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July 29, 2014 1

Some Anti-Semitism In U.S. In Reaction To Israeli Operations In Gaza

As Israel’s response to the lat­est round of rocket fire from Hamas in Gaza con­tin­ues, some Jew­ish indi­vid­u­als and insti­tu­tions in the U.S. have been tar­gets of anti-Semitism related to the cur­rent conflict.anti-semitic-graffiti-synagogue

In Florida this week, two sep­a­rate anti-Semitic hate crimes des­e­crated a syn­a­gogue and a Jew­ish family’s prop­erty. Con­gre­ga­tion Torah V’Emunah, an Ortho­dox syn­a­gogue within close prox­im­ity to other syn­a­gogues, was spray-painted with the word “Hamas” and swastikas on its front entrance. Addi­tion­ally a Jew­ish fam­ily dis­cov­ered that one of their cars was cov­ered from top to bot­tom with eggs while the other had the words “Jew” and “Hamas” smeared in cream cheese on the windows.

In Mal­ibu, Cal­i­for­nia over the week­end, phrases such as “Jews=Killers” and “Jews are Killing Inno­cent Chil­dren” were found near the entrance to a Jew­ish sum­mer camp.

Last week, anti-Semitic leaflets, which threat­ened vio­lence if Israel does not pull out of Gaza, were left on cars in Peter­son Park, a pre­dom­i­nantly Ortho­dox Jew­ish neigh­bor­hood of Chicago.

On July 17, about two dozen anti-Israel pro­test­ers tar­geted the Florida Holo­caust Museum with graphic images of dead Pales­tini­ans and slo­gans charg­ing Israel with genocide.

Ear­lier this month, the Chabad of South­ern Nevada in Las Vegas was spray-painted with graf­fiti that read “Fre Pales­tine” [sic] and “Free Gaza.”

Sim­i­larly, in Mass­a­chu­setts, the Mon­te­fiore Ortho­dox Syn­a­gogue in Low­ell was van­dal­ized with the words “Free Pales­tine” and “God Bless Gaza” spray painted in red on its white mar­ble walls.

Amer­i­can Jew­ish insti­tu­tions have also been tar­geted online. The Moroc­can Islamic Union-mail hacker group van­dal­ized the web­site of Con­gre­ga­tion Beth Am Israel in Penn Val­ley, Penn­syl­va­nia ear­lier this month with the phrase “end Israeli vio­lence in #Gaza” and an image of Moham­mad Abu Khdeir, a Pales­tin­ian who was killed in Jerusalem by what appears to be a group of Jew­ish extremists.

Addi­tion­ally, the pop­u­lar­ity of some dis­turb­ing Hitler-related hash­tags on Twit­ter has grown in reac­tion to Israel’s “Oper­a­tion Pro­tec­tive Edge,” such as #Hitler­Was­Right and #HitlerDidNothingWrong.

Such anti-Semitism is also evi­dent at many of the anti-Israel demon­stra­tions held in cities through­out the U.S., as well as in Europe, where the State of Israel is often demo­nized with Holo­caust imagery or other anti-Semitic expressions.

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May 15, 2014 7

“Jews Vs. Nazis” Drinking Game Controversy

An offen­sive new Holocaust-themed ver­sion of the pop­u­lar “beer pong” drink­ing game has become a sub­ject of intense dis­cus­sion online and in domes­tic and inter­na­tional media. The game, dubbed “Jews vs.Jews vs  Nazis beer pong drinking game Nazis,” is played by set­ting up two groups of cups, one in the shape of a swastika and the other in the shape of a Star of David.

While the game has report­edly been played across the coun­try in the last few years, the most recent instance came to light after a Twit­ter feed ded­i­cated to anony­mous high school con­fes­sions tweeted a photo of cups set up for “Jews vs. Nazis” on April 27. The photo, which appeared to be from a high school in Florida, was sub­se­quently retweeted 1,800 times, favor­ited over 3,000 times, and cov­ered by the local news.

There are doc­u­mented instances of “Jews vs. Nazis” beer pong on var­i­ous social media sites going back to at least 2011. These pho­tos are fre­quently recir­cu­lated by peo­ple claim­ing they are from a recent event.

The photo from the sup­posed recent game actu­ally first appeared in March 2013 on Red­dit, a user-generated news site. It has since shown up on other blogs and web­sites where drink­ing games are a com­mon topic, as well as on a food blog and the web­site of a Col­orado radio sta­tion, which described five new ver­sions of beer pong for its lis­ten­ers to try.

The March 2013 photo, the most com­monly cir­cu­lated on social media, often also includes the game’s rules. In addi­tion to hav­ing the teams shape their cups into a swastika and a Star of David, the game’s over-the-top insen­si­tiv­i­ties include giv­ing the “Jews” the abil­ity to hide one of their cups as the “Anne Frank” cup and the “Nazis” the abil­ity to “Auschwitz” their oppo­nents, mean­ing that one of their play­ers must tem­porar­ily sit out.

Not only is this game pro­foundly offen­sive, its rules also encour­age anti-Semitism against the “Jew” team. The rules state: “Through­out the game you are sup­posed to talk a lot of s–t and say as many racist things as pos­si­ble to make it more enjoy­able. My Jew­ish friends actu­ally love this game haha.”

This game under­scores once more the crit­i­cal need for Holo­caust edu­ca­tion. A recent global poll on anti-Semitism con­ducted by ADL revealed that only a lit­tle more than half of the respon­dents had heard of the Holo­caust, though that num­ber was much higher in the U.S. where 89% of peo­ple acknowl­edged aware­ness of the Holocaust.

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December 20, 2013 1

Virginia Neo-Nazi Indicted On Threat Charges

On Decem­ber 11, a fed­eral grand jury in Orlando, Florida, indicted Vir­ginia white suprema­cist William “Bill” White on charges of threat­en­ing a Florida judge, a for­mer state attor­ney, and a law enforce­ment offi­cer. The six count indict­ment includes five counts of mak­ing threats over the Inter­net and one count of unlaw­ful use of iden­ti­fi­ca­tion information.bill-white-threat

The charges stem from e-mails allegedly sent by White to the vic­tims and from posts allegedly made by White on the com­ments sec­tions of sev­eral web­pages, includ­ing one belong­ing to the Anti-Defamation League.  The com­mu­ni­ca­tions fol­lowed on the heels of the May 2012 arrests of 14 mem­bers of the racist skin­head group Amer­i­can Front on con­spir­acy and other charges—the vic­tims all had some involve­ment in that case.  Iron­i­cally, almost all of the charges against the Amer­i­can Front mem­bers would later be dropped.

The com­mu­ni­ca­tions alleged to have been sent by White threat­ened to kid­nap, tor­ture, rape, and kill the recip­i­ents, their spouses, and their chil­dren and grand­chil­dren.  Some of the com­mu­ni­ca­tions made pub­lic the home addresses of the victim.

In the threat­en­ing com­ment made on the Anti-Defamation League’s Extrem­ism & Ter­ror­ism blog, the poster (iden­ti­fy­ing him­self as “Joe Tomassi, Charles Man­son and Son of Sam”) wrote that “we are at your house, we are at your kids houses we are at your grand­kids houses and we are sit­ting out­side their schools” (punc­tu­a­tion as in orig­i­nal).  The mes­sage then pro­vided the home addresses of the vic­tims.  It demanded that author­i­ties release the arrested white suprema­cists “or we will be send­ing you a mes­sage writ­ten in blood.”

White is cur­rently in cus­tody in Vir­ginia serv­ing a sen­tence for a 2011 fed­eral con­vic­tion on threat charges.  He also awaits sen­tenc­ing on a more recent con­vic­tion of threat­en­ing his estranged wife. White also pre­vi­ously served two years in fed­eral prison fol­low­ing a 2009 con­vic­tion on threat and wit­ness intim­i­da­tion charges.  In that case, White used his web­site to encour­age vio­lence against the fore­man of a jury in Chicago that con­victed Matt Hale, a promi­nent white suprema­cist, of solic­it­ing the mur­der of a fed­eral judge.

White, a long time white suprema­cist, is the for­mer head of the now-defunct Amer­i­can National Social­ist Work­ers Party, a small neo-Nazi group; prior to that, he was a mem­ber of the neo-Nazi National Social­ist Movement.

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