Westin Leipzig Hotel’s Insulting Response to Antisemitism of One of Their Staff

Earlier this week, Gil Ofarim, a 39-year-old singer and dual citizen of Israel and Germany, posted a video to social media in which he accused the Westin Leipzig hotel of denying him service because he was wearing a Star of David necklace.

Thankfully, the hotel faced a huge backlash, leading to this response by it:

A spokesperson for Westin Leipzig, which is of the Marriott multinational company, told DPA, a German publication, that the hotel was “deeply concerned” and was regarding the case “extremely seriously.” The hotel has reached out to Ofarim to hear more details about what happened, the spokesperson said. Leipzig police are also looking into the incident.

Oh, and posted this photo of their staff to social media:

Which begs the question: what were they thinking, responding to an incident of Jew-hatred by one of their staff, with a photo of staff holding both the Israeli flag and crescents symbolizing Islam?

For a start, the incident was against someone showing they are Jewish. By having their staff hold up the Israeli flag, the Westin Leipzig is essentially conflating all Jews with Israel, something antisemites are prone to do.

But arguably even worse than this, why the crescents in response to an incident of Jew-hatred?

It reminds me of all those reactions to antisemitic incidents in the US that inexplicably made mention of Islamophobia, including incidents that were perpetrated by Muslims. For example, remember this from May of this year?

As reports of attacks on Jews broke into the news late last week, Democratic lawmakers moved quickly to condemn antisemitism — but they didn’t stop there.

“We’ve recently seen disturbing antisemitic attacks and a troubling rise in Islamophobia,” Bernie Sanders, the Jewish Vermont senator who is a leader of American progressives, tweeted Friday. “If you are committed to a future of equality and peaceful coexistence, please stand united against anyone who promotes hatred of any kind.”

Numerous other progressives soon followed suit, including multiple members of “The Squad” in the US House of Representatives.

“The work of dismantling antisemitism, anti-Blackness, Islamophobia, anti-Palestinian racism, and every other form of hate is OUR work,” Representative Cori Bush of Missouri tweeted.

Representative Jamaal Bowman of New York wrote, “We’ve seen an increase in antisemitic and Islamophobic hate, in NYC and nationwide — hateful words, hate crimes, and other forms of violence.” And Representative Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts tweeted, “I strongly condemn the rise in anti-Semitism and islamophobia we’re seeing across the country.”

“Antisemitism has no place in our country or world. Neither does Islamophobia,” Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts tweeted late Tuesday. “That means standing together and condemning all forms of bigotry and hate.”

The messages all took aim at attacks reported while Israel and Hamas in Gaza fought a conflict in which more than 250 Palestinians and a dozen Israelis were killed. In New York, Los Angeles, and elsewhere, violent attacks on Jews were caught on camera. Meanwhile, mosques in Brooklyn and on Long Island were vandalized.

Perhaps the Westin Leipzig are infected by the same illness. Alternatively, they were acting like robots and reacting in kind to the protests against it, which included people “carrying signs with a Star of David and the Muslim crescent,” obviously in a show of solidarity.

Either way, their pathetic reaction to the troubling antisemitism of one of their staff is just making things worse.

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David Lange

A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media

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