Left-wing group Bend the Arc: Jewish Action went on a Twitter rampage over Sen. Lindsey Graham’s, (R-SC), criticism of a group of freshman legislators as anti-Semitic.
Bend the Arc is the result of a merger of The Progressive Jewish Alliance and Jewish Funds for Justice which joined forces in 2011. It was founded and funded by George Soros’ son Alexander Soros.
Before the merger, Jewish Funds for Justice received at least $200,000 in funding from George Soros’ Open Society Foundations. Alexander Soros also donated $250,000 to Jewish Funds for Justice in 2011, before it merged to become Bend the Arc Jewish Action, where he is chairman of the board of directors. Since Bend the Arc’s founding, George Soros also gave it at least $1,025,000.
The group’s Twitter conniption fit on July 15, followed the senator’s Fox & Friends interview about President Donald Trump’s electoral chances and Trump’s recent tweets concerning freshmen congresswomen: Rep. Rashida Tlaib, (D-MI), Rep. Ilhan Omar, (D-MN), Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, (D-NY), and Rep. Ayanna Pressley, (D-MA).
In the interview, Graham denounced them for being anti-Semitic, saying, “They accuse people who support Israel as doing it for the benjamins, they are anti-Semitic, they are anti-America.”
Bend the Arc’s Twitter account snapped at him, “STOP WEAPONIZING ANTISEMITISM AGAINST PROGRESSIVE WOMEN OF COLOR. You don't care about Jews, @LindseyGrahamSC. You care about reinforcing white supremacy & the status quo, so you attack progressive leadership & try to divide us. Our Jewish community is having none of it.”
Bend the Arc continued ranting with multiple tweets. One all caps rant added, “STOP USING ANTISEMITISM TO PROP UP YOUR RACIST POLICIES AND RHETORIC. STOP DEHUMANIZING PEOPLE OF COLOR & IMMIGRANTS. AMERICAN JEWS ARE NOT YOUR POLITICAL FOOTBALL AND WE REJECT EVERY BIT OF YOUR WHITE NATIONALISM.”
Never-Trumper and executive editor of The Washington Examiner Seth Mandel slapped back at liberals rushing to defend the Congresswomen in a July 16, tweet, “I confess to still being baffled by the apparently common malady that prevents the human brain from being able to register that white nationalism and left-wing antisemitism are both bad. I hope they find a cure.”
In spite of Bend the Arc’s attacks, Graham was just one of many who have condemned the congresswomen for anti-Semitic statements they’ve made in recent months. Democratic leadership as well as Jewish individuals, organizations and newspapers have called them anti-semitic too.
Democratic leaders condemned Omar for anti-Semitism in February. Many Jewish organizations, figures and Jewish news publications have also called them out for various anti-Semitic remarks..
In March, eleven Jewish organizations penned a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, (D-CA), and House Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY) demanding Omar’s removal from her committee assignment.
“Rep. Omar’s presence as a keynote speaker to raise funds for Islamic Relief USA, whose parent organization and chapters have documented ties to terrorist organizations, demonstrates that she has learned next to nothing over the last few weeks when she was reprimanded by your office and by other Democrats for posting ugly, anti-Semitic attacks on Jews and their organizations.”
Orthodox Jewish Newspaper Hamodia also published an op-ed on Feb. 26, saying, “Omar’s numerous statements against the ‘evil doings’ of Israel and her outspoken support of BDS mirror that of another freshman Democrat, Muslim Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib. Tlaib’s anti-Semitic rhetoric and push for legal warfare against the Jewish state are not surprising, coming from a woman known for her long association with Jew haters and Holocaust deniers.”
“Perhaps the most conspicuous progressive line of the new female ‘axis of evil’ is Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez,” Hamodia argued.
Even the liberal Washington Post reported on Feb. 11, that “Jewish groups questioned the kid-glove treatment for Omar and Tlaib” in an article concerning Omar’s anti-Semitic tweet — “It’s all about the Benjamins, baby” (referring to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee).
After Tlaib alleged Palestinians created a safe-haven for Jews following the Holocaust, Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon condemned her remarks saying, “@RashidaTlaib your words are both grossly #antiSemitic and ignorant. You should take some time to learn the history before trying to rewrite it.”
Bend the Arc hasn’t just sided with the congresswomen against this latest criticism. It has an open letter campaign #CloseTheCamps, which piggybacked off Ocasio-Cortez’s comparison of U.S. border security detention centers and Nazi concentration camps. Many Jewish groups attacked the comparison for “insulting the victims of genocide,” but Bend the Arc didn’t only defend it, it created a campaign with similar language.
Jewish News Syndicate reported that Bend the Arc said outrage should be directed at the Trump administration, not Ocasio-Cortez’ language.