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In today’s Daily Dispatch, we reported on the growing frequency of anti-Semitic violence in the U.K., including one at a London synagogue this weekend. Anti-Jewish attacks are still occurring all over Europe, as well, including a Hungarian Jewish cemetery that was vandalized:
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The leader of a small Hungarian Jewish community says about 20 graves have been vandalized in a Jewish cemetery.
Peter Weisz says the damage to the graves in the northeastern city of Gyongyos, including the scattering of human remains, was “unprecedented.”
The office of Prime Minister Viktor Orban condemned the “barbaric deed” on Sunday and vowed to launch a program this year to renovate neglected cemeteries.
Weisz said a number of graves dating as far back as the late 1800s were of ancestors of some of the 80 current members of the recently re-established Jewish community in Gyongyos.
Monday, March 23rd, 2015 at 10:24 AM | Stand For Israel
Anti-Semitic violence has been erupting all across Europe in recent months – in France, in Belgium, and in the United Kingdom, where violence at Jews is at all-time highs. The Jewish Press reports on the latest incidents – this weekend, anti-Semitic thugs attacked a London synagogue and its worshipers:
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A gang of around 20 young men in the Stamford Hill section of London stormed a synagogue in the neighborhood late Saturday night. The gang yelled obscenities and threats, beat worshipers and vandalized property according to IsraelHatzolah’s official Twitter account …
One member of the Ahavat Torah congregation who witnessed the attack said the mob shouted “We will kill you!” He also said they physically assaulted the worshipers inside the synagogue and tore apart prayer books.
One Jewish man was beaten about the face and had a tooth knocked out after he tried to apprehend one of the attackers on his own and haul him off to police, having spotted the scene while passing by.
Monday, March 23rd, 2015 at 8:38 AM | Stand For Israel
Stand for Israel has kept abreast of the troubling anti-Semitism and anti-Jewish violence that has been on the rise across Europe. The Algemeiner reports that one of the nations where anti-Semitic hatred is especially troubling is the United Kingdom:
Figures released in February showed antisemitic incidents in the UK reaching the highest level ever recorded, the BBC reported. The Community Security Trust, a Jewish security charity that runs an incident hotline, recorded 1,168 antisemitic incidents against Britain’s 291,000 strong Jewish population in 2014, compared to 535 attacks in 2013.
Britain’s Telegraph supported those findings by talking to members of the Jewish community on how such discrimination and violence have affected their lives:
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“I know there are plenty of people who simply want to live a peaceful coexistence. But there is so much anti‑Semitism in Britain, and it’s coming from all sides. Our local Jewish schools look like prison camps. They’re surrounded by wire fences. There are guards on patrol, some with dogs. On Saturdays, you see police walking the street with members of the CST. I don’t want to sit at home panicking when my husband goes to the synagogue. I just want to live in peace.”
Thursday, March 19th, 2015 at 2:20 PM | Stand For Israel
Earlier this year, the terrorist attacks at a Paris newspaper and Jewish kosher deli highlighted the problem of Islamist extremism Europe is facing. More specifically, France – and the entirety of Europe – has become a dangerous place for the Jews who live there. This anti-Semitic violence was demonstrated again today, The Times of Israel reports, as two Jewish teens were attacked after leaving their French synagogue:
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Two Jewish teens in France were robbed and beaten after leaving their Marseille synagogue …
According to the victims, the assailants said, “Dirty Jews, we will exterminate all of you,” before they were robbed and beaten. The Jewish teens required medical attention …
“Jewish citizens have become increasingly vulnerable targets,” the BNVCA said in a statement. “This gives rise to insecurity, despite the significant steps taken by the government to try to protect its Jewish citizens, and their places of worship.”
Thursday, March 12th, 2015 at 3:55 PM | Stand For Israel
Today marks the beginning of the annual Israeli Apartheid Week. This harshly anti-Israel event will spread its message for two weeks this year. But Arutz Sheva reports that such discrimination is already rampant in the U.S., where a UCLA student was recently interrogated by the student board because she is Jewish:
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A student’s Jewish affiliation became the subject of a heated debate at University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA) earlier this month, after the student government nearly scrapped her acceptance due to her background.
Student Rachel Beyda applied to be a member of the UCLA Judicial Board in February, and presented herself as a candidate in front of the Board.
However, the meeting quickly dissolved into a debate over whether her Jewish background and affiliation with Jewish life on campus is a “conflict of interest”…
Four students who opposed her candidacy – Fabienne Roth, Manjot Singh, Negeen Sadeghi-Movahed and Sofia Moreno Haq, as named by student newspaper the Daily Bruin – also made a public apology following their comments.
Roth had begun the debate by asking whether Beyda could have an “unbiased” view.
“Given that you are a Jewish student and very active in the Jewish community,” Roth asked Beyda, “How do you see yourself being able to maintain an unbiased view?”
Beyda was then asked to leave the room, wherein a long debate ensued over the issue …
The incident garnered a significant backlash from the Jewish community on campus.
Baral later stated to the Daily Bruin, “It was definitely very difficult for me to sit there as they were discussing the appointment and were quite clearly biased against her because of her Jewish identity and her affiliation to the community.”
“As a Jewish student, this for me echoed a centuries-long sort of connotation of Jews being unable to be truly loyal,” he said, adding that he is working on a draft resolution against anti-Semitism on campus.
Thursday, February 26th, 2015 at 8:53 AM | Stand for Israel
Last week, Stand for Israel shared a video showing the rising problem of anti-Semitism on college campuses across the United States. Today, The Times of Israel reports on a poll that shows well over half of all Jewish students have faced hatred because of their faith:
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More than half of current American Jewish college students have personally witnessed or experienced an anti-Semitic incident, according to a new study.
Some 54 percent of Jewish college students participating in a survey released Monday by the Louis D. Brandeis Center and Trinity College said they had experienced or witnessed anti-Semitism within the past academic year. The survey was taken in the spring of 2014, prior to the outbreak of hostilities last summer in Gaza …
Tuesday, February 24th, 2015 at 10:33 AM | Stand For Israel
A chilling video threat issued over the weekend by the Somali terror group al-Shabaab against specific Jewish-owned malls provides further indication that Islamist groups around the world are setting their sights on Jewish targets, according to a leading expert on Jewish security and terrorist threats:
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“The most recent threat by al-Shabaab against malls, and more specifically against Jewish-owned institutions around the world, is another indication that global jihadi groups are increasingly focusing on Jews and Jewish institutions as a way to rally support for their cause,” said Dr. Joshua Gleis, president of Gleis Security Consulting.
Al-Shabaab’s recording, posted to YouTube on Saturday, mostly glorifies the group’s bloody 2013 attack on the Jewish-owned Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya which left 63 people dead and at least 175 wounded.
Towards the end of the nearly 77 minute video, a masked man with an English accent calls on Jihadists to attack specific targets
“If just a handful of mujahedeen fighters could bring Kenya to a complete standstill for nearly a week, then imagine what a dedicated mujahedeen in the West could do to the American or Jewish-owned shopping centers across the world,” he says.
“What if such an attack was to occur in the Mall of America in Minnesota, or the West Edmonton Mall in Canada, or in London’s Oxford Street, or any of the hundred or so Jewish-owned Westfield shopping centers dotted right across the western world?” he continues. …
Responding to the video in an interview on CNN, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said, “This latest statement from al-Shabaab reflects the new phase we’ve evolved to in the global terrorist threat, in that you have groups such as al-Shabaab and ISIL publicly calling for independent actors in their homelands to carry out attacks.”
Regarding the specific threat to Mall of America, Johnson said: “Anytime a terrorist organization calls for an attack on a specific place, we’ve got to take that seriously.” He advised people going to the Mall of America to be particularly careful, Reuters reported.
Monday, February 23rd, 2015 at 9:16 AM | Stand For Israel
Yemen’s once-vibrant Jewish community has been reduced to untended cemeteries, empty villages, and less than 100 individuals. Rod Nordland, writing for The New York Times, takes a deeper look at life for this country’s Jewish community, which is marked by persecution and fear:
The last of Yemen’s once numerous Jews, who predated Muslims by many centuries, have seldom been so threatened and had so few protectors. … Most of them live in Amran Province, deep in territory controlled by Houthi militants, whose leaders have made anti-Semitism a central plank in their political platform. …
The Houthis, who now dominate the country, are particularly strong in the two places with confirmed remaining Yemeni Jews: here in Raida, where there are 55 Jews, and in Sana, the capital, where a small number live under what amounts to house arrest by the Houthi leadership.
The two countries that have long facilitated Jewish emigration from Yemen — the United States and Britain — both closed their embassies last week, as did most other Western countries. And the Yemeni strongman who for three decades was the Jews’ protector, former President Ali Abdullah Saleh, is not only out of power, but also, more recently, out of favor with the Houthis.
“We have no friends,” said [Abraham Jacob, one of the country’s remaining Jews], “so we just try to stay away from everyone as much as we can.”
The Fellowship has long been committed to rescuing Yemen’s Jews. Click here to read the story of a Yemenite family that was brought to Israel though our On Wings of Eagles program.Comments (6) »
Thursday, February 19th, 2015 at 8:46 AM | Stand For Israel
We are accustomed to hearing about anti-Semitism in Europe, where Jews are one of the prime targets of Islamic terror. But many people are not aware that America’s Jewish population has also become the target of anti-Semitic hatred and violence. This video produced by The Israel Project depicts how difficult it is to be a Jew on many American college campuses.
- Ami FarkasComments (41) »
Wednesday, February 18th, 2015 at 8:27 AM | Stand For Israel
We keep hearing about the rising tide of anti-Semitism in Europe. And while surveys and statistics do illustrate the increasing difficulty and danger of European Jewish life, nothing shows it more clearly than seeing hatred in action.
Israeli journalist Zvika Klein courageously ventured through the streets of Paris while donning a kippah – a skullcap worn by Orthodox Jews – and with a hidden cameraman by his side. During his tour of France, he was taunted, insulted, and spit at, simply for having the chutzpah to walk the Parisian streets as a Jew. He documented his experience and put the short film on YouTube.
Anyone with familiarity of Jewish and Christian history in Muslim countries knows that life was never easy for non-Muslims living in Islamic lands. There were periods of relative calm, where money extorted from Jews and Christians enabled them to get by for periods of time. Yet riots, looting, and discriminatory laws – especially towards Jews – were common since the dawn of Islam.
To think that Islamic intolerance and hatred of Jews is an outcome of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is shortsighted and ignorant. Jews have always had a target on their backs in the Middle East, for hundreds of years before the Zionist dream was realized. What we are seeing on the streets of Paris, Copenhagen, and other parts of Europe is deplorable, yet the fact that such blatant anti-Semitism has found a home on the continent where six millions Jews were murdered is simply unbelievable.
- Ami FarkasComments (32) »
Tuesday, February 17th, 2015 at 9:17 AM | Stand For Israel