Group tries to link Occupy Wall Street to anti-Semitism

Tue Oct 18, 2011 7:22pm EDT

NEW YORK (TheWrap.com) - A new ad from the conservative pro-Israel group Emergency Committee for Israel tries to make a startling connection between the Occupy Wall Street protests and anti-Semitism.

The ad, which aired on CNBC Tuesday, shows Democrats including President Obama and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi saying they understand the protesters' message: Pelosi says she supports it, and Obama says the movement "expresses the frustrations that the American people feel."

It then cuts to a sequence of half a dozen people (from among the thousands and thousands of Occupy Wall Street protesters) carrying anti-Semitic signs or expressing anti-Semitic sentiments. It concludes with the message: "Why are our leaders turning a blind eye to anti-Semitic, anti-Israel attacks? Tell President Obama and Leader Pelosi to stand up to the mob. Hate is not an American value."

Give the committee credit for being clever, if nothing else, in its effort to tar the entire movement based on the behavior of a few. (Two Wrap reporters who observed the protests in New York on three separate days did not see any anti-Semitic signs.)

The group did not immediately respond to requests for comment Thursday. Its board includes Weekly Standard editor William Kristol and former Republican presidential contender Gary Bauer.

In an MSNBC interview, Occupy Wall Street supporter Russell Simmons said the ad reflected isolated incidents and nothing more.

"I go down there every day and I see sweet, compassionate and astute people. I see the people who have high aspirations for America who are idealistic," Simmons said, according to Mediaite. "I see the most inclusive group America has to offer."

Expect complaints that the ad unfairly portrays the movement based on the actions of a few to be met with conservatives retorting that liberals have done the same thing to Tea Partiers.

A third politician featured in the ad, former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, says of the protesters, "in my bones, I know they're right." The ad does not note that Spitzer is himself Jewish: A New York Times profile said that his family celebrates both Jewish and Christian holidays (his wife was raised Southern Baptist), but that the family does not "adhere rigorously" to either religion. Still, Spitzer seems an especially unlikely candidate to support an anti-Semitic movement.

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Comments (8)
WChurchill wrote:
This is supposed to be a news article? Really? Is this Molloy person a “reporter”? Really?

Oct 18, 2011 10:07pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Djoser101 wrote:
What is amazing is Tim Malloy’s statement that a group “tries to make a startling connection between the Occupy Wall Street protests and anti-Semitism.” Why is that startling? On the one hand there are several documented incidents of antisemitism at the rallies, but on the other hand Reuters and other media outlets had no problem tarring the Tea Party movement as racist. When Morgan Freeman recently made the claim that the Tea Party was racist why wasn’t that a “startling connection”? I guess it’s just easier for Reuters to imagine racism at conservative rallies than to see real racism and antisemitism at Left-wing ones. Is that the way it is, guys?

Oct 18, 2011 10:12pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
truedat wrote:
I feel this movement crosses normal political boundries. I am sympathetic to elements of the tea party message and I also can sympathize with some of what the Wall St protestors are complaining about.

Here are 3 issues that are bugging me.

1.I’m a union member who works for Verizon.Verizon is a healthy,profitable company.They make billions in profit every quarter.They paid no federal income taxes the past 2 years and somehow even got a tax refund.They also took 1.5 billion $ in bailout money from you and me even though the CEO stated that they did not need any bailout money. So, how do they repay this country and their workers ? By trying to take away my pension, my healthcare plan and most importantly by moving as many American jobs as they can overseas! How does this help America’s economic recovery ? Who are the politicians that allow this? Oh ,and the CEO makes the same amount of money as 300 average employees but I’m not supposed to mention this little fact because if I do then I’m engaging in class warfare. This corporation has no allegiance to this country,only to the stock price. The media won’t say anything for fear of losing ad revenue. There has got to be a middle ground between corporate profits and maintaining a viable middle class in this country.

2. This financial disaster which started in late 2008 and is still going on —- who has done the perp walk for this? NOBODY! NOBODY! As a matter of fact, not only has nobody done the perp walk but these foxes guarding the henhouse got bailed out with our money and even preserved their big money bonuses in the process.Who should do the perp walk ? People who rated absolute garbage debt as AAA,profiting while doing so. Corporate execs who stand up at a meeting and tell the public their company is healthy when they know that it is a house of cards.I lost alot of money in my 401k because of these irresponible clowns. The fact that nobody has gone to jail for this fiasco just makes your average working person feel that the game is rigged.

3. I’ve got kids who’s future I’m very concerned about. Can you imagine how it must feel to come out of college with 100k- 200k of loan debt and the job prospects are almost none ? These kids have been sold down the river before they even get started.

The politicians on both sides of the aisle and the corporate exec who’s attitude is “let em eat cake” needs to know that there is a very large segment of the population that has had it with all of them and is just about reaching a boiling point.

Oct 18, 2011 10:48pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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