By Miriam Raftery
July 17, 2021 (El Cajon) – In response to an all-time high number of violent attacks on Jewish people and synagogues in the U.S., a rally titled “We Are Israel” will be held on Sunday, July 25 at 3 p.m. in Prescott Prominade Park at 201 East Main Street in downtown El Cajon.
The rally is organized by Shield of David, an organization founded to stand up against anti-Semitism and promote Jewish education, along with numerous other local groups.
The keynote speaker is Mike Pompeo, former Secretary of State and ex-Director of the Central Intelligence Agency during the Trump administration.
“Because the number of Antisemitic attacks has never been this high in the U.S. Jew-hatred seem to have no consequences. We deserve to go to a restaurant without being harassed for being a Jew. We deserve to be protected by law the same way as any other minority group,” states the event website https://www.weareisrael2021.com/.
Other speakers include:
Dr. Eli Ben-Moshe founded Shield of David in spring 2020 to teach young Jewish adults how to protect themselves against anti-Semitism physically and mentally with the Krav Maga program training and education.
Matthew Haverim is an Iranian American Jew who survived a violent anti-Semitic attack
Bill Wells is Mayor of El Cajon and was first elected to the City Council in 2008.
Dumisani Washington, founder and CEO of the Institute for Black Solidarity with Israel (IBSI, is a pastor and author whose latest book is Zionism & the Black Church: Why Standing with Israel will be a Defining Issue for Christians of Color in the 21st Century.
Jennifer Karlan won the 2020 National Teen Advocacy Award from the Lawfare Project and Club Z for her advocacy efforts against discrimination and anti-Semitism in speeches, articles, video blogs and educational training videos used on social media and civil rights sites including CombatAntiSemitism.org.
Larry Allen Elder, a Libertarian talk radio host, author, attorney and filmmaker is also a candidate for Governor.
To RSVP for the event or get more information, visit https://www.weareisrael2021.com/rsvp.
El Cajon, home to many Middle Eastern immigrants of multiple faiths, is no stranger to multi-denominational events to stand up against persecution of religious minorities.
Notably, in 2014, a prayer vigil was held in downtown El Cajon for persecuted Chaldean Christians fleeing Iraq following massacres of Chaldeans by Muslim extremists. That event drew thousands of people and featured speakers that included a Jewish rabbi, an Evangelical minister, a Chaldean Catholic bishop, Mayor Bill Wells and other.
Now the focus has shifted to speaking out against anti-Semitism following attacks on the Jewish community internationally, nationally and locally
In a video, Mayor Wells states, “A lot of Christians are going to be there, standing with our Jewish brothers and sisters…the Bible tells us, those who curse Israel will be cursed, and those who bless Israel will be blessed. We want to bless Israel.”
Recent local incidents include the 2019 Passover synagogue shooting at Chabad of Poway that killed a woman and injured three others, as well as anti-Semitic graffiti at San Diego State University in March 2021.
A 2021 survey of American Jewish people conducted by the Anti-Defamation League found that in the past five years, 63% had experienced or witnessed anti-Semitism, up from 54% in 2020 – and 25%, or one in four American Jews, said they had been targeted by anti-Semitic comments, slurs or threats. Most alarming, 9% said they had been physically attacked because they are Jewish.