May 30th, 2021 – The Gaza Operation “Guardian of the Walls” which was a military campaign that began after May 10th sent the world into further instability due to the rise of anti-Semitic attacks that the ADL recorded since the launch of the operation. Hamas had started this recent conflict allegedly due to the recent occupation and takeover of the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in East Jerusalem.
Hamas delivered an ultimatum to Israel to remove all its police and military personnel from both the Haram al Sharif mosque site and Sheikh Jarrah by May 10th at 6pm; If it failed to do so, they announced that the combined militias of the Gaza Strip (“joint operations room“) would strike Israel. Minutes after the deadline passed, Hamas fired more than 150 rockets into Israel from Gaza.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said that seven rockets were fired toward Jerusalem and Beit Shemesh and that one was intercepted. An anti-tank missile was also fired at an Israeli civilian vehicle, injuring the driver. Israel launched air strikes in the Gaza Strip on the same day. The following day, the IDF officially dubbed the campaign in the Gaza Strip, “Operation Guardian of the Walls”.
There has also been instances of anti-Muslim sentiment across the world, including one that occurred at a well-known pub in United Kingdom recently. Both ordinary Jews and Muslims who have nothing to do with this conflict are at the receiving end of this racism that seems to be permeating out of the blue. But everyone knows it’s social media and the propaganda floating around about this conflict that is hurting us the most.
Due to this conflict, news stations across the United States and the world have reported an alarming uptick in anti-Semitic attacks including where a Christian man who was friends with the Jewish patrons of a diner in Los Angeles was viciously attacked by “Palestinian Sympathizers” who do not speak for the cause. The attacks were finally condemned by U.S. President Joseph Biden in a statement on the Official White House website and on Monday May 24th, Biden also stated the following on his Twitter page.
This sudden surge in anti-Semitic attacks something not seen during previous Middle East Conflicts due to Social Media posts. A BBC journalist was only recently condemned for her anti-Semitic remarks in 2014 and launching a Twitter trend known as #HitlerWasRight which has resurfaced after the recent fighting.
The conflict has also fueled political decisions among state representatives and Congressional members to attempt to condemn or to prevent any company that affiliates with the BDS (Boycott, Divestments & Sanctions) Movement from doing business. It has also made it to the music industry in the United States when the music group Rage Against the Machine, singer Roger Waters of the band Pink Floyd and Serj Tankian have called on other artists to boycott Israel and pause concerts in Tel Aviv.
Former U.S. President Donald Trump appeared to show no sympathy towards minorities in the nation and not condemning white supremacists during the 2020 campaign, telling the far-right Proud Boys to, “Stand back and stand by“. The following is a list of a few examples of anti-Semitic attacks that have occurred:
Instances of anti-Semitic Attacks Worldwide
- In the United Kingdom, a slew of attacks like the assault of a rabbi in North London and a convoy of cars driving through the city with passengers yelling “F*** the Jews, rape their daughters” prompted Prime Minister Boris Johnson to pledge support for the Jewish community amid what he described as an “unprecedented” rise in anti-Semitism.
- In Germany, Community Security Trust, a charity that records anti-Semitic threats in Britain, told Forbes it has received nearly 140 reports of Jews being threatened since the escalation of conflict between Israel and Gaza, a roughly 400% increase, with “almost of all of them” involving “language, imagery or behavior” related to the fighting.
- Meanwhile, Germany’s leading Jewish organization, the Central Council of Jews in Germany, has also flagged an alarming rise in hate speech and attacks against Jews both online and at rallies in multiple German cities, including a at protest in front of a synagogue in Gelsenkirchen at which some protesters were recorded chanting, “Sh*tty Jews”.
- In the United States, on May 25th around 2am Nazi stickers were put up on a sign in Alaska. About 45 minutes later, another sticker was placed on the main entrance door to Mad Myrna’s, a gay bar in downtown Anchorage, and some of the stickers above and below the swastika were the words, “WE ARE EVERYWHERE”. Alaska’s State Representative Alma Hernandez publicly condemned the incident on her Twitter account showing the damage done by the vandals.
In New York City, a man at Times Square was attacked by a group of suspects around May 20th. They were shortly caught after about a week and a suspect, 25-year-old Faisal Elezzi of Staten Island, was one of the men identified by NYPD. They are accused to beating 29-year-old Joseph Borgen in the middle of the busy street.
And in Tucson, Arizona, a synagogue was vandalized around May 19th about 8:30pm Tuesday night. The second suspect showed up to Speedway Boulevard & Sahuara Avenue at around 8 a.m. the next day.
Conflation of Jewish people and the Israeli Government’s Policies
This surprises me that people cannot distinguish between Ordinary Jews and the Israeli government they are supposedly upset with and this is only going to get worse due to ignorance and lack of understanding of the conflict.
As a Jew myself by blood, I have had myriad arguments with my non-Jewish friends who think that me or every Jewish person across the world has Benjamin Netanyahu on speed dial and can just call him up and say, “Hey Bibi, do you minding toning down the violence against the Palestinian people? I would sure appreciate it if you can, bye!“.
It is sickening that there are people with racist mindsets who are permeating into pro-Palestinian groups who use their ideology as a cloak to spread their anti-Semitic sentiment. This is a blatant hijacking of groups that are meant to bring stability to that region but instead it’s only hurting the Palestinians and their cause increasingly so since this recent conflict in Gaza.
New York City has been experiencing unusually high amount of anti-Semitic incidents in a city where nearly 2 million Jewish people reside and call home. For example, an Orthodox Jew was attacked by three suspects in the Brooklyn section allegedly chanting, “Free Palestine!” and “Kill ALL the Jews!“. Brooklyn’s Assembly Member Shimon Eichenstein wrote on twitter asking for the suspects to be brought to justice.
Every movement has been poisoned by violent and racist individuals who seek to destroy it from the inside.
Humans in general are tribalistic and prone to violence by nature. In simpler terms, human beings have a strong affinity to belong just like some animal species. You don’t see a rabbit sleeping in a wolves’ den, do you? The same is for humans.
I bring up an example of an American who ventured off to the North Sentinel Island off the coast of Myanmar in the South Andaman Sea, The tribespeople on this island has virtually been cut off from the rest of the world and when they encountered the outsider, he was ultimately killed. It is not a perfect analogy but the point is, their first course of action to eliminate the foreigner is to kill it.
Social Media Deception on Both Sides
After a brief search on Google, I could not find many sources that claim BDS was working with them. I am not saying it’s not true but the claim seems to be unsubstantiated. I am not against StandWithUs, I love their other posts. I have witnessed both pro-Israeli and pro-Palestinian groups/pages slinging propaganda like hot cakes.
I feel that this conflict is utilizing social media to fuel tensions to garner sympathy for both sides which is NOT morally right. This is due to social media being in a way, influenced by corporate media interest. I have been isolated by my Jewish and Christian friends for my impartial opinions on the conflict and I won’t back down or browbeat into submission for questioning the conflict blindly.
I have been attacked by fellow Jewish people claiming I am an anti-Semite or a “self-loathing/self-hating” Jew.
It is very alarming that within the past three weeks, left and right leaning Arab and Jewish Israelis in the city of Lod have been squabbling amongst each other causing IDF soldiers to be present to make sure the violence did not spill outside of city limits. Russia Today News has touted that this outbreak in violence and rioting that this was a “civil war” in Israel. Until the occupation of West Bank and Gaza is resolved, the violence and instability will lead to an eventual societal decay of each nation.
The Palestinian issue is not a regional conflict, it is a global conflict that will have repercussions on the rest of the world.