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New Report Highlights Skyrocketing Antisemitic Attacks

Ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, which will be commemorated around the world on Monday, the Ministry of Diaspora Affairs on Sunday published its report on anti-Semitism for 2019.

The report reveals extremely disconcerting trends of increased and intensifying anti-Semitic incidents across the globe in general, and in Western Europe and the United States in particular.

In 2019, according to the report, seven Jews and non-Jews were murdered in a series of antisemitic attacks, and many others were wounded. The report also states that anti-Semitic violence came from different directions and was inspired by various ideologies, by the far-right, white supremacists, the extreme left, radical Islam and even escalating street violence perpetrated by African-American youths.

The epicenters of anti-Semitism: Western democracies

The report reveals that anti-Semitism mainly poses a threat to Jews living in Western democracies with large Jewish communities – the US, France, Great Britain and Germany. The US saw a rise in the number of violent anti-Semitic incidents, with over 100 violent street attacks in Brooklyn alone in the past year.

In France, too, there was a drastic increase in the number of reported antisemitic attacks in the first half of 2019. And for the second consecutive year, online anti-Semitic abuse intensified, with many anti-Semitic commenters no longer searching for an excuse, such as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, to spew classic anti-Semitic rhetoric.

In Germany, there was a 20% increase in antisemitic incidents, among them the Halle synagogue shooting on October 9, in which two bystanders lost their lives. Additionally, throughout 2019 Jews were assaulted in the streets, targeted with insults and threats, and neo-Nazi groups and political parties openly disseminated neo-Nazi propaganda and called for the release of Holocaust deniers from prison.

In Great Britain, meanwhile, where an ant-Semitic candidate, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, vied for the premiership in 2019, the Jewish community sensed an existential threat to its future in the country.

Success in combatting antisemitism on social media

A positive trend noted in the report was the drastic drop, about 25%, in anti-Semitic discourse on monitored online sites and forums, primarily the result of new policies – mainly on Facebook and Twitter. However, anti-Semitic activists have been moving to alternative social media sites and to the dark web.

Diaspora Affairs Minister Tzipi Hotovely addressed the report’s findings at the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on Sunday.

“To our great regret, the trend of rising anti-Semitism is continuing, and it seems the lessons of history are not erasing the deep hatred toward the Jewish people,” she said. “Our duty is to turn the impressive show of international solidarity here on Thursday [at the Fifth World Holocaust Forum] into an actionable work plan to effectively fight hatred of Israel.”

Hotovely added: “2019 was a watershed period for US Jewry. Half of the hate crimes reported to the FBI targeted Jews; there were terrible anti-Semitic attacks, such as the attack at the synagogue in San Diego, the attack at the kosher grocery in Jersey City and the  Hanukkah attack in Monsey (New York); all these represent a dangerous and worrying escalation. In France and Britain the concerning trend is continuing at unprecedented levels. The Corbyn case proves that the problem of anti-Semitism reaches the highest levels of politics.”

Source: https://www.israelhayom.com/2020/01/27/alarming-trend-over-100-anti-semitic-attacks-in-brooklyn-in-2019/