The past several days have seen a spate of violent attacks on Jews across the United States, conducted in the name of the Palestinian cause. Among the most shocking were the brutal of beating of Joseph Borgen and the explosion of an incendiary device by gangs yelling anti-Israel and anti-Semitic slogans. The week before, Representatives Rashida Tlaib and André Carson appeared at an anti-Israel protest outside the State Department—organized by the Hamas-affiliated Council on American-Islamic Relations—where the latter accused the Jewish state of “ethnic cleansing.” While such rhetoric was echoed by other members of the progressive left, not to mention various celebrities, there has been little outrage, or even media coverage, of the violence to which it gives sanction. Seffi Kogan writes:
While anti-Zionist gangs beat up Jews in her city, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was providing a quasi-intellectual basis for their actions, defaming Israel as an apartheid state employing indiscriminate force in what she seems to think is a capricious quest to murder as many Palestinian children as possible, instead of a highly restrained military operation tightly targeted on terrorists. Ocasio-Cortez didn’t call for violence, but she carved out an area of respectability for a certain type of anti-Semitism, and others were only too happy to rush in, fists flying.
It turns out, if you ignore all evidence, turn Israel into the villain in your morality play, and insist that Americans have a “responsibility” to do something about Israel, the thing that they will do is beat up American Jews, throw rocks through the windows of American synagogues, and harass Jews who try to speak up on social media.
Senator Bernie Sanders published his own dangerous anti-Israel harangue, . . . which began, “No one is arguing that Israel . . . does not have the right to self-defense or to protect its people,” even as his own supporters were arguing just that on social media. The comedians John Oliver and Trevor Noah made the same case into their media megaphones, arguing that Israel was wrong to attack the terrorists aiming at Israeli civilians because Israel’s Iron Dome missile-defense system can prevent most (but not all) civilian deaths from Hamas rockets.
People like Ocasio-Cortez and Sanders (and too many other progressive members of Congress, unfortunately) are greatly concerned about whether Israel’s response to Palestinian terror meets a standard of acceptable “proportionality.” But what are the acceptable numbers in America of Jews assaulted and synagogues vandalized?