According to the Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) annual audit, there were 3,697 reported attacks—verbal, physical, and online—against Jewish people in the United States last year—the most ever recorded in the history of the organization.
The largest increase of hostilities was against the “visibly Jewish”—the Orthodox Jews. Communities received bomb threats as well as individualized aggressions; white supremacist groups increased their harassment, distributing hate-filled flyers and draping derogatory banners at interstate overpasses and high school football games.
The ADL’s report, which was released on Thursday, found that 10 antisemitic attacks happened every day (statistically)—a 36 percent increase over 2021 and the highest total since 1979, when ADL first started keeping track of violence against Jewish people.
The increases could not be traced to one single cause or group, but there is no doubt that anit-Jewish conspiracy theories were popularized by Kanye West’s attacks on Jewish people and the NBA’s Kyrie Irving promotion of an antisemitic movie.
On Oct. 27, Irving tweeted a link to “Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America,” a 2018 film driven by antisemitic tropes about Jewish people lying about their origins. Among its false and outlandish claims is the assertion that the Holocaust never happened. (source)
There were incidents in all 50 states, and the rise in attacks was across all major categories: vandalism, assault, and harassment. Overall, there were more bomb threats and attacks against Orthodox Jews and more white supremacist propaganda activities.
In 2022, the ADL reports that there were 2,298 incidents of harassment, 1,288 vandalism acts, and 111 physical attacks. Attacks or assaults were defined as physical attacks on Jewish people or those thought to be Jewish, accompanied by evidence of antisemitism. Orthodox Jews—because they are more visibly recognizable as Jewish—received the brunt of the attacks. They accounted for 53% of the victims, and the majority of those (60%) were in New York (Brooklyn).
Assaults ranged from a neo-Nazi at a rally in Florida attacking a Jewish person to an hours-long rampage in New Jersey where an attacker caused serious injury to four Orthodox Jewish people. An Arizona professor was killed in an antisemitic attack—even though he wasn’t actually Jewish, but the assailant thought he was.
Incidents of antisemitic propaganda circulated by white supremacists doubled to 852. And the use of swastikas in vandalism rose by 37% from 2021 (to 792 times). New York had the highest concentration of antisemitic incidents, with California, New Jersey, Florida, and Texas following behind.
There were 91 bomb threats against synagogues and other Jewish institutions. Celebrity-inspired incidents—most linked to the aforementioned Kayne West—also rose sharply. Dozens of incidents (59) appear inspired by comments from West and Kyrie Irving, also mentioned above.
The FBI reports that Jewish people are the most targeted religious minority for hate crimes in America.
Antisemitism has been compared to a mutating virus, that makes itself compatible to its host. This is why we have antisemitism on the extreme right and left. There is Christian antisemitism and Jihadist antisemitism. It is in leftwing universities and Klan rallies.