Anti-Semitism among Florida pro-Batista Cuban Americans


Anti-Semitic graffiti in Miami, Florida, USA

An interesting 27 April 2021 article by Jordan Levin in the USA. Though maybe it talks too much about people of Latin American ancestry in general, while in fact, anti-Semitism is especially a problem among the part of Cuban Americans who prefer the pre-1959 Batista dictatorship in Cuba, supported by the CIA, to the post-1959 situation.

Some quotes:

Antisemitism rises among Hispanic Miami’s right wing

The graffiti messages scrawled around Miami in March, on the eve of Passover and Holocaust Remembrance Day, were shocking: “The Jews are the Problem” “Zionism is Satanism.”

Most ominously in this city filled with Cubans … was this one: “Communism is Judaism.”

The phrase echoed a trend towards antisemitism in Miami’s right-wing Hispanic political circles that have come to dominate this bellwether city:

•In 2018 Miami-based Radio Television Marti, the federally funded broadcaster of anti-Communist messaging to Cuba, ran a report blaming Soros for orchestrating the 2008 financial collapse, and supporting narco-terrorism and Cuban schemes. … the report was exposed and denounced as antisemitic in 2019.

•Last year, Libre, a 40-page Spanish-language insert published by a longtime right-wing Cuban exile activist and filled with racist, extremist opinion pieces, was distributed in El Nuevo Herald, the Miami Herald’s sister paper, for 32 weeks. The op-eds said Black Lives Matter was worse than the Nazis, called out Bernie Sanders and Michael Bloomberg as Jews, and compared American Jews to Cubans brainwashed by communism. Following public backlash, El Nuevo Herald’s managing editor resigned and the Miami Herald’s publisher and executive editor lost her position as publisher.

•Last October a group of over 150 parents, including Vince Lago, the recently-elected mayor of the prosperous municipality of Coral Gables, the former speaker of the Florida House, and other prominent figures, sent a letter to an elite private Catholic girls school, castigating it for launching an anti-racism program in response to numerous reports of racism among students and faculty. The letter cited the malign influence of “Cultural Marxism” and the Frankfurt School, parroting a conspiracy theory that blames progressive U.S. social and racial justice movements on German Jewish scholars who fled the Nazis. …

But Rivero says he frequently encountered “Jews are communists” and other antisemitic posts in conservative Cuban social media groups during 2020, as well as death threats from Trump supporters. …

Antisemitism rose across the U.S. during the Trump administration.

But the insular nature of Miami’s Hispanic community, particularly among a conservative Cuban faction that has reversed a years-long moderating trend to become politically dominant again, appears to be magnifying that tilt here, while making it more acceptable for leaders to ignore or even encourage the slide towards prejudice.

No politician condemned the antisemitic graffiti. The signatories on the Catholic school letter, which was covered by the Miami Herald and the Miami New Times, defended their calls to abandon teaching about racism.

“The idea that equality and racial equity are rooted in a socialist Jewish group – that’s ridiculous,” said Billy Corben, the Jewish filmmaker lambasted by the Miami commissioner, who first exposed the letter on Twitter. “You cannot minimize the impact of these very powerful and influential policymakers who have signed this letter.”

Jessica Landsberg, a young political operative who has worked on several local campaigns, and whose father is Jewish and mother is Cuban, was disturbed by the “communism is Judaism” and other anti-Semitic graffiti – and frustrated no one denounced it.

“That there’s no conversation that long after the Holocaust antisemitism is alive in a city with one of the largest Jewish populations is disappointing,” said Landsberg, 23. “The graffiti is just the latest thing. I’ve been repeating for the last few years that antisemitism is not just alive but on the rise.” …

Perez and Soibel emphasize that they do not believe most of Miami’s Hispanics are antisemitic. But because Hispanics, and Cubans in particular, dominate politics in Miami-Dade and are so influential in Florida, and in U.S. foreign policy in Latin America, a shift in attitude towards Jews here has the potential for much wider influence.

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