THIS WEEK’S GLOBAL ANTISEMITISM REPORT
The City of Wichita, Kansas adopted the IHRA working definition of antisemitism after a spate of antisemitic flyers were widely dispersed across the city recently. Mayor Brandon Whipple signed a proclamation directing education and law enforcement agencies to use the definition in response to the recent incidents.
Following antisemitism controversies among staff in its Arabic service, Germany’s public broadcaster, Deutsche Welle, changed its code of conduct to require support for Israel’s right to exist.
In a 60 Minutes appearance, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi became the latest in a long line of top Tehran regime officials who have trivialized, distorted, or outright denied the Holocaust. Asked by CBS interviewer Lesley Stahl, “Do you believe the Holocaust happened, that six million Jews were slaughtered?”, Raisi replied, “There are some signs that it happened. If so, they should allow it to be investigated and researched.”
Progressive U.S. Congresswoman Rashia Tlaib (D-Michigan) claimed this week “…it’s become clear that you cannot claim to hold progressive values, yet back Israel’s apartheid government, and we will continue to push back and not accept that you are progressive..” Her comments were condemned as antisemitic by numerous Democratic members of Congress.
Calogero Pisano, a candidate for the right-wing Brothers of Italy (FDI) party, and a member of the its naitonal leadership, was suspended for praising Hitler ahead of Italian elections, in which the FDI is expected to perform well.
A Hasidic Jewish man walking down a street in Brooklyn, New York was violently assaulted by a female passerby who shouted, ‘F***ing Jew.’ At least two more antisemitic assaults were reported in New York, which were sternly condemned by New York City Mayor Eric Adams, and U.S. Congressman Ritchie Torres.
Another Jewish man was attacked on a subway line in Berlin, Germany, following reports of a similar incident last week.
At Cornell University, Jewish students held a rally against antisemitism after signage was carved into a campus sidewalk equating the Star of David with the Nazi swastika, and a campaign sign for Jewish American Congressional candidate Max Rose was vandalized with a swastika.
This week’s global antisemitism report highlights 35 new media reports of antisemitic incidents. The total includes 14 (40.0%) from the far-right, 8 (22.9%) from the far-left, 6 (17.1%) with Islamist motivations, and 7 (20.0%) unidentifiable in nature.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
FAR ROCKAWAY, NYC MAN ACCUSED OF HATE CRIMES IN ANTISEMITIC ATTACK
By BILL PARRY
A Far Rockaway man was charged with assault as a hate crime for allegedly attacking a Jewish man on Beach Channel Drive in broad daylight Tuesday morning, Sept. 13, according to Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz. James Purcell, 34, of Ocean Crest Boulevard, was arraigned Sept. 15 on a six-count criminal complaint. According to the charges, at around 11:40 a,m, on Sept. 13, Purcell approached a 58-year-old man as he was walking near the intersection of Beach 25th Street and Beach Channel Drive. Purcell allegedly began to shout antisemitic remarks, stating, “Shut up Jew, I’ll make you shut up.” Purcell then allegedly punched the victim in the face and continued to assault him with his fists while shouting more hateful remarks.
RASHIDA TLAIB SAYS PROGRESSIVES CANNOT SUPPORT ISRAEL’S GOVERNMENT, SPARKING SHARP CRITICISM FROM FELLOW DEMOCRATS
By RON KAMPEAS
Rep. Rashida Tlaib, a Michigan Democrat who is Palestinian American and who is the only member of Congress who opposes Israel’s self-definition as a Jewish state, said Tuesday that there was no room in the progressive movement for supporters of what she called Israel’s “apartheid” government. Tlaib is a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and at least two of her fellow members said they found her challenge offensive. “I fundamentally reject the notion that one cannot support Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish and democratic state and be a progressive,” tweeted New York Democrat Jerry Nadler, who is Jewish. Ritchie Torres, also of New York, who is gay and who has extolled the protection of LGBTQ rights in Israel, took aim at some of Tlaib’s other stances. “There’s nothing progressive about advocating for the end of Israel as a Jewish State,” he said on Twitter.
WOMAN VIOLENTLY KNOCKS HAT OFF ORTHODOX JEWISH MAN IN BROOKLYN STREET ASSAULT
A Hasidic Jewish man walking down a street in Brooklyn, New York, last Saturday was violently assaulted by a female passerby and had his traditional fur hat (shtreimel) knocked to the ground, The Jerusalem Post reported, citing the Boro Park Shomrim volunteer community security group. The suspected assailant was arrested on Saturday night by the New York City Police Department (NYPD). “[The woman] randomly approached him, first asked him something about Jesus, when he kept walking, she said, ‘F***ing Jew,’ knocked his shtreimel off,” Boro Park Shomrim was quoted as saying.
FOOTBALLER INVESTIGATED AFTER CLAIMING ‘HITLER WOULD BE PROUD’ OF WIN AGAINST JEWISH TEAM
By LEE HARPIN
A football match involving a Jewish children’s team is at the centre of antisemitism probe after an opposition player posted a message on social media saying “Hitler would be proud” of his side’s victory. The message, which also said “4-3 win against some random Jews” was posted online following a match played in a Hertfordshire Football Association fixture on Sunday. Jewish News has learned that the father of the player who made the antisemitic remark has subsequently sent an apology for his son’s conduct. Sources say the apology appeared to be sincere and heartfelt.
AL JAZEERA FACES ‘HARASSMENT’ CLAIMS AS NEW TV DOC TARGETS JEWISH LABOUR ACTIVISTS
By LEE HARPIN
Qatari-based television channel Al Jazeera is facing claims it has engaged in the “harassment” of seven Jewish Labour activists who have been targeted by producers of a new documentary looking into the party under Jeremy Corbyn. But an advanced promotional video for the series tweeted by Al Jazeera Investigations ahead of the first episode, makes clear that a central aim of the series is to once again challenge the narrative around antisemitism in Labour under Corbyn.
2 ANTISEMITIC ATTACKS REPORTED IN BERLIN ON SINGLE DAY, AMID RISING TALLY OF INCIDENTS
By TOBY AXELROD
Authorities in Berlin are investigating two attacks on Jewish train riders reported on the same day last week, amid a rise in the number of reported incidents of antisemitism in that city. A 33-year-old man was verbally attacked and beaten in the S-bahn commuter train, Berlin police announced. The attacker reportedly used anti-Jewish slurs, and proceeded — together with another man — to beat the victim around the head and upper body. Another passenger tried to protect the victim, who then got off the train, while the perpetrator remained on board. The victim’s physical injuries were not serious enough to warrant treatment, police said.
NEO-NAZI FORUM LAUNCHES DIRTY JEW CONTEST 2022: FRENCH POLITICAL FIGURE IN LEAD
A French neo-Nazi website, which was inspired by and is modelled on the American “Daily Stormer” forum, posted an article promoting a contest for “Dirty Jew” of the year. An excerpt from the article reads: “The ‘dirty Jew of the year’ contest is underway on the forum; feel free to suggest names and explain what made you believe they are a strong candidate. The election will take place by Christmas 2022!” On the comment thread, several users nominated French political figures. Ukrainian president Zelensky also ranked high.
OTHER WORLD NEWS
FANS OF ZAGREB’S FC DINAMO SOCCER CLUB PERFORM NAZI SALUTES AHEAD OF MILAN, ITALY MATCH
Fans of Zagreb’s FC Dinamo soccer club marched through the streets of Milan, Italy, this week performing Nazi salutes ahead of a Champions League match, Balkan Insight reported. FC Milan defeated FC Dinamo 3-1 in Wednesday’s showdown at San Siro Stadium. “In Croatia, hardcore football fan groups often evoke the 1990s independence war with Serb-dominated Yugoslavia to use hate speech against Serbs or show sympathy for the Fascist Ustasa movement, which ruled Croatia under Nazi German and Italian auspices and persecuted Serbs, Jews and Roma people during World War II,” Balkan Insight noted.
ITALY’S FAR-RIGHT FRONTRUNNER PARTY SUSPENDS CANDIDATE WHO PRAISED HITLER
A candidate for the far-right Brothers of Italy (FDI), which is tipped to come top in weekend elections, has been suspended for praising Hitler, the party said on Tuesday. FDI leader Giorgia Meloni, who could lead Italy’s first post-war far-right government after Sunday’s vote, has sought to distance herself from her party’s neo-fascist roots without renouncing them entirely. Calogero Pisano, the head of the FDI in Agrigento in Sicily and a member of the national leadership, has been “suspended with immediate effect,” the FDI said in a statement.
ISRAELI EMBASSY IN MEXICO VANDALIZED DURING PROTESTS
Israel’s embassy in Mexico City is vandalized by demonstrators calling on Israel to extradite a former senior official wanted in connection with the disappearance of 43 students in 2014. The demonstrators defaced the embassy, including slogans of “Death to Israel.” After the incident, Israel issues a summons to the Mexican ambassador in Israel. “We view this issue very gravely. We expect that Mexico will fulfill its international obligations,” says Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon.
IRAN’S PRESIDENT RAISI BECOMES LATEST TOP TEHRAN REGIME OFFICIAL TO QUESTION HOLOCAUST
In a 60 Minutes appearance on Sunday, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi became the latest in a long line of top Tehran regime officials who have trivialized, distorted, or outright denied the Holocaust in recent decades. Asked by CBS interviewer Lesley Stahl, “Do you believe the Holocaust happened, that six million Jews were slaughtered?”, Raisi replied, “Look, historical events should be investigated by researchers and historians. There are some signs that it happened. If so, they should allow it to be investigated and researched.” Stahl followed up with question on Israel’s right to exist. Raisi answered, “You see, the people of Palestine are the reality. This is the right of the people of Palestine, who are forced to leave their houses and motherland. The Americans are supporting this false regime there.”
MARVEL CONTROVERSY: ISRAELI HEROINE SABRA OUTRAGES ARAB WORLD
By i24 NEWS
Marvel has responded to criticism over an Israeli character to be played by an Israeli actress in the US film studio’s next blockbuster “Captain America: New World Order.” The move to cast Shira Haas for the role of superheroine Sabra angered pro-Palestinian organizations, prompting Marvel to announce that it would take “a new approach” to the character.
CORNELL UNIVERSITY JEWISH COMMUNITY HOLDS RALLY TO PROTEST ‘WRONG AND DETESTABLE’ SWASTIKA GRAFFITI
By DION J. PIERRE
Cornell University’s Jewish community on Monday held a rally at the Ho Plaza to protest the carving of a swastika into a sidewalk near Bebe Lake, a reservoir on the university’s 745 acre campus. The demonstration, which included prayer and speeches by Jewish student leaders, followed the incident’s reporting by Jewish on Campus (JOC), an advocacy group led by University of Chicago senior Julia Jassey. It is the fourth antisemitic incident at Cornell University, where over 3,000 Jewish undergraduates are enrolled, in five years.
NEW YORK COUNCILWOMAN PROTESTS APPOINTMENT OF CAIR SUPPORTER TO INVESTIGATE CUNY ANTISEMITISM CONTROVERSY
By DION J. PIERRE
New York City Councilwoman Inna Vernikov is calling on Mayor Eric Adams to address antisemitism at City University of New York following reports that an individual alleged to be a supporter of Hamas was recently put in charge of an antisemitism investigation. Kingsborough Community College diversity officer Saly Abd Alla —a former civil rights director of the Council for American Islamic Relations (CAIR) — was appointed as lead investigator concerning an antisemitism complaint filed by Professor Jeffrey Lax, a member of the college faculty.
ANALYSIS & OP-EDS
STUDIES & STATISTICS
COLLEGE NEWSPAPERS SINGLE OUT ISRAEL FOR OPPROBRIUM, NEW STUDY SAYS
By DION J. PIERRE
College newspapers tend to paint Israel in bad light, according to a new report by the Alums for Campus fairness, a US watchdog monitoring antisemitism in higher education. Released on Monday, the report titled “Institutional Bias: Campus Newspapers and Israel” surveyed college newspapers at 75 US colleges. It said that only 17 percent of 1,450 articles they have published about Israel since 2017 were positive.“These same newspapers are notably silent on antisemitism and discrimination against Jews on their own campuses, publishing only 505 news articles about this growing trend in their own community,” ACF said Monday. “Campus media is extremely biased against Israel.”
GOVERNMENT & POLICY
INTERNATIONAL ANTISEMITISM TASK FORCE TO QUESTION SOCIAL MEDIA EXECUTIVES
By MARC ROD
The Inter-Parliamentary Task Force to Combat Online Antisemitism — an international coalition of lawmakers formed in 2020 including lawmakers from the U.S., Canada, the European Union, Israel, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand — is set to hold its first in-person hearing Friday morning in Washington, featuring testimony from high-ranking officials from Meta, TikTok, Twitter and YouTube. “This has been a more than two-year effort since when we launched the task force to assess and analyze the problem and the challenges that are presented in trying to stop the infectious spread of online antisemitism,” Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), one of the group’s co-chairs, told Jewish Insider.
US REP. TORRES CALLS TO PROBE NYC’S ‘FAILURE’ TO PROSECUTE HATE CRIME
New York Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-N.Y.) sent a letter on Friday to the U.S. Department of Justice asking it to investigate what he called New York City’s failure to prosecute antisemitic hate crimes. “I am respectfully asking the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department to consider investigating New York’s systematic failure to police and prosecute hate crimes and to issue recommendations for reform,” Torres wrote to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland. “The federal government can no longer stand by passively as antisemitic violence goes unchecked and unpunished in America’s largest city,” the congressman continued.
HOUSE DEMS CONDEMN TLAIB’S CLAIM THAT PROGRESSIVE, PRO-ISRAEL POLICIES INCOMPATIBLE
By MARC ROD
A number of House Democrats on Wednesday condemned comments made earlier this week by Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) in which she argued that support for “Israel’s apartheid government” is incompatible with “progressive values.” Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) accused Tlaib of antisemitism. A spokesperson for Rep. Elaine Luria (D-VA) told Jewish Insider that she agrees with Wasserman Schultz that the comments were antisemitic. Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA), who noted that he’s a long-serving member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, emphasized his support for Israel in a statement to JI. Tlaib was also called out by other House progressives.
GERMANY’S PUBLIC BROADCASTER MANDATES THAT ALL EMPLOYEES SUPPORT ISRAEL’S RIGHT TO EXIST
By TOBY AXELROD
Germany’s public broadcaster, Deutsche Welle, has revised its code of conduct to require support for Israel’s right to exist, and employees who fail to do so may now be fired. The move announced Sept. 1 preceded a court order last week that DW reinstate a former employee fired who was fired after the company determined she had made comments about Israel that could be construed as antisemitic. In all, seven employees from the broadcaster’s Arabic service were let go last year on similar grounds, and so far two have successfully sued DW for reinstatement.
The Combat Antisemitism Movement is a global coalition engaging more than 360,000 people and 450 organizations from a diverse array of religious, political, and cultural backgrounds in the common mission of fighting the world’s oldest hatred. We act collaboratively to build a better future, free of bigotry, for Jews and all humanity.