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An Israeli official slammed an NBC report that appeared to blame Jews for the epidemic of anti-Semitic hate crimes in New York.

By United with Israel Staff

An article, published by NBC New York on Thursday was slammed for anti-Semitism because it appeared to blame orthodox Jewish expansion for a wave of anti-Semitic hate crimes and violence.

“The expansion of Hasidic communities in New York’s Hudson Valley, the Catskills and northern New Jersey has led to some anti-Semitic rhetoric,” said the article.

It claimed that Jews are moving from more expensive neighborhoods to “cheaper housing to establish modern-day versions of the European shtetls where their ancestors lived for centuries before the Holocaust.”

The writers pointed out that religious Jews have expanded their communities to “New York’s Hudson Valley, the Catskills and northern New Jersey,” which “has led to predictable sparring over new housing development and local political control” that “has also led to flare-ups of rhetoric seen by some as anti-Semitic.”

Following its publication, Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesman Lior Haiat called the article “outrageous.” He tweeted:

On Monday, at a meeting hosted by US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand in Rockland Country, where the vicious anti-Semitic Monsey machete attack occurred during Chanukah, Jewish leaders blamed hate speech, rampant on social media platforms, for the rising anti-Semitic violence, according to NBC.

“In the last few years in Rockland County I have seen a rise in hate rhetoric, and I was able to foresee it would end in violence,” Rockland County Legislator Aron Wieder said, according to NBC. “You have seen on social media where the Orthodox community has been called a cancer, leeches, people who don’t pay taxes. It has become normal and accepted to say derogatory and hateful things about Jewish people.”

Rabbi Yisroel Kahan, administrative director of the Oizrim Jewish Council in Monsey, which seeks to bridge the gap and foster relationships between the Jewish community and elected officials, government agencies and public service companies, said bigoted messages and hateful comments on social media platforms have “been tolerated for far too long.”

According to NBC, “Some towns have enacted zoning changes forbidding new houses of worship” and the prevention of building multi-family housing because “small towns everywhere” carry “resentment against newcomers and ‘outsiders.'”

Stressing the spate of violent attacks were based in “pure hatred,” Rabbi David Niederman, executive director of the Brooklyn-based United Jewish Organizations of Williamsburg, said that housing issues and population growth are not what should lead to murder.

“If you have tensions, what you do is you sit down at a table; that’s how you deal with tensions,” Niederman said, according to NBC. “You don’t go out and murder people. You don’t go out with a butcher knife and almost kill a whole congregation.”

The original NBC New York article inexplicably claimed it is unclear whether “heated rhetoric was a factor in the recent violence” despite the fact that all available evidence indicates anti-Semitism has been behind every recent attack in New York on those whose appearance clearly identifies them as Jews.