In a world that should be moving forward toward peace and unity, it's disheartening to acknowledge that the fires of hate against Jews and Israel are still burning fiercely.
We, as a community, must confront this insidious trend head-on. It's a battle that requires courage, determination and unity.
Many Jews find ourselves in the perplexing situation of standing up against our own people who have been indoctrinated by hate are afraid to openly express their support for Judaism, or have simply fallen prey to the toxic rhetoric that fuels anti-Semitism.
The echoes of cries for the elimination of Israel, calls for the death of Jews and the deafening silence from certain influential quarters who are hesitant to take a firm stand for Israel have become alarmingly loud.
The persistent work of Holocaust deniers over the years is now clearer than ever. The call for Jewish genocide and the annihilation of the only Jewish homeland resonates across college campuses, in government halls and within numerous communities. It's a deeply concerning reality that we can no longer ignore.
Our children attend prestigious universities like Harvard, Penn, Columbia and many more, yet too often they are exposed to an environment that encourages animosity towards Israel, Jews and Judaism.
As professionals, businesspeople and citizens, many of us fear speaking out due to the risk of being ostracized or canceled. We must remember the wise words of Martin Luther King Jr.: "In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."
It's high time for our community to follow the example set by individuals and organizations like Bill Ackman, Citibank, Davis Polk, The Wexner Foundation and others who have unequivocally stated that anyone expressing anti-Semitism will face professional consequences. Universities that tolerate such hatred must also be held accountable.
Jews have strength in numbers, and it's disheartening that so many remain hesitant to speak out. Some have fallen victim to the opposition's narrative, portraying Israel as a colonialist power, Hamas terrorists as freedom fighters and Jews as savages. It's imperative that we address such misconceptions head-on.
One glaring example of this misrepresentation is the Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital bombing. While we know that Islamic Jihad fired the rocket, not the IDF, the media and various commentators have weaponized this event to falsely portray Israelis as indiscriminate killers.
As individuals involved in public relations in America and worldwide, we possess the knowledge, experience, connections, resources and abilities to counter such disinformation.
For those who share these concerns, I urge you to utilize your knowledge and experiences, call in your favors and leverage your relationships to push the truth and promote a more accurate understanding of the situation. It will require financial support, determination, time and, above all, courage.
While we all have businesses and families to protect, it's essential to recognize that silence in the face of hatred and anti-Semitism offers no protection.
We must learn from history and remember that "Never again" doesn't guarantee safety if we allow prejudice to fester unchecked. Let us not be lulled into a false sense of security, as history has shown that hatred grows if left unchallenged.
Each of us has a voice, and we cannot afford to allow the voices of hatred to drown us out.
The slogan "From the River to the Sea" isn't a call for Palestinian freedom or equity; it's a call for the extermination of Jews. Inaction in the face of such threats is no longer an option.
The words of Edmund Burke, John Stuart Mill, or President John F. Kennedy remind us that "the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." The time for action is now.
At rallies across the globe, we witness mobs calling for genocide while Israel and its Jewish allies sing songs of peace and love. We proudly sing our national anthems, but we also solemnly sing the Passover song, "Vehi Sheamda"—a reminder that in every generation, there are those who seek to destroy us. We know who is seeking war, and we know who is striving for peace and calm.
Israel has consistently pursued a path to peace with its neighbors, but it's clear that some of the neighboring countries' leadership is determined to see the defeat of Israel and its Jewish population.
This isn't a time for silent prayer and hope; it's a time for public action. The battle against anti-Semitism is not just a military one; it's a battle for hearts and minds, and regrettably, we are losing. When lost, we risk experiencing another Pogrom, another Shoah and another attempt to destroy us.
Let us be proud of our Jewish heritage, support Israel and take action. It's not enough to pray silently; we must use our voices, our influence and our resources to combat the rising tides of anti-Semitism. Only through collective action and unwavering courage can we ensure that "Never again" remains a solemn promise rather than a fading hope.
Juda Engelmayer is president of HeraldPR.