entrance was destroyed. Two Colorado high schools simultaneously experienced vile antisemitic vandalism and a Texas public school administrator instructed educators to teach opposing viewpoints on the Holocaust.
In Europe, a Neo-Nazi group projected the phrase “Holocaust was a scam,” on a synagogue in Malmo, Sweden. Two Jewish children were assaulted in London’s Stamford Hill neighborhood, and an Islamist preacher justified the shocking terrorist murder of British MP David Amess based on the late MP’s pro-Israel views.
This week’s global antisemitism report highlights 41 new antisemitic incidents reported by the media. The total includes 19 (46.3%) from the far-right, 7 (17.1%) from the far-left, 7 (17.1%) with Islamist motivations, and 8 (19.5%) unidentifiable in nature. The diversity of antisemitic incidents this week from across the ideological spectrum, and notably from the center of society, is a prescient reminder of the need to combat all forms of contemporary Jew-hatred.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
IN LATIN AMERICA OUTREACH PUSH, CAM ATTENDS ANNUAL ‘CONFERÊNCIA GLOBAL’ IN BRAZIL
Representatives of CAM were among the more than 3,000 people — including top government officials, spiritual leaders, and opinion makers from across Latin America and the United States — who took part in “Conferência Global 2021” in Brasília, Brazil. The event, which has been held annually for a decade now, was hosted by the Latino Coalition for Israel (LCI), Comunidade Das Nações, and Bishop JB Carvalho. CAM Senior Advisor Ellie Cohanim and CAM Director of Hispanic Outreach Shay Salamon traveled to Brazil for the gathering, at the invitation of LCI.
NEW JEWISH ADVOCACY GROUP WARNS OF ANTISEMITISM GROWTH FUELED BY ‘CRITICAL SOCIAL JUSTICE IDEOLOGY’
The prevailing social justice rhetoric in progressive circles in recent years — often featuring heavy doses of anti-Israel vitriol, as well as the legitimization of antisemitic stereotypes — has left many American Jews feeling alienated from causes they would otherwise wholeheartedly support. The notion that Jews should not be forced to choose between their political and religious identities is what led veteran Jewish professional David Bernstein to establish a new advocacy group earlier this year — the Jewish Institute for Liberal Values (JILV). CAM spoke with Bernstein to learn more about his organization’s mission.
UNITED IN MISSION OF DEFEATING ANTISEMITISM, CAM’S BROAD COALITION SEES RAPID PARTNER GROWTH
For the past two-and-a-half years, CAM has been hard at work building a broad coalition to fight contemporary Jew-hatred through innovative and collaborative action. Today, CAM has a strong interfaith, non-partisan coalition of 365 partners that is built for long-term success. When CAM was first established in 2019, it was hard to imagine that such rapid partnership growth could occur. Yet, in less than 30 months of operations, CAM has developed a robust international network of dedicated partner organizations from across the ideological spectrum.
‘BY FIGHTING ANTISEMITISM, WE FIGHT FOR DEMOCRACY AND EUROPE’: EU COMMISSIONER DETAILS NEW COMPREHENSIVE STRATEGY TO TACKLE JEW-HATRED
CAM hosted an exclusive in-depth briefing on the European Union’s first-ever Strategy on Combating Antisemitism and Fostering Jewish Life, which was unveiled earlier this month. The webinar featured a dialogue between European Commission Coordinator for Combating Antisemitism and Fostering Jewish Life Katharina von Schnurbein and Chairman of the Center for Jewish Impact and Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM) Senior Advisor Robert Singer. During the conversation with Singer, Von Schnurbein provided her insider perspective on the EU’s first-ever comprehensive plan to tackle Jew-hatred and protect and nurture Europe’s Jewish communities.
WOMAN ARRESTED, CHARGED AFTER DOUSING YESHIVA WITH GASOLINE, LIGHTING IT ON FIRE IN BROOKLYN
By ABC 7 NY
A woman caught on camera lighting a Jewish school on fire was arrested and charged. Police say 39-year-old Brooklyn resident Sharee Jones was charged with reckless endangerment as a hate crime and arson. The incident happened at the Yeshiva of Flatbush on Avenue J. The woman was seen dressed all in black and carrying a red gasoline can. Police say she walked up to the Yeshiva, doused the area in gasoline, and lit it on fire. A security guard inside the school saw what was going on and he was able to put out the fire with water. Fortunately, no one was injured in this incident.
TWO MEN WANTED FOR DRUNKEN ANTISEMITIC ATTACK IN BROOKLYN: ‘JEWS SHOULDN’T EXIST!’
By Benjamin Kerstein
New York police released footage of an antisemitic assault, in which two intoxicated men attacked a Jewish man outside a club in Brooklyn, New York while shouting anti-Jewish statements. The NYPD Crime Stoppers Twitter account tweeted that the hate crime took place outside the Set Lounge in Brooklyn. Two individuals, the police said, began punching and kicking the victim while yelling racist and antisemitic slurs. The two men appeared to be drunk, and screamed “F***ing Jews! Jews shouldn’t exist!” during the attack, as well as “Islam faith is the most purest!”
SUNRISE MOVEMENT’S DC CHAPTER BOYCOTTS EVENT DUE TO ‘PARTICIPATION OF ZIONIST ORGANIZATIONS’
By Gabby Deutch
For progressive advocacy groups, this was supposed to be a make-or-break week on voting rights. After the Senate failed to advance the Freedom to Vote Act, a group is set to host a large Capitol Hill rally in support of voting rights in Washington, D.C, on Saturday. Instead, the event has become steeped in controversy after the Washington chapter of the Sunrise Movement — an influential progressive environmental advocacy group — released a statement announcing it would not participate in the event “due to the participation of a number of Zionist organizations.” The statement also announced that the movement would no longer join coalitions with Zionist organizations, naming the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism (RAC), the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) and the Jewish Council on Public Affairs (JCPA).
TWO ATTACKS ON JEWISH CHILDREN IN STAMFORD HILL IN JUST THE PAST FEW DAYS
By Campaign Against Antisemitism
There have been at least two attacks on Jewish children in Stamford Hill in just the past few days. In the evening of 16th October, a sixteen-year-old Jewish child was chased down the road by a woman who then assaulted him with a beer glass while laughing. The incident took place on Egerton Road in the heavily-Jewish neighbourhood. Then, in the evening of 18th October, a Jewish child had an egg thrown at him on a number 67 bus before the two adult assailants threatened him, saying, “We will still get you.” They then chased him off the bus until he reached a local shop for refuge.
HATE PREACHER ‘SAYS MP WAS MURDERED FOR BEING PRO-ISRAEL’
By JC Reporter
Radical Islamist preacher Anjem Choudary has suggested that the late Conservative MP Sir David Amess, who was stabbed multiple times, may have been targeted due to his stance on Israel. Mr Choudary was convicted of inviting support for ISIS in 2016 and jailed until his early release in 2018. The 54-year-old cleric said he was unsure about Sir David’s views but added he was rumoured to be pro-Israel. “Many people do [believe] that [Israel] is a terrorist state, and who would possibly be a friend of Israel after you see the carnage that they carried out against Muslims in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and continue to do with the appropriation of properties,” Mr Choudary said.
NAZI VICTIMS EXHIBITION ATTACKED SEVERAL TIMES IN ONE NIGHT
By Eli Nahum
On Friday night in Memmingen, strangers smear “For Hitler” on an exhibition board that is supposed to commemorate the acts of the Nazis. They also sprayed a swastika. Another suspect damaged a plaque about Jewish life. The police arrested a young man who was drunk and bent an exhibition board on Martin-Luther-Platz. In addition, another perpetrator had smeared another exhibition board with red paint that same night.
SENIOR LEADER AT THUNDER BAY, ONT., HOSPITAL REMOVED AFTER NAZI IMAGERY DISCOVERED ON HIS SOCIAL MEDIA
By Logan Turner
The hospital in Thunder Bay, Ont., has removed a senior official from a leadership council for violating its social media policy after images of Nazi-affiliated items were discovered on his Facebook page. Keith Taylor is no longer co-chair of the patient family advisory council at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (TBRHSC), where he had volunteered for about a decade. In over a dozen posts to his public Facebook page, there were images of swastikas, a bronze sculpture of Adolf Hitler and a military badge, among other items.
OTHER WORLD NEWS
‘HOLOCAUST WAS A SCAM’ PROJECTED ON SWEDISH SYNAGOGUE DURING INTERNATIONAL ANTISEMITISM CONFERENCE
By CNAAN LIPHSHIZ
Swedish police are investigating how the words “the Holocaust was a scam” were projected onto the main synagogue in Malmö while that city was holding an international forum on combating antisemitism. The projection was seen on the Synagogue of Malmö and on other buildings in cities across southern Sweden the day of the Malmö International Forum on Holocaust Remembrance and Combating Antisemitism. The Nordic Resistance Movement, a neo-Nazi group, claimed responsibility for the incident.
THE MIDDLE EAST
SAUDI CHILDREN’S CARTOON DEPICTS KORANIC STORY OF JEWS BEING TURNED INTO APES
A Saudi YouTube channel uploaded a children’s video earlier this month depicting the Koranic story of Jews being transformed by Allah into apes for violating Shabbat. The narrator explains how a group of Jews in a seaside village employed “trickery and deception” to circumvent a divine prohibition against fishing on the day of rest. “When the sinners did not heed the words of advice, Allah’s punishment came upon them at night. The group that commanded good were spared the punishment. The punishment of the sinners was that they were transformed into apes,” the narrator states.
TEXAS OFFICIAL TO TEACHERS: STATE LAW REQUIRES TEACHING ‘OPPOSING’ VIEWS ON THE HOLOCAUST
By PHILISSA CRAMER
Teachers in a Texas school district were told that a new state law requiring them to present multiple perspectives about “widely debated and currently controversial” issues meant they needed to make “opposing” views on the Holocaust available to students. NBC News obtained an audio recording of the official, the Carroll Independent School District’s executive director of curriculum and instruction, speaking to the teachers about how to work under the constraints of the new law, known as House Bill 3979. “Just try to remember the concepts of 3979,” Peddy said in the recording. “Make sure that if, if you have a book on the Holocaust that you have one that has an opposing — that has other perspectives.”
ANSWERS SOUGHT AFTER MEZUZAH TORN DOWN AT NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY HILLEL CENTER IN BOSTON
A mezuzah was torn down from the back entrance of the Hillel Jewish student center at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts.“We are working with university administrators and law enforcement to ensure the matter is investigated and those responsible are held to account,” Northeastern Hillel said in a statement. The incident at the Hillel building — located in Boston’s Fenway neighborhood — was recorded by a security camera. Campus police are investigating the incident.
ANALYSIS & OP-EDS
STUDIES & STATISTICS
ANTISEMITIC PREJUDICES WIDESPREAD IN GREECE, SURVEY SHOWS, BUT GREEK MP INSISTS THE STATE HAS BEEN FIGHTING A LOT ANTISEMITISM IN THE LAST FEW YEARS
By EU Reporter
A comprehensive survey of antisemitic prejudices in 16 European countries, which was released in the framework of a meeting of Jewish leaders in Brussels, shows that Greece is, along with Poland and Hungary, the country where the population has the most negative feelings towards the Jews and where antisemitic prejudices are widespread. According to the survey, commissioned by Action and Protection League (APL), more than a third of Greeks surveyed believe that “Jews will never be able to fully integrate into society”. The belief in a “secret Jewish network that influences political and economic affairs in the world” is shared by 58% of Greeks. In addition, some 36% of Greeks have ‘’rather negative feelings” towards Jews.
GOVERNMENT & POLICY
FORMER ENVOYS TALK ANTISEMITISM, WITH FOCUS ON CAMPUSES
By Marc Rod
Ira Forman and Elan Carr, two former State Department special envoys to monitor and combat antisemitism, discussed the fight against antisemitism at an event hosted by The George Washington University. Forman, who served under former President Barack Obama, said he is most concerned about governments that “play the game of antisemitism — they use it for their own political purposes,” naming Hungary and Poland in particular. Carr, who served under former President Donald Trump, acknowledged antisemitic threats from “ethnic supremacists on the far right, the Israel haters and anti-Zionists on the radical left and militant Islamists,” but focused his opening remarks squarely on antisemitism on college campuses.
IRELAND TO CRIMINALISE HOLOCAUST DENIAL
By Campaign Against Antisemitism
Ireland is set to criminalise Holocaust denial. Taoiseach Micheál Martin is introducing the new hate crime bill which has the power to impose a “Class C fine”, “imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months”, or both to anyone who “publicly condones, denies or grossly trivialises any act falling within the definition of a ‘genocide’ in Article II of the United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (the Genocide Convention).”
SHEIKH MOHAMMED AL-ISSA, MUSLIM LEADER AND 2020 COMBAT ANTI-SEMITISM AWARD RECIPIENT, SPEAKS ABOUT JEWISH-MUSLIM RELATIONS AT YU
By Jonathan Levin
Sheikh Mohammed Al-Issa, secretary general of the Muslim World League and recipient of the 2020 Combat Antisemitism Award, and President Ari Berman addressed Yeshiva University students and staff regarding the future of Jewish-Muslim relations. During the event, titled, “Jews and Muslims: A Look Toward the Future,” the sheikh spoke about the responsibility of religious communities to engage in interfaith dialogue, the importance of meaningful dialogue in achieving peaceful co-existence and the need to teach values in the education system. The sheikh used the lessons of the Holocaust to emphasize why teaching values is integral, as Nazi Germany did not lack culture, knowledge nor an education system. Rather, Al-Issa said, they only lacked values to guide their advancements.
CITING FAMILY’S HOLOCAUST HISTORY, BROOKLYN RABBI ORGANIZES RESCUE OF DOZENS OF IMPERILED AFGHANS
A rabbi from Brooklyn, New York, has played a key role in evacuating dozens of imperiled Afghans from their home country following the sudden Taliban takeover in August. Rabbi Moshe Margaretten and the Tzedek Association he runs got involved after he heard the story of four children hiding from the Taliban in a Kabul apartment. “I thought about those four kids, all younger than 18, I thought, ‘Who knows if they are still alive, I have to try to reach them,’” Rabbi Margaretten said. “We got our people on the ground to take care of the children and an hour later they were inside the [Kabul] airport,” he said. The children later reached the United States after a stopover in Qatar.
KRAKOW PHOTO EXHIBIT SHINES LIGHT ON HOLOCAUST MEMORY AND CONTEMPORARY POLAND
A new exhibit, “Sweet Home Sweet: A Story of Survival, Memory, and Returns,” at the renowned Galicia Jewish Museum in Kraków, Poland, delivers a stark reminder of the light and beauty which survived the darkness and destruction of the Holocaust. Richard Ores was born to a Jewish family in 1923. He lived in the heart of Kraków and was a teenager when World War II engulfed Europe. He survived the ghetto and Nazi concentration camps only to learn almost everyone else in his family had been killed. Ores kept a camera with him during his time in the ghetto, and took many photos of his friends before they perished. Thanks to the Galicia Jewish Museum, for the first time ever, this collection of photographs is now available to the public.
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.