Is The US State Department Finally Catching On?

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The US State Department may finally be catching on to something that Israellycool and others have been writing about for years. JNS reported yesterday,

kerry abbas
Is the honeymoon over?

For the first time, the U.S. State Department has explicitly accused the Palestinian Authority (PA) of promoting anti-Semitism, a signal Jewish groups are hoping will lead to change in U.S. policy.

According to a newly released State Department annual report on international religious freedom, official PA media “carried religiously intolerant material,” citing Palestinian television programs that called Jews “evil” or “denied a historical Jewish presence in Jerusalem.”

Previously, U.S. officials labeled the PA denial of Jewish ties to Jerusalem as “material criticizing the Israeli occupation,” but stopped short of calling it anti-Semitism. Arab media channels that carried the anti-Semitic content were “nonofficial PA and nonmainstream,” according to last year’s report.

The Obama Administration no longer claims that the PA is working “to control and eliminate” expressions of anti-Semitism in its media outlets. Officials dropped an assertion made in previous years that the PA acted to “prevent preaching” of “sermons with intolerant or anti-Semitic messages.”

It’s unclear what caused this change, or what it portends. Having been so obtuse for so long, it is a bit difficult to have any faith in the State Department.

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