Spate of antisemitic incidents across U.S. causes concern

Neo-nazi flyer denying Holocaust stapled to Jewish Cemetery in Michigan

By
July 25, 2019 17:57
3 minute read.
 A supporter waves her flag during a neo-Nazi rally at the Jackson County Courthouse in Kansas City,

A supporter waves her flag during a neo-Nazi rally at the Jackson County Courthouse in Kansas City, Missouri. (photo credit: DAVE KAUP / REUTERS)

Antisemitic posters, flyers and graffiti have littered different parts of the United States over the past week, with most stating Holocaust denial and preaching neo-Nazi sentiments.

The most recent incident was in Santa Monica earlier this week. Antisemitic graffiti saying the “Holocaust is a lie” was found on a well-known bicycle path in the city, and on a bridge alongside the words, “Why have Jews been kicked out of 109 countries?” and “Nationalism or extinction.”
 
On its Facebook page, the American Jewish Committee in Los Angeles wrote: “We are reminded that antisemitism continues to be a plague in our society.”

 


A police report has since been filed by AJC Los Angeles with the Santa Monica Police Department, and the city said it has since removed the graffiti, according to The Jewish Journal.
 
This is the second such incident in the city since last week, when a swastika and “Holocaust is a lie” were found on a frequented pedestrian bridge. The graffiti was quickly removed by the city.
 
Anti-Defamation League Los Angeles regional director Amanda Susskind told the Journal that it was still not clear if the two incidents were connected, but if they are, “it is even more of a heightened issue for us.”
 
On Wednesday, neo-Nazi flyers denying that six million Jews were killed in the Holocaust, captioned with the words “Is that a challenge? We wish!” and depicting a skeleton dressed in an SS uniform, were found in two areas of Oakland County, Michigan.
According to a statement from the Coordination Forum for Countering Antisemitism, one of the flyers was found stuck onto the gates of the Jewish cemetery in Birmingham.
 
The flyers also encourage readers to join the Atomwaffen Division, believed to be a group of “out of state” neo-Nazis operating in the area.
Similar flyers have also been found over the last few weeks along street posts on the Royal Oaks and Birmingham border, 7 Action News reported.
 
In Cleveland meanwhile, a poster denying the Holocaust was placed at the entrance to the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage that read: “Holocaust = Fake News.”
 
Similar signs were also found at a Massachusetts synagogue, and at two other Jewish centers in other states last week, with the words “Holocaust = Fake News,” and captioned below: “The people that lied about soap and lampshades are lying about gas chambers and ovens.”
 
According to the Associated Press, the museum’s spokeswoman, Dahlia Fisher, said the poster “is troubling” to museum employees and members of Jewish communities in the area, and that the museum was taking steps to ensure the safety of employees and visitors.
 
She declined to discuss what security measures would be taken.
 
Police are investigating these incidents, as well as the similarities of the cases in the different states as being possibly connected.
According to Stop Antisemitism, neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer has reportedly taken responsibility for these posters that have placed across the United States.
 
On Tuesday, “F*** da Jews” graffiti with a painted swastika above it was found outside a church in Denver.
In a separate incident last week, the Hebrew Discovery Center, a synagogue and school in the Woodland Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles, was defaced with paint.
 
In a statement, the AJC Los Angeles condemned the incident as antisemitic, calling it a “vile act.”
 
Dganit Abramoff, AJC Los Angeles acting chief of staff, said that “in the wake of Pittsburgh and Poway, and in light of other recent acts of antisemitic vandalism in the valley, we urge law enforcement authorities to prioritize their investigation into this incident. The trend of antisemitic vandalism, violence, and rhetoric continues to grow, threatening the values that we as a country hold dear. We must unite together with community partners, elected officials and law enforcement to combat this scourge.”
 
According to the Anti-Defamation League, there were 1,879 antisemitic incidents reported in the United States in 2018.
 


JTA contributed to this report.


Related Content

August 22, 2019
The Italian political crisis – what to bear in mind in Jerusalem

By ROSSELLA TERCATIN

Cookie Settings