Speed Reads

'silence is complicity'

At Hanukkah reception, Biden condemns antisemitism: 'America will not be silent'

President Biden on Monday vehemently denounced the rise in antisemitic attacks and rhetoric in the United States, saying he is committed to "the safety of the Jewish people and the vibrancy of Jewish life."

The president made his remarks during a Hanukkah reception at the White House. There is no place in the U.S. for hate or violence, Biden said. "Silence is complicity. I will not be silent. America will not be silent."

As part of this year's Hanukkah celebration, Biden and first lady Jill Biden added the first menorah to the White House collection, made by the White House carpentry shop. In previous years, menorahs used at events were borrowed, and this is the first Jewish artifact to enter the White House archives, NBC News reports.

Guests at the event included Bronia Brandman, a Holocaust survivor and retired teacher; Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker of Temple Emanuel in Winston-Salem, North Carolina; and Avigael Heschel-Aronson, the granddaughter of the late Jewish theologian Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel.

In its latest report on antisemitic incidents in the United States, the Anti-Defamation League said assault, harassment, and vandalism against Jews has reached its highest levels in more than 40 years. Last week, Biden created an interagency group to develop a national strategy to fight antisemitism.