News Release

Antisemitism: Does Israel Really Care?

Rabbi ALISSA WISE, alissa at jewishvoiceforpeace.org, @jvpliveAlissaShira
Deputy director of Jewish Voice for Peace, Rabbi Alissa Wise said today: “On MSNBC on Monday, in a discussion of the killing of 11 Jewish people in a synagogue in Pittsburgh by a white supremacist, Israeli ambassador to the United States Ron Dermer defended U.S. President Trump’s widely criticized response to the shooting. Echoing Trump in 2017 when he said there were ‘a lot of fine people’ on ‘both sides’ of a white supremacist demonstration in Charlottesville that left one counter-protester dead, Dermer stated: ‘I see a lot of bad people on both sides who attack Jews.’ He added: ‘Antisemites are usually not neo-Nazis, on college campuses. They’re coming from the radical left. We have to stand against antisemitism whether it comes from the right or whether it comes from the left.’

“For an Israeli diplomat to compare college students defending Palestinian human rights to a mass murderer is reprehensible, insulting and frankly dangerous. Criticising Israeli policy or defending Palestinian human rights is not in any way antisemitic. However, employing white supremacists, as Trump and other politicians have done, is indeed antisemitic. Moreover, making false claims of antisemitism is dangerous, as the events this week have show, because these false claims distract from the dangers of real antisemitism.

“The Israeli ambassador’s false allegation that students on the ‘radical left’ are as dangerous as white supremacists betrays Israel’s true lack of concern for Jewish safety. Even in the wake of the deadliest attack on American Jews in history, Israel has shown how it is yet again willing to jeopardize the safety of the American Jewish community in order to maintain its close relationship with Trump, all in pursuit of the goal of Israeli domination of Palestinian lives and land.”

See recent statements form Jewish Voice for Peace: “First Ever: 40+ Jewish Groups Worldwide Oppose Equating Antisemitism With Criticism of Israel“; “JVP Is Deeply Concerned as Controversial Kenneth Marcus Confirmed to Office of Civil Rights“; “Antisemitism Bill Is a Cynical Attempt to Silence Human Rights on College Campuses.”