SWC Statement on the Death of Paul Kessler

November 7, 2023

The Simon Wiesenthal Center mourns the shocking death of Paul Kessler a proud pro-Israel Jewish man who died as a result of (allegedly) being hit with a megaphone by a pro-Hamas demonstrator on a street corner in Thousand Oaks, a northern suburb of Los Angeles.

“We have spoken to a senior law enforcement official and expect that the attacker will be held accountable to the full extent of the law. The SWC denounces members of Congress, social media influencers and Palestinian protesters chanting the genocidal ‘from River to Sea, Palestine Will Be Free’, and tropes like ‘Israel Apartheid’ and ‘Israel is Guilty of Genocide’.”

“The weaponization of words and false narratives has been used by Hamas to physically attack, intimidate, and bully Jewish students on campuses across the US. The Jewish community will not be bullied, we will continue to stand with Israel in her time of greatest need. We demand that law enforcement, elected officials, and university presidents protect members of our community. The SWC also urges all faith leaders led by the Abrahamic faiths to denounce the violence that led to Mr. Kessler’s death and extends its condolences to his family,” said Rabbi Abraham Cooper, SWC Associate Dean and Global Social Action Director.

For further information contact the Center’s Communications department at pressinquiries@wiesenthal.com, join the Center on Facebook, or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent directly to your Twitter feed.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).

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