International Fellowship of Christians and Jews

German Jews Fear Rising Anti-Semitism

(Photo: flickr/israel-mfa)

(Photo: flickr/israel-mfa)

With the influx of Middle-Eastern refugees Europe is facing, anti-Semitism across the continent is also on the rise. Yediot Achronot reports that nowhere is concern higher than in Germany:

Jews across Germany are hiding their identity when volunteering at refugee shelters for fear of reprisals, adding another layer of complexity to a social, economic and logistical challenge that is stretching the fabric of German society.

“Among the refugees, there are a great many people who grew up with hostility toward Israel and conflate these prejudices with hatred toward Jews in general,” Josef Schuster, president of the Central Council of Jews, told Reuters in an interview conducted in October.

Chancellor Angela Merkel stressed last week that anti-Semitic attitudes among some young people arriving from countries where “hatred toward Israel and Jews is commonplace” needed to be dealt with.


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Tuesday, February 2nd, 2016 at 7:57 AM  | Stand For Israel

French Jews Fear ISIS-Inspired Anti-Semitism

(Photo: twitter/ZvikaKlein)

(Photo: twitter/ZvikaKlein)

European law enforcement agencies are on high alert for ISIS-inspired attacks, such as those that left 130 dead in Paris this past November. But The New York Times’ Adam Nossiter reports that Europe’s Jewish communities, particular those in France, are even more alarmed by the anti-Semitism being inspired by the Islamist terror group:

It was the heavy leather-bound volume of the Torah he was carrying that shielded Benjamin Amsellem from the machete blows.

His attacker, a teenage fanatic who the police say was inspired by the Islamic State, was trying to decapitate Mr. Amsellem, a teacher at a local Jewish school. But Mr. Amsellem used the Torah — the only defense at hand — to deflect the blade and save himself.

It was the third such knife attack since October on a Jew in Marseille, where the Jewish population, around 70,000, is the second largest in France after Paris. And it was the latest example of how France is confronting both the general threat of terrorism, especially after two large-scale attacks in Paris last year, and a particular strain of anti-Semitism that has left many French Jews deeply unnerved.

“This was something claimed by an individual who invoked Daesh, who wanted to kill a Jew. It is extremely serious,” said Marseille’s top police official, Laurent Nunez, in an interview. “Daesh” is an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State, which is also known as ISIS or ISIL.

Among Jews here, the attack on Mr. Amsellem, 35, has been met with a mix of anger and resignation, a response conditioned by the history of anti-Semitism in France, along with the recognition that global jihadism has made French Jews choice targets.

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Monday, January 25th, 2016 at 11:36 AM  | Stand For Israel

Things Are Getting Uncomfortable for European Jews

(Photo: screenshot)

(Photo: screenshot)

Things are indeed becoming more and more unsafe for Europe’s Jewish communities. Anti-semitism, hatred, and violence abound, with many European Jews looking to make aliyah (immigrate to Israel). Writing at The Jerusalem Post, Trevor Asserson, a London-born Israeli, looks at one more way that life has become uncomfortable for Jews in Europe:

It is fitting that France, the center of the fashion industry, should be the center of a kippa controversy.

Halacha famously requires that a Jew must sacrifice his life even over how his shoelaces are tied – if he’s told to change that as part of a public demand to abandon Judaism. Yet the command to save our own lives takes precedence over almost any other commandment. The range of opinions is wide enough to support both the Marseilles community leader who, following a recent stabbing, advised Jews not to wear a kippa and the rabbis who tell him to continue to wear it.

The kippa has recently established itself among Orthodox Jews as a fashion item. Jewish men should cover their head when saying God’s name; but otherwise opinion is divided as to whether it is essential to keep one’s head covered. Many great scholars of the past went bare-headed.

However, recent decades have seen the kippa become the ubiquitous symbol of the identifying male Jew. This has only strengthened in the decades after the Six Day War as Jews have grown in confidence, reflecting the growing confidence of the Jewish state itself…

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Friday, January 22nd, 2016 at 7:52 AM  | Stand for Israel

Turkish Synagogue Vandalized After First Prayer Service in Decades

(Photo: flickr/anitagould)

(Photo: flickr/anitagould)

A moment of rejoicing for one Turkish synagogue quickly turned to sadness. The Jerusalem Post reports that after a prayer service was held at the temple for the first time in nearly seven decades, vandals defaced the Jewish house of worship:

Vandals spray-painted hate graffiti on the Istipol Synagogue in Istanbul just days after a one-time prayer service was held, the first in 65 years, the Turkish publication Today’s Zaman reported on Tuesday.

Vandals wrote “Terrorist Israel, there is Allah,” on the external walls of the structure in white paint, in the largely Jewish neighborhood of Balat.

“Writing anti-Israel speech on the wall [outside] of a synagogue is an act of anti-Semitism,” Ivo Molinas, editor-inchief of the Jewish community’s weekly newspaper Salom, said in an interview with the Turkish newspaper.

“There is widespread anti-Semitism voiced in Turkey and it gets in the way of celebrating the richness of cultural diversity in this country,” he added.

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Thursday, January 21st, 2016 at 7:56 AM  | Stand for Israel

Palestinian Authority Anti-Semitism: Overview of 2015

(Photo: wikicommons/ Manar al Zraiy)

(Photo: wikicommons/ Manar al Zraiy)

Yesterday we told you about an anti-Israel video that Fatah-run TV is using to incite violence. But this is not an isolated incident of incitement. Gatestone Institute’s Itamar Marcus reports on the rampant anti-Semitism from the Palestinian Authority over the past year:

Since the Palestinian Authority (PA) was established, and continuing throughout 2015, it has systematically used Antisemitism to indoctrinate young and old to hate Israelis and Jews. The PA has actively promoted religious hatred by demonizing Judaism and Jews, spreading libels that present Jews as endangering Palestinians, Arabs, and all humanity.

The PA presents Jews as possessing inherently evil traits. Jews are said to be treacherous, corrupt, allied with the devil, as well as descendants of apes and pigs. In 2015, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ advisor on Islam and head of PA Shari’ah courts taught on PA TV that Jews throughout history have represented “falsehood… evil… the devils and their supporters… the satans and their supporters.” Accordingly, the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is a conflict of “Allah’s project vs. Satan’s project.”

The official PA daily published an op-ed saying Jews “are thirsty for blood to please their god (against the gentiles), and crave pockets full of money.” These Jewish “attributes” and traditions are presented as the unchangeable nature of Jews. These messages come from the top of the Palestinian Authority.

In 2015, children were broadcast on official PA TV reciting poems with strong Antisemitic content. Young kids had learned by heart that Jews are “most evil among creations,” “barbaric monkeys” and “Satan with a tail…”

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Thursday, January 14th, 2016 at 7:45 AM  | Stand for Israel

London Jews Attacked, Told “Hitler Is on the Way”

(Photo: flickr/kafka4prez)

(Photo: flickr/kafka4prez)

Even as France’s Jews commemorate the one-year anniversary of the terrorist attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris, anti-Semitism continues to occur there and elsewhere in Europe. Today, JNS reports that Jews in London were attacked with gas canisters and anti-Semitic epithets:

In the incident, three men threw steel canisters from a pickup truck at two Jewish men and one Jewish woman who were shopping in the Tottenham Hale area, according to the London-based Jewish watchdog group Shomrim.

“Hitler is on the way to you, Heil Hitler, Heil Hitler, Heil Hitler,” the attackers shouted, Shomrim said.

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Friday, January 8th, 2016 at 9:27 AM  | Stand for Israel

2015’s Worst Anti-Semitic, Anti-Israel Incidents

(Photo: Flickr/ Takver)

(Photo: Flickr/ Takver)

The past year saw shocking violence strike all over the world, from attacks in the United States, in Europe, and in the Middle East. While the terror that we all face looks to put an end to our free, Western world, it – and other, non-violent aggression – often more specifically focuses on its victims because of their faith. Arutz Sheva’s Hillel Fendel reports on the Simon Wiesenthal’s year-end look at 2015’s worst anti-Semitic and anti-Israel incidents:

Its top-ten list of anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism is topped by an incident within the family of the ISIS-sympathizing couple that murdered 14 Americans in San Bernardino earlier this month: “I told him he had to stay calm and be patient,” Sayed Farouk reassured his son the mass-murderer, “because in two years Israel will not exist anymore. Geopolitics is changing: Russia, China and America don’t want Jews there anymore. They are going to bring the Jews back to Ukraine …”

Number two on the list of samplings of what the Center calls the “growing menace that threatens the Jewish people and democratic values” comes from ISIS itself. Of their many nauseating pro-death videos, one has a narrator announcing, on the backdrop of weapons-wielding terrorists, “To all the Jews, grandsons of apes and pigs, we are coming at you from all over the world. … [The war] is soon; it won’t be long, Allah willing, Allah willing.” Another video released in Hebrew threatens, “Soon, there will not be even a single Jew left in Jerusalem or the rest of the country. We will keep going until we eradicate this disease worldwide.”

Interestingly, a German correspondent reported from within ISIS on Sunday that the terrorists are afraid not of America or Britain, but only of the IDF.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center cites next the EU’s decision to label Israeli-made products from Judea, Samaria and the Golan – and specifically not those made in other disputed territories around the world. It calls this an example of double standards that “typify modern anti-Israelism…

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Thursday, December 31st, 2015 at 7:55 AM  | Stand for Israel

Jews Biggest Targets of Religious Hate Crimes

(Photo: FBI)

(Photo: FBI)

From the nearly constant terror facing Israelis to the anti-Semitic attacks carried out across the Middle East, Europe, and the rest of the world, the Jewish people are so often targeted simply because of their faith. Forward’s Johanna Markind reports that this is also the case in the U.S., as the FBI has found that American Jews were the most likely to face religious hate crimes:

When it comes to religious hate crimes, Jews and Jewish institutions were the biggest targets in America again last year, hands down…

Last year, as in previous years, Jews were the most frequent victims of reported crimes targeting members of a religious group. Of the 1,140 reported victims of anti-religious hate crimes, 648, or almost 57%, were Jewish. Looked at another way, of the 1,014 reported anti-religious hate crime incidents (some of which had multiple victims), 609, or slightly more than 60%, targeted Jews.

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Friday, December 11th, 2015 at 9:31 AM  | Stand for Israel

Homeland Security Asks Jewish Agencies to Institute Security

(Photo: DHS)

(Photo: DHS)

While the whole world is now a target for terrorists, the Jewish people still remain especially at risk. In the wake of the Paris attacks, JTA reports, the Department of Homeland Security has called for Jewish agencies to initiate greater security:

“If they have not developed security management plans, they need to get those plans,” Goldenberg told JTA. “We’re asking Jewish agencies to institutionalize security as a part of the culture…”

Mayorkas explained how even when a primary target is not Jewish, the attackers may seek out Jewish targets in a secondary attack. He noted the attacks in Paris in January, where a satirical magazine that had mocked Islam was the first target; subsequently, attackers targeted a kosher supermarket.

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Wednesday, November 25th, 2015 at 9:01 AM  | Stand for Israel

The Iran Deal and the Media’s Obsession with Congress Members’ Jewishness

(Photo: flickr/IDF)

(Photo: flickr/IDF)

As more and more members of Congress have come out in opposition of the Iran nuclear deal, the media has begun to focus on something other than the legislators’ stances. The media has instead focused on the fact that many of these Congressmen and -women are Jewish. Writing at The Algemeiner, Ruthie Blum points out the alarming anti-Semitism in this emphasis:

Two well-known Jewish pundits took to Twitter on Sunday to question the practice of the newspaper, The Hill, to emphasize the Jewishness of members of Congress in relation to the Iran nuclear deal.

Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic and Glenn Greenwald of The Intercept tweeted similar sentiments about what they consider the dubious practice, which neither actually refers to as “antisemitic” though this could be inferred from their banter with followers.

Jewish or not, those who believe in what is good and right must make their voices heard. Tell your congressmen and senators to say no to a nuclear Iran.

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Monday, August 31st, 2015 at 10:55 AM  | Stand For Israel