Police are investigating after the words “Zionist police state 2020” were found graffitied in at least two locations in Hackney in North London.
The antisemitic vandalism – either an allusion to the racist meme that ‘Zionists’ have outsized power or an association of Zionism with the emergency draconian rules in place during the pandemic – was sighted on a boat called ‘Shalom’ (meaning ‘hello’, or ‘peace’) on the River Lea and on a local map.
The graffiti was noticed by a journalist, Sophie Wilkinson, who said: “Seeing ‘Zionist’ as a pejorative term truly upset me. As a Jew, I am under as much ‘state control’ as the next person, and to suggest Jews gain from this crisis is not only absurd but is part of seemingly never-ending racist conspiracy theories against us. That the Hebrew word for ‘peace’ has been interpreted as a threat to this vandal speaks volumes to their lazy presumptions about Jews and power.”
Campaign Against Antisemitism’s analysis of Home Office statistics shows that an average of over three hate crimes are directed at Jews every single day in England and Wales, with Jews almost four times more likely to be targets of hate crimes than any other faith group.
(Photo credit: Sophie Wilkinson)