update deskAntisemitism

Antisemitism roundup: Nov. 10

New York woman assaulted. Harvard to launch antisemitism training. First person arrested under Melbourne Nazi salute ban.

"Never Again Is Now" projected on Brandenburg Gate in Berlin on Nov. 9, 2023. Credit: Achim Wagner/Shutterstock.
"Never Again Is Now" projected on Brandenburg Gate in Berlin on Nov. 9, 2023. Credit: Achim Wagner/Shutterstock.

In remarks to the press on Friday in New Delhi, India, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that the United States is focusing on getting the hostages home from Gaza and on pushing Israel to do more to protect Palestinian civilians.

“Far too many Palestinians have been killed; far too many have suffered these past weeks,” Blinken said. “We want to do everything possible to prevent harm to them and to maximize the assistance that gets to them.”

The secretary did not mention that Hamas is using civilians as human shields, nor did he mention that Hamas has continued to launch rockets at Israel on an ongoing basis.

Attacked in New York

Police officers are searching for two women who assaulted a Jewish woman on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. The latter, 41, confronted the two after they pulled down posters of kidnapped Israelis.

“The two women assaulted the Jewish woman—ripping off her Star of David necklace and knocking the cellphone out of her hand, before fleeing on foot,” according to the New York Post. “The victim sustained minor injuries to her face and neck, and her cell phone was damaged in the altercation.”

Anti-Israel protesters also staged a sit-in at The New York Times building. (“Their claim that The New York Times has a ‘pro-Israel bias’ tells you a lot about their mental health,” quipped David Friedman, former U.S. ambassador to Israel.)

Melbourne malignity

A 24-year-old, Jacob Hersant, is the first to be arrested in Melbourne for performing a Nazi salute. That hateful gesture and Nazi symbols were criminalized last month.

Canadian leader fired

Dr. Sanjiv Gandhi, a surgeon, was fired as deputy leader of the Green Party of British Columbia and stepped down as one of the party’s candidates in the 2024 provincial election.

Gandhi liked a social-media post “that compared provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry to Nazi war criminal and doctor Josef Mengele, who performed heinous experiments on Auschwitz concentration camp victims during the Second World War,” per CBC.

Also in Canada, about 200 anti-Israel Toronto protesters sought to “shut down Union Station during rush hour.”

‘We got gliders’

An Emory University School of Medicine professor put on leave last month by the administration for antisemitic comments no longer works at the school in Atlanta. (It wouldn’t say if she was fired or resigned.) Dr. Abeer AbouYabis told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution last month that she didn’t know what she was accused of saying.

The Palestinian-American did not respond when the paper asked her about comments, including, “They got walls, we got gliders. Glory to all resistance fighters.” Some of the Hamas terrorists who entered Israel on Oct. 7 en route to murdering 1,400 people, in addition to gang-raping women and putting babies in ovens, among other atrocities, crossed the border on gliders.

Antisemitic materials

Antisemitic symbols and literature were found in Rome’s Jewish Quarter; on a New Jersey synagogue; at Boston University and Ohio State Hillels; and in Middletown, Conn.

Police in Portland, Ore., arrested six people for antisemitic vandalism.

Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center denounced the vandalism of an Indigo store in downtown Toronto. The store’s founder and CEO is Jewish. “Sadly, this is the tragic, new reality for Jews today in Canada and around the world, which requires more than just condemnations from government leaders,” stated Michael Levitt, the president and CEO of the center.

Ivy instruction

After facing widespread criticism for inaction, Claudine Gay, the president of Harvard University, announced on Thursday that the school will put into place “a robust program of education and training for students, faculty and staff on antisemitism broadly and at Harvard specifically.”

“Our community must understand that phrases such as ‘From the river to the sea’ bear specific historical meanings that to a great many people imply the eradication of Jews from Israel, and engender both pain and existential fears within our Jewish community,’ Gay added. “I condemn this phrase and any similarly hurtful phrases.”

Also on campus

Officials at Syracuse University in New York state released a statement following what it called “an otherwise peaceful demonstration that happened on our campus.” The university said: “We have learned that one of the speakers specifically called out a number of Jewish student organizations by name, accusing them of being ‘complicit’ in genocide.”

Antisemitic messages were projected onto buildings at the University of Pennsylvania. “These reprehensible messages are an assault on our values and cause pain and fear for our Jewish community,” said university president Liz Magill.

Len Blavatnik, a billionaire, has reportedly joined the “donor revolt over antisemitism” at Penn.

Princeton University students in New Jersey shouted “Globalize the intifada” and “There is only one solution: intifada revolution.”

George Washington University in the nation’s capital “suspended an unnamed student accused of tearing down posters of Israeli hostages in the GW Hillel building Friday,” the student-run Hatchet reported.

Doug Emhoff, who is married to U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, visited Cornell University in New York state to meet with students and staff. The school’s kosher dining hall was closed last month following antisemitic death threats.

Media bias

A senior BBC news executive “has admitted that errors in its news coverage of Israel could endanger British Jews—but insisted such mistakes were inevitable because of the ‘fog of war,’” reported the London-based Jewish Chronicle.

The Washington Post took down a cartoon that criticized Hamas following “many deep concerns and conversations.”

Misinformation fog

The Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning will offer four, one-hour online sessions about the “fog of misinformation” on college campuses and on social media following Hamas’s Oct. 7 terror attacks.

Geared for parents and students, the free program is led by Howard Lupovitch, director of Wayne State University’s Judaic Studies Center, and Joy Getnick, executive director of the Hillel at the University of Rochester.

Other protests

Anti-Israel protesters gathered near a Chicago fundraiser attended by U.S. President Joe Biden. Health-care workers held a “die-in” in Philadelphia to “protest Biden and Netanyahu’s genocide in Gaza.”

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