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Sarsour Announces Twitter Hiatus After Endorsing Tweet Mocking IDF Involvement in Surfside Rescue

Jewish Journal

Aaron Bandler | July 7, 2021

Photo: a katz /

Former Women’s March, Inc. leader Linda Sarsour announced that she’s taking a hiatus from Twitter after coming under fire over endorsing a tweet mocking the Israel Defense Force’s (IDF) efforts in helping rescue the victims of the condo collapse in Surfside, Florida.

On July 5, Rafael Shimunov, who has been involved with organizations like IfNotNow and Jews for Racial and Economic Justice, tweeted, “I really don’t understand the IDF’s involvement in rescue attempts of people tragically crushed under buildings in Miami. Their expertise is crushing buildings with people in them, not rescuing them.” Sarsour quote-tweeted Shimunov’s tweet with two finger emojis pointing downward, which has since been deleted.

Sarsour’s apparent endorsement of the tweet was criticized by Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon, who tweeted in response to Sarsour: “I do not expect those who worship violence and death to understand those who value life. The IDF, Israel’s army, the most moral army in the world, will always stand by our allies in times of need.”

StandWithUs Israel Executive Director Michael Dickson also tweeted that Sarsour’s tweet was “evil” and “heartless,” accusing Sarsour of “compounding the victims pain at a time when many Jewish people are still buried under rubble in #surfside, and while Israeli & American first responders work side by side to help them and their neighbors from all backgrounds.”

Writer Emily Schrader similarly tweeted, “Imagine being such a small person you’re mad about people you don’t like saving lives. Linda Sarsour is mad the IDF is saving lives in #Miami. Remember that.”

Later on July 5, Sarsour tweeted that she’s taking a Twitter break and would be “back in a few days.” “This site is a place where those with no morals or values can take someone’s tweet & claim higher ground with no reflection or retrospection on the atrocities and injustice they support on a daily basis.”

Various Jewish and pro-Israel Twitter users proceeded to criticize Sarsour further. Writer Peter Fox argued that Sarsour’s “those with no morals or values” was referencing Jews. “I’m a forgiving person, but you owe (((us))) an apology, and maybe a Shabbat dinner.”

Julia Jassey, CEO of Jewish on Campus, similarly tweeted, “The least you could do is apologize for disrespecting victims to take a cheap dig at Israeli volunteers. But it’s so much easier to keep pointing fingers, right? With all due respect, you’re the one who needs reflection and retrospection, Linda.”

International human rights lawyer Arsen Ostrovsky also tweeted, “Good riddance. Hope #Sarsour and her relentless antisemitism and hatred stays away for good.”

The condo’s collapse occurred on June 24; as of this writing, at least 46 people have died from the collapse and 94 people have yet to be found, according to CNN.

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