The neo-Nazi BDS Movement continues to exploit the murder of George Floyd to demonize and slander Israel. This is why American Jews (in part) are being attacked during these violent riots. It’s frightening. The Democrat Party seek the votes of these anti-Semitic thugs. Scary times. Exodus!
So now George Floyd is Palestinian, according to this 'Palestinian Museum US' drawing.
— Hananya Naftali (@HananyaNaftali) June 4, 2020
How is this garbage antisemitic content permitted on Twitter from Neo-Nazis like David Duke?! https://t.co/5AKYo6786m
— StandWithUs Israel (@standwithusintl) November 19, 2018
Anti-Israel Activists Falsely Blame Israel for George Floyd’s Death, Stoke Anti-Jewish Violence
By Legal Insurrection, June 3, 2020
We have seen this movie before. Whenever there is a high-profile death of a Black person in the U.S. at the hands of local police, anti-Israel activists try to hijack the anger and redirect it at Israel.
The death of George Floyd in the custody of Minneapolis police is another example. We demonstrate below the background of the incitement and how it predictably has resulted in the targeting of synagogues and Jewish businesses.
Table of Contents
A. Years-Long Effort To Blame Israel For U.S. Policing
B. ‘Deadly Exchange’ Falsehoods
C. Examples of Current Incitement
- Electronic Intifada’s Nora Barrows-Friedman
- Democratic Socialist BDS
- The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald
- Electronic Intifada’s Maureen Murphy
- US Campaign for Palestinian Rights
- “BDS Movement”
- American Muslims for Palestine
- “Palestinian Lives Matter”
D. Targeting Jews Under Cover of Riots
A. Years-Long Effort To Blame Israel For U.S. Policing
For more than a decade, anti-Israel activists have argued that Israel exports its “occupation police tactics” abroad.
In recent years, anti-Israel voices have built on that theme by asserting that cases of police brutality and racism in the United States are a direct result of post-9/11 educational exchanges between Israeli and American law enforcement. The programs, we are told, militarize American police by teaching officers to target ethnic minorities at home in imitation of Israeli anti-Palestinian “oppression”.
We have covered this bizarre conspiracy theory many times. In our 2016 post Exposed: Years-long effort to blame Israel for U.S. police shootings of blacks, we documented:
There has been a multi-year effort by left-wing and Islamist anti-Israel, anti-Zionist, and openly anti-Semitic activists to hijack racial tensions in the United States and redirect that anger towards Israel.
That effort has been on overdrive since the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson and is accomplished through a combination of false and misleading statements regarding the militarization of domestic U.S. police departments and U.S. police training in Israel.
…The intellectual rubric is “intersectionality,” by which anti-Israel activists try to forge links with minority (particularly black) activists by holding out Israel as the key link to oppression around the globe.
We documented how, in Ferguson, anti-Israel activists embedded themselves in the protest crowds and ran their own protests fomenting violence [see Intifada Missouri – Anti-Israel activists may push Ferguson over the edge]:
As much tension as there is, an underreported story is the active role of “pro-Palestinian” activists who have exploited the Ferguson riots and tension this summer and fall to push their anti-Israel agenda. That anti-Israeli agenda, which involves encouraging confrontation with police in solidarity with Palestinians, is helping provide the accelerant to an already volatile situation.
Recently, the effort to tie “systemic” American racism to Israel has coalesced into an organized campaign called “Deadly Exchange: Ending U.S.-Israel Police Exchanges, Reclaiming Safety”, spearheaded by the anti-Zionist non-Jewish group calling itself “Jewish Voice for Peace” (JVP).
We’ve written about the Deadly Exchange initiative in numerous prior posts. As we’ve previously observed, the campaign aims to exploit pre-existing and unrelated domestic racial tensions to stoke hatred of Jews—especially by blaming Israel for police violence—all in the service of building an anti-Israel coalition. Indeed, Deadly Exchange has been heavily promoted by many pro-BDS (boycott, divestment, and sanctions) organizations based in the U.S.
B. ‘Deadly Exchange’ Falsehoods
Deadly Exchange’s conspiracy theories have no basis in fact; there is simply no evidence to suggest a causal relationship between police killings of Black Americans and American-Israeli law enforcement exchanges.
As we detailed in 2016:
It is preposterous to blame Israeli counter-terrorism training for the militarization of U.S. police, much less how a specific police officer acted in a particular situation. Only a miniscule and almost unmeasurable percentage of U.S. police are trained in Israel.
There are several hundred police training academies in the U.S. training tens of thousands of police in the U.S., compared to a few hundred (at most) police who participate in Israeli counter-terrorism training. That Israeli training is focused on counter-terrorism, and usually involves police chiefs who visit Israel for a week of combined seminars and tourism.
A total of 648 state and local law enforcement training academies were providing basic training to entry-level recruits at year end 2006, the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) in the Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice, announced today. An estimated 57,000 recruits entered basic training at these academies during 2005. Eighty-six percent of recruits successfully completed training and graduated from the academy.
The average cost of operating a training academy totaled $1.3 million during 2005. Academies spent an estimated $16,000 per successful recruit.
Nearly all academies trained recruits for careers as local police officers (92 percent), and many academies trained recruits who were hired as sheriffs’ deputies (70 percent) or campus police officers (50 percent). Some academies also trained recruits for careers as state police officers (21 percent), constables (16 percent), tribal police officers (15 percent), natural resources officers (15 percent), or transportation police officers (14 percent).
Those numbers do not even include training by the federal government (pdf.)
So the likelihood is somewhere close to zero that any cop who is involved in a shooting (much less an unjustified shooting) was trained in Israel and the Israeli training contributed to the shooting.
In 2001, shortly after 9/11, I wrote a column asking, “We’re all Israelis now?” That question resonated with U.S. law enforcement agencies, which see Israel as the vanguard of the fight against Muslim terrorism. But as with the argument that Israel’s lobby determines U.S. foreign policy priorities, Israel usually follows the parameters set by U.S. political and strategic elites, not the other way around. For example, the U.S. did not need Israel to reallocate tens of billions of dollars toward domestic defense. Similarly, the half a billion dollars in military weapons given to local police forces through the Department of Defense’s 1033 grants program — a surplus the army was happy to be rid of — was not a result of Israel’s lobbying. It was a natural extension of local law enforcement’s decades-long relationship with the military.
Rather than comparing Ferguson to Israel’s heavy-handed conduct in Gaza and the West Bank, Americans should instead examine their own country’s history of militarized policing. In the aftermath of 9/11, the U.S. military-industrial complex has done pretty well on its own to capitalize on the so-called war on terrorism. As the American Civil Liberties Union described in a 2012 report and again this June, these synergies are part of the dangerous precedents that brought “the war [on terrorism] home.” ….
In fact, the roots of the police violence seen in Ferguson go well beyond the Israel-Palestinian conflict. They lie in Vietnam, inner-cities and the farmlands of California’s Central Valley. The militarization of police and the concomitant view that treats minority communities as enemies needing to be pacified rather than citizens to be served professionally began in the 1960s with the confluence of four factors.
First, the assertiveness of the civil rights movement, particularly the shift toward black militancy after urban riots in several black neighborhoods such as Watts, led major urban police departments to search for more powerful tools to control and pacify potentially insurgent populations. Second, the U.S. military’s counterinsurgency tactics employed in Vietnam were brought to bear on the “urban jungles” and the growing anti-war movement, which was considered a major threat to the ongoing prosecution of the war. Third, the government felt the need to police the growing movement for labor rights, as epitomized by the response to the United Farm Workers Union (UFW) strikes in Delano, California, in 1965.
In fact, a special weapons and tactics (SWAT) team was used for the very first time against the Cesar Chavez–led UFW strike of 1965. The deployment inspired Darryl Gates, then an inspector at the Los Angeles Police Department, to push for making SWAT a major part of his unit. It laid a solid foundation for the rise of militarized policing in the United States.
Fourth, the war on drugs, which was launched in 1971 by president Richard Nixon and focused on communities that were already targeted by SWAT teams; the law and order ethos of the Reagan era, which led to the (increasingly privatized) prison industrial complex; and the militarization of the U.S. southern border with the rise of anti-immigrant hysteria exacerbated militarized policing, with truly damaging results for American society. The concept gained even more momentum after 9/11. In 1985 only one quarter of cities with more than 25,000 inhabitants had SWAT teams. By 2005 this number had grown to more than 80 percent, conducting more than 50,000 annual raids, in part because the federal government requires the military equipment given to municipal police departments be used within one year or returned.
Interestingly, the LeVine article was edited to correct that false statement spread by Khalek and others about the alleged Israeli training of Ferguson police:
Editor’s note: A previous version of this article stated without evidence that Ferguson police officers had received training in Israel. The text has been amended. We regret the error.
C. Examples of Current Incitement
Naturally, the evidence contradicting Deadly Exchange-type propaganda has not stopped anti-Israel voices from hijacking the continuing struggle for Black civil rights and blaming Israel for the killing of George Floyd.
In their rush to exploit legitimate Black grievances to justify Palestinian terrorism, these activists ignore that much of the violence and looting has reportedly been committed by opportunistic criminals perpetuating and then hiding behind chaos in order to steal merchandise; that Black independent business owners were also victimized by wanton looting; and that the violence—especially that perpetrated by extraneous thugs rioting for fun or profit—has now eclipsed and discredited the warranted outrage and peaceful protesters. Instead, they lump all the violence together, attributing it uniformly to the valid protest movement, and thus unwittingly smear its legitimate activists as criminals.
Though quick to hijack legitimate Black struggles for their own political agenda, anti-Israel actors frequently object when mainstream Jewish groups issue their own public statements of support for Black Americans. By blaming Israel for police brutality, anti-Zionists attempt to discredit Jewish efforts to build on a long tradition of friendship between Black and Jewish communities in the United States.
Here are some examples.
1. Electronic Intifada’s Nora Barrows-Friedman
Here, Nora Barrows-Friedman, associate editor of the anti-Israel blog Electronic Intifada, manufactures a connection between Israeli counterterrorism and homeland security studies and the killing of George Floyd.
Interestingly, Barrows-Friedman does not mention that the very article she used in her tweet reports that Sherrif [sic] Stuart’s program focused on “preventing terrorism…and human trafficking”—enterprises that specifically target Black Americans and other Black communitiesaround the world to this day. Nor does Barrows-Friedman mention that the article specifies that “only a few hundred” American law enforcement officials (of many thousands) have taken part in the training since its post-9/11 inception.
These key omissions are par for the course for Barrows-Friedman, who is a long-time anti-Israel agitator. She has spent years as a contributor to multiple anti-Israel publications and published a 2014 book glorifying the work of radical nationwide campus group Students for Justice in Palestine.
2. Democratic Socialist BDS
Others, including the Democratic Socialist BDS cadre, are content to offer even less evidence for similar assertions, preferring to issue only vague comparisons between last week’s clashes between police, rioters, and protesters and Israeli against “violence” Palestinians.
3. The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald
Below, Glenn Greenwald makes a similar statement, but also justifies Palestinian terrorism as “return violence” and even endorses the violence in Minneapolis as “way overdue.”
4. Electronic Intifada’s Maureen Murphy
Maureen Murphy, another editor at Electronic Intifada, ironically insinuates that the Anti-Defamation League’s sponsorship of counterterrorism exchange seminars renders its statement of solidarity in the wake of George Floyd’s death disingenuous.
5. US Campaign for Palestinian Rights
The US Campaign for Palestinian Rights (with the help of an old Amnesty International article that blames Israel for police violence in Baltimore) elaborates. Here, USCPR alleges that Israeli training is responsible for the “racialized, systematized violence” that killed George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery—all Black Americans killed by current or former police officers within the last three months. Indeed, Ahmaud Arbery’s tragic murder is being investigated as an anti-Black hate crime).
6. “BDS Movement”
In a similar example, another umbrella BDS group uses the heartbreaking hashtag #icantbreathe (which George Floyd reportedly struggled to communicate as he was forcibly restrained and his neck pressured) to proclaim “Palestinian solidarity” with the same three victims.
7. American Muslims for Palestine
In a recent mailing entitled “Justice for George Floyd, solidarity with Black people,” American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) declares,
Centuries of institutional oppression against Blacks have been bolstered in recent decades by thousands of US law enforcement personnel being trained in Israel. They are trained by and share “lessons learned” with Israeli counterparts to implement practices of control, surveillance, discrimination, restrictions of movement, repression of social and political movements, torture, and police violence.
However, like many who’ve proclaimed Palestinian solidarity with Black communities in the wake of George Floyd’s killing, AMP’s “solidarity” soliloquy ignores reports that the individual who summoned the police on Floyd in the first place is himself a Palestinian. The man in question has expressed regret for the initial call, reportedly “called police on the police” when he learned of their abuse of Floyd, and has offered his support to Floyd’s family.
Yet few “solidarity” groups have been willing to acknowledge his involvement at all; perhaps because doing so might mean admitting that people of “marginalized” identities can still harbor racism against one another.
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