A meeting of the left-wing advocacy group ‘Jewish Voice for Peace’ in San Francisco Sunday was attacked by right-wing Zionists from ‘SF Voice for Israel’ who, wrapped in an Israeli flag, harassed and intimidated meeting attendees, pepper spraying two attendees at point-blank range causing their skin to be burned.This is not the first time that ‘SF Voice for Israel’ members have attacked either pro-peace or pro-Palestinian groups. At a protest last year, ‘SF Voice for Israel’ members photographed the faces of attendees, then threatening them, saying, “You’re all being identified, every last one of you…we will find out where you live. We’re going to make your lives difficult. We will disrupt your families…” The threat was captured on video, and a police report was filed.
Attacks on Jews organizing meetings for equal rights for Palestinian by right-wing Zionists have been increasing in intensity and severity in recent months, both in Israel and in the U.S.
According to analyst Alex Kane, “In Israel, there was the organized attack by the group Im Tirzu on the New Israel Fund for the liberal group’s funding of organizations that cooperated with Richard Goldstone’s team investigating war crimes committed during the 2008-09 assault on Gaza. There’s the anti-boycott legislation currently in the Israeli Knesset that would effectively criminalize Israelis supporting the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement.br />
‘And in the most recent manifestation of Israel’s turn towards proto-fascism and the shutting down of internal dissent, the Israeli government has taken to threatening the cutting off of money to artists who are urging the boycott of a cultural center in the illegal West Bank settlement of Ariel.”
While U.S. groups working for Palestinian rights report being verbally harassed by Zionist minorities at most of their protests, the physical assaults by Zionists are not as common.
But in San Francisco, a Zionist minority has moved from verbal threats to physical assaults against pro-Palestinian activists. In the incident on Sunday, ‘SF Voice for Israel’ member and Oakland-based attorney Robin Dubner was identified as the perpetrator of the assaults on the pro-Palestinian Jewish activists.
Retired attorney Glen Hauer was one of the meeting attendees who was assaulted. He reported, ”When one of the intruders [Dubner] continued standing and filming people despite the facilitator and facility manager repeatedly telling her that she could not, I first asked her politely to please put away the video camera, then several times told her to put away the camera, and then tried nonviolently to stay in front of the camera with my body. I could have taken the camera but decided instead to talk to the woman and to try to be the only person she photographed.’