Massachusetts Democrats, together with Ayanna Pressley, condemn pro-Palestinian challenge mapping Boston Jewish teams – The Forward

(JTA) – At the least 4 Democrats in Congress, together with one vocal critic of Israel, have spoken out in opposition to a Boston pro-Palestinian activist group’s initiative mapping “local institutional support for the colonization of Palestine,” saying the map, which incorporates the names, addresses and workers members of many Jewish organizations, may incite violence in opposition to the Jewish neighborhood.

Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Jake Auchincloss, Seth Moulton and Ritchie Torres every individually condemned the Mapping Challenge this week in statements. Pressley, Auchincloss and Moulton characterize districts in Massachusetts; Torres represents a New York congressional district.

Their statements adopted a denunciation of the map by Boston’s largest communal Jewish organizations.

“There is no doubt that antisemitism and organized, violent white supremacy are at a boiling point in this nation and threaten our communities,” Pressley stated in her statement. She added, “It is not acceptable to target or make vulnerable Jewish institutions or organizations, full stop.”

Pressley’s assertion was notable as a result of she is a member of the progressive “Squad” of representatives who embrace Israel’s strongest critics in Congress, Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar. Pressley herself voted in 2019, shortly after being elected, to sentence the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions motion concentrating on Israel. However since then, she has expressed increasing solidarity with the Palestinian cause.

Final 12 months, throughout Israel’s lethal battle with Hamas in Gaza, she delivered a speech on the Home flooring condemning U.S. support to Israel and saying that the funds “create conditions for oppression and apartheid.” She additionally was considered one of 9 members of Congress, together with Tlaib and Omar, to vote in opposition to sending funds to replenish Israel’s Iron Dome missile protection system.

With out referring to the mapping challenge straight, Pressley in her assertion cited last year’s stabbing attack on a Boston-area rabbi as proof for the must be “vigilant when it comes to keeping each other safe.”

Auchincloss told Jewish Insider this week that the Mapping Challenge’s “actions have the potential to incite violence, especially in a moment of heightened antisemitism and gun violence.” Moulton tweeted that the challenge is “an anti-Semitic enemies list with a map attached.”

Torres, a progressive who has often defended Israel in public statements, stated the challenge was an instance of “scapegoating,” which “is a common symptom of antisemitism.”

A map of purported connections between Jewish teams and different organizations in Massachusetts created by The Mapping Challenge, which says its purpose is to map ‘institutional help for the colonization of Palestine.” Picture by Screenshot

The Mapping Challenge attracts what it says are strains of affect between “Zionist leaders,” operating the gamut from Jewish political organizations and foundations to Jewish day faculties and synagogue teams, and different “harms,” together with native police departments and pharmaceutical corporations. In an announcement on its web site, the nameless group — which has connections to Boston BDS — says its purpose is to “dismantle” these establishments.

The challenge additionally consists of some politicians, together with the state’s two non-Jewish Democratic senators, Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey, in its net of supposed Zionist affect.

Different Democratic political figures who’ve criticized the challenge embrace Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, state Sen. Becca Rausch and Chip Goines, a former organizer for Pressley.

BDS Boston continued to defend the challenge on social media, retweeting messages of help from figures together with Black Jewish writer and theoretical physicist Chanda Prescod-Weinstein. “The vast majority of organizations on the map are not Jewish,” Prescod-Weinstein stated, including that “JewishBoston dot com and Google Maps will literally tell you where all the Jewish orgs are, much more efficiently than this map does.”

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