Gaza Activists Hurl Paint at Homes of Brooklyn Museum Leaders, Including Jewish Director

Protesters linked to the war in Gaza allegedly vandalized the home of Brooklyn Museum Director Pasternak, who is Jewish, on June 12, 2024. (NYC Mayor’s Office)

(New York Daily News/TNS/Hamodia) − The homes of Brooklyn Museum director Anne Pasternak and several board members were defaced by pro-Palestinian protesters, along with the Permanent Observer Mission of the State of Palestine to the United Nations, and three people splattered paint on the German Consulate at 871 UN Plaza.

Vandals hit the homes of the Brooklyn Museum board, who live in both Brooklyn and Manhattan, between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m. Wednesday. The Palestinian mission was vandalized around 6:15 a.m.

Red paint covers portions of the entrance to the German consulate building, Wednesday, in New York. (AP Photo/Sophie Rosenbaum)

The German Consulate was vandalized around 3:30 a.m., cops said.  Attempts to reach diplomats there were unsuccessful Thursday.

(NYC Mayor’s Office)

The vandals spray-painted the front of the building and plastered posters on the front door, police said.

Mayor Eric Adams, in a post on social media, shared images of a brick building splashed with red paint with a banner hung in front of the door that called the museum’s director, Anne Pasternak, a “white-supremacist Zionist.”

“This is not peaceful protest or free speech. This is a crime, and it’s overt, unacceptable antisemitism,” Adams wrote, sending sympathy to Pasternak and other museum board members whose homes were defaced. “These actions will never be tolerated in New York City for any reason.”

Museum spokesperson Taylor Maatman said four officials were targeted. A police report was filed.

“Earlier today, the homes of people connected to the Brooklyn Museum were vandalized in an attempt to threaten and intimidate them,” Maatman said in a statement. “For two centuries, the Brooklyn Museum has worked to foster mutual understanding through art and culture, and we have always supported peaceful protest and open, respectful dialogue. Violence, vandalism, and intimidation have no place in that discourse.”

Surveillance video captured two women and a man walking near the scene. They fled the area in a dark colored vehicle.

No arrests have been made.

There has been a steady stream of demonstrations in the city and across the nation since Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, sparking a ferocious war in Gaza.

On Monday, protesters rallied outside the Nova Exhibition, a memorial created to honor the victims of Hamas’ attack that killed some 1,200 Israelis and took hundreds hostage. Antisemitic messages and rhetoric were reported, and some protesters waved a flag with Hamas’ emblem, as well as a sign lauding the massacre.

The demonstration was roundly condemned by city officials and national politicians.

Mayor Eric Adams, in a press briefing on Tuesday, said he was “extremely troubled” by the protest, adding that he planned to go to the exhibit in the next day in a show of support.

Mayor Eric Adams visited with victim’s families there on Tuesday and denounced the protesters.

“You do not call for peace and wave flags of Hamas. You do not call for peace and then come to a memorial site. That’s like you are desecrating the graves,” Adams said.

Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine wrote on social media that the “targeting of the exhibition is not pro-peace. It is repulsive and vile.” New York City Comptroller Brad Lander called the demonstration “an abominable example of antisemitism.”

The Biden administration issued a statement denouncing the protest. “Profane banners of terrorist organizations should not be flown anywhere, especially not on American streets,” Andrew Bates said in a statement. “Antisemitism has no place in the United States.”

“I visited the Nova exhibit site Friday and was incredibly moved to see the huge loss of human life on display—so many young people in the prime of life—to vicious Hamas attackers,” NY Senator and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer wrote on his X account. “The protest and vitriolic rhetoric outside were nothing short of despicable, inhumane, antisemitic.”

House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries blasted Monday night’s protest.

“The callousness, dehumanization, and targeting of Jews on display at last night’s protest outside the Nova Festival exhibit was atrocious antisemitism — plain and simple,” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) said. “Antisemitism has no place in our city nor any broader movement that centers human dignity and liberation.”

York politicians to speak out against the protests, said the Brooklyn Museum has done more to grapple with questions of “power, colonialism, racism, and the role of art” than many other museums.

“The cowards who did this are way over the line into antisemitism, harming the cause they claim to care about, and making everyone less safe,” he wrote on social media.

With reporting by AP

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