A Statement on Current Incidents of Antisemitism


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 8, 2018
Contact: Sonya E Meyerson-Knox | sonya@jvp.org | 929-290-0317

A confluence of events in the last weeks has reminded us yet again that antisemitism in the United States is dangerously present in this moment.

At least three current candidates for office have made hatred of Jews and Holocaust denial major parts of their platform and discourse, along with other racist and white supremacist views. Each is viably positioned to be official candidates in this fall’s elections. Despite some verbal denunciations by local party leaders, none of the candidates have been stripped of their party credentials. There are multiple other candidates for offices around the country that have taken strongly racist and islamophobic positions, demonstrating that intertwining forms of bigotry, including antisemitism, are no longer deal-breakers in seriously pursuing higher office.

In the last month, four visibly Jewish men have been subject to alleged antisemitic attacks on the streets of Crown Heights, Brooklyn. This lack of safety on the streets presents a challenge to those of us who are not visibly Jewish as we seek to show solidarity with members of our community under attack.

Finally, last week Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas made blatantly antisemitic remarks, which he subsequently apologized for. As a leader he enjoys minimal support among his own people, and is under severe criticism for corruption, co-option and authoritarianism. His comments do not serve the Palestinian people and should rightfully be rejected by anyone who claims to fight all forms of bigotry. This is the same standard to which we hold Netanyahu, and all Israeli leaders, who deny Palestinian’s histories and identities.

JVP is watching this swell of antisemitism with alarm. It is clear that in both rhetoric and deed, antisemitism has gained more traction than it has in several decades. We also note that elected officials and other authority figures have roundly criticized these incidents more swiftly than similar instances of racism or Islamophobia.

As an organization that takes fighting antisemitism, as well as all forms of bigotry, as an integral part of our mission, we feel a fundamental responsibility to stand up in the fight against antisemitism, which cannot and should not be separated from the struggle against racism in all its forms. In our commitment to that work, we reiterate a vision of solidarity and safety for all people.

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Jewish Voice for Peace is a national, grassroots organization inspired by Jewish tradition to work for a just and lasting peace according to principles of human rights, equality and international law for all the people of Israel and Palestine. JVP has over 200,000 online supporters, over 70 chapters, a youth wing, a Rabbinic Council, an Artist Council, an Academic Advisory Council, and an Advisory Board made up of leading U.S. intellectuals and artists.



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