Swastikas. Archive
Swastikas. ArchiveReuters

Sharon Hoota, the Israeli owner of multiple New York City restaurants arrived at his restaurant ZiZi, in Chelsea, last week to find two swastikas spray painted on the restaurant’s outdoor dining shed.

This is not Hoota's first run-in with antisemitism, last December, his Kosher restaurant on the Upper East Side, Hummus Kitchen, saw two incidents within a few days of each other. During the first incident, a woman tore down an American-Israeli flag and threw soup at a restaurant employee. A few days later another woman attempted to cover up the flag displayed outside the eatery and shoved an employee, four days after the original incident.

Speaking to the New York Post, Hoota stated: "This is, I believe, no different than what the Jews saw in the 1930s in Germany.

According to the restaurateur, since the October 7th massacre, 10 Israel/US flags hanging outside of ZiZi have been torn down.

Instead of reporting the hateful vandalism to the police, Hoota told his staff to remove it immediately. "I said, ‘Just take it off.’ I cannot see something like that,” he said.

Hoota told the Post: "I feel unsafe as a business owner, as a citizen, to put the flags outside, and it’s showing again the kind of marking as a Jew, as an Israeli … I’m unprotected. Unfortunately, this type of thing is still happening in New York, and actually, it looks like it’s getting worse.”