NEW YORK – An intruder stabbed five people Saturday at a Hasidic rabbi’s home in a New York suburb, escalating fears about a surge of violent anti-Semitism in the state.
The attack took place around 10 p.m. in Monsey, Rockland County, about 30 miles north of New York City, during a Hanukkah celebration that was being attended by many dozens of people. According to the Orthodox Jewish Public Affairs Council andHasidic outlets, the assailant was a black male whose face was partially masked with a scarf.
At 9:50 this eve, a call came in about a mass stabbing at 47 Forshay Road in Monsey (Rockland County; 30 miles North of NYC). It’s the house of a Hasidic Rabbi. 5 patients with stab wounds, all Hasidic, were transported to local hospitals.
“The community is terrified,” said Evan Bernstein, the New York regional director of the Anti-Defamation League, who was at the crime scene on Saturday night,according toThe New York Times. “They are very, very scared.”
Jewish conservatives and their supporters on Twitter slammed liberal activists and journalists for allegedly downplaying the anti-Semitic violence.
Jake Turx, the White House correspondent for Ami, a Jewish news magazine, suggested liberals have kept quiet because the attacks — most of which have been attributed to African Americans — do not fit the preferred narrative of a rising white supremacist threat under President Donald Trump.
First they came for the Jews… but I did not speak out, for I wasn’t Jewish.
Then they came for the Jews again… but I did not speak out, because the attacker wasn’t White.
And they came for the Jews yet again… but I did not speak out, because the attacker wasn’t pro Trump.
“How many dead Jews do major publications need before they think this story is worth covering?” Ag_conservative asked.
~2 years of almost daily attacks on Jews in New York with limited or no coverage from most major outlets. Now we have an attempted mass shooting and mass stabbing in 3 weeks. How many dead Jews do major publications need before they think this story is worth covering?
Journalist Mairav Zonszeincomplained shewas “being verbally” assaulted for making similar comments.
I’m being personally attacked and insulted in what appears to be a coordinated fashion – for holding a president who has empowered white nationalists and normalIzed antisemitism. I feel threatened and scared as a Jew for the first time in my lifehttps://t.co/QA3a8IRwUw
Another journalist, Erin Biba, was widely criticized after she said the “situation in NY” is “massively complicated” and urged “solidarity with each other against our shared enemy of white supremacy.” She later made her Twitter account private.
David Klion, an editor at Jewish Current, a left-wing Jewish magazine, faced backlash for opposing demands for greater police protection for Jews in New York hours before the attack — and defending his position afterward.
New York City’s police department had on Fridaystepped uppatrols in heavily Jewish neighborhoods following a spate of anti-Semitic attacks.
“Hate doesn’t have a home in our city,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasiowrote on Twitter,calling the assaults attacks on all New Yorkers.
The NYPD Counterterrorism Bureau is “closely monitoring” the situation,it said on Twitter.
New York Attorney General Letitia James said she was “deeply disturbed” by the events in Monsey.
“There is zero tolerance for acts of hate of any kind and we will continue to monitor this horrific situation,”she tweeted.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Sunday he considers the attack to be an “act of domestic terrorism.”He orderedthe State Police hate crimes task force to investigate.
In more deadly recent attacks, a gunman killed a female rabbi and wounded three people during Sabbath services at Congregation Chabad in Poway, near San Diego, on the last day of Passover in April 2019.
Six months before that, a gunman killed 11 worshipers at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh in the deadliest anti-Semitic attack in U.S. history.
A history of violence
Amid the online rancor this weekend, some Twitter commenters on both the right and left sought to put the problem of anti-Semitism in historical perspective.
Jerry Dunleavy, a reporter at the Washington Examiner, said: “Anti-Semitism is an ancient evil that by no means began with Hitler & the Nazis & by no means ended with them. It’s a parasite constantly searching for whatever new host ideology it can latch onto.”
Anti-Semitism is an ancient evil that by no means began with Hitler & the Nazis & by no means ended with them. It’s a parasite constantly searching for whatever new host ideology it can latch onto. It must be combated whenever & wherever it is found & however it manifests itself.
Daniel Seidemann, a researcher and liberal activist in Jerusalem, said, “Anti-Semitism is an underground river that has flowed immediately beneath the surface –or veneer– of Western civilization for millennia.”
With so many anti-Semitic incidents in so many diverse locations, and with no one specific incident in mind, some hesitant musings.
Anti-Semitism is an underground river that has flowed immediately beneath the surface –or veneer– of Western civilization for millennia.