Exposing the Vile Antisemitism of the “Pro-Palestinian” Activists

June 24, 2024

This article was originally published in the Jerusalem Post on June 23rd, 2024, written by Adam Milstein

Since October 7th, protests around the globe in support of the “Palestinian cause” have exploded in popularity and tenacity. Anti-Israel and anti-Jewish activists repeatedly, almost religiously claim that they’re not antisemitic but merely “pro-Palestinian”, while celebrating (and sometimes, at the same time denying) the atrocities committed by Palestinian terror groups.

However, it’s almost impossible to find a “pro-Palestinian” rally that isn’t drenched in antisemitic rhetoric, anti-Jewish venom, or stereotypical tropes. They chant “from the river to the sea”, which means the complete annihilation of the Jewish state. They have called on Hamas and Hezbollah to inflict more death and destruction on Jews living in Israel. They have called for violence against Jews in the diaspora. These rallies clearly reveal a veiled antisemitism under the guise of being “pro-Palestine.”

But when confronted about their antisemitism, pro-Palestinian activists cry foul and claim they are merely standing for social justice and human rights. They continue to blatantly exploit the conflict to propagate hate against Jews, even when it requires a gross distortion of the facts. In recent weeks, college campuses have become fertile ground for rampant antisemitism. Despite the obvious levels of anti-Jewish and anti-American vitriol, protestors and activists are consistently referred to and perceive themselves as human rights activists, while the media legitimizes this charade instead of labeling these protestors what they are: antisemites. The complicity of many media outlets helps perpetuate dangerous stereotypes and fosters further Jew-hatred.

The tenor and momentum behind the popularity of the “pro-Palestinian” cause is clear, especially amongst young Americans. Tens of thousands of college students across the country have been brainwashed by radical, Marxist doctrines that view America and Israel as the world’s greatest evils. These radical ideas were systematically spread in the U.S. by the Islamo-leftist alliance, especially in academia. For example, an assistant professor at Humboldt State University in California was arrested for refusing to end an illegal occupation at the university. He declared, “Our arrest on a stolen land and in a place that we consider home is an act of violence.” His response perfectly encapsulates the fact that the enemies of Israel are also the enemies of America and the West. They don’t believe that Israel or the United States should exist. The natural remedy? Violence, revolution, and global intifada.

One of the most insidious tactics employed by these individuals is the use of “anti-Zionism” as a masked disguise for antisemitism.  In New York City, pro-Hamas, antisemitic protestors tried to shut down an art exhibit memorializing the victims of the Nova Music Festival massacre. The protestors waved Hezbollah and Hamas flags and called for a global “intifada” outside the Nova exhibit. The phrase “intifada” is not merely an “anti-Zionist” phrase. It refers to the terrorist uprisings in Israel in the past 40 years that injured and killed thousands of innocent civilians. It’s widely accepted as a call for violence against all Jews worldwide. Media outlets referred to these protestors as “Pro-Palestinian”. Supporting Hezbollah and Hamas, officially recognized terrorist groups who have no interest in peace, is not “pro-Palestinian”. The media’s whitewashing of the protestors’ calls for violence does not advance the cause of peace.

Anti-Israel activists regularly and shamefully use Jewish historical trauma to their advantage. A trending social media video perfectly captures this phenomenon with unintentional irony that would be comical if it weren’t so offensive. Currently with over 2 million views, the video argues that “pro-Palestinian” advocates are silenced by claims that they’re “antisemitic”. They appropriate the post-Holocaust motto for Jewish safety, “Never Again” to vilify Israel. Antisemitic activists use the memory of the Holocaust for the purpose of painting its victim, the Jewish people, as the “new” oppressor in the form of Israel. The video also chooses to call the only Jewish state in the world, “genocidal”, a common choice of many antisemitic activists who claim to be “Pro-Palestinian”. Obfuscating and appropriating Jewish history is a tactic that comes directly from the playbook of terrorist organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah.

Representative Ilhan Omar has infamously and repeatedly used antisemitic rhetoric. Her daughter was among the Columbia students arrested for their illegal encampment, flaunted her antisemitic bona fides. In an attempt to defend the protesters against claims that they’re antisemitic, she said “…we should not have to tolerate antisemitism or bigotry for all Jewish students, whether they’re pro-genocide or anti-genocide.” Rep. Omar was implying that Jews who support Israel are de facto “pro-genocide”. The ADL called out Omar’s comments for what they are, a “blood libel” against Jews.

To combat this troubling trend, media outlets and leaders must acknowledge that these pro-Palestinian activists are antisemitic. The onslaught of protests, boycott demands, divestment campaigns, and slogans must be referred to as “antisemitic efforts”.

Antisemitic protestors choose their words strategically. And too many journalists willfully eat up their obfuscation. Why say “destroy Israel and kill all the Jews there” when you can chant “from the River to the Sea” and hide behind “pro-Palestinian” activism, you should not be allowed to dictate how others describe you. They all use different words and creative framing, but the end goal is clear – to isolate and eradicate the Jewish State, as well as the Jewish people worldwide.

George Orwell once said, “The great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one’s real and one’s declared aims, one turns, as it were, instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish squirting out ink.” “Pro-Palestinian” protests have been spraying out ink for a long time – its color is pure antisemitism.