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Antisemitism is the focus at a Jewish American Heritage Month event at the White House

In songs and in speeches, an event at the White House marking Jewish American Heritage Month celebrated the presence of Jews in America since colonial times — and fretted about threats to American Jewry today.

“For some reason it’s come roaring back in the last several years,” President Biden told a crowd of Jewish supporters in the White House’s East Room on Tuesday evening. “Reports have shown that antisemitic incidents are at a record high in our history — a record high in the United States.”

The emphasis on antisemitism was evident even in the entertainment — which featured a selection of songs from “Parade,” a Broadway musical about the 1915 lynching of a Jewish man. That theme was a departure from past White House Jewish American Heritage Month events, which focused on Jewish accomplishments and spotlighted legendary Jewish athletes, scientists, artists and performers.

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