Photo Credit: Jason Koppel / Twitter
AIPAC's Jason Koppel with responding NYPD officers.

Antisemitism in New York City is continuing unabated, including among those who with mental health issues.

Political Director Jason Koppel of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)’s Northeast Region was attacked Tuesday in midtown Manhattan.

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“Yesterday at 6:40 pm in Midtown I encountered an individual who appeared to be an emotionally disturbed person,” Koppel said in a statement. “He was cursing and when he passed me began muttering about Jews.”

The perpetrator ran back behind Koppel and spit on him, he said, then “turned and ran away.”

One bystander stopped to see if Koppel was okay, he noted.

Koppel said that while he’s grateful it was “only spit and nothing worse,” antisemitism is alive and ever-present in New York City, “and we all need to be aware of our surroundings at every moment.”

He offered a special “thank you” to the responding officers of the New York Police Department (NYPD) whose “professionalism, empathy and concern” for his well-being, he said, “helped calm this experience.”

New York City Rabbi Elchanan Poupko of United Against Antisemitism commented in a tweet that although “most times these incidents are perpetrated by people with mental health issues,” nevertheless they “somehow know that targeting Jews is okay.”

American Jewish Committee’s Long Island Director Eric Post added, “We need to continue to raise awareness and have our elected officials join us in this battle.”

“Jew Haters come in all shapes, sizes and mental health,” observed senior adviser at IDW Media William Rapfogel. “Painful to see them attack, even with phlegm, one of us. Thanks to the NYPD for being spot on.”

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.
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