Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer (D – N.Y.) on Monday slammed boycotts of Israel and called anti-Zionism a “modern brand of anti-Semitism” in a speech on the Senate floor.
Schumer praised French President Emmanuel Macron for identifying anti-Zionism—the denial of the Jewish people’s right to self-determination—as “a reinvention of anti-Semitism” over the weekend.
“Anti-Semitism is a word that has been used throughout history when Jewish people are judged and measured by one standard and the rest by another. When everyone else was allowed to farm and Jews could not; when anyone else could live in Moscow and Jews could not; when others could become academics or tradesmen and Jews could not. The word to describe all of these acts is anti-Semitism,” Schumer said, explaining why Macron’s formulation was appropriate. “So it is with anti-Zionism; the idea that all other peoples can seek and defend their right to self-determination but Jews cannot; that other nations have a right to exist, but the Jewish state of Israel does not.”
Schumer specifically identified the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel as being the leading purveyor of this unjust standard. “The BDS movement is a deeply biased campaign that I would say, in similar words to Mr. Macron, is a ‘reinvented form of anti-Semitism’ because it seeks to impose boycotts on Israel and not on any other nation,” Schumer observed.
The minority leader observed that many states, including New York, have enacted legislation “boycotting the boycotters.” He also noted with satisfaction that the fight against anti-Semitism “has not lent itself to partisanship” in the Senate, and expressed his hope that senators on both sides of the aisle would “join me in condemning this modern brand of anti-Semitism, as Mr. Macron did this weekend.”
Diverse public figures including former British Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt, Pope Francis, and Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres have also denounced anti-Zionism as a form of modern anti-Semitism.
[Photo: Senator Schumer / YouTube ]