Is Occupy Wall Street anti-Semitic?

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Are the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations anti-Jewish? That is what the Emergency Committee for Israel is claiming in a new video (below). The video features clips of Democratic politicians expressing sympathy for the OWS protesters, followed by clips of some protesters alleging a Jewish conspiracy controls the banking cartels that exploit the American people.

Of course, the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations are not anti-Semitic or anti-Jewish. That is to say, some of the participants are surely anti-Semitic, just as some are surely anti-Black, some are surely anti-Asian, and some are surely anti-Gay. All of these haters are probably found at OWS in more or less the same proportion as they appear in the rest of the population.

The attempt by the Emergency Committee for Israel to paint the entire
Occupy Wall Street movement as anti-Semitic when its messages are only
representative of an extreme minority and condemned by a large majority is a shoddy, sloppy example of how right-wing elements in the Jewish community cynically smear their ideological, and now their economic, opponents.

What the Emergency Committee for Israel has actually done by producing this pathetic piece of propaganda – as has Commentary magazine and other outlets, by uncritically re-broadcasting this disingenuous disinformation – is revealed that they are card-carrying 1%-ers. They are choosing sides against the exploited 99%. They should have the integrity to do so honestly.

But when they try to scare off other Jews from supporting the OWS protesters with obviously false claims of pervasive anti-Semitism, they are engaging in the lowest form of cowardice. As the 99% finally rises up, the 1% knows they will soon receive their comeuppance. So these modern-day slave-masters, the 1%, are trying to hide behind the skirt of American Jews, the 2%.

They are also stupid for not doing their homework; upwards of 88% of Israelis support the July 14th Movement, the ‘Israeli Summer’ that predated the ‘American Autumn’. Most Israelis agree that the wealthiest 1% are responsible for their economic woes. And here, it’s not just some CEOs that are Jewish, it’s almost every single one. Does that make nearly all Israelis anti-Semitic, as well?

David Sheen is a reporter and content editor at Haaretz Newspaper in Israel and has authored award-winning blogs on ecological sustainability and social justice. His website is

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