ADL reports ‘dramatic surge’ in anti-Semitism during Gaza op

Dozens of incidents recorded since the Israeli campaign began; director Abraham Foxman says ‘anti-Semitism was in the air’

Marissa Newman is The Times of Israel political correspondent.

Stop the Holocaust in Gaza: A pro-Palestinian protester at a Berlin rally Friday, July 18, 2014. (Micki Weinberg/The Times of Israel)
Stop the Holocaust in Gaza: A pro-Palestinian protester at a Berlin rally Friday, July 18, 2014. (Micki Weinberg/The Times of Israel)

The US-based Anti-Defamation League recorded a “dramatic surge” in anti-Semitic incidents worldwide since the beginning of Operation Protective Edge, the group said Wednesday.

In a report released Wednesday, the ADL listed dozens of incidents internationally, which include physical assaults on Jews, threats and intimidation, damage to synagogues, public hate speech, declarations invoking blood libels and Nazi atrocities, and anti-Semitic political cartoons.

The majority of the incidents occurred throughout Europe, but others were reported in South Africa, Australia, Turkey, Canada, Morocco and several Latin American countries.

“There was a dramatic surge in violence against Jews and Jewish institutions around the world during Israel’s Operation Protective Edge. From France to the Argentina, from Canada to Chile, synagogues were attacked, Jewish cultural centers were vandalized, Jewish shops were threatened and identifiably Jewish individuals beaten on the street. Anti-Semitism was in the air, and in the streets,” Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, said.

The report emphasizes that it “focuses on actions and speech which extend far beyond the bounds of criticism into violence and bigotry.”

Most incidents were tenuously tied to the Israeli operation, but in the cases cited, the hatred quickly spiraled into general anti-Jewish rhetoric. At various anti-Israel demonstrations, for example, the anti-Semitism was rampant, it reports.

On July 12, protesters in Belgium chanted “death to the Jews” and at demonstrations throughout Europe, rally-goers held up signs comparing Zionism to Nazism. Other notable incidents include an attack on the Casablanca rabbi in retribution for the Gaza campaign, breaking his nose and ribs. In Frankfurt, on July 25, a rabbi received a phone call threatening him that if the caller’s family was injured in Gaza, he would kill 30 of the city’s Jews.

“And the list goes on and on,” Foxman said.

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