Anti-Semitism Rises in Europe, North and South America
By Sarah Ann Haves
Anti-Semitism has increased 40% worldwide since early 2014. It is not only being seen in the general population of Europe, but also in government settings, as neo-Nazi leaders sit in Parliaments in Hungary and Greece.
In Hungary, Holocaust deniers have influence in media, academics and governmental arenas. They spread lies about the Jewish people for political and financial gain.
Many European Jews who lived through the Holocaust say that the current atmosphere in Europe feels like it did in 1930… in pre-Holocaust days. At times they are fearful because they do not know when the next attack may occur. Violent acts of anti-Semitism, intolerance, and fanaticism remain a real threat to the Jewish communities of Europe.
say the atmosphere
feels like it did
Attackers have learned how to avoid security cameras so they won’t be caught. What is happening today is not just spontaneous acts of anti-Semitism, but professionally organized crimes against Jews. Anti-Semitism is sometimes connected to terrorism – which is the most extreme form of hatred against Jews.
In April 2015, European leader Dr. Moshe Kantor, said that the streets of European cities have become hunting grounds for Jews. Trends show that anti-Semitic attacks in Western Europe are often carried out by young Muslims. However, France and other European countries do not want to link the actions of Muslim immigrant populations to anti-Semitism.
Furthermore, Israel can be criticized and European leaders don’t see it generating hostility towards their Jewish communities. In an effort to be politically correct, these leaders will condemn “Islamaphobia” along with Anti-Semitism. The growing power of Muslim influence on European governments has weakened the resolve of many European leaders towards the Jewish People. Some even seek favor within Muslim communities because they want the Muslims to vote them into office.
EMERGENCY PREPARATIONS IN EUROPE
The head of Israel’s Jewish Agency, Natan Sharansky, spoke at the Board of Governor’s meeting in Jerusalem several months ago. He said that Israel dealt with two emergencies in 2014 that threatened Jewish communities in France and the Ukraine. Sharansky expects more emergencies this year. Statistics show that 38% of Ukrainian citizens harbor anti-Semitic attitudes.
In France, while the government there has taken unprecedented measures to protect the country’s Jewish population, Jews in Paris still feel closed in behind high walls and barbed wire fences. They attend synagogue services and community events with police protection, and most of the time they do not wear Jewish symbols when walking in the streets for fear of being attacked.
CONFERENCE ON GLOBAL ANTI-SEMITISM
In May 2015, Israel’s Foreign Ministry hosted an international conference in Jerusalem on Global Anti-Semitism. More than 1,000 people attended including diplomats, academics, lawyers, judges, journalists and other professionals. It was there that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu talked about Israel welcoming European Jews with open arms if they wanted to immigrate to Israel. Following his speech, the Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, gave a public relations speech, promoting Paris as a great city for Jews to live in. She mentioned how all efforts are being made to keep French Jews safe, and encouraged them not to leave France.
She insisted, “Without the Jews, France would not be the same country anymore. And, without the Jews, Paris would not be the same city anymore, and we do not want this to happen… We should not tolerate anti-Semitism against the Jewish community. All Jews are welcome in Paris.”
Hidalgo went on to explain that France is very proud of its synagogues, libraries, and schools, and that Jewish life cannot be disconnected from the soul of Paris.
But, Israeli analysts are concerned that the French government may be working against Aliyah (immigration) of Jews to Israel.
is deeply rooted
At the conference, one French leader, Francois Pupponi, the Mayor of Sarcelles, did acknowledge that Jewish people are not safe in France without soldiers present; and, that anti-Semitism is deeply rooted in French neighborhoods. He admitted that there may be more attacks in the future.
Pupponi and other conference speakers spoke about the three social groups that encourage anti-Semitism in France. This was also applied to other European nations:
(1) The “Extreme Right” political parties that are involved in stirring anti-Jewish sentiments among members of the population. These parties have great influence on 20% of French voters.
(2) The “Extreme Left” political parties which back the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement. These groups use the image of Jews and Israelis in a negative way, claiming there are links to imperialism and world power.
(3) Radical Islamic jihadists among the Muslim European populations that stir up violence against Jews.
There is an atmosphere in Europe that challenges Jewish identity. Jews cannot travel safely on the metro system without fear of becoming a target of anti-Semitism. It is hampering the lives of European Jews, as this kind of hatred is becoming part of the European cultural scene. Anti-Israel views are entering mainstream society in Europe.
At the Jerusalem conference on Global Anti-Semitism, American Jewish leader Malcolm Hoenlein declared that there is an immediate need to establish an international Jewish security network. Its main purpose would be to deal with the physical security of Jewish institutions and communities throughout the world.
However, 23 out of 28 European countries are not supporting this effort. Those countries that have been hit the worst with anti-Semitism are showing interest, such as France, Germany, the U.K., Denmark and Belgium. More has to be done to involve other European nations.
CHRISTIANS SHOW THEIR SUPPORT FOR JEWISH COMMUNITIES
Jewish leaders are now dialoguing with Evangelicals, especially Christian leaders of Spanish descent. These Christians have been willing to lend a hand of support to Israel in order to prove to Jewish community leaders that they are not alone in their efforts to combat anti-Semitism.
The Venezuelan Jewish Community is active with Evangelical groups in opposing the BDS movement, as well as the campaign to de-legitimize Israel’s right to its land.
At least 30% of American Evangelical communities are united with Jewish communities in taking a stand against anti-Semitism. That number is expected to increase this year.
During the conference, a Spanish Evangelical leader said that when the truth is spoken about blatant anti-Semitism across the world, people come together with a clear objective to bring the facts to others and do something about it.
At the Israeli Foreign Ministry conference, participants heard from Heiko Maas, the German Federal Minister of Justice and Consumer Protection. He said, “When we fight anti-Semitism, we are dealing with both the present and the past,” as Hitler’s ideals live on.
|In the 1950s and 1960s
many Nazis fled
to South America.
When the Holocaust ended, Germans let the perpetrators escape conviction. In the 1950’s and 60s, the German government did not prosecute the Nazis for war crimes. Instead, many fled to South America. Germany suffered not only the guilt of the Holocaust itself, but also the guilt of not punishing those people who committed such atrocities. Today, Germany is trying to track down perpetrators and bring them to justice, even in their old age. Heiko Mass said it is never too late for justice to be done.
Last year, there were 1,500 anti-Semitic criminal offenses committed in Germany. These were mainly verbal assaults against Jews. There is a broad consensus among government leaders that there has to be a zero tolerance policy.
According to Heiko Mass, “Everyone who lives in Germany is expected to understand there is no place for it (anti-Semitism) in our country.”
Reportedly, young Germans in the 18-20-age category hold a negative view of Israel. The younger generation in Germany has shown signs of a radical pacifist culture. German young people have trouble accepting Israel’s self-defense wars against terrorist organizations, and these Germans express their opposition loudly and publicly.
After WWII, Germans who lived through the war wanted to deal with their guilt, and many did so by supporting Israel. Today, however, more than 40% of Germany’s citizens feel they have worked through the crimes of the Holocaust and they want to move on with their lives.
When Israel fights terrorist groups on its borders for security reasons, and it doesn’t line up with Germany’s political position, many Germans resent this. For example, during Israel’s Gaza military campaign in 2014, “leftist” German youth gangs held protests and threw rocks and bottles at pro-Israel supporters, screaming profanities at them. It seems that Germany’s left-leaning society wants to discipline and punish Israel without taking into consideration Israel’s need to protect its sovereignty.
At the conference in Jerusalem, there was a consensus that more action is needed in Germany to fight anti-Semitism at a street level.
OPTIONS FOR EUROPEAN JEWS
According to Anti-Defamation League (ADL) Director, Abraham Foxman, European Jews are confronted with three choices: (1) Assimilate so they are not recognized as Jews. (2) Reveal their true identity, along with their strong religious ties to Judaism, and, therefore, accept the consequences. (3) Emigrate from Europe.
NAZI PENETRATION INTO LATIN AMERICA AFTER WWII
Many Nazis fled Germany after WWII. The Argentinean government gave them refuge, and settled them in the south of the country. It was there that the Nazis were protected and lived their lives in relative calm with new identities.
|In Latin America
Argentina and Venezuela
have anti-Semitic policies.
Today, in Latin America, there is great danger because governments there have anti-Semitic policies, such as Argentina, Guatemala and Venezuela.
Anti-Semitism has been active in Venezuela for many years. Today, there are 7,000 Jews still living in the country. The government is considered “far left”, and reportedly, Iran is trying to get advanced military equipment into the country. The Venezuelan government is known for giving passage to terrorists.
Venezuelan officials are careful not to speak outwardly against the country’s Jewish population. However, they do allow social media, and traditional mainstream media (including official TV and newspapers), to attack Israel, Zionism, and the Jews. There are at least 10 people linked to the government that speak against Venezuela’s Jewish community.
At the Israeli Foreign Ministry conference, a Jewish leader from Venezuela said that the Jews there face anti-Semitism on a daily basis. He explained that his community has now adopted a new policy. They will respond to any attack against them and they expect a fierce backlash.
The next six months are critical for Venezuela’s Jews as there have already been many lies and accusations spoken against them. They hope there will not be an uptick in anti-Semitism in the future.
IRAN IN LATIN AMERICA
The Iranian penetration into Latin America is increasing. Countries there are forming an alliance with Iran, which hinders any kind of relationship with Israel.
Hezbollah has cells throughout Latin America, especially in the southern triangle region. There are also physical attacks against Jews in Chile where there are large populations of Palestinians living.
From 2004 until now, an undercurrent of anti-Semitism has been prevalent in Brazil. It is mostly underneath the surface, but stirred up by “leftists” who hold great power in Brazil. Brazil votes for anti-Israel measures in the U.N.
During the Jerusalem Conference on anti-Semitism, Tim Uppal, Minister of State and Multi-Culturalism for Canada, said that there has been a 21% increase in vandalism against Jews in his country. The Canadian government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper is set on combating these hate crimes.
Referring to the persecution against Jews in the past, Tim Uppal declared, “We have an obligation to recognize that the same threats exist today.” He talked about the disturbing rise of incidents of anti-Semitism in Canada, which peaked in 2014.
There is a new anti-Semitism, which comes from anti-Israel participants in human rights organizations. These individuals look for ways to discredit and delegitimize Israel.
Uppal explains, “This new anti-Semitism targets Israel. It is racist, hateful and completely unacceptable…. Israel has a right to exist as a Jewish State. Through fire and water, Canada will stand with you!”
ANTI-SEMITISM AT THE UNIVERSITY LEVEL IN AMERICA
On U.S. college campuses, anti-Semitism is running rampant. A recent survey shows that 54% of Jewish students experienced anti-Semitism on campus during the first six months of the 2013-2014 school year.
Jewish students are being physically, emotionally and intellectually harassed and intimidated by other students and teachers alike.
Anti-Semitism has taken place at N.Y. University, University of Michigan, University of California (Berkeley), San Francisco State University, and Northeastern University (Boston). These acts of hatred against Jews have been met with silence from educators.
Students at pro-Israel events have been threatened and harassed, sometimes with violent acts committed against them. Most of the perpetuators have been members of Muslim and pro-Palestinian student organizations.
There are also major BDS movements staged on college campuses with faculty involved. Professors on campuses have distorted Israel’s historical and biblical right to the land, advancing an agenda of lies and distortions about Israel’s place among the nations.
Professors at California State University (Northridge and Riverside) are heading up campaigns focused on boycotting Israeli products. This is also true of a professor at New York University.
University administrators ignore anti-Israel campaigns and turn a blind eye to hatred against Jews on their campuses. They refuse to protect Jewish students from acts of violence against them.
THE BDS MOVEMENT
There is a campaign effort in the U.S. on student campuses today to isolate Israel economically. Reportedly, almost everything the Nazi’s in Germany said about the Jewish People during WWII, is being said, now, by BDS supporters. This is being seen by Jewish leaders as a concrete threat to the future of Israel on many fronts including science, education, culture, sports, and within the business and diplomatic communities.
Naftali Bennett, leader of Israel’s Bayit Yehudi party in Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government coalition, spoke at the Jerusalem Conference on Global Anti-Semitism. He said, “We need to fight back. Today, to be anti-Israel or anti-Semitic doesn’t cost you anything… Shed light on this and never never be silent. If you look at Jewish history, anti-Semitism was a first step to de-legitimize us.”
Mentioning what happened in Nazi Germany between 1933-1941, Bennett spoke of the de-humanization of European Jewry. He encouraged all people to take a stand against hatred of Jews and anti-Israel rhetoric. “Whenever you hear slander of Israel, even if it is inconvenient, stand-up and speak the truth.”
“Therefore, behold days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when it will no longer be said, ‘As the Lord lives who brought up the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt,’ but, ‘As the Lord lives, who brought up the sons of Israel from the land of the north and from all the countries where He had banished them.’ For I will restore them to their own land which I gave to their forefathers.”
“Behold, I am going to send for many fisherman,” declares the Lord, “and they will fish for them; and afterwards, I will send for many hunters, and they will hunt them from every mountain and every hill and from the clefts of the rocks.” Jeremiah 16:14-16
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Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright ©1979, 1980, 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Ms. Haves is a news analyst, reporting on political, diplomatic, military and spiritual issues in Israel and the nations.