Following a rally and march Saturday in support of the Palestinian people, which brought thousands of activists marching up San Francisco's Market Street, some anti-Jewish and anti-Israel graffiti was found on windows along the street.
Saturday's march was the largest demonstration so far in the Bay Area amid the latest outbreak of Arab-Jewish violence in the Middle East. It drew thousands, and was one of numerous similar demonstrations that same day around the U.S., in support of peace and in protest of the violent retaliation that's ongoing by Israel in Gaza, in response to the surprise attacks on civilians in Israel by Hamas a week earlier.
During that protest, graffiti appeared on the windows of two banks in the downtown area. As documented by the Jewish Community Relations Council, the messages read "Death to Zionism," "Kill a Settler," and "Death 2 Israel."
We are deeply disturbed by graffiti along Market Street reading after yesterday's pro-Palestinian rally in San Francisco. We have been in touch with city leaders and @SFPD to investigate this crime. pic.twitter.com/8p6FOPIcGu— JCRC Bay Area (@SFJCRC) October 15, 2023
"We are deeply disturbed by graffiti along Market Street reading after yesterday's pro-Palestinian rally in San Francisco," said JCRC Bay Area in a tweet Sunday. "We have been in touch with city leaders and [the SFPD] to investigate this crime."
SF Mayor London Breed denounced the graffiti in a tweet, noting that the police were still investigating and that Public Works had quickly gotten the graffiti cleaned up.
"I support peaceful protests but on Saturday protestors vandalized buildings with disgusting calls to violence," Breed said.
SF District Attorney Brooke Jenkins went further in a now-deleted tweeted referring to the protest march as being "pro-Hamas." As the Chronicle reports, Jenkins denounced the graffiti as well, blaming it on the "All Out for Gaza" protest.
Wassim Hage, outreach coordinator for the Arab Resource and Organizing Center in San Francisco, has now called for public censure of Jenkins, calling the tweet, "deliberately and recklessly incorrect."
The past week featured a number of instances of progressive leaders trying to the toe the line of expressing support for Palestinians while denouncing the actions of Hamas, and showing sympathy and support for Israel, and calling for peace on both sides.
SF Supervisor Dean Preston was called out last week for not fully denouncing the violence inflicted on Israeli civilians in an initial statement, which he ultimately walked back a bit.
On Sunday, a smaller demonstration formed in Civic Center Plaza of supporters of Israel. KTVU had the report below.
There was also a pro-Palestinian protest in downtown San Jose.