By Kanishka Singh
(Reuters) – Antisemitic incidents in the United States rose by about 400% in slightly over two weeks since war broke out in the Middle East after Palestinian Islamist group Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, advocacy group Anti-Defamation League (ADL) said Wednesday.
The advocacy group’s data – which showed a 388% rise in antisemitic incidents in the U.S. between Oct. 7 and Oct. 23 over the prior year – comes amid monitoring by American authorities of domestic threats due to the conflict.
The ADL Center on Extremism said preliminary data showed 312 reported U.S. antisemitic incidents from Oct. 7 to Oct. 23, including harassment, vandalism and assault.
About 190 of those were directly linked to the war between Israel and Hamas.
Among examples cited by ADL were alleged physical assault; violent online messages, especially on messaging platform Telegram; and rallies where “ADL found explicit or strong implicit support for Hamas and/or violence against Jews in Israel.”
In the same period of 2022, ADL recorded 64 U.S. antisemitic incidents, of which four were linked to Israel.
Antisemitism was already rising in the U.S. before the war. Nearly 3,700 antisemitic incidents were recorded in 2022, more than in any year since ADL began tracking the issue in 1979.
“When conflict erupts in Israel, antisemitic incidents soon follow in the U.S. and globally,” said ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt, urging authorities to provide security and support to Jewish communities.
The U.S. Justice Department has said it is monitoring rising threats against Jews and Muslims amid the conflict. President Joe Biden has condemned antisemitism and Islamophobia.
Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack killed over 1,400 people and Israel’s air strikes on Gaza have since killed over 5,700 Palestinians as of Tuesday, according to Gaza officials.
(Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Washington; Editing by Kieran Murray and Cynthia Osterman)