- The Washington Times - Monday, July 15, 2019

President Trump’s Justice Department is aiming to cut down on anti-Semitic discrimination, hosting a summit in Washington, D.C., Monday to draw attention to the uptick in attacks against the Jewish community, with the attorney general calling racial hatred a cancer on society.

Attorney General William P. Barr said that although the anti-Semitic shootings at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh last year and the shooting in April at Chabad of Poway in California made national news, other acts of discrimination against Jews have gone largely unreported.

He said his agency has seen a spike in violence against Orthodox Jews in New York City within the Crown Heights neighborhood. He also noted a Jewish cemetery in Massachusetts that had been vandalized, as well as college students who support Israel being attacked on campuses.

“I want to assure the Jewish community that the Department of Justice and the entire federal government stands with you and will not tolerate these attacks,” Mr. Barr said at the Justice Department’s Summit on Combatting Anti-Semitism.

According to the FBI, anti-Jewish hate crimes account for more than half of the hate crimes nationally each year. Jews have also faced discrimination against their businesses and through zoning laws in some areas across the country, the attorney general said.

“Today is about far more than criminal prosecutions. We need to combat anti-Semitism on all fronts as a government, but also as a society,” Mr. Barr said.

Monday’s summit at the Justice Department was the first to combat anti-Semitism since Mr. Trump came into office.

Other members of the president’s cabinet also spoke at the event. FBI Director Christopher Wray noted in March his agency probed 287 threatening phone calls, emails and bomb threats to Jewish Centers and the Anti-Defamation League.

Steven Mnuchin, the president’s Treasury Secretary, said he is proud his agency has used sanctions to disrupt funding and isolate human rights violations, while Secretary of the Department of Education Betsy DeVos said the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement is plaguing college campuses.

The BDS movement focuses on a boycott of Israel, with a special focus on economic interests.

“These campus bullies claim they sand for human rights, but we all know BDS stands for anti-Semitism,” Ms. DeVos said.

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