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U.S. senate working to CRIMINALIZE any criticism of Israel’s genocide with ADL-backed law that will make it illegal to tell the truth
By Cassie B. // Apr 14, 2024

As Israel continues to carry out its genocide of Palestinians in Gaza, criticism of the Jewish state is growing louder, and many Americans are unhappy that their tax dollars are being used to support Israel’s efforts. However, lawmakers don’t seem to care about the will of the people when it comes to this topic. Instead, they are trying to pass a bill that will prevent Americans from criticizing the war in Gaza.

The new bill, known as the Countering Antisemitism Act, would set up a National Coordinator to Counter Antisemitism. This individual would be the president’s main advisor on steps that can be taken to counter antisemitism. It would also create an Interagency Task Force to Counter Antisemitism that would carry out the federal strategies chosen to achieve this aim. The FBI, National Counterterrorism Center, and Department of Homeland Security would have to carry out yearly threat assessments of antisemitic violent extremism.

However, one of the most controversial parts of this questionable bill is the analysis it calls for of online antisemitic content, which will include denying or distorting the Holocaust, along with issuing recommendations to Congress on how the spread of antisemitism online can be countered.

Some of the other provisions include requiring the Department of Education to task an official with overseeing efforts to counter antisemitic discrimination in the nation's universities and a potential overhaul of Holocaust education in public grade schools.

This bill is intended to work in conjunction with Biden’s National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism. This 2023 initiative commanded “all online platforms” to ban what it deems extremist websites and hate speech and enact “zero tolerance” policies in order to protect Jewish people from antisemitism. It is easy to see how this could be applied using a broad definition of antisemitic speech and expanded to cover criticism of the Jewish state's actions in Gaza right now.

Follow the money

The bill was introduced by Republican Senator James Lankford of Oklahoma and Democratic Senator Jacky Rosen of Nevada. Not surprisingly, the America Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) was one of the top contributors to Rosen's campaign, while Lankford’s top campaign contributor from 2017 to 2022 was the Pro-Israel America PAC.

The Anti-Defamation League is backing the bill and praised it online, with ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt writing on X: "The Countering Antisemitism Act is the most far-reaching antisemitism initiative to be introduced in Congress. It offers a smart, bipartisan, whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach to combating this hatred and protecting Jews around the country."

Supporters of the bill are pointing to a rise in antisemitic attacks to justify this need to patrol people’s speech. For example, Senator Lankford said: “In America, we have the right to have a faith and to live that faith. No American should live in fear that they will be attacked simply because of their religious views. As the number of acts of antisemitism continues to rise, Jewish communities across the US deserve action to protect this basic freedom.”

A survey by Pew Research found that the percentage of American adults who believe there is “a lot” of discrimination against Jewish people has doubled in the last three years from 20% to 40%, while nine out of ten Jewish Americans report noting an increase in discrimination.

It’s very telling that the Biden administration thinks that taking away free speech is the only way to stop people from criticizing Israel. While there is undoubtedly a wider motivation at play related to censoring people’s speech in general, Americans might view Israel differently if they weren’t trying to wipe Palestinians off the planet with backing from the U.S.

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