By Jon Dougherty for The National Sentinel
(NationalSentinel) During a week in which President Donald Trump called out at least three U.S. lawmakers over their anti-Semitism and outsized praise of militant Islam, the Justice Department has quietly launched a probe of what officials say is a rising tide of Jewish hatred around the country.
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As reported by the Washington Free Beacon, the DoJ sponsored a day-long event on Tuesday to examine cases of rising anti-Semitism — in Democrat-run American cities, on Leftist college and university campuses, and in other places:
The Trump administration is working on multiple fronts to investigate and combat a rising tide of anti-Semitism in America that top officials warned is spreading across the country via a network of far-left, anti-Israel activists, who seek to mainstream hatred against Jews at the nation’s college campuses and elsewhere.
During a daylong conference, the first of its kind for this administration, senior administration officials from across the government gathered with legal experts and scholars to address the growing threat of anti-Semitism, which has resurged in America and across the globe in recent years.
The forum comes amid disclosures by the FBI that hate crimes in the U.S. have risen steadily since 2014, with anti-Jewish hate crimes consistently comprising more than half of totals for each year.
The event was organized by the Justice Department and involved Trump administration officials from the State, Education, and Treasury Departments as they discussed several actions the government could take to prevent tax dollars from being spent on university program that attempt to mainstream anti-Semitic attitudes and ideologies.
In fact, the Free Beacon noted, the Department of Education has already begun a formal probe into how almost a quarter of a million dollars in federal grant money was awarded to Duke and the University of North Carolina for several events that hosted speakers and organizations that preached anti-Semitism but also were tied to known terrorist groups.
The news site reported in June:
Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos informed Rep. George Holding (R., Ga.), a member of the Ways and Means Committee, that she has directed her agency to investigate how these funds were used and whether they violated grant conditions, according to a letter sent to Holding, who had initially requested an investigation into the anti-Israel conference in April.
“I am troubled by the concerns outlined in your letter,” DeVos wrote to Holding, according to a copy of that letter obtained by the Free Beacon.
“In order for the Department to learn more about this matter, I have directed the Office of Postsecondary Education to examine the use of funds under this program to determine if the Consortium violated the terms and conditions of its grant, Department regulates, or the HEA. It is critical that recipients of grants use funds in accordance with statutory and regulatory requirements, as well as for purposes of the program for which they are funded.”
As for the conference on Tuesday, officials in attendance cited troubling data that shows a steady and dramatic increase in anti-Jewish violence across the United States.
“Far too often, Jews and Jewish communities in America suffer outside the spotlight,” Attorney General William Barr said as he began the conference
“New York City, this past year, has seen a sharp uptick in attacks on Orthodox Jews, particularly in the Crown Heights neighborhood. People are attacking Jews in the streets and vandalizing synagogues. In Massachusetts in March, vandals desecrated 59 gravestones in a Jewish cemetery, knocking over headstones and scrawling swastikas and hateful graffiti,” Barr continued.
“While the tragic attacks in Pittsburgh and Poway appropriately drew national attention, these attacks and others like them in communities across the country are, sadly, less well-known outside the Jewish community,” Barr added. “But they form the daily background of concerns about security and safety that many in the Jewish community feel.”
“As attorney general and a fellow citizen, I want to assure the Jewish community that the Department of Justice and the entire federal government stands with you and will not tolerate these attacks,” he vowed.
Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey A. Rosen noted further that the DoJ, under Barr, has “aggressively pursued anti-Semitic hate crimes.”
“Under his leadership, the Department successfully convicted eight members of hate groups for desecrating a synagogue in Nashville, Tennessee; five individuals for conspiracy to interfere with the rights of a holocaust survivor in San Diego through a vicious campaign of anti-Semitic harassment; numerous skinheads around the country for a variety of anti-Semitic crimes; and convicted the neo-Nazis responsible for the murder of the prominent radio host Alan Berg in Denver, Colorado,” Rosen continued. “He also fought against anti-Semitic zoning discrimination in Airmont, New York.”
The conference came as President Trump lambasted freshmen members of Congress who have demonstrated obvious anti-Semitic, anti-Jewish bias before they took office in November and since.
Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), a first-generation American from Somalia, Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), who is of Palestinian descent, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), a ‘democratic socialist,’ have all used language that many believe is distinctly anti-Semitic.
As we reported in February, the Democratic leadership has a problem on its hands:
A report on Monday noted that freshman Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) once penned a column for a magazine founded by anti-Semite Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan even as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is attempting to manage the fallout from another gaffe from a freshman Democratic lawmaker
As reported by The Daily Caller, Tlaib — who is Muslim and of Palestinian heritage — wrote an article in 2006 for Nation of Islam publication Final Call, in what is the latest piece of evidence tying her to anti-Semitic figures.
“Tlaib authored the column in 2006 while working as the advocacy coordinator for the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services (ACCESS), two years before she first won election to the state legislature,” The Daily Caller reported. “Tlaib was described as a ‘guest columnist’ in the article, which argued against deporting immigrants found guilty of ‘minor offenses.’
Meanwhile, Abdel-qader Maher was a key fundraiser for Tlaib’s 2018 campaign; he’s repeatedly promoted anti-Semitic conspiracies online. He took credit on Facebook for raising hundreds of thousands for her campaign.
Tlaib’s column comes to light as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) attempts to mitigate criticism and fallout over a tweet sent by another freshman Muslim congresswoman, Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), who accused a prominent pro-Israel lobbying group of paying lawmakers to support the Jewish state.
As Fox News reported:
Omar, who became the first Somali-American woman elected to Congress in November, responded to a Twitter post by journalist Glenn Greenwald criticizing House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., for threatening to take action against Omar and another freshman lawmaker, Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., over allegedly anti-Semitic remarks.
“It’s all about the Benjamins, baby,” she wrote, quoting a 1997 rap song by Puff Daddy.
Omar’s factually inappropriate tweet drew the immediate condemnation of House leadership.
“Congresswoman Omar’s use of anti-Semitic tropes and prejudicial accusations about Israel’s supporters is deeply offensive,” said Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn and other party leaders in a statement, Politico reported. “We condemn these remarks and we call upon Congresswoman Omar to immediately apologize for these hurtful comments.”
The comment eventually led to a rebuke by the House, but it was so watered down that it was essentially meaningless, as lawmakers refused to identify Omar by name.
Omar was challenged by Batya Ungar-Sargon, the opinion editor of The Forward newspaper, about who was “paying” lawmakers.
“Would love to know who @IlhanMN thinks is paying American politicians to be pro-Israel, though I think I can guess,” Ungar-Sargon tweeted. “Bad form, Congresswoman. That’s the second anti-Semitic trope you’ve tweeted.”
In response, Omar tweeted “AIPAC!” referring to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.
For her part, Ocasio-Cortez has defended the comments of her freshmen colleagues.
As documented by PJ Media in 2015, Muslim groups in the U.S. overwhelmingly donate and support Democratic candidates for federal office.
“An analysis of federal campaign contributions finds that key figures at six of America’s most prominent Islamist organizations have favored Democrats over Republicans by a ratio of 12 to 1 since the 9/11 terrorist attacks,” wrote David J. Rusin.
The views expressed by Tlaib and Omar reflect an overall shift of Democrats away from Israel, especially over the past few years.
A Pew Research poll last year found only 27% of Democrats “sympathize” with Israel – a figure that is roughly even to the 25% of Democrats who sympathize with Palestine.
The same poll found that 79% percent of Republicans “sympathize” with Israel.
For some reason, however, most Jewish-Americans remain loyal Democrats.
In 2016, Hillary Clinton received 70 percent of their votes. And American Jews hold a range of views on Israel. Following the 2018 midterm elections, a leading Jewish publication, the Forward, ran a piece which stated, “it’s simply not the case that the American Jewish community is willing to supply Israel with unconditional support anymore.”
As for Barr’s conference, the AG noted that the anti-Semitism, especially on Left-wing college campuses, is getting out of hand.
“On college campuses today, Jewish students who support Israel are frequently targeted for harassment, Jewish student organizations are marginalized, and progressive Jewish students are told they must denounce their beliefs and their heritage in order be part of ‘intersectional’ causes,” Barr said, referring to several academic causes that attempt to mainstream demonization of Israel and Jews.
“We must ensure—for the future of our country and our society—that college campuses remain open to ideological diversity and respectful of people of all faiths.”