Diaspora Ministry sees troubling trends in anti-Semitism worldwide
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Diaspora Ministry sees troubling trends in anti-Semitism worldwide

In press release, ministry says unreleased report has found growing anti-Jewish sentiments in the UK, Germany and among migrant populations in Europe

A screenshot from a video of the scene outside kosher grocery store Promo & Destock in the Parisian suburb of Creteil, that was burned overnight on January 9, 2018, less than a week after it was hit by anti-Semitic graffiti. (Screen capture/AFP)
A screenshot from a video of the scene outside kosher grocery store Promo & Destock in the Parisian suburb of Creteil, that was burned overnight on January 9, 2018, less than a week after it was hit by anti-Semitic graffiti. (Screen capture/AFP)

The Ministry of Diaspora Affairs announced a report on Sunday it said showed worrying trends in anti-Semitic sentiment worldwide in 2017.

The report itself was not made public, nor did a press release about it offer sources for the ministry’s figures.

In its release, the ministry highlighted increases in the numbers of incidents in the UK and Germany, high levels of anti-Semitic beliefs among Muslim migrants in Europe, and the growing power of the far-right in Europe and the United States.

“Anti-Semitism is the dangerous fuel feeding our enemies for generations. We must ensure every Jew in the world can live a safe and proud life,” Diaspora Minister Naftali Bennett is quoted as saying in the release.

He added: “In 2017 we saw a strong anti-Semitic presence online. Much of this discourse was related to the changes in governments around the world, the refugee crisis and the visibility of anti-Semitism in social media. We must act with all available tools against current anti-Semitism to ensure the security of the Jewish people, in Israel and the Diaspora.”

According to the ministry, Britain saw a record number of anti-Semitic events, including a 78 percent jump in physical attacks against Jews and a 30% rise in the overall number of reported anti-Semitic events.

Germany saw an increase, too, “mainly in light of the surge in the power of the extreme right and [the] refugee crisis.” A critical copy of “Mein Kampf” became a bestseller, the ministry notes.

A German edition of Adolf Hitler’s ‘Mein Kampf’ (‘My Struggle’) on display at the Institute for Contemporary History in Munich, December 11, 2015. (Matthias Balk/dpa via AP, File)

“The refugee population [in Europe] is becoming a risk factor for Jewish communities,” the release said. “Over 50% of refugees in Western Europe hold anti-Semitic views and opinions,” it charged.

The risk to Jews from the far right is also on the rise, and even “reached its peak at the Charlottesville march” last year, the ministry said, while anti-Semitic discourse is undergoing a “continuous increase” on the radical left.

It noted the doubling of anti-Semitic incidents in 2017, “including dozens of acts of vandalism against memorials, museums and synagogues.”

And it cited a Pew survey in 18 European countries that found 20% of Europeans aren’t interested in accepting Jews in their countries, 30% wouldn’t want Jews as neighbors, and 22% of Romanians and 18% of Poles would like to revoke the citizenship of local Jews.

The report comes ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27.

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