Jewish community divided over Biden strategy against antisemitism

Jewish community divided over Biden strategy against antisemitism

Credit: Reuters

A 60-page National Strategy to Combat Antisemitism was announced in a video presentation and live-streamed conversation between Susan Rice, Doug Emhoff, Dr. Liz Sherwood-Randall and Ambassador Deborah Lipstadt, the Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism.

Top Israeli figures have come out in support of US President Joe Biden's new strategy. President Isaac Herzog  himself thanked Biden in a tweet on Saturday night: "Thank you for your staunch stand against antisemitism. This is reflected by the first ever national strategy for combating antisemitism issued by your administration."

However, some Jewish organizations critique Biden's antisemitism strategy. Combat Antisemitism Movement Chief Executive Officer Sacha Roytman stated that “the strategy does not highlight enough the threats posed by other, equally menacing and potent, manifestations of Jew-hatred, including from the far-left and the radical Islamist communities in the US. Contemporary antisemitism, in all its forms, must be confronted with the same vigor and resources.”

B'nai B'rith International President Seth J. Riklin and CEO Daniel S. Mariaschin said in a statement that they are “disappointed in the document’s mention of the Nexus definition of antisemitism. We believe that definition allows the more invidious of Israel’s nemeses to hide their animus behind strident criticism of Israel. The important and well-established IHRA definition addresses this issue in a far superior manner.”

One of the organizations chosen to implement some of the strategy was The Council on American-Islamic Relations, a self-declared Muslim civil rights and advocacy group that the FBI severed ties with a number of years ago. “Given CAIR’s checkered history of regularly defaming and demonizing the Jewish people and state, it is not a legitimate partner in the collective effort against antisemitism”, said Sacha Roytman.

Jewish community is divided over the new strategy. "Joe Biden had a chance to take a strong stand against antisemitism and he blew it”, stated the Republican Jewish Coalition.“