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June 26, 2015 12:19 pm

After Confederate Flag Ban, Major Jewish Group Demands Amazon ‘Revisit’ Policy for Nazi, Hamas Banners

avatar by Shiryn Solny

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Amazon continues to sell Hamas flags, though it banned Confederate flags. Photo: Screenshot.

Amazon continues to sell Hamas flags, though it banned Confederate flags. Photo: Screenshot.

Just days after online retailer Amazon announced a ban on Confederate flags, a major Jewish group called on the retail giant to reconsider its policy on selling Hamas and Nazi SS banners on the site.

“If this is a decision that they made out of their concerns about what the symbol itself stands for and what it has inspired, then I think they’re gonna have to revisit they’re overall policy on other issues,” Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) associate dean, Rabbi Abraham Cooper told The Algemeiner on Friday. “like the swastika, the Celtic cross, which is used by many white supremacists and Nazis… the Hamas flag, Hezbollah, and all the other terrorist groups on the State Department’s terrorist list.”

Amazon announced earlier this week that it would stop selling Confederate flags and merchandise following last week’s deadly shooting at a historically black church in Charleston, South Carolina. An ongoing debate over the use of the Confederate flag, which is seen by many as a symbol of the slave-holding South, intensified in the aftermath of the shooting.

While all merchandise depicting the Confederate flag has been removed from Amazon, a quick search on the website shows that it still sells Nazi SS and Hamas flags as well as other items featuring the banners, such as T-shirts, magnets and even a baby’s bib. Amazon also offers various merchandise bearing Nazi swastikas, such as jewelry and iPhone cases.

Cooper said the online retailer should explain its decision to ban the selling of Confederate flags while still offering customers other flags with hateful symbols such as the banner of ISIS, which was used in the bloody terror attack on Friday in southern France.

“I think it’ll be very hard for them to explain why they made one gesture, which is obviously a gesture against racism and extremism, and leave other symbols unaffected,” he said.

The SWC associate dean held back from calling on Amazon to ban Hamas and Nazi flags, and other hateful symbols from its site. He said a move to ban symbols of extremism all over the Internet is a mistake, not very practical and “it won’t go very far.” An alternative solution, according to Cooper, would be for online companies to resolve not to profit from the sale of items that utilize hateful symbols.

“There’s nothing wrong with full profit entities on the Internet to say, ‘you know what, that’s not why we’re in business, we don’t want to market these symbols, we’re not gonna carry them anymore,'” he said. “I think that’s an appropriate decision to make.”



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  • Joseph Feld

    There is a big difference between the Confederacy flag and the terrorist groups mentioned. The Confederacy was never a terrorist organisation and never supported genocide. Therefore if they have banned the Confederacy flag, how much moreso should they ban the swatika and Hamas and other murderous groups who officially support genocide.

  • Andre Vincenzo

    Shiryn is completely right about scrutinizing Amazon’s marketing of Hamas & Nazi flags. A state of the US really has no business displaying a confederate flag at that state’s capitol. This readdressing the issue is long over due. I’m not an American black but being a minority, I too feel uncomfortable whenever I see a confederate flag hanging from a flag pole. It may seem illogical but it’s a visceral reaction I have to what that flag stands for. I think ,enough with being so PC, it’s time we call it for what it is and what it represents.

    The bigger point being that Amazon has now set a new precedence by banning the southern flag, the next logical progression should be to ban the sale of hamas, hezbollah and isis flags. Amazon should not be in the business of marketing to terrorists.

    They, as a company, lend legitimacy to these groups and should Amazon should police what is sold or traded on their site. If enough public pressure and bad publicity is brought to bear on Amazon, they may just may change their policies, if not they can easily be boycotted by the general public for promoting terrorism .

    • bill

      Ban the sale of Nazi flags, rainbow flags, Venezuelan flags, soviet flags, as well as any book,game,movie or tv show that shows them, mentions them or hints at them. Perhaps we should clean up history so we forget. I would rather have someone have the flags mentioned and once I know the person through actions or words let me make the judgement on who that person is…should I be worried about him. Perhaps we should ban the sale of Hyundai’s also since there seem to be more photographs of him and his car than the flag and his car had a bad bad front license plate.

      The ridiculous part whole flag discussion is that it took away from the discussion of the 9 people who amazingly let a stranger come to their prayer group uninvited. And their families who after the tragedy where the most gracious forgiving people who I have ever seen. I would not have been that way. I would want vengeance and would push for a quick speedy trial and death for the little boy.

  • E Pluribus Wombat

    In a year or two actual Holocaust denial will in fact become the official policy of at least one European nation.

  • Milhouse

    And what about Che Guevara tee-shirts, and soviet symbols? Those are far more hateful than anything to do with the confederacy.

  • Henry Frank

    The Confederate flag is just about 8 generations old. Jew hatred goes back more than 100 generations. Good luck eliminating either one, but especially the latter.

  • Craig

    Ebay quietly eliminated sellers that were offering flags of the hamas and hezbollah terrorist groups last year. Ecommerce Bytes and Israellycool exposed them (thanks to a certain anonymous tipster). After they published articles the hamas flag seller stopped selling them. You can no longer find these flags on ebay although they did not announce the changes.

  • Peter Kramer

    Typical double standard when it comes to Jews. It’s acceptable to hate Jews, if not fashionable. In America, we can thank Obama in part for such sentiments. Obama wept for fallen black parishioners, which was truly appropriate, but I’m sure he wouldn’t have a tear for one Jewish soul if the same thing happened in a synagogue.

  • RidgeRunner
  • Pastor CJ

    There was never anything racist about the Confederate Flag. The most offensive flag of all is the rainbow flag of the sinful sodomites.

  • atilla

    Thank you Rabbi Cooper for your voice of reason and sanity.

  • Are you aware that Amazon, and Barnes and Noble as well, sell rabid antisemitic literature – such as a book written by one of the leaders of the Aryan Nation : “It’s the Jews, Stupid!” under a pseudonym – as well as books blaming Jews for 9/11, saying there was no Holocaust etc. I hope you include the dropping of these books from their website. This is not freedom of speech, but commercialization and profiting from hatred.
    Shalom, Cantor Bob Cohen, Congregation Emanuel of the Hudson Valley, Kingston, NY

    • bill

      I may agree with your sentiment but who is the judge and jury on hate? Will you be for that negative judgement when you agree with the speech?

  • Michael Palmer

    If Amazon decides to continue to sell Nazi and other anti semitic symbols while refusing to sell Conferate Flags it will show a lack of judgement and sensitity when it comes to Jewish feelings. This would be a double standard. I hope the Weisenthal Center continues to press them on this issue. I for one would consider discontinueing doing business with Amazon if they continue to sell Nazi and other anti semitic symbols.

  • count l f chidkiewicz chudzikiewicx

    I think Hamas is a terrorist gang but no one in Europe thinks so and more n more young people
    In the us agree with the Europeans Asians south Americans. US groups in the US rely too much on political pressure not public information to fight Israel bashing n antisemitism and outside the us do nothing to counter antu-semitism like the propalestinian groups at Jewish colleges

    • bill


  • Richard

    I think it’s a very bad decision by Amazon. They are bowing to fear and that’s wrong. The Confederate battle flag has been used by hate groups in the past, but it’s also a historicsl emblem cherished by ancestors of soliders who fought under that flag.

  • Liz

    It’s great that Rabbi Cooper has pointed out to Amazon the inconsistency of banning sales of Confederate flags on their site, but not Nazi or Hamas or ISIS flags, Now, I’d love to see him try to persuade the Pope to acknowledge the inconsistency of his preaching peace and justice, while ignoring the Palestinian’s unfulfilled Oslo Agreement obligations and their ongoing incitement to hatred and violence against Israel.

  • A. Hoffman

    While I am not a proponent of racism, nor the Confederacy, reading of some commentary showed the issue of state’s rights l needing protection against absolute Federalism . And still perhaps true. The image seen is a poor emblem , reminding of a stand for a ill cause. Still, May the public voice be heard., and think before it signs to misdirection of any type. Perhaps Torah might be source of guidance? A good one? ( Rhetorical)

  • Well, while we’re at it, let’s demand from the U.S. Congress to remove the following anti-Semitic people from the Plaques of Lawgivers:

    Edward I YM”S
    Gregory IX YM”S
    “Not so” Innocent III YM”S
    Justinian I YM”S
    “Not such a” Saint Louis YM”S
    Simon de Montfort YM”S
    Tribonian YM”S