The 16th annual Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW), a series of worldwide anti-Israel events, took place in the United States and Canada March 21-28, 2022. Activities included celebrations of Palestinian heritage and criticism of Israel’s policies that, while contentious, were not problematic. However, a notable segment of the events engendered intense controversy and accusations of antisemitism.
The Holocaust – the systematic murder of six million Jews and millions of others by the Nazis and their collaborators during World War II – stands out as a preeminent example of modern-day state-sponsored mass murder. Despite the Holocaust’s distinctive status, or perhaps because of it, politicians, activists and other public figures often invoke inappropriate Holocaust comparisons to highlight the ostensible “danger” of a social or political act.
A week of violent Islamist extremist attacks in Israel beginning on March 22, 2022, left 11 people dead and many more wounded. The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) claimed responsibility for two of the attacks, and released a video of two of the terrorists swearing an oath of allegiance to the terrorist group in a video released online.
The ADL Center on Extremism has, with a high degree of certainty, identified “Clandestine,” the man behind the viral biolab conspiracy theory, as Jacob Creech, a self-described former restaurant manager and Army National Guard veteran living in rural Virginia. The discovery highlights how a fringe QAnon figure, harnessing the power of social media, sparked a viral conspiracy theory that – in just a few weeks – made its way from QAnon to the world stage, amplified by Tucker Carlson, white supremacists Nick Fuentes and Vincent James, members of the Proud Boys, and Steve Bannon – and even the Kremlin.
Mainstream social media companies have allowed Nation of Islam (NOI) leader Louis Farrakhan’s antisemitism and anti-vaccine disinformation to once again find a home on their platforms. In the days since Farrakhan’s annual Saviours’ Day address was broadcast on February 27, 2022, videos of the hours-long speech have received over 500,000 views across dozens of YouTube channels and Facebook pages.
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, extremists and antisemites across the ideological spectrum have used the war as fodder for promoting antisemitic conspiracy theories. Emanating from classic antisemites and white supremacists, as well as QAnon influencers and Proud Boys acolytes, classic tropes of Jewish power, financial control and “abuse” of the Holocaust narrative abound online. In just a few short weeks, tens of thousands of social media users have been exposed to these dangerous lies.
The Nation of Islam (NOI) held its annual Saviours’ Day event on February 27, 2022. The event, which commemorates the birth of NOI founder Fard Muhammad and culminates in a keynote address by longtime NOI leader Louis Farrakhan, regularly features extensive antisemitic, bigoted and conspiratorial rhetoric.