JERUSALEM, Israel – American Jews studying in Israel are expressing outrage at what they see as a rise in anti-Semitism back home in the United States following the worst terrorist attack in the Jewish state’s history.
Gideon Rown, a student from Baltimore, Maryland expressed his frustration at the anti-Semitism on display across the United States as people demonstrate in support of Hamas amid the war between Israel and the terrorist group.
“1400 people were murdered by terrorists in cold blood in the most horrific way we haven’t seen in 75 years. You don’t see the same type of support because there’s no reason other than being Jewish,” Rone said.
Oran Goodman, another student from Englewood, New Jersey expressed his concerns and confusion as to why people would tear down posters of hostages taken by Hamas.
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“People go around tearing down pictures of hostages. Why? Why would you ever tear down a picture of a hostage?” Goodman asked.
“We weren’t even given the proper time to grieve,” Rone explained. “The protests started the next day in America, against Israel. And, you know, we all know people who died. Two of my friends are being held captive in Gaza and all I could see was people saying how I was wrong, how I was the reason I stayed here. I was the reason my friends are being held captive.”
Goodman says he is having second thoughts about attending NYU next year. Asked if he felt safe going to university, he wasn’t sure. “”I’m still struggling with this. Part of me feels like somebody has to be there because if nobody’s there, then what’s the only voice?” Goodman explained.
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Rone says he feels safer in Israel than he would back home. “I fear far more for them and my family in America than for my well-being here.”
Despite being an American citizen, Beth Levin of the Bronx says she feels a closer kinship with Israel right now, “In America you might be sent to Afghanistan… and you might be fighting in a different country like you’re not fighting necessary for your country In Israel, we are just fighting to exist.”
Levin says she is outraged by anti-Israel protests in her home country.
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“Friends I know who aren’t even Jewish. They started posting things like Free Palestine. They didn’t even realize it at the time. I just loved it– it made me realize how much I want to stay in Israel and how this is my They say it’s for human rights. Just not when it comes to Jewish rights,” he said.
Another student, Joseph Savenor, is shocked by what’s happening, “Seeing all this hate, anti-Semitism, it’s like, why are we turning back?”
Asked if he felt people should be more sympathetic to what happened in Israel, he told Fox News, “I don’t understand how — it’s very obvious that they’re killing our babies. Like, what could be more clear?”
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About half the girls at Beth Levin’s school in Jerusalem left after the massacre. Beth says she never thought about leaving. Neither did any of the other Americans we spoke to. “I never realized how much I want to be here for Israel, because Israel is the place of the Jews. It’s my home. I can’t go anywhere else.” Levin said.
“What is going on in our world? Why is our world upside down?” Goodman asked. “I feel unsafe as an American Jew now. I’ve never felt unsafe as an American Jew,” he said.
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“All over the world, all we see is division, and that’s not what we need,” said Rone.
These students hope by sharing their stories – there will be more support for the Jewish people around the world.