Holding Antisemites Accountable.

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Phillip Agnew

As of March 7th, 2020 Phillip Agnew, who in 2015 changed his name to Umi Selah before changing it back in 2020 to Phillip Agnew, became the newest addition to Bernie Sanders’ 2020 Presidential Campaign, serving as Senior Advisor. At Bernie Sanders 2020, Agnew joined a long list of Jew-haters such as Ilhan OmarRashida Tlaib, and Linda Sarsour, all thrilled to call Sanders an ally.

Agnew, who previously also served as a national surrogate for the Sanders campaign and is known as a devoted anti-Zionist, is the co-founder of Dream Defenders, a radical activist group that wants to ‘Abolish Prisons’ and promotes Palestinian Terrorists.

In March 2016, Agnew promoted on Facebook a Dream Defenders educational series marketed towards sixth to eleventh graders titled “Blacked Out History – Rebellion Curriculum Toolkit” which glorified terror and featured the PFLP (Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine). The PFLP, a designated Foreign Terror Organization by the United States, Canada, Israel, the European Union, Australia, and other countries pioneered civilian aircraft hijackings, most notably with the capture of an Air France plane in 1976. 

Philip Agnew also called Zionism “a racist, exploitative, and exclusionary ideology” in a 2015 article for Ebony magazine. He also criticized former President Barack Obama for comparing the right of Jews to have a state to African-Americans seeking equal protection under the law; he called the comparison a “lie” and a “figment of our well-manicured imagination.”

Philip Agnew via Dream Defenders attempts to promote a concept of global solidarity by falsely drawing a direct line between the struggle for Black liberation in America and the characterization of Israel as an apartheid state that perpetrates ethnic cleansing, a direct violation of the IHRA working definition of antisemitism

In addition, Agnew openly spread his hatred of the Jewish State on Social Media: 

  • On October 2018, Agnew tweeted falsely accusing the “Israel government” of “ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people.”
  • On August 2016, Agnew shared a misleading article titled: “The Genocide of the Palestinian People: An International Law and Human Rights Perspective.” 
  • On August 2016, Agnew shared a Dream Defender blog post doubling down on the Movement for Black Lives Platform’s false accusations that Israel committed “genocide… against the Palestinian People.”

Agnew pushes back against charges of antisemitism by emphasizing that his accusations are directed at the Israeli government, rather than Jews as a people. However, his narrative clearly indicates this is not true. Equating Zionism with racism often crosses a dangerous line beyond simply criticizing a government’s actions and undermines the right of Jews to a national homeland. 

Philip Agnew’s attempts to hide his blatant Jew hatred under the pretense of ‘Zionism is racist’ is fooling no one. In a time when we have skyrocketing incidents of antisemitism, bigots like Agnew should be held accountable rather than rewarded for their hatred with coveted political positions.