Growing European antisemitism forcing French Jews to hide religion, new report says

Report finds rising levels of antisemitism in Britain, France and Germany.

By Dion J. Pierre, The Algemeiner

Growing antisemitism in Europe is forcing French Jews to caution their children against revealing their faith, according to a new report by the Jewish People Policy Institute, a Jerusalem-based nonprofit.

Published in September, the report, titled “Annual Assessment: The Situation and Dynamics of the Jewish People,” described an increase in antisemitic discrimination from across the political spectrum in multiple European countries.

“In France…a primary source of antisemitism emanates from the extreme left and often conceals itself behind the mask of human rights and egalitarianism,” it said. “The Jewish state is frequently described by activists in these movements as the last bastion of colonialism, an evil entity that should be dismantled. This is often accompanied by age-old antisemitic tropes, creating a hostile environment for Jews.”

Twenty-percent of French Jewish respondents said they were physically assaulted in the last year and forty-five-percent said they “ask their children not to disclose their religion.”

In Britain, eighteen percent of Jews reported feeling unwelcome, the group noted, with many saying that “progressive left circles” offer little to no support to fight antisemitism. JPPI credited this to a neo-Marxist “conceptual framework” in which Jews are perceived as white and incapable of experiencing racism.

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“This framing is an obstacle to fighting antisemitism and contributes to significantly to failures to recognize and stand against antisemitism among the broader left,” it continued.

The report comes amidst a significant uptick in antisemitic incidents in Britain and France. In August, Community Security Trust (CST), a nonprofit that monitors antisemitism, recorded in the first half of 2022 the fifth most antisemitic incidents since it began tracking them in 1984. In February, France’s interior ministry reported a 74 percent increase in complaints of antisemitism.

Antisemitism also threaten Jews in Germany, the report continued. Forty-percent of Jews there said they have been “disadvantaged, marginalized, or threatened in one way or another over the past year.” It also noted that at least a quarter of all Germans have antisemitic beliefs, some of which are based on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“Jews living in Germany often feel they are held accountable for Israeli policy vis-a-vis the Palestinians and the conceptualization of Israel as the ‘collective Jews’ has become the identificational basis for regarding and judging all Jews,” JPPI said.

The group concluded that antisemitism may haunt European Jews for years to come and called on Israel to work with international bodies to set out “clear and measurable objectives” for fighting it.

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