By Morton A. Klein and Elizabeth A. Berney/JNS.org
Radical Muslims are currently the major perpetrators of verbal and physical attacks on Jews throughout the world.
For instance, a prominent survey concluded, “Perpetrators of the most extreme cases of violence against European Jews in recent years were Muslims.”
And on U.S. college campuses, the radical Islamist group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is the major perpetrator of anti-Semitism. The Zionist Organization of America has extensively documented SJP’s anti-Semitic activities.
Its is deeply disappointing that during her speech at the United Nations “anti-Semitism” conference on Sept. 7, 2016, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power failed to even mention the term “Muslim” or “Islamic anti-Semitism” which constituted a major portion of the physical and verbal anti-Jewish attacks. She also failed to mention the critical role of the SJP and Muslim campus groups in committing hate crimes and harassment of Jews, encouraging additional anti-Jewish actions and inducing fear among Jewish students. And throughout her speech, when describing attacks on Jews, she never mentioned the perpetrators were Muslims.
For instance, Power said, “On July 1, a cement-filled bottle was thrown through the window of a local Jewish center in Santa Fe, Argentina with the message, ‘This is a warning, the next one explodes.’ ” She omitted the fact that the note attached to the cement-filled bottle also stated, Allahu Akbar (Arabic for “God is great”) and included the Islamic State logo.
Power also failed to mention even more violent anti-Semitism in South America, such as the Muslim who, while shouting Allahu Akbar, stabbed to death a Jewish man (and wounded the victim’s son) in Uruguay in March.
In another example, the ambassador referred to the “horrific terrorist attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris” without mentioning that the perpetrator of this deadly attack on Jews was a radical Somali Islamist, who also declared Allahu Akbar as he murdered victims that he selected for their Jewish faith.
It is also deeply disappointing the only time Power mentioned Muslims during her entire speech was when she misleadingly complained that rising anti-Semitism goes “hand in hand” with “xenophobic” efforts to bar Muslim immigration. In fact, Muslim immigration goes “hand in hand” with rising terrorist attacks on Jews and persons of other faiths in Western nations. It is not “xenophobic” to want to limit immigration by a population infiltrated with ISIS members and other radical Islamists and who, according to FBI Director James Comey, can’t be properly vetted.
Power also omitted the involvement of Islamists and SJP when she described anti-Semitism on U.S. college campuses.
For instance, she stated, “In February, not far from here in Brooklyn College, a group of student activists interrupted a faculty meeting demanding that all Zionists be removed from campus.” She edited out that this was one of many incidents the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) documented related to SJP’s anti-Semitic activities at Brooklyn College and other CUNY campuses.
In addition to omitting the radical Muslim perpetrators of violent anti-Semitic attacks, the ambassador adopted the diversionary tactic of focusing much of her talk on alleged right wing (generally non-violent) neo-Nazi anti-Semitism. For instance, she expounded at length about an isolated, unsuccessful proposal to erect a statue to honor an official who was a Nazi collaborator in Hungary. By contrast, she never breathed a single word about the innumerable ways that the Palestinian Authority (P.A.) honors Muslim terrorists who murder innocent Jews. The P.A. names streets, sports clubs, schools and public squares, and sponsors television specials and holidays for these terrorists, and pays these terrorists stipends for murdering Jews.
Sadly, Power also ignored the helpful existing State Department definition of anti-Semitism, which includes holding Israel to a double standard of behavior not expected of other democratic nations; comparing Israeli policy to that of the Nazis; blaming Israel for all inter-religious or political tensions; NGOs that focus peace or human rights investigations only on Israel; and denying the Jewish people’s right to self-determination and Israel’s right to exist.
The ambassador should have called for worldwide adoption of this existing definition. Instead, she called for countries to draft and adopt a weak new definition of anti-Semitism that apparently legitimizes much anti-Semitic criticism of Israel.
We urge Power to acknowledge that radical Islam is the major perpetrator of rising anti-Semitism and anti-Jewish and anti-Western terrorism.
Morton A. Klein is the national president of the Zionist Organization of America. Elizabeth A. Berney is ZOA’s director of special projects.
Be a part of our community
JNS serves as the central hub for a thriving community of readers who appreciate the invaluable context our coverage offers on Israel and their Jewish world.
Please join our community and help support our unique brand of Jewish journalism that makes sense.