Anti-Semitic Threats And Sectarian Splits

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Rabbi Joshua Bolton of the University of Pennsylvania's Hillel center surveys damaged headstones at Mount Carmel Cemetery  in Philadelphia. (Jacqueline Larma/AP)
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Jewish cemeteries vandalized. Community centers threatened. The shooting in Kansas City. What’s going on?

The first words out of President Trump’s mouth before Congress this week were about civil rights, threats against Jewish Community Centers, vandalism against Jewish cemeteries, and the shooting of an Indian immigrant in Kansas now being investigated as a hate crime. He condemned hate and evil. But a wave of threats and attacks has also coincided with his campaign and presidency. This hour On Point, a hate crime fever, and the role and reaction of President Trump. — Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Jonathan Greenblatt, CEO and national director of the Anti-Defamation League. (@JGreenblattADL)

Richard Cohen, president of the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Jane Eisner, editor in chief of the Forward, a Jewish national news organization. (@Jane_Eisner)

From Tom’s Reading List

The Wall Street Journal: New Wave of Anti-Semitic Threats Rattle U.S. — “Jewish organizations and schools in more than a dozen states were evacuated Monday after receiving threatening phone calls, marking the fifth wave of such incidents this year. Police investigated bomb threats against Jewish community centers in New York and New Jersey, all of which were deemed safe and reopened for business.”

BuzzFeed: Federal Cyber Crime Officials Are Investigating Jewish Center Threats And If A “Troll” Is Involved — “The FBI Cyber Crime Division is among the units focusing on the spate of bomb threats to Jewish centers and schools — and one line of inquiry for the bureau is whether a ‘troll’ is involved, a liaison between the Jewish community officials and the FBI who was briefed by federal agents told BuzzFeed News.”

Forward: How Did Jewish Cemeteries Become Battlegrounds For Bigots — Again? — “What do these cowards want? To inflict harm for the hell of it? To make a statement? To infuriate or frighten? It’s not the first time in the past few years that Jewish cemeteries have been damaged; these incidents have occurred elsewhere in the United States and Europe. But in this fraught political moment, when anti-Semitism that had been long dormant is being aroused and given social permission by even top White House officials, it’s impossible not to see these incidents as part of a larger, more incendiary trend.”

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