Can an African American Be Anti-Semitic? A Tutorial on Black Anti-Semitism



INDEX/TABLE OF CONTENTS:

1. History
2. More Recent History
.... a. Professor Leonard Jeffries
.... b. Congressman Keith Ellison
.... c. Rev. Jeremiah Wright
.... d. Rev. Al Sharpton
.... e. Rev. Jesse Jackson
.... f. Alice Walker
.... g. Marc LaMont Hill
.... h. Michael Bennett
.... i. Ms. Lauryn Hill
.... j. Joy Karega
.... k. Dieudonne
.... l. Cynthia McKinney
.... m. Danny Glover
.... n. Cornel West
.... o. Reggie Bush
.... p. Harry Belafonte


HISTORY

Anti-Semitism has had a long history among African Americans. In the 1920s, for instance, the 'buy-black' campaign of the black-nationalist leader Marcus Garvey was explicitly targeted against Jews, and Garvey later spoke admiringly of Adolf Hitler.

In February 1948 the black writer James Baldwin acknowledged how widespread anti-Semitism was in his community, writing: "Georgia has the Negro and Harlem has the Jew." Baldwin later succumbed to such views himself when he wrote that while Christians made up America's true power structure, the Jew "is doing their dirty work." He went on to denigrate Jewish financial support of civil rights organizations as mere "conscience money."

Malcolm X, too, was a vociferous anti-Semite both publicly and privately. According to author Murray Friedman, when Malcolm met with representatives of the Ku Klux Klan to solicit their support for his project of black separatism, he "assured them" that "it was Jews who were behind the integration movement."

The prominent role that Jews played in the American civil rights movement did little to diminish black anti-Semitism. When the movement first began to gain traction in the late 1950s and early 60s, the front-line troops in the Montgomery bus boycott and then in the lunch-counter sit-ins were all blacks; but among the whites who soon rallied to the cause, a disproportionately large share were Jews. The Freedom Riders rode in integrated detachments, and two-thirds of the whites, were Jews.

A few years later, in 1964, came the "Mississippi Summer," a black-voter-registration project conceived and organized by a Jew, Allard Lowenstein. According to Friedman, Jews made up from one-third to one-half of the white volunteers who took part. Of the three volunteers who lost their lives in the project, two -- Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman -- were Jews.

In his book Blacks and Jews, Paul Berman reports that Jews contributed one-half to three-quarters of the financial support received by civil rights groups in the 1960s. The organizational support they provided was equally pronounced. All over the United States, Jewish organizations assigned staffers to work on civil rights initiatives. In those days, writes Berman, "it was almost as if to be Jewish and liberal were, by definition, to fly a flag for black America."

Then, just as the struggle for civil rights achieved its cardinal victories with the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, many of its black activists began to turn away from their original goals, taking up instead the cause of “Black Power.” The driving motive of Black Power was the venting of rage over racial humiliation, a rage that the earlier civil rights movement had insisted on subordinating to the strategy of nonviolence and sublimating in the rhetoric of Christian love.

This rage manifested itself within the civil rights movement's own organizations, where the presence of whites in leading positions -- and indeed at all levels -- was now regarded as an intolerable affront. CORE and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, which had been on the cutting edge of the fight for integration, suddenly became racially exclusive.

With whites in the movement redefined as oppressors and opportunists, and with so many of the whites being Jews, some of the new hostility was bound to assume an anti-Jewish tone. In 1968, during a New York City school strike, leaflets were distributed by blacks attacking Jewish teachers as "Middle East murderers of colored people."

MORE RECENT HISTORY

In more recent decades, a number of leading black activists -- some immensely popular and influential -- have become vocal exponents of anti-Semitism. Stoking the fires of racial grievance and victimology, they aim to imbue fellow blacks with contempt for, and envy of, Jews. Some of these anti-Semites serve as Imams or ministers at major mosques across the country. Others work as chaplains in America's prison system. Others have established themselves as leaders of the contemporary civil rights movement.

According to a poll from the Pew Research Center during the 2014 Hamas attack on Israel, "While 47 percent of whites see Hamas as the instigator and 14 percent blame Israelis, 35 percent of Hispanics side with the Palestinian group Hamas on this issue, versus 20 percent with Israel. And blacks were split on the question, with 27 percent faulting the Israelis and 25 percent faulting the Palestinians." Similarly, "Hispanics and Blacks were less sympathetic to Israeli policy, with 35 and 36 percent saying the nation had overreacted, while only 22 percent of whites shared this view."

The left-wing Anti-Defamation League (ADL) even noted, "For many years, anti-Semitic views among African-Americans have remained consistently higher than the general population. In 2013, 20 percent of African-Americans expressed strongly anti-Semitic views, an encouraging decrease of nine percentage points from the previous survey in 2011."

Professor Leonard Jeffries:

City College of New York professor Leonard Jeffries, for instance, contends that, "Rich Jews who financed the development of Europe also financed the slave trade." He charges that Jews have greatly exaggerated the horrors of the Holocaust, and he once described Jewish academicians who disagreed with his views as "slick and devilish and dirty and dastardly."

Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan also has a long, well-documented history of diatribes about the "white devils" and Jewish "bloodsuckers" who purportedly decimate America's black community from coast to coast. He has referred to Judaism as a "gutter religion," and to Adolf Hitler as "a wickedly great man."

Congressman Keith Ellison:

A disciple of Farrakhan, Congressman Keith Ellison from Minnesota, has the backing of several top Democrats to become Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC). In the summer of 2016, Ellison was one of three Bernie Sanders representatives on the DNC platform committee who worked to turn the platform away from support for Israel. In 2007, Ellison made a comparison between George W. Bush and 9/11 to Hitler and the 1933 Reichstag fire.

Ellison's public agitation on behalf of the Nation of Islam extends back to his days as a law student at the University of Minnesota Law School through his first attempt to secure the Democratic endorsement for a state legislative seat. Over the years Ellison agitated on behalf of the Nation of Islam he operated under names including Keith Hakim, Keith X Ellison and Keith Ellison-Muhammad. Around 1990, Ellison, then a University of Minnesota law student known as Keith E. Hakim, wrote several columns in the student newspaper that are getting a second look. One column defended Farrakhan against charges of anti-Semitism, and another suggested the creation of a state for black residents. In 1995, Ellison helped organize a delegation to Farrakhan's Million Man March in Washington.

The U.S. Campaign to end the Israeli Occupation, recently rebranded as the U.S. Campaign for Palestinian Rights, is one of the most active BDS groups. As we have covered many times, the U.S. Campaign is active on campuses and in churches urging the boycott of Israel. Ellison received the highest ranking from this U.S. Campaign on its congressional scoring for 2009-2010, the most recent year (as of 2016) for which a ranking exists. The centerpiece of the U.S. Campaign's anti-Israel activism at the 2016 DNC Convention was a panel titled Progressives for Palestine. Ellison was one of the featured speakers. Ellison's vote against increased Iron Dome funding to protect Israel from Hamas rockets was nothing short of bizarre. Ellison appeared to argue that it was unfair to only protect Israel. Ellison also argued to remove the blockade of Gaza during the 2014 war. The blockade is military, and even the U.N., which almost never agrees with Israel on anything, ruled the military blockade to be legal under international law. Now the Democratic Party appears poised to tap Mr. Keith Ellison as its public face.

According to Nation of Islam spokesman Malik Zulu Shabazz, Jewish conspirators possessed exclusive foreknowledge of the 9/11 attacks and saved their own lives that day by not going to their jobs in the World Trade Center. In 2002 Shabazz said: "Kill every goddamn Zionist in Israel! Goddamn little babies, goddamn old ladies! Blow up Zionist supermarkets!"

Shabazz's mentor, the late Khalid Abdul Muhammad, characterized Jews as "slumlords in the black community" who were busy "sucking our [blacks'] blood on a daily and consistent basis."

Rev. Jeremiah Wright:

Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the longtime pastor of Barack Obama during the latter's years in Chicago, was asked by an interviewer in June 2009 whether he had spoken to President Obama since the latter had taken his oath of office five months earlier. Wright replied: "Them Jews aren't going to let him [Obama] talk to me.... They will not let him to talk to somebody who calls a spade what it is."

In a May 2006 appearance at UC Irvine, the Oakland-based Imam Amir Abdel Malik-Ali referred to Jews as "new Nazis" and "a bunch of straight-up punks," telling them directly: "The truth of the matter is your days are numbered. We will fight you. We will fight you until we are either martyred or until we are victorious."

Quanell X, the former national youth minister for the Nation of Islam, was quoted thusly in the Chicago Tribune: "I say to Jewish America: Get ready... knuckle up, put your boots on, because we're ready and the war is going down ... Black youth do not want a relationship with the Jewish community ... All you Jews can go straight to hell."

Rev. Al Sharpton:

Civil rights activist Al Sharpton is another prominent African American whose anti-Semitism has frequently been on public display. In 1991, for instance, after anti-Semitic riots in Brooklyn's Crown Heights section had erupted in response to a Hasidic Jew's accidental vehicular homicide of a black child, Sharpton organized angry demonstrations and challenged local Jews -- whom he derisively called "diamond merchants" -- to "pin their yarmulkes back and come over to my house" to settle the score. Stirred in part by such rhetoric, hundreds of Crown Heights blacks continued rioting for three days and nights, killing an innocent rabbinical student named Yankel Rosenbaum in the process.

Four years later, Sharpton led an ugly boycott against Freddy's Fashion Mart, a Jewish-owned clothing store in Harlem, New York. The street leader of the boycott, Morris Powell, was the head of Sharpton's "Buy Black" Committee. He and his fellow protesters repeatedly referred to the Jewish proprietors of Freddy's as "the greedy Jew bastards [who are] killing our [black] people." The subsequent picketing became increasingly menacing in its tone, until one of the protesters eventually shot four whites in the store and then set the building on fire -- killing seven employees.

Rev. Jesse Jackson:

In January 1984 Jesse Jackson referred to Jews as "Hymies," and to New York City as "Hymietown," during a private conversation with a black Washington Post reporter, Milton Coleman. Jackson assumed -- largely because of what he perceived as his racial bond with the black reporter -- that the references would not be printed in the media. But a few weeks later, Coleman would permit the slurs to be included in another Post reporter's article on Jackson's poor relations with American Jews. News of Jackson's comments set off a firestorm of of controversy. Jackson at first denied having made the remarks, then accused Jews of conspiring to defeat him. Finally, in late February of 1984, Jackson delivered an emotional speech admitting that he had made the remarks in question, and and seeking atonement before national Jewish leaders in a New Hampshire synagogue.
Alice Walker:

Popular American author Alice Walker's 2013 book "The Cushion in the Road" devotes 80 pages to a screed on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict replete with fervently anti-Jewish ideas and peppered with explicit comparisons between Israel and Nazi Germany. The 12 essays of the section, titled "On Palestine," which make up a quarter of the book, are rife with comparisons of Israelis to Nazis, denigrations of Judaism and Jews, and statements suggesting that Israel should cease to exist as a Jewish state. Walker's book also attempts to justify terrorism against Israeli civilians, claiming that the 'oppressed' Palestinians should not be blamed for carrying out suicide bombings. June 2012 she refused to allow an Israeli company to publish a Hebrew edition of her classic novel, "The Color Purple" in protest of what she described as Israel's 'apartheid' policies and persecution of the Palestinian people.

Most recently, Walker wrote a letter calling on the singer-songwriter Alicia Keys to cancel her upcoming July 4th concert appearance in Tel Aviv in protest of Israel's policies. On several occasions Walker seems to indicate that the purported evils of modern-day Israel are a direct result of Jewish values, alleging that Jews behave the way they do because they believe in their "supremacy". She suggests that Israeli settlements are motivated by the concept that "possession is nine-tenths of the law," which she claims is a lesson she "learned from my Jewish lawyer former husband. This belief might even be enshrined in the Torah."

Marc LaMont Hill:

Marc LaMont Hill, a professor at Morehouse College in Georgia who is also a television personality on BET, VH1, and CNN, has a sad history of hatred for Jews and Israel. After the controversy regarding a police officer-citizen shooting in Ferguson, Missouri, Hill was responsible for widespread pro-Palestinian/anti-Israel demonstrations in Ferguson. He, along with the "U.S. campaign against the Israeli Occupation" (now renamed the "U.S. Campaign for Palestinian Rights"), mobilized the local African American community against the Jewish people. This despite that Jews had nothing to do with the incident in Ferguson, Missouri. Hill frequently praises Jew-hater-in-Chief and Nation of Islam founder Louis Farrakhan on his personal Facebook page. Accusing Israel of "apartheid," he is one of the most outspoken proponents of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel and the Jewish people. All of this while he is being paid by four prominent American institutions in spite of -- or perhaps because of -- his Jew-hatred: Morehouse College, Black Entertainment Television, CNN, and VH1.

Michael Bennett:

In early 2017, a group of NFL players led by Michael Bennett of the Seattle Seahawks, refused a free trip to Israel. Among those who also dropped out were Bennett's brother Martellus Bennett, of the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots, Miami Dolphins receiver Kenny Stills, Seahawks' Cliff Avril, San Francisco 49er Carlos Hyde and Justin Forsett of the Denver Broncos. Gilad Erdan, the Public Dipomacy Minister in Israel, had been promoting the trip as a way to foster good will between the players and Israel. Five other NFL players did make the trip.

An open letter published in the antisemitic The Nation and signed by Harry Belafonte, Danny Glover and Alice Walker had urged the players to skip the trip: "The Israeli government sought to use these NFL players, who have tremendous platforms due to their popularity, in an effort to whitewash Israel's ongoing denial of Palestinian rights," said Yousef Munayyer, director of the U.S. Campaign for Palestinian Rights, who initiated the open letter. Michael Bennett's rant against Israel on Twitter echoed the comment by Munayyer, saying that he as being used by Israel and that his hero Muhammad Ali "stood with the Palestinians". He also said the Palestinians have lived on that land "for thousands of years". He concluded his post by saying he is "committed to justice". But not justice for Jews, obviously.

Ms. Lauryn Hill:

In May of 2015, hip hop singer Lauryn Hill canceled her concert in Rishon LeZion after intense pressure from the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement. Jewish Voices for Peace, an anti-Jewish hate group, was quick to praise Hill on Twitter. The BDS movement are proponents of the radical "one-state solution" that has been exposed as a scheme to dissolve Israel as the Jewish state. The Jerusalem Post says the BDS movement receives directives from Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, and the movement is considered extreme even by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas -- who stated his opposition to a BDS boycott of Israel in 2013.

Joy Karega:

In early 2016, Oberlin College in Ohio became the subject of a controversy when it was revealed that one of its professors, Joy Karega, had blamed Israel for the Charlie Hebdo attacks and for ISIS. She also claimed that Jacob Rothschild and his family had financed both sides of every war since Napoleon. Because Joy Karega is African American and claimed that she was being targeted because of her race, several other professors -- mostly black -- stood up for Karega despite her objectionable comments. After five and a half months of discussion, the school removed her from her position, and then fired her for the antisemitic statements in November 2016.

Dieudonne:

Dieudonne is a French name meaning "Gift of God". Dieudonne M'bala M'bala was born to a Cameroon-born father and a French-born mother in France. On December 1, 2003, Dieudonne performed a sketch on a TV show about an Israeli settler whom he depicted as a Nazi. Dieudonne refused to apologize and denounced Zionism and the "Jewish lobby". Dieudonne approached Jean-Marie Le Pen, leader of the National Front political party, and the anti-Semitic men became political allies and friends. Holocaust denier Robert Faurisson appeared in one of his shows in 2008 Dieudonne described Holocaust remembrance as "memorial pornography" and has been convicted in court eight times on antisemitism charges.

Dieudonne has also been known to associate with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad -- President of Iran from 2005 to 2013 -- who has himself been accused of describing the Holocaust as a myth. On February 25, 2015 Ahmadinejad Tweeted "Visiting an old friend, a great artist" and the tweet included photographs of himself and Dieudonne, arms around each other, smiling. The two also met in 2009 during a visit by Dieudonne to the Islamic Republic of Iran -- where they reportedly discussed their shared anti-Zionist views. Further, Dieudonne developed and popularized a gesture known as the 'quenelle', which is an inverted Nazi salute.

Cynthia McKinney:

Cynthia McKinney is a a former member of the Democratic Party from Georgia whoserved six terms in the United States House of Representatives. She was the first black woman elected to represent Georgia in the House. She left the Democratic Party and in 2008 and ran as the Presidential candidate of the Green Party. In the March 29, 2006, Capitol Hill police incident, she struck a Capitol Hill Police officer for stopping her to ask for identification.

In March, 2009, McKinney attended a conference in London on the Gaza crisis organized by a foundation established by Mahathir Mohamad, who was prime minister of Malaysia from 1981 to 2003 and has a long history of anti-Jewish rhetoric. McKinney commented about the London conference in two postings on the Green Party's website in which she praised Mahathir ("one of my heroes") and also a man named David Pidcock, whom she called "my London friend." A British-born convert to Islam, Pidcock is the author of an extensive collection of conspiracy-laden anti-Semitic works, including the 1992 work Satanic Voices Ancient & Modern, which blames most of the world's current and ancient problems on a centuries-old conspiracy whose participants include Freemasons, Illuminati, "Luciferian Zionists," the Rockefeller family, big oil companies and the Council on Foreign Relations. The principal Internet outlet for Pidcock's writings is the website iamthewitness.com, which is devoted to fascist and anti-Semitic writings, prominently featuring The International Jew published by Henry Ford.

For his part, Mahathir Mohamad -- the hero of McKinney -- wrote that "Jewish stinginess and financial wizardry gained them financial control of Europe" and that Jews "are not merely hook-nosed, but understand money instinctively." In a 2003 speech at an international summit of Islamic leaders, he said: "Today, the Jews rule the world by proxy. They get others to fight and die for them. They invented socialism, communism, human rights and democracy to avoid persecution and gain … control of the most powerful countries."

On April 20, 2009 McKinney posted a commentary on the Green Party Facebook page focusing on the international economy. The essay essentially accused financier George Soros and former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan (both of whom are Jewish) of participating in a plot to destabilize the world economy to pave the way for "one-world government."

In 2002, when asked about his daughter Cynthia McKinney using an old endorsement in her primary campaign, Billy McKinney -- who served in the Georgia House of Representatives from 1983 until 2002 -- said that the endorsement would not matter because "Jews have bought everybody. Jews. J-E-W-S."

Danny Glover:

Cornel West:

Cornel West, the son of a Baptist minister, is a retired professor of American Studies who is regarded as a prominent spokesman for left-wing values. In 2011, West called on the University of Arizona to "divest from companies profiting from the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories." In August 2015, Cornel West led a campaign to boycott Israel among students and faculty at Princeton University, saying "Princeton has a moral obligation to divest from Israel and its systematic injustices. He not only compared the current boycott movement on campus to the anti-apartheid movement in the 1970s, but he also stated that Israel has a "brutal and vicious occupation that needs to be highlighted". During his Princeton rally, West appeared with notorious anti-Semitic activist Max Blumenthal.

In 2016, West was appointed by Bernie Sanders to the Democratic Party Platform Committee. While on the Committee, West advocated that Israel-boycott language be added to the official party platform, but it was soundly rejected by his fellow Committee members. He subsequently endorsed the anti-Semitic Green Party ticket for President of U.S., Jill Stein and Ajamu Baraka.

Professor Cornel West is an engaging speaker who has a Minister-like eloquence about his presentations. Before criticizing Israel, he is always certain to invoke his "love" for his "Jewish brothers and sisters". By beginning his hateful and inflammatory rhetoric -- including his goal of the total destruction of the one and only Jewish state -- with niceties, he is able to mislead audiences with eloquence that few others can muster. Despite his praise for "his Jewish brothers and sisters" and his continued insistence that "anti-Semitic hate is evil", West has never once said anything positive about Israel. In accordance with his fellow vile bigots in the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, he wishes to crush any hopes of Jewish self-determination in favor of the total destruction of the Jewish state.

Reggie Bush:

Harry Balafonte:

COMING SOON.


SOURCES:

"Facing up to Black Anti Semitism," by Joshua Muravchik (December 1995).

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