In New York City, Jews Keep Getting Attacked, but No One Gets Arrested

Aug. 30 2022

During the past few years, Jewish media outlets have reported a disturbing increase in physical attacks on visibly religious Jews in urban areas. For the most part, the perpetrators are young African American men and the victims are Ḥasidim. According to a recent study by an advocacy group, 118 adults have been arrested for anti-Semitic hate crimes in New York City since 2018; of these, only one has been convicted and imprisoned. Armin Rosen observes:

In New York, street harassment, minor assaults, and even full-on beatings of visible Jews are almost a banality now, too frequent over too long of a period to be considered an active crisis, even in the communities most affected. The city reported a 76-percent year-over-year rise in hate crimes during the first three months of 2022—attacks on Jews more than tripled, accounting for much of the spike. When reached for comment by email, the NYPD’s public information office stated that the Hate Crimes Task Force has made 44 arrests related to attacks on Jews so far in 2022 compared to 33 in all of 2021.

Some unknowable number of the 118 anti-Jewish hate-crime suspects whose cases showed up in the state’s WebCrims database since 2018 were sent to state psychiatric institutions for an unknown period of time, instead of being criminally charged. . . . Fifteen took plea deals, although the study found no evidence that any of these agreements involved jail time. In 23 cases, the charges were dropped. The only conviction was for a relatively high-profile incident, in which the suspect choked and beat a visibly Jewish man in his mid-50s while he walked home from Shabbat daytime services in Crown Heights.

The growing sense of chaos, of which the failure to punish anti-Semitic attacks is a possible symptom, exposes a tension within the current governing project in New York and beyond. Criminal-justice reform is aimed at correcting real and longstanding inequities; at the same time, rising crime denies large numbers of law-abiding citizens, most of them women or members of minority groups, of their basic right to safety.

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Read more at Tablet

More about: Anti-Semitism, Crime, Hasidim, New York City

Condemning Terrorism in Jerusalem—and Efforts to Stop It

Jan. 30 2023

On Friday night, a Palestinian opened fire at a group of Israelis standing outside a Jerusalem synagogue, killing seven and wounding several others. The day before, the IDF was drawn into a gunfight in the West Bank city of Jenin while trying to arrest members of a terrorist cell. Of the nine Palestinians killed, only one appears to have been a noncombatant. Lahav Harkov compares the responses to the two events:

President Joe Biden called Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to denounce the attack, offer his condolences, and express his commitment to Israel’s security. Other leaders released supportive statements as well. Governments across Europe condemned the attack. Turkey’s foreign ministry did the same, as did Israel’s Abraham Accords partners the UAE and Bahrain. Even Saudi Arabia released a statement against the killing of civilians in Jerusalem.

It feels wrong to criticize those statements. . . . But the condemnations should be full-throated, not spoken out of one side of the mouth while the other is wishy-washy about what it takes to stave off terrorism. These very same leaders and ministries were tsk-tsking at Israel for doing just that only a day before the attacks in Jerusalem.

The context didn’t seem to matter to some countries that are friendly to Israel. It didn’t matter that Israel was trying to stop jihadists from attacking civilians; it didn’t matter that IDF soldiers were attacked on the way.

It’s very easy for some to be sad when Jews are murdered. Yet, at the same time, so many of them are uncomfortable with Jews asserting themselves, protecting themselves, arming themselves against the bloodthirsty horde that would hand out bonbons to celebrate their deaths. It’s a reminder of how important it is that we do just that, and how essential the state of Israel is.

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Read more at Jerusalem Post

More about: Jerusalem, Palestinian terror