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July 16, 2014 0

Vitriol and Violence in European Anti-Israel Demonstrations

While a hand­ful of vio­lent acts have tar­geted Jews in Europe dur­ing the lat­est round of Israel-Hamas fight­ing, the vit­riol has flowed freely. Unde­ni­ably anti-Semitic expres­sions have been widely reported at anti-Israel demon­stra­tions over the past week.

“You Jews are Beasts.” So read the sign at an anti-Israel demon­stra­tion in Frank­furt, Germany.

Cries of “Death to the Jews!” were heard mul­ti­ple times dur­ing a large-scale demon­stra­tion in Paris. Two groups of dozens of demon­stra­tors broke off from the march to attack two synagogues.

anti-israel hitler rally“We are all Mohamed Merah!” was chanted at a demon­stra­tion in Nice, France, refer­ring to the mur­derer of three chil­dren and a rabbi at a Jew­ish school in Toulouse in March 2012.

“Slaugh­ter the Jews!” and “Khay­bar, Khay­bar,” the anti-Semitic slo­gan evok­ing the mas­sacre of Jews in Ara­bia 1400 years ago, were repeated in Antwerp, Belgium.

“Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the gas!” was shouted in Gelsenkirchen, Ger­many, less than 10 miles from the Nazi camp at Hol­beck­shof, where hun­dreds of Jews were sent.

Israeli and Nazi flags were equated on signs at a demon­stra­tion in The Hague.

As French Pres­i­dent Fran­cois Hol­lande suc­cinctly and clearly expressed on July 14, “Anti-Semitism can­not be used because there is a con­flict between Israel and Palestine.”

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July 14, 2014 1

Disturbing Online Messages Say #HitlerWasRight

The pop­u­lar­ity of some dis­turb­ing Hitler-related hash­tags on Twit­ter has grown in reac­tion to “Oper­a­tion Pro­tec­tive Edge,” Israel’s response to the lat­est round of rocket attacks from Hamas and other ter­ror­ist groups in Gaza.HitlerWasRight-hitler-gaza-israel-twitter-hashtag

Many of these responses have included the hash­tags #Hitler­Was­Right and #Hitler­Did­Noth­ing­Wrong, such as:

  • “World needs another Hitler! #Hitler­Was­Right #SavePales­tine #SaveGaza”
  • “#Hitler­Was­Right but he did one thing wrong he let other Jews to live, and they are mas­sacring #Pales­tini­ans today”
  • “#Hitler­Was­Right #Hitler­Did­Noth­ing­Wrong we need a clone of #hitler for #jews #Israel @IsraeliPM”

This online out­pour­ing of anti-Semitism ini­tially appeared in the con­text of the recent series of Nazi and Holo­caust ref­er­ences that flooded social media after Germany’s 7–1 vic­tory over Brazil in the World Cup semi­fi­nals. Some of those wish­ing to protest Israel’s oper­a­tion in Gaza have pig­gy­backed on this phe­nom­e­non, ref­er­enc­ing both Germany’s World Cup vic­tory and Gaza in their #Hitler­Was­Right and #Hitler­Did­Noth­ing­Wrong tweets:

  • “Ger­many won the World Cup– Israel has won mur­der, destruc­tion and dis­as­ter. #iSup­port­Gaza #Hitler­Was­Right? He did what Israel does now”
  • “I am sup­port­ing #Ger­many because #Hitler­Was­Right he killed jews with this rea­son #GAZA #Gaza­Un­der­At­tack #WorldCuptFinal2014Brazil”
  • “2014 FIFA World Cup CHAMPIONS! ***GERMANY*** #Pray­ForGaza #Hitler­Was­Right #Jew­sAre­Hu­manEn­emy #JewsAreRealTerrorist”

Invok­ing Hitler and Nazi Ger­many to demo­nize Israel is not lim­ited to social media. Bla­tantly offen­sive com­par­isons have appeared at a num­ber of anti-Israel protests in the U.S. Below are just a few examples:

  • At a protest orga­nized by the Mil­wau­kee Pales­tin­ian Sol­i­dar­ity Coali­tion, one young woman held a sign that read, “Don’t Do To Pales­tini­ans What Hitler Did To You.”
  • At a pro­test­ in Cleve­land, one sign depicted Israeli Prime Min­is­ter Ben­jamin Netanyahu with a Hitler mus­tache and a Nazi flag jux­ta­posed with an Israeli flag.
  • At a rally in front of the Israeli Con­sulate in Chicago, among the many signs were sev­eral that accused Israel of per­pe­trat­ing a Holo­caust: “End the Pales­tine Holo­caust,” “It was Wrong in Auschwitz, it is Wrong in Gaza!” and “Gaza Concentration/Starvation Camp, Designed, Man­u­fac­tured, Fre­quently Bombed and Man­aged By Israel.”    

A recent ADL poll of anti-Semitic atti­tudes in 100 coun­tries found that knowl­edge about the Holo­caust varies widely depend­ing on the coun­try. In the sur­vey, 54 per­cent of those polled glob­ally responded affir­ma­tively when asked if they had heard about the Holo­caust in Europe dur­ing World War II. Another 35 per­cent of those polled indi­cated they had no knowl­edge of the Holo­caust, and 10 per­cent responded “don’t know.”

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May 23, 2014 8

Anti-Muslim Group Uses Hitler Imagery In Latest Anti-Muslim Ad

anti-muslim-ad-geller

AFDI’s “Islamic Jew-Hatred” ad in Wash­ing­ton D.C.

Pamela Geller and her anti-Muslim orga­ni­za­tion, the Amer­i­can Free­dom Defense Ini­tia­tive (AFDI), has taken its hate­ful anti-Muslim mes­sage once again to the pub­lic in the form of paid adver­tise­ments on pub­lic transportation.

The lat­est con­tro­versy is just one of many inflam­ma­tory adver­tis­ing cam­paigns spon­sored by Geller and her orga­ni­za­tion in a bid to influ­ence pub­lic dis­course on the dif­fi­cult issues of reli­gion and the Mid­dle East conflict.

Geller’s newest ad cam­paign, which began appear­ing on buses in the Wash­ing­ton D.C. Metro area, states, “Islamic Jew-hatred: It’s in the Quran.” The ad also includes a 1941 photo of the Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin el-Husseini, hav­ing a con­ver­sa­tion with Adolf Hitler.

Geller has a long his­tory of pro­mot­ing her big­oted anti-Muslim views through inflam­ma­tory mes­sages in pub­lic spaces, stretch­ing back at least to 2010. These ad cam­paigns are designed to expose Amer­i­cans to what Geller and her orga­ni­za­tion con­sider the biggest threats posed by Islam.

Some notable exam­ples include:

  • July 2012: Geller sub­mit­ted an ad that ran on 75 Metro North train sta­tions stat­ing, “19,250 deadly Islamic attacks since 9/11/01 and count­ing. It’s not Islam­o­pho­bia. It’s Islamorealism.”
  • Sep­tem­ber 2012: After a New York fed­eral dis­trict court ruled that the New York City MTA vio­lated Geller’s First Amend­ment right, AFDI’s “Sav­age” ad appeared in sub­way sta­tions. The inflam­ma­tory ad read: “In any war between the civ­i­lized man and the sav­age, sup­port the civ­i­lized man. Sup­port Israel. Defeat Jihad.”
  • 2010 “Honor Killing Aware­ness Cam­paign”: A series of ads were placed on buses and taxi cab tops pur­port­edly to address young Mus­lim women fac­ing threats from their fam­ily for reject­ing Mus­lim val­ues or becom­ing “too Amer­i­can­ized.” The cam­paigns appeared under sev­eral names, includ­ing “Refuge From Islam” and “Leave Islam Safely.”

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has crit­i­cized Geller and AFDI for “con­sis­tently vil­i­fy­ing the Islamic faith under the guise of fight­ing rad­i­cal Islam;” how­ever, acknowl­edges that the ads are pro­tected polit­i­cal speech under the First Amend­ment. ADL is also on the record stat­ing that “Pro-Israel doesn’t mean anti-Muslim. And sup­port for Israel is not built on anti-Muslim and anti-Arab stereotypes.”

Geller’s lat­est ad cam­paign is in response to an April 2014 anti-Israel ad by the vir­u­lently anti-Israel group Amer­i­can Mus­lims for Pales­tine (AMP). AMP also has a his­tory of pro­mot­ing extreme anti-Israel views through inflam­ma­tory ads on pub­lic trans­porta­tion aimed at demo­niz­ing and dele­git­imiz­ing Israel. In March 2013, on the eve of the Jew­ish hol­i­day of Passover, AMP unveiled an ad on sev­eral New York City Metro North sta­tions falsely accus­ing Israel of “apartheid.”

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