Flyers blaming the Jewish community for the Ukraine war were found in Sarasota, Florida over the weekend, the second time similar antisemitic flyers were distributed in the area in recent weeks, the Herald-Tribute reported.
Residents in the Arlington Park neighborhood of Sarasota discovered the flyers in front of their houses on Saturday morning.
“Disgusting – more antisemitic flyers from the 'Goyim Defense League' were found in Sarasota, FL this weekend,” StopAntisemitism.org tweeted. “The flyers are titled ‘Every single aspect of the Ukraine-Russia War is Jewish.’ Zelenskyy and Putin are both pictured wearing kippahs standing at the Kotel in Israel.”
Brian Lipton, American Jewish Committee regional director for the west coast of Florida, told the news outlet that the flyers were reported to them by a resident who lives on a street that was targeted.
The flyers were also reported to the Sarasota Police Department.
“Flyers are just the tip of the iceberg, there's a larger problem here,” Lipton said. “Our surveys have shown that one in four American Jews have been personally targeted by antisemitism in the last year alone.”
The incident on Saturday was the second time that the neighbourhood has been targeted with the same flyers, in each case placed in Ziplock bags weighed down with rice and found at the end of driveways.
Sarasota police said some of the flyers blamed the Jewish community for the Ukraine war but some were of the previous type that blamed the Jewish community for COVID-19.
“They will blame Jews for anything,” Lipton said of the group.
In January, similar antisemitic flyers were found in Miami and Surfside, Florida.
Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said at the time that “hundreds of homes in our community found plastic bags outside their homes filled with a hateful antisemitic flyer and small pebbles.”
He urged anyone with a security camera that might have recorded relevant footage to reach out to police.
Local police and federal agencies were involved in tracking down the origin of the flyers, which were also distributed in other cities across the country.