Managing Director of the Coalition of Jewish Values Rabbi Yaakov Menken penned an op-ed in Newsweek published Wednesday that slammed the “Jewish left” for ‘whitewashing’ Georgia Democratic Senate candidate Raphael Warnock’s antisemitism.
In his piece, Rabbi Menken argued that Jews on the Left have “reduced anti-Semitism to a partisan weapon.”
“According to them, whether an individual’s statements about Jews or Israel are bigoted depends entirely upon that individual’s political affiliation—or worse, his or her race,” wrote Rabbi Menken.
For example, he accuses Leftist Jews of failing to condemn Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-MN, for antisemitism, while calling out neo-Nazi David Duke. Rabbi Menken asserts that both figures “say many of the same things about Jews.” Still, he says, it’s “many on the Jewish Left insist that only Duke is hateful—and even claim, deplorably, that it is Omar’s critics who are biased.”
Further, Rabbi Menken says the Jewish Left defended Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-NY, when she compared migrant detention facilities at the southern border to concentration camps. Many Jewish organizations spoke out against Ocasio-Cortez, including Yad Vashem, the U.S. Holocaust Musem, and other prominent groups and individuals, Rabbi Menken notes.
However, the Jewish Left, Rabbi Menken says, “rushed to claim both that Ocasio-Cortez made no such comparison and that the comparison was appropriate—never mind that these claims were mutually contradictory.”
He adds, “These activists were not trying to make a logical argument, but to serve as Jewish shields to block well-deserved criticism of AOC’s disgraceful statements.”
All the while, Jewish Leftists were charging President Donald Trump with antisemitism and “white supremacy” and ‘blaming him’ for the attack on the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, he noted.
“This is how the Jewish Left helped create the environment in which the Rev. Raphael Warnock could conceivably be a major party candidate, much less a viable contender to become a U.S. senator,” Rabbi Menken warned in his opinion editorial.
Warnock has time and time again proved that he’s not a friend of the Jewish people, Rabbi Menken reveals.
For example, “Warnock claims to be a friend of Israel who rejects the odious comparison of Israel to apartheid South Africa and opposes BDS,” but who last year signed a statement that “demonized Israel, made precisely that comparison and endorsed ‘utilizing economic pressure’ against the country,” the Rabbi wrote.
Rabbi Menken pointed to a previous sermon where Warnock, falsely “claimed that Israeli soldiers ‘shoot down’ unarmed Palestinian sisters and brothers like birds of prey.”
At the time, Rabbi Menken’s organization sent a letter to Warnock’s campaign and the Jewish Democratic Council of America (JDCA) asking that they prove “that Warnock had abandoned these repugnant views before running for office—and was not merely saying different things to different audiences to fool those willing to be duped.”
“He, as a spiritual leader, had misused his pulpit to bear false witness,” Rabbi Yaakov Menken
The letter received no response. Instead, many Jewish Democrats chose to criticize President Trump’s decision to appoint Richard Grenell to the Holocaust Memorial Council, inluding Halie Soifer, CEO of the Jewish Democratic Council of America, who accused the former U.S. Ambassador to Germany of ’emboldening actual neo-nazis.’
“The idea that a Republican might have done great things for the Jewish community is as inconceivable to them as the thought that they are endorsing a man who promoted hateful lies about Jews because he is a Democrat,” Menken adds.
Rabbi Menken concludes:
“It is up to the good citizens of Georgia to see past the whitewash. To use a person’s own minority status to shield him or her from the consequences of hate speech is identity politics in its most malignant form. Warnock repeatedly made anti-Semitic statements, for which he cannot be given a pass due to his progressive politics or his racial identity. The push for true equality and tolerance demands no less.”