New York City’s Hidden Anti-Semitic Violence

While hardly on the bloody scale of last Saturday’s massacre in Pittsburgh, physical assaults on Jews in New York City—not to mention anti-Semitic graffiti and similar acts of vandalism—are far more common than most would believe. Often the victims are visibly religious, and the attacks get relatively little attention from the press. Ginia Bellafante writes:

For several years now, expressions of anti-Jewish sentiment have made up the preponderance of hate-crime complaints in the city. [This year alone], there have been four times as many crimes motivated by bias against Jews—142 in all—as there have been against blacks. Hate crimes against Jews have outnumbered hate crimes targeted at transgender people by a factor of twenty.

Within the course of a few days this month, a swastika showed up on an Upper West Side corner and two ultra-Orthodox men were attacked on the street in ḥasidic neighborhoods in Brooklyn in separate incidents. In one of them, according to the police and prosecutors, a Muslim livery driver jumped out of a car and started beating up his victim, seemingly at random, yelling “Allah.” . . .

When a ḥasidic man or woman is attacked by anyone in New York City, mainstream progressive advocacy groups do not typically send out emails calling for concern and fellowship and candlelight vigils in Union Square, as they often do when individuals are harmed in New York because of their race or ethnicity or how they identify in terms of sex or sexual orientation. . . . Sympathies are distributed unevenly. Few are extended toward religious fundamentalists of any kind, who reach the radar of the urbane “Pod Save America” class only when stories appear confirming existing impressions of backwardness. . . .

The Anti-Defamation League . . . reported that nine of the twelve physical assaults against Jews categorized as hate crimes in New York State were committed in Brooklyn and involved victims who were easily marked as members of traditionally Orthodox communities. Outside that world, they were hardly noticed at all.

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More about: American Jewry, Anti-Semitism, Hasidism, Jewish World, New York City, Ultra-Orthodox

Iran Is Back on Israel’s Doorstep

Feb. 15 2019

On Monday, the IDF shelled Iranian-linked targets—most likely held by Hizballah—in the Quneitra province, which lies in the Syrian part of the Golan Heights. There can thus be little doubt that the Islamic Republic has positioned its proxies in deadly proximity to Israel’s borders. Yossi Yehoshua comments:

Hizballah is trying to entrench itself in Syria now that Bashar al-Assad has reclaimed the Syrian side of the Golan Heights, precisely as it did in 2014 and 2015, [before Syrian rebels retook the area]. This was when one of the terror organization’s more prominent members, Jihad Mughniyeh, was appointed by Hizballah and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards to be in charge of the Golan Heights area and of planning terror attacks against Israeli civilians. Mughniyeh was killed in a 2015 airstrike attributed to Israel. . . .

In addition, an increase in the number of incidents along the Syrian border was noted over the past two months, with the Israeli strikes in Syria . . . meant to signal to the enemy that it is best not cross any red lines. This is similar to the message Jerusalem conveyed to Iran when it [previously] attempted to entrench itself in [this part of] Syria and was pushed out of there after a series of Israeli airstrikes.

Unlike the situation of four years ago, Iran now has a real presence along the Syrian border, while Hizballah is working to resume its confrontations with Israel. And since the organization is up to its neck in domestic problems and thus cannot allow itself to face Israel on the Lebanese front, it finds Syria to be a more comfortable staging ground from which to take on the Jewish state.

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More about: Golan Heights, Hizballah, Iran, Israel & Zionism, Israeli Security, Syria