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A new report from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has found a “significant uptick” in “anti-Semitic attacks on Twitter” against Jewish journalists, many coming from supporters of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, according to The New York Times. The report noted that “some of the targets” of the attacks pointed to Trump’s campaign for having “inspired and emboldened white nationalists and others to engage in acts of digital aggression.”
Trump’s campaign has received staunch support from white nationalists, who have lauded his stance on immigration and his rhetoric against Muslims and Hispanics. They also praised what appeared to be an anti-Semitic tweet from Trump in July and an October speech from Trump that appeared to push anti-Semitic dog whistles. In addition, Trump has launched unprecedented attacks on journalists and encouraged his supporters to lash out at reporters, for which he has been condemned by free press organizations.
In an October 19 article, the Times reported that the ADL report found 19,253 anti-Semitic messages on Twitter “directed at journalists” between August 2015 and July targeting “More than 800 journalists.” The report found “a significant uptick” in those messages “starting early this year, when the presidential campaign began to intensify.” The Times noted that some of the Twitter accounts launching the attacks were “prominent white supremacists” and that many were Trump supporters. The Times also pointed out that targets of the anti-Semitic attacks say Trump “had inspired and emboldened white nationalists” to go after Jewish journalists and that his candidacy “has been treated as a call to arms by white nationalists.” From the article:
In some respects, Mrs. Mandel’s story has become a familiar one. She is among hundreds of Jewish journalists who have been the target of anti-Semitic attacks on Twitter during the 2016 presidential campaign, according to a new report by the Anti-Defamation League.
During its investigation, the organization found that 2.6 million anti-Semitic messages were posted on Twitter from August 2015 to July 2016. Of those, 19,253 were directed at journalists.
There was a significant uptick starting early this year, when the presidential campaign began to intensify, the organization said in its report, to be released on Wednesday. More than 800 journalists have been the subject of anti-Semitic attacks on Twitter, with 10 of them receiving 83 percent of the total attacks.
The words appearing most frequently in the Twitter biographies of the attackers were “Trump,” “nationalist,” “conservative” and “white.” Many of the owners of the 1,600 Twitter accounts were anonymous, though at least two are prominent white supremacists: Andrew Anglin, the founder of the website The Daily Stormer, and Lee Rogers of the Infostormer.
The report was careful not to suggest that the Trump campaign “supported or endorsed” the anti-Semitic attacks, but noted that many had been sent by his supporters.
But some of the targets said that by evoking hostility toward minorities, Mr. Trump’s campaign had inspired and emboldened white nationalists and others to engage in acts of digital aggression toward “others” — including Jews — and toward Jewish journalists in particular.
Whatever Mr. Trump’s intentions, his candidacy has been treated as a call to arms by white nationalists, who often rush to attack Jewish journalists when they write something perceived as unflattering about Mr. Trump.