Israeli Flag Burned in Williamsburg, New York on Purim (VIDEO)
by Joshua Levitt
Satmar Chasidic Jews burned an Israeli flag in a street demonstration in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, during the Jewish celebration of Purim at the weekend.
Footage of the display was posted on YouTube by reporter Jacob Kornbluh on Tuesday, and many people wrote to say they were angry.
“In the past two years, Israeli flags have been publicly burned by anti-Semites in Hungary and Egypt,” wrote one commenter. “Never thought I would see it done by people claiming to be Jews in New York City.”
Another wrote, “Really pretty nauseating stuff. I’m sure Bil’am and Haman would have been very happy to see this.”
While most of world Jewry supports the modern state of Israel, some Jews, including many in the Satmar sect, feel that Israel’s secular founders in the 20th century betrayed the religion’s 3,000 years of history in creating its modern national incarnation. A debate to compel religious students to also participate in Israel’s mandatory three-year Army draft came to a head this month, also raising tensions between the two camps.
Watch the footage of the flag burning below: