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February 22, 2017 8:15 pm

Algemeiner Editor-in-Chief: All Hands on Deck Required for Fight Against Antisemitism in US

avatar by Barney Breen-Portnoy

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Algemeiner Editor-in-Chief Dovid Efune. Photo: Screenshot.

Algemeiner Editor-in-Chief Dovid Efune. Photo: Screenshot.

The fight against antisemitism in the US requires “all hands on deck,” the editor-in-chief of The Algemeiner said during an i24 News appearance on Tuesday.

Dovid Efune called President Donald Trump’s public condemnation of antisemitism earlier in the day a “great beginning” to an expected broader effort to quell the recent surge of anti-Jewish hate incidents — including a spate of telephone bomb threats against Jewish community centers across the country and the desecration of graves at a Jewish cemetery in St. Louis.

“Absolutely, you have to call in the FBI, you’ve got to call in [Attorney General] Jeff Sessions [to investigate the incidents],” Efune said. “These are criminal people doing criminal acts — hateful people, and they have to be brought to justice.”

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Referring to critics of Trump who have accused the president of waiting too long to speak out against antisemitism, Efune said, “There is no such thing in this case of too little, too late. He’s [been] in office for a number of weeks, and I think and I hope that he’s just getting started.”

“I think it’s unfair to say…that the president has been dragging his feet,” Efune stated. “I think what we’ve seen here is a president who is reluctant to take commands from anybody, especially from the media, and especially from his political opponents. So really it was a question of finding the right time and place to speak out against antisemitism and we saw that the president found that this morning.”

Furthermore, Efune noted, “It is very important to make the distinction between somebody who is supporting antisemitism and someone you’d like to encourage to do more to combat antisemitism, and that’s the tone we have to take with this president.”

“I’m confident that we’re going to see more from this president,” Efune went on to say. “I think Jewish groups should be encouraging this president. I think that [with a ] tone [that] is not one of forcing, [but rather] one of encouragement and support, we’re going to see a heck of lot more from him.”

Efune also praised Trump for his strident support of Israel — as illustrated by US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley’s defense of the Jewish state last week — and his campaign pledge to launch an investigation into anti-Israel hate groups at US colleges, which Efune described as “the major source of antisemitism on campuses across the country.”

“So in that respect, he [Trump] gets great marks, full marks,” Efune said.

Efune’s two-part appearance on i24 News can be viewed here [starting at 5:40] and here [starting at 7:25].

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