March 30, 2015


One of France’s largest Jewish Organizations has called for American Jews, in an advertisement placed in the NYTimes, to lobby and push for harsher government control over anti-Semitic speech on the internet.

In the advertisement, titled “an appeal to our American friends,” Roger Cukierman, who is the leader of the Representative Council of French Jewish Institutions, wrote that following the terrorist attack in Paris earlier this year, “French Jews fear for their safety, their integrity, their dignity, and their future.” The call has been met mostly with silence from American Jews.

Is this an appropriate form of American allyship, or an infringement of free speech? What is the right response? What kinds of speech ought to be regulated, and do harsher restrictions truly impact anti-Semitism, hatred and global terrorism? NYU Washington, DC and the NYU Global Center for Jewish Life discussed these questions in a round-table conversation.  

Guest Discussants

  • Chelsea Garbell, Global Program Coordinator for the NYU Global Center for Jewish Life

  • Sarah Jaïs, Legal Consultant, Financial Market Integrity/Stolen Asset Recovery Initiative, The World Bank