By: Caroline Glick
On Wednesday, President Reuven Rivlin sent a letter of support to the American Jewish community in the wake of the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, last Saturday.
On the surface, his move made sense – the largest Diaspora community is concerned about the growing profile of viciously antisemitic forces on the Right. But at a deeper level, Rivlin’s move was detrimental.
Rivlin’s letter channeled a communal posture that ignores the actual state of the Jewish community. In so doing, it made it more difficult for Jewish Americans to recognize and surmount the dangers they face.
The American Jewish community is rightly concerned about neo-Nazis and other white supremacist groups that are gaining more and more attention these days. The fact that antisemitism was the dominant theme of a rally ostensibly organized to oppose the removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from a public park reveals the potency and centrality of Jew-hatred as an organizing tool for white supremacists in America.
President Donald Trump’s remarks on Tuesday, where he claimed that only some of the people participating in the protest were white supremacists and the rest were just there to protect a monument, were hurtful. On Thursday, The New York Times published interviews with rally participants that bore out Trump’s claims. They said they were only at the rally to protect the statue and do not harbor white supremacist views.
Maybe they were telling the truth. But it is hard to believe people who oppose white supremacism and Jew-hatred would willingly march under swastika flags to the roar of Nazi chants.