Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is an investigative journalist and writer focusing on the radical Left and Islamic terrorism.
Two types of people plot attacks against Jewish synagogues and community centers: Nazis and Muslims.
In 1999, Buford O. Furrow, a white supremacist, opened fire at a Jewish Community Center in the Los Angeles area. He wounded three little boys, their teenage female counselor and an elderly female receptionist. He told the FBI that he wanted this to be “a wake-up call to America to kill Jews.”
While Furrow was carrying out his attack, President William Jefferson Clinton was in the White House.
In 2000, Ali Hassan Abu Kamal and Mazin Assi attempted to firebomb a synagogue in New York.
“A bias-motivated attempt to firebomb a synagogue?” the New York Times wondered. “Or a misguided message critical of Israeli policies against Palestinians?”
In 2006, Naveed Afzal Haq used a teenage girl as a hostage to force his way into the Seattle Jewish Federation where he shot 6 women. The Muslim attacker shouted, “You Jews” at the non-Jewish marketing director and shot her in the stomach. The bookkeeper went into cardiac arrest, died at the scene, was revived and died again on the operating table and still lived to testify at Haq’s trial.
“I want these Jews to get out,” Haq could be heard shouting on the phone.
The media attempted to portray Haq as mentally ill. The local alternative paper insisted that his “his anti-Semitic rhetoric” was just a “veneer” on “a man disturbed by feelings of inadequacy and rejection.”
In 2009, James Wenneker von Brunn, a white supremacist, opened fire at the Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C. His rhetoric, claiming that Obama was controlled by the Jews, closely echoed the more recent Squirrel Hill synagogue shooter’s rants about Trump being controlled by the Jews.
This would be one of two major anti-Semitic attacks by neo-Nazis during the Obama years.
That same year, another major anti-Semitic terror plot was broken up by the FBI. But this time the perpetrators were Muslims and the media coverage couldn’t have been more different.
“Look at the Jewish guy. You’re not smiling no more, you f___r. I hate those bastards. I hate those m______s. Those f____g Jewish bastards. I’d like to get one of those. I’d like to get a synagogue. Me. Yeah. Personally,” Abdul Rahman, also known as James Cromitie, had ranted.
The targets of the Muslim terrorists known as the Newburgh Four had been two synagogues. And the media took the side of the anti-Semitic terrorists.
“Newburgh Four: poor, black, and jailed under FBI ‘entrapment’ tactics,” The Guardian had wept. NPR, The Nation, Mother Jones and BuzzFeed all wrote sympathetically of the synagogue terrorists.
Glenn Greenwald at The Intercept simpered over Cromitie as “an impoverished African-American Muslim convert” who “had never evinced any inclination to participate in a violent attack”.
That’s quite a description of the man who had bragged, “With no hesitation, I will kill 10 Jews.”
HBO aired a documentary, The Newburgh Sting, supportive of the synagogue terrorists. It won a Peabody Award.
In 2011, Ahmed Ferhani was arrested after plotting to blow up “the biggest synagogue” in Manhattan. Along with Mohamed Mamdouh, he had considered dressing up as a Hassidic Jew and attacking a synagogue with a gun and a grenade.
“I intended to create chaos and send a message of intimidation and coercion to the Jewish population of New York City,” Ferhani admitted at his trial.
Ferhani was defended by Linda Sarsour and many on the Left. Just two years ago, The Nation headlined a sympathetic piece about the synagogue terrorist as, “A Muslim Man Was Ensnared in a Terror Plot by the NYPD—He Just Attempted Suicide”. The Huffington Post ran a post titled, “An Entrapped Muslim Man Just Attempted Suicide, But Does Anyone Care?”
Both media outlets have accused President Trump of somehow being complicit in the latest synagogue shooting when they are actually the ones who continue to be complicit in anti-Semitic violence.
“The Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting Is the Inevitable Result of Trump’s Vile Nationalism,” The Nation shrieks. This is the same vile rag which has repeatedly defended Muslim synagogue terrorists.
In 2014, Frazier Glenn Miller, a white supremacist, opened fire at the Overland Park Jewish Community Center. He murdered three people. Afterward he shouted, “Heil Hitler”.
Miller had earlier stated, “I have a great deal of admiration Louis Farrakhan,” and admired Iran’s leader because, “he tells the truth about the Jews.”
The only thing he regretted is that all of his victims turned out not to be Jewish.
All this happened under Barack Obama. And Miller had expressed a certain implausible liking for Obama. Like Miller, Obama also had an affinity for Farrakhan, having posed with him, and for Iranian leaders.
There are two groups that plot terrorist attacks against Jewish synagogues and centers in America and Europe: Nazis and Muslims.
The media unequivocally condemns Nazis, but equivocates when the attackers are Muslims.
When a Nazi attacks a synagogue, the media blames Republicans. But when a Muslim attacks a synagogue, the media will claim that he was a mentally ill man entrapped by the FBI. Buford O. Furrow and Robert Bowers are monsters, but Abdul Rahman and Ahmed Ferhani are victims.
President Trump has never expressed an ounce of sympathy for Bowers. Instead he firmly demanded justice. “Anybody who does this deserves the death penalty. When people do this they should get the death penalty and they shouldn’t have to wait years and years. Now the lawyers are going to get involved and we’ll be ten years down the line. Anybody that does this to innocent people who are in temple or in church, should pay the ultimate price.”
It’s the media which has repeatedly expressed sympathy for synagogue terrorists.
The same media busy blaming the Squirrel Hill synagogue attack on Trump would have been defending the terrorist if his name had been Rahman instead of Robert.
And the media has two things in common with the Squirrel Hill synagogue shooter.
Robert Bowers hated Trump. And he hated the Jews in the Trump administration. “Trump is surrounded by kikes,” he complained.
The media responded to Bowers’ attack by going after Jews.
The Atlantic decided to publish an execrable blood libel by Franklin Foer which called for “shunning Trump’s Jewish enablers. Their money should be refused, their presence in synagogues not welcome.” Julia Ioffe, who had previously been fired for a Trump incest tweet, but was hired anyway by GQ, accused Trump of being responsible for the synagogue shooting. But not before blaming pro-Israel Jews.
The media isn’t just exploiting the murder of Jews to attack Trump. It’s even sickeningly exploiting the murder of Jews to attack Jews.
That isn’t opposing anti-Semitism. It’s engaging in it.
When you oppose anti-Semitism, then you oppose the murder of Jews. By Nazis and by Muslims.
By anyone. Period.
The Left’s position on the murder of Jews is wholly politically opportunistic. It opposed the murder of Jews by Hitler, and supported the murder of Jews by Stalin. And now it opposes the murder of Jews by neo-Nazis and supports the murder of Jews by Islamic terrorists.
Its moral preening after the Squirrel Hill shootings is the posturing of a depraved movement.
The same journalists and activists lecturing on Trump’s complicity in the massacre were outraged when he cut funding to the Palestinian Authority terrorists who are being paid to murder Jews.
On a November four years ago, two Muslim terrorists entered a synagogue in Har Nof, Jerusalem.
They used axes, knives and a gun to murder four Rabbis, three of them Americans. Photos showed a floor covered in blood and torn prayer books.
The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine which took responsibility for the attack is popular on college campuses. Its signage is often displayed by campus hate groups like Students for Justice in Palestine. British leftist leader Jeremy Corbyn was photographed with the attack mastermind.
And the payments to the terrorists continued, paid for with foreign aid from the United States.
President Trump has called for ruthless action against the Muslim and Neo-Nazi murderers of Jews. If the media wants to sincerely oppose anti-Semitism, it could take a lesson from him.
Or it can go on exploiting the Neo-Nazi murder of Jews to promote the agenda of the Islamist murderers of Jews.