MYNORTHWEST NEWS

Antisemitic instances up 800% nationally, 300% in Washington

Apr 17, 2024, 12:28 PM

antisemitic...

Antisemitic graffiti sprayed across a Jewish social service agency (Photo courtesy of KIRO 7)

(Photo courtesy of KIRO 7)

New numbers from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) showed there has been over an 800% increase in antisemitic incidents across the country over the last decade.

In 2014, the number of incidents in the U.S. was 912. In 2023, that number skyrocketed to 8,873. ADL compiled data from victims, police and community leaders which was subsequently evaluated by ADL staff.

In Washington specifically, 65 incidents were reported in 2022. In 2023, that number jumped to 190 — a near-300% leap. Among neighboring states, 124 antisemitic incidents were reported in Oregon, 13 in Alaska, 21 in Montana and 22 in Idaho.

ADL stated more than 5,200 incidents occurred between Oct. 7 — the day Hamas attacked an open-air music festival on the Jewish holiday of Sukkot — and Dec. 31 of last year.

More on Oct. 7 attacks: Hamas attack survivor shares his story

“We don’t expect everyone to know what is free speech and what’s a hate crime or what may be a hate crime, but please report it to law enforcement so we can make those assessments,” Program Coordinator for Hate Crimes and Civil Rights for the FBI in Washington, Ryan Bruett, told KIRO 7.

Bruett added in addition to reporting to local law enforcement, also report incidents to the FBI via their website or by calling the local field office.

The FBI has seen a marked increase in hoax bomb threats and active shooter threats targeting synagogues and Jewish community centers, according to Bruett. Additionally, there have been more attacks on U.S. military bases overseas carried out by militia groups backed by Iran.

“Our most immediate concern is that violent extremists, whether individuals or small groups, will draw inspiration from recent events we’re learning about overseas and attempts to carry out attacks in the U.S,” Bruett said.

More on attacks on Jewish centers: Mercer Island synagogue vandalized in latest attack on Jewish centers

Across the country, there was an average of 24 incidents per day, according to ADL.

Antisemitic bomb threats reached an all-time high. Last year, the ADL reported a total of 1,009 antisemitic bomb threats in 2023, with 906 synagogues targeted. Bomb threats were recorded in 45 states and the District of Columbia.

Contributing: KIRO 7

Frank Sumrall is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read his stories here and you can email him here.

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Antisemitic instances up 800% nationally, 300% in Washington