America Should Learn from Europe’s Mistakes When It Comes to Ignoring Anti-Semitism

Last week, CNN released the results of a survey of European attitudes toward Jews that, although shocking to many, will come as little to surprise to anyone who has paid attention to the issue over the past two decades. Nearly one in four respondents, for instance, reported believing that Jews have too much influence on conflict and wars, and a similar number said the same about business and finance. Yet, writes Bari Weiss, these data don’t capture the “three-headed dragon” that is anti-Semitism in Europe today: violent and often deadly attacks perpetrated almost exclusively by Muslims, obsessive hatred of Israel from a hard left that is becoming increasingly mainstream, and a resurgent anti-Semitic far right. And these trends might not stay in Europe:

[On the far right] is the anti-Semitism of the “Jews will not replace us” marchers in Charlottesville and the killer at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh who ranted against globalists and the “kike infestation.” . . .

Islamism is far less of a threat in the United States than in Europe—we do not, contrary to what the president would have you believe, have caravans of terrorists crossing our border. Still, a Muslim American who expressed hatred of Israel shot six people, killing one of them, at the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle, in 2006. Four Muslim men were arrested in a plot to bomb two Bronx synagogues in 2009. A Muslim convert was thwarted by the FBI in his plan to blow up a Florida synagogue in 2016. Just last week, Mohamed Mohamed Abdi, a Somalian immigrant, shouted anti-Semitic slurs while trying to run down with his car people leaving a Los Angeles synagogue.

[Then] there is the hatred from the left, which comes cloaked in the language of progressive values. This includes the perhaps unwitting anti-Semitism of college professors who refuse to write letters of recommendation for students wanting to study abroad in Israel or who seek to suspend study-abroad programs to Israel entirely, without thinking of sanctioning, say, China or Russia. Or turning a blind eye to unconscionable comments like one from Minnesota’s new congresswoman Ilhan Omar, who tweeted in 2012 “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel”—because she is breaking ground as a Muslim woman of color.

For reasons historical, aesthetic, and political, we Jews are most attuned to the anti-Semitism of the far right—and we find the most sympathy among our progressive allies when these are our attackers. But when Jews point out the other two kinds, we are often dismissed as sensitive or hysterical, or as mistaking legitimate criticism of Israel for something darker. This is nonsense. The same was said of the Jews in Europe when they sounded the alarm bells. Look where they are now.

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More about: American Jewry, Anti-Semitism, European Islam, European Jewry, Jewish World

Hizballah Prepares for War, and UN Peacekeepers Do Nothing

Dec. 10 2018

According to last year’s UN Security Council Resolution 2373, the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL)—the peacekeeping force created after the Second Lebanon War to keep both Israel and Hizballah out of southern Lebanon—is authorized “to take all necessary action in areas of deployment of its forces, and as it deems within its capabilities, to ensure that its area of operations is not utilized for hostile activities of any kind.” If anything ought to rouse UNIFIL to action, writes Elliott Abrams, it should be the IDF’s recent discovery and destruction of tunnels dug by Hizballah to move troops into the Galilee:

The existence of these tunnels, dug from precisely the area of southern Lebanon that UNIFIL is meant to patrol, means that this area is indeed “utilized for hostile activities.” What, then, is the meaning of [UNIFIL’s statement in] response that it “will communicate its preliminary findings to the appropriate authorities in Lebanon”? The meaning is that UNIFIL will likely do nothing.

UNIFIL is not supposed to be merely a means of communication, or the Security Council would have bought cell phones instead of paying for a military force. Moreover, there are no “appropriate authorities” in Lebanon; if there were, Hizballah would never have been able to dig its tunnels.

The tunnels are hardly the only brazen Hizballah violation of the Security Council resolutions undertaken right under UNIFIL’s nose. Consider this: Hizballah is blocking roads in southern Lebanon to smooth the path of missiles it is moving into the area. . . . Then there is the village of Gila, just north of the Israeli border, where there is a Hizballah headquarters and according to the Israelis about twenty warehouses with weapons, combat positions, lookout points, and dozens of underground positions. All this was built in an area supposedly patrolled by UNIFIL. . . .

This is a test of UNIFIL and its new commander, [Stefan Del Col, who took over in August]. “Communicating” to “appropriate authorities” is a euphemism for doing nothing at all. Hizballah is preparing for war. UNIFIL is supposed to get in its way. If it cannot hinder Hizballah’s war preparations in any way, and is even ignorant of them, UNIFIL is a waste of time and money.

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More about: Hizballah, Israel & Zionism, Israeli Security, Lebanon, United Nations