Israel-Gaza conflict has generated disturbing backlash against American Jews
From New York and California to Illinois and Utah, the recent conflict between Israel and Gaza has generated a disturbing backlash against American Jews – who have found themselves the targets of death threats, hate speech and violent physical attacks.
“Stop telling me this is about Israel and Gaza,” said a New Yorker who was confronted by a pro-Palestinian mob on his way to synagogue this week. “My people are being targeted across the United States in broad daylight. This is textbook anti-Semitism, and we will continue to live in danger until the public starts to recognize it for what it is.”
His remarks were a common refrain rippling across U.S. Jewish communities in recent days. Here’s a look at some recent incidents throughout the country.
Troubling footage emerged late Thursday showing pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian protesters clashing on a midtown Manhattan sidewalk, despite Israel and Gaza having reached a ceasefire agreement earlier in the day. Police confirmed that two commercial fireworks were thrown from a car and one person suffered minor burns.
New York Jews were already on edge from a disturbing video that showed an older man being viciously beaten by a gang of pro-Palestinians for wearing a Yarmulke as he attempted to cross a street in Times Square earlier in the day. Police said their Hate Crime Task Force was investigating the gang assault and urged the public to come forward with information.
“Wearing a Kippah in NYC always felt safer than anywhere else in the world,” a prominent New York attorney told Fox News. “I’ll never take mine off, but I will for the first time have to teach my children to be careful if they choose to wear theirs publicly,” he said.
Thursday’s escalation came as little surprise to Israeli-Americans Amit Skornik and Snir Dayan, who were personally attacked by a pro-Palestinian mob on their way to grab lunch at a well-known New York City bagel shop earlier in the week.
“Someone with their back to us heard us speak Hebrew. … He immediately looked at us and then went into the crowd. I didn’t put too much thought into it but around 10 seconds later, he and another 10 people were charging towards us. I got the first punch then we realized that we’re being attacked,” they told Fox News.
The attack occurred less than 10 days after a Jewish man was left bloodied and forced to seek refuge in a nearby store during clashes between pro-Palestinian and pro-Israel supporters outside the Israeli consulate in New York. Close to 150 demonstrators returned to the consulate on Thursday, wreaking havoc and reportedly shutting down traffic in the area before police made more than a dozen arrests, the New York Post reported.
“My eyes are swollen from crying. This is not the New York City I recognize,” a longtime Big Apple resident told Fox News.