The Black Hebrew Israelites were the same hate group that harassed a group of Covington, Kentucky high school students on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial earlier this year. The media tried to portray the radicals as victims and falsely labeled the students racist. But over the weekend, a man with interest in the group went on a stabbing rampage during a Hanukkah celebration. In response to the revelation, CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News omitted that fact from their Monday reports on the attack.
While CBS and NBC did note the attacker was an anti-Semite, ABC’s World News Tonight was on the only broadcast network program to mention the attacker’s interest in the anti-Semitic hate group.
“Investigators say journals recovered from Thomas's home appear to ‘express anti-Semitic sentiments’ and refer to the ‘Black Hebrew Israelite’ movement, some of its members espousing hatred toward Jews,” reported correspondent Stephanie Ramos. “Prosecutors say there were also references to Hitler, ‘drawings of a star of David and a swastika.’”
Ramos circled back to the Black Hebrew Israelite connection again when she reminded viewers that the attack “comes just weeks after three people were killed at this kosher grocery store in Jersey City.” Adding: “One of the suspects posting anti-Semitic comments online and expressing interest in the Black Hebrew Israelite movement.”
In an online video, ABC News showed off the court documents that made reference to the Black Hebrew Israelites. “The term ‘ebinoid Israelites’ appears to be a reference to the ‘Black Hebrew Israelites’ movement, in which groups of African-Americans assert that they are the descendants of the ancient Israelites,” the documents said.
NBC News was currently being sued by Nicholas Sandmann, one of the Covington students, for defamation because of how they vilified him in their reporting and accused him of being an instigator. Yet, CNN, who was also being sued by Sandmann, actually managed to cover the attacker’s ties to the Black Hebrew Israelites.
“From the 37-year-old's home, investigators say recovered handwritten journals ‘expressing anti-Semitic sentiments’ and referenced to the Black Hebrew Israelite movement, which asserts they are the true descendants of the ancient Israelites and the Jews are interlopers,” reported CNN’s Miguel Marquez during Monday’s Erin Burnett OutFront.
Adding: “The teachings of the same group were connected, says a law enforcement official, to the attack on a kosher market in New Jersey earlier this month.” ABC’s online video also made that connection.
The transcripts were below, click "expand" to read:
ABC’s World News Tonight
December 30, 2019
6:38:48 p.m. Eastern
WHIT JOHNSON: We want to turn now to the suspect in that machete attack at a Hanukah party in New York. He's now been charged with federal hate crimes. Grafton Thomas was already faced attempted murder and burglary charges for the stabbings at a rabbi's home. Within hours, he was under arrest. And what authorities say they found in his car and on his phone led to those new federal charges. Here's ABC's Stephanie Ramos.
[Cuts to video]
STEPHANIE RAMOS: Tonight, hate crime charges filed against 38-year-old Grafton Thomas, accused of stabbing five people with a machete during Hanukah celebrations in the New York suburb of Monsey.
Investigators say journals recovered from Thomas's home appear to "express anti-Semitic sentiments" and refer to the "Black Hebrew Israelite" movement, some of its members espousing hatred toward Jews. Prosecutors say there were also references to Hitler, “drawings of a star of David and a swastika.”
There were about 100 people inside the rabbi's home Saturday night at the time the attack.
RAMOS: It comes just weeks after three people were killed at this kosher grocery store in Jersey City. One of the suspects posting anti-Semitic comments online and expressing interest in the Black Hebrew Israelite movement.
[Cuts back to live]
In Thomas's car, agents recovered a machete, a knife, and a phone showing searching for local temples and an article about security in the wake of recent anti-Semitic attacks.