Jewish UK parents receive child’s birth certificate torn, with ‘Israel’ scribbled out

‘Like we’re in 1930s Germany,’ says father, as Britain sees sharp uptick in antisemitism; home secretary promises incident will be investigated

Jewish UK parents receive child's birth certificate torn, with 'Israel' scribbled out as the father's birthplace, February 20, 2024 (Screenshot/X; ; Used in accordance with Clause 27a of the Copyright Law)
Jewish UK parents receive child's birth certificate torn, with 'Israel' scribbled out as the father's birthplace, February 20, 2024 (Screenshot/X; ; Used in accordance with Clause 27a of the Copyright Law)

UK Home Secretary James Cleverly promised “appropriate action” Monday after a London Jewish couple received their six-month-old daughter’s birth certificate partially ripped with the word “Israel,” the father’s birthplace, blotted out.

“Two weeks ago, a member of the public sent off a passport application to [the UK Home Office] for his six-month-old baby girl. Today, the birth certificate was returned ripped with the word ‘Israel’ scribbled out,” wrote the Anglo-Jewish organization Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) in an X post Monday, with a picture of the defaced document. “We are asking the Home Office to investigate how this happened. The Home Office has responsibility for law enforcement and the security of the Jewish community. ”

Cleverly replied to the post two hours later, saying that “I have asked my officials to investigate this urgently and will see that appropriate action is taken.” Minister of Security Tom Tugendhat seconded Cleverly an hour later in a separate exchange on the social media platform.

The incident comes amid a worrying rise in British antisemitism following Hamas’s brutal October 7 onslaught on Israel and the ensuing Gaza war. “Confidence in the authorities among British Jews is at painfully low levels and must be restored,” a CAA spokesperson said in a statement.

Israel, 32, an engineer father of three from Edgware in north London who preferred not to disclose his surname, told the Daily Mail that his wife Dorin, 29, had opened the envelope containing their baby Ronnie’s birth certificate, and was aghast to discover the name of the Jewish state scribbled over in pen, with the document itself partially torn, rendering it invalid.

Israel’s Channel 12 later interviewed the couple, identifying them as Israel and Dorin Weinberger.

“We felt as if we had been taken back to 1930’s Germany where the Nazis would put notes on Jewish people’s documentation,” the Daily Mail quoted the father as saying. “It is completely warped and it hurts my heart that my daughter is not even six months old and she has already been discriminated on in the worst way,” he added.

According to the image posted by the CAA, the entry for the mother’s birthplace, which is also Israel, was left intact. Since personal names were redacted in the published image, it is unclear if the father’s name, Israel, was vandalized as well.

Antisemitism in Britain has surged since the start of Israel’s war on Hamas. On Thursday, the Community Security Trust, an Anglo-Jewish security advisory body, published a report that said the number of antisemitic incidents in the UK in 2023 had more than doubled since 2022. Speaking in the House of Commons Monday, Policing Minister Chris Philip called the report “deeply disturbing reading.”

“The record total of antisemitic hate in 2023 is due entirely to the surge in incidents following the 7 October Hamas terrorist attack on Israel, and the scale of the increase is unprecedented,” the CST said in a statement Thursday.

Illustrative: The word ‘Gaza’ daubed in red paint outside the Wiener Holocaust Library in central London, November 2, 2023. (Via X)

On October 7, thousands of Hamas-led terrorists stormed southern Israel, killing nearly 1,200 people, mainly civilians, and taking 253 hostages of all ages, while committing numerous atrocities and weaponizing sexual violence on a mass scale.

Vowing to destroy the Palestinian terror group, Israel launched a massive airstrike and ground campaign in Gaza, which has seen about half of the enclave’s residences destroyed, displacing over a million people, many of whom face severe risk of starvation. According to the Strip’s Hamas-controlled health ministry, over 29,000 Palestinians have been killed in the fighting.

The figure, which cannot be independently verified, does not distinguish between civilians and combatants, of whom the terror group claims to have lost some 6,000, while the Israeli military says it has killed about twice that many. 236 Israeli soldiers have also lost their lives in the fighting.

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