Thursday 22 May 2014

A day in the life of European Anti-Semitism.

May 22, 2014.

I opened my morning edition of the Jerusalem Post and this is what I read as I ate my breakfast in sunny Netanya.

Following the great success of Maccabi Tel Aviv in beating Real Madrid and lifting the European Basketball Championship trophy 18,000 anti-semitic tweets were posted on Twitter by angry Spanish fans.
Some of the tweets included, "Now I understand Hitler and his hate for the Jews," "They should all be killed in an oven."
It made no difference to the thousands of racist basketball fans that a number of Tel Aviv players were not Jewish, the Israeli side epitomised their anti-Semitism.

Spain is known to be one of the most anti-Semitic countries in Europe and it expressed itself when their favourite team, the really excellent Real Madrid, were defeated by the Israeli side. However, I turned the page of my paper and was met by an article which asked in Greece in the most anti-Semitic country in Europe? The piece detailed an Anti-Defamation League poll that found that 69% of Greeks hold anti-Semitic views putting it on a par with Saudi Arabia and making it more anti-Semitic than Iran (56%). The popularity if the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party is an expression of this Jew hatred in Greece, this despite the fact that official and trade relations between Greece and Israel have improved recently.

Then my eyes landed on a headline that told of the expectation of the German NPD party, described as "racist, anti-Semitic and revisionist," to gain seats in the European parliament in this week's elections.

Just the day before, the director of research for Studies of Contemporary European Jewry at Tel Aviv University, Haim Fireberg, said that Anti-Zionism is Anti-Semitism and now here were these headlines jumping off the page of my morning newspaper at me.

When people say that Jews do not have the right to self-determination in their own state, that is anti-Semitism. When they say if Israelis say that their country is the Jewish State this is racism, they are simply and clearly expressing their own biased racism against the Jews. They are saying that Jews are not worthy or deserving of having a state of their own. The tweet expressions following the victory of an Israeli team over Real Madrid is ample evidence of this phenomenon.

All this, and the annihilation threats that Israelis hear coming from Iranian and the Palestinian leaderships, leaves us with the feeling we are living under the cloud of a potential new Holocaust.

Barry Shaw is the special consultant on delegitimization issues to The Strategic Dialogue Center at Netanya Academic College.
He is also the author of the best selling book 'Israel Reclaiming the Narrative' available at

No comments: