Duvi Honig
Duvi HonigOrthodox Jewish Chamber of Commerce

Liberal US Jewish organizations and college groups have undoubtedly played a role in planting the seeds of the antisemitism on college campuses and around the world. The promotion of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement engaged in by some of them, such as JStreet, as well as the propagation of the false dream of Hamas wanting peace, have contributed to the growing hatred and discrimination against Jews and the State of Israel.

Many have opened their eyes as their synagogues were attacked and they themselves or their children were targeted with antisemitism solely because they are Jews, whether or not they are observant or obviously Jewish. But others still promote the naive kumbaya beliefs they used to skewer the Jewish State.

In recent years, liberal US Jewish groups and college organizations have played a role in planting the seeds to promoting anti Israel sentiment by boycotting the Israeli government and some of its representatives, promoting BDS, and perpetuating the false dream of peace with Hamas on their campuses. The repercussions of their actions and the monster they created are today being felt on their own college campuses, turning around and biting them. Jewish individuals on their own campuses face increasing attacks and violence because of the animal they created.

The ostracizing of individuals in the Israeli Government whom they publicly banned from their College campuses and synagogues, this because they spoke out clearly against terror groups like Hamas, demonstrates the unfair treatment and misunderstanding of those who advocate for Israel's defense and safety out of their luxurious homes in the USA. They are now beginning, hopefully, to know that they are unconnected to reality.

The treatment of individuals like Bezalel Smortich, who was ostracized for speaking out about the dangers posed by terror groups like Hamas and advocating for Israel's defense and safety, is an example of the unfair and unwarranted treatment by liberal US Jewish groups and college groups. Smortich, who had firsthand experience of the constant threat of violence and terrorism, was disaffiliated and excluded from embassy events and invites due to misinterpretations of his character, words and ideals. It is crucial to acknowledge that he never had malicious intentions or initiated violence against Palestinian Arabs, but spoke solely about prevention or self-defense when attacked. He was never given the chance to clarify his views.

With recent attacks resulting in the murder of over a thousand Jews in a single day, the urgency and significance of Israel's defense measures are evident. It is clear that Hamas is a dangerous terrorist organization that must be confronted and defeated. The failure of liberal US Jewish groups and college groups to recognize their past mistakes in judgment and embrace the current Israeli government as a whole is a disservice to the Jewish community and the State of Israel. it is rebounding in their faces on college campuses and in the Senate hearing for the three college deans who could not condemn calls for genocide against Jews.

Have they learned anything? The Orthodox Jewish Chamber of Commerce, which is at the forefront of fighting the pro-Hamas rallies and working with the US government to hold those accountable for the attacks on Jewish individuals, is calling on liberal Jewish groups and college groups to be proactive in their support of the Israeli government and embrace reality. It is crucial for these groups to show unconditional support and even apologize for their role in creating an environment that has allowed antisemitism to thrive on college campuses and around the world.

The fear that liberal Jewish groups on college campuses, once they feel safe, may lead anti-Israel rallies and advocate for a ceasefire with Hamas, is a valid concern.

These groups must acknowledge their past mistakes and commit to supporting Israel's right to defend itself against terrorist organizations like Hamas. The consequences of failing to do so will only perpetuate the cycle of antisemitism and put the Jewish community, including their own, at risk.

The recent results of the November 2023 National Survey of Jewish Voters highlight a concerning trend regarding the views of younger Jewish College age voters when it comes to the Israel-Palestine conflict and President Joe Biden's handling of the situation. The fact that nearly half of Jewish voters aged 18-35 feel that Biden is overly supportive of Israel, as well as being against the US vetoing the UN ceasefire resolution, suggests that there is a significant generational divide in political opinions among American Jews and shows the crooked Leftist ideology won’t stop even with another Holocaust G-D forbid.

One important factor to consider is the impact of social media and other online platforms on shaping the views and opinions of younger Jewish voters. The rise of social media has provided a platform for a wide range of voices and perspectives on the Israel-Palestine conflict, and this has led to increased awareness and engagement among young people, with Israel not able to do enough to counter months of inflated Palestinian Arab civilian casualty images. (On the other hand, Alan Dershowitz and others have spoken out.)

There are many different organizations and groups within the Reform and Leftist Jewish community that have varying perspectives on Israel and the Middle East, and these organizations have a great deal of money and often play a role in shaping the views of those they target.

Call To Action;

It is imperative for liberal Jewish groups and college groups to recognize the role they have played in the current climate of antisemitism and discrimination against Jews.

1.The boycott of the elected Israeli Government, promoting Smotrich as a terrorist while he was looking out to save Jewish lives, and when his warnings, if embraced, would have prevented Oct 7th from happening

2. The promotion of the BDS movement as if it’s a way to protect Israel, and the false dream of Hamas wanting peace contributed to the growing hostility and hatred towards Jews around the globe and the State of Israel.

It is time for these groups to take responsibility for their actions, apologize for their past mistakes, and show unwavering support for the Israeli government's efforts to ensure the safety and security of the Jewish people. Only through this acknowledgment and commitment to change can the seeds of antisemitism be uprooted and a path towards understanding and peace be cultivated.

Duvi Honigis founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Orthodox Jewish Chamber Of Commerce and J-biz Expo.