A Jewish man hit in the face with a brick. An observant woman’s wig pulled off her head. An Orthodox mother and her baby assaulted in the street.

These incidents took place not in 19th-century Russia or pre-war Germany, but in Brooklyn—which has one of the densest Jewish populations in America—in 2019. The recent spike in anti-Semitic attacks in New York against the most visibly Jewish members of our community, the ultra-Orthodox, is a worrying sign in a nation experiencing rising levels of Jew-hatred. Yet the mainstream press and many on the political Left, groups otherwise worried about the supposed rise of racism and bigotry in America, seem blithely unconcerned.

In this podcast, Tikvah’s Jonathan Silver is joined by two Jewish journalists who have given these attacks the attention they deserve. Avital Chizik-Goldschmidt is the life/features editor at the Forward and Batya Ungar-Sargon is the Forward’s opinion editor. Founded in 1897, the Forward has long been a voice of the Jewish Left. Yet among progressives, few have been as honest and clear-eyed as our guests about the ideology that blinds the many on the Left to anti-Semitism directed at the ḥaredi community. In this conversation, Chizik-Goldschmidt and Ungar-Sargon discuss the nature of the recent violence in Brooklyn and Monsey, what might be causing it, and why so many in the media have ignored this slow-moving pogrom.

Musical selections in this podcast are drawn from the Quintet for Clarinet and Strings, op. 31a, composed by Paul Ben-Haim and performed by the ARC Ensemble, as well as the original Broadway cast recording of Fiddler on the Roof and “Above the Ocean” by Evan MacDonald.

Subscribe to The Tikvah Podcast in Apple Podcasts (and leave a 5-star review, please!), or by RSS feed. For all our podcasts in one place, subscribe to the Ricochet Audio Network Superfeed in Apple Podcasts or by RSS feed.

Now become a Ricochet member for only $5.00 a month! Join and see what you’ve been missing.

There are 8 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Yehoshua Ben-Eliyahu Inactive

    American Jews: wake up, pack up, and come to Israel. We are waiting for you with open arms.

    • #1
    • December 4, 2019, at 9:43 AM PST
    • 1 like
  2. Henry Castaigne Member

    Yehoshua Ben-Eliyahu (View Comment):

    American Jews: wake up, pack up, and come to Israel. We are waiting for you with open arms.

    America needs to be the Western Country that’s Jew friendly. Europe is becoming increasingly anti-semitic. There needs to be one Western Country that still protects their Jewish citizens. 

    • #2
    • December 4, 2019, at 12:33 PM PST
    • 1 like
  3. David Foster Member
    David Foster Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    If the US falls under the domination of an anti-Israel Democratic President and Congress, then Israel is going to face a rocky road in the future.

    American “liberal” Jews need, not to pack up, but to *wake* up, and to realize just how hostile to their interests the present-day Left is.

    • #3
    • December 4, 2019, at 2:20 PM PST
    • Like
  4. colleenb Member
    colleenb Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I have heard about these attacks but, indeed, little has been written about them. I don’t know. Maybe it was just me but I felt that the ‘I’ word was skirted around in favor of blaming this on President Trump’s rhetoric. The ‘I’ word is, of course, Islam. There was some mention but more along the lines of attackers being black rather than being Muslim. Remember the Hanafi Muslim attack on Bnai Brith (not spelled right – sorry) in DC? I felt that the HMs were much more motivated by Islam than being black although it was a mixture of both. Could the rhetoric of Islam on the internet and elsewhere have as much, if not more, influence than the President? Unfortunately, the internet’s dark side includes anti-Semitism and racism. I certainly hope these attacks will be covered more thoroughly by the media and spoken of in all of the US Jewish community. 

    • #4
    • December 5, 2019, at 8:06 AM PST
    • Like
  5. iWe Reagan
    iWe Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Yehoshua Ben-Eliyahu (View Comment):

    American Jews: wake up, pack up, and come to Israel. We are waiting for you with open arms.

    And we know there is no discrimination between Jews in Israel!

    • #5
    • December 5, 2019, at 11:34 AM PST
    • 1 like
  6. Yehoshua Ben-Eliyahu Inactive

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):

    Yehoshua Ben-Eliyahu (View Comment):

    American Jews: wake up, pack up, and come to Israel. We are waiting for you with open arms.

    America needs to be the Western Country that’s Jew friendly. Europe is becoming increasingly anti-semitic. There needs to be one Western Country that still protects their Jewish citizens.

    Thanks, Henry. I love your attitude.

    • #6
    • December 5, 2019, at 10:12 PM PST
    • Like
  7. Yehoshua Ben-Eliyahu Inactive

    Henry Castaigne (View Comment):
    There needs to be one Western Country that still protects their Jewish citizens. 

    Thanks, Henry, nice of you to mention that.

    • #7
    • December 6, 2019, at 3:55 AM PST
    • Like
  8. DJ EJ Member

    Wow…they really keeping reaching, reaching, reaching, grasping at straws to somehow some way make Trump responsible for teenagers in Brooklyn attacking Orthodox Jews, the election of Democrat members of Congress who support BDS, and too many other things to list. They repeatedly fail to make any direct connection, instead saying that somehow it’s in the air, culture of rhetoric, and normalized…answers so vague and lacking in any evidentiary basis as to completely discredit their arguments. If only both your guests were looking in the mirror when one of them said “I believe he gets over-blamed for a lot of things…”. It was the most (and only) accurate thing they said in the last 10 minutes of the podcast.

    Also, if Louis Farrakhan is better categorized as being more right wing than left wing, why do so many leftists (Barack Obama, Keith Ellison, Maxine Waters, Al Green, Al Sharpton, etc., etc.) want to meet with him, get their pictures taken with him, and refuse to condemn his virulent Anti-Semitism?

    • #8
    • December 9, 2019, at 6:40 PM PST
    • 1 like