“Jews, your end is near”

…synagogues attacked….in the Paris suburb of Sarcelles, firebombed by a
400-strong mob….the crowd’s chants included “Slit Jews’ throats”…..Germany, molotov cocktails were lobbed into the Bergische synagogue
in Wuppertal – previously destroyed on Kristallnacht…….notable slogans included: “Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the gas”…..

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Pakistanis in the UK and others (in our opinion) need to exercise a bit more care as to how to put on display their (genuine) grievances. One suggestion is to make the protests more inclusive, to demonstrate that Muslims in Europe are capable of feeling empathy toward the Christians of Iraq (for example). And yes, please do stuff the Hitler/Nazi love – from what we know of him and his Aryan values – he would not have hesitated to stuff Muslims (and Hindus and other unter-mensch) in gas chambers.
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Destroying Jewish property in Paris, displaying ISIS flags in London, chanting “Death to Jews” in Berlin will not
make things better in Gaza, but will tear apart the social fabric in
Europe.
 

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Right now there is a powerful Muslim-Left coalition in Europe aligned against Israel. Western societies are facing tremendous stress, impacted not only by the Gaza war but also other events unfolding in the Middle East and North Africa, whereby some people/sects are doing incalculable harm to other people/sects.

It is alarming to see anti-semitism has been spreading thick and fast making a come-back across Europe, even amongst the middle class, and even in Germany (see below).

If things become truly insufferable for Jews, they can migrate to Israel (indeed large numbers are doing so), or the USA. However the same option is not available to Euro-Muslims. Remember, if the hell-fires break out, it will not make any distinction between Jews and Muslims.
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A black flag with white Arabic writing, similar to those flown by jihadist groups, was flying at the entrance of an east London housing state near Canary Wharf.
……..
In
a highly provocative gesture, the emblem was planted on top of the
gates of the Will Crooks estate on Poplar High Street, and is surrounded
by flags of Palestine and slogans.

The flag bears similar writing to the jihadi flags that have been
flown by the extremist group in Iraq and other jihadi groups since the
1990s. When the estate was approached last night, a group of about 20
Asian youths swore at Guardian journalists and told them to leave the
area immediately. One youth threatened to smash a camera.

When a
passerby tried to take a picture of the flag on a phone, one of the gang
asked him if he was Jewish. The passerby replied: “Would it make a
difference?” The youth said: “Yes, it fucking would.” Asked if the flag
was an ISIS flag, one local man said: “It is just the flag of Allah.” But another man asked: “So what if it is?”

One
local man said that the flag has been there for several days. “People
were taking photos of it last night,” he said. A Metropolitan police
spokesman said on Thursday that they had received no complaints about
offensive flags in the Tower Hamlets area. The Dutch government has
banned the public display of the Isis flag, but it is not illegal in the
UK.

……….
 
In the space of just one week last month, according to Crif, the
umbrella group for France’s Jewish organisations, eight synagogues were
attacked. One, in the Paris suburb of Sarcelles, was firebombed by a
400-strong mob. A kosher supermarket and pharmacy were smashed and
looted; the crowd’s chants and banners included “Death to Jews” and
“Slit Jews’ throats”. That same weekend, in the Barbes neighbourhood of
the capital, stone-throwing protesters burned Israeli flags: “Israhell”,
read one banner.

In Germany
last month, molotov cocktails were lobbed into the Bergische synagogue
in Wuppertal – previously destroyed on Kristallnacht – and a Berlin
imam, Abu Bilal Ismail, called on Allah to “destroy the Zionist Jews …
Count them and kill them, to the very last one.” Bottles were thrown
through the window of an antisemitism campaigner in Frankfurt; an
elderly Jewish man was beaten up at a pro-Israel
rally in Hamburg; an Orthodox Jewish teenager punched in the face in
Berlin. In several cities, chants at pro-Palestinian protests compared
Israel’s actions to the Holocaust; other notable slogans included: “Jew,
coward pig, come out and fight alone,” and “Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the gas.”

Across Europe,
the conflict in Gaza is breathing new life into some very old, and very
ugly, demons. This is not unusual; police and Jewish civil rights
organisations have long observed a noticeable spike in antisemitic
incidents each time the Israeli-Palestinian conflict flares. During the
three weeks of Israel’s Operation Cast Lead in late 2008 and early 2009,
France recorded 66 antisemitic incidents, including attacks on 

Jewish-owned restaurants and synagogues and a sharp increase in
anti-Jewish graffiti.But according to academics and Jewish leaders, this
time it is different. More than simply a reaction to the conflict, they
say, the threats, hate speech and violent attacks feel like the
expression of a much deeper and more widespread antisemitism, fuelled by
a wide range of factors, that has been growing now for more than a
decade.

“These are the worst times since the Nazi era,” Dieter
Graumann, president of Germany’s Central Council of Jews, told the
Guardian. “On the streets, you hear things like ‘the Jews should be
gassed’, ‘the Jews should be burned’ – we haven’t had that in Germany
for decades. Anyone saying those slogans isn’t criticising Israeli
politics, it’s just pure hatred against Jews: nothing else. And it’s not
just a German phenomenon. It’s an outbreak of hatred against Jews so
intense that it’s very clear indeed.”

Roger Cukierman, president
of France’s Crif, said French Jews were “anguished” about an anti-Jewish
backlash that goes far beyond even strongly felt political and
humanitarian opposition to the current fighting: 

“They are not screaming
‘Death to the Israelis’ on the streets of Paris,” Cukierman said last
month. “They are screaming ‘Death to Jews’.” Crif’s vice-president
Yonathan Arfi said he “utterly rejected” the view that the latest
increase in antisemitic incidents was down to events in Gaza. “They have
laid bare something far more profound,” he said.

Nor is it just
Europe’s Jewish leaders who are alarmed. Germany’s chancellor, Angela
Merkel, has called the recent incidents “an attack on freedom and
tolerance and our democratic state”. The French prime minister, Manuel
Valls, has spoken of “intolerable” and clearly antisemitic acts: “To
attack a Jew because he is a Jew is to attack France. To attack a
synagogue and a kosher grocery store is quite simply antisemitism and
racism”.

France, whose 500,000-strong Jewish community is one of Europe’s
largest, and Germany, where the post-war exhortation of “Never Again” is
part of the fabric of modern society, are not alone. In Austria last
month, a pre-season friendly between Maccabi Haifa and German Bundesliga
team SC Paderborn had to be rescheduled after the Israeli side’s
previous match was called off following an attempted assault on its
players.

The Netherlands’
main antisemitism watchdog, Cidi, had more than 70 calls from alarmed
Jewish citizens in one week last month; the average is normally three to
five. An Amsterdam rabbi, Binjamin Jacobs, had his front door stoned,
and two Jewish women were attacked – one beaten, the other the victim of
arson – after they hung Israeli flags from their balconies. In Belgium,
a woman was reportedly turned away from a shop with the words: “We
don’t currently sell to Jews.”

In Italy,
the Jewish owners of dozens of shops and other businesses in Rome
arrived to find swastikas and anti-Jewish slogans daubed on shutters and
windows. One slogan read: “Every Palestinian is like a comrade. Same
enemy. Same barricade”; another: “Jews, your end is near.” Abd al-Barr
al-Rawdhi, an imam from the north eastern town of San Donà di Piave, is
to be deported after being video-recorded giving a sermon calling for
the extermination of the Jews.

There has been no violence in Spain,
but the country’s small Jewish population of 35,000-40,000 fears the
situation is so tense that “if it continues for too long, bad things
will happen,” the leader of Madrid’s Jewish community, David Hatchwell,
said. 

The community is planning action against El Mundo after the daily
paper published a column by 83-year-old playwright Antonio Gala
questioning Jews’ ability to live peacefully with others: “It’s not
strange they have been so frequently expelled.”

Studies suggest
antisemitism may indeed be mounting. A 2012 survey by the EU’s by the
Fundamental Rights agency of some 6,000 Jews in eight European countries
– between them, home to 90% of Europe’s Jewish population – found 66%
of respondents felt antisemitism in Europe was on the rise; 76% said
antisemitism had increased in their country over the past five years. In
the 12 months after the survey, nearly half said they worried about
being verbally insulted or attacked in public because they were Jewish.

Jewish
organisations that record antisemitic incidents say the trend is
inexorable: France’s Society for the Protection of the Jewish Community
says annual totals of antisemitic acts in the 2000s are seven times
higher than in the 1990s. French Jews are leaving for Israel in greater
numbers, too, for reasons they say include antisemitism and the
electoral success of the hard-right Front National. 

The Jewish Agency
for Israel said 1,407 French Jews left for Israel in 2013, a 72% rise on
the previous year. Between January and May this year, 2,250 left,
against 580 in the same period last year.

In a study completed in
February, America’s Anti-Defamation League surveyed 332,000 Europeans
using an index of 11 questions designed to reveal strength of
anti-Jewish stereotypes. It found that 24% of Europeans – 37% in France,
27% in Germany, 20% in Italy – harboured some kind of anti-Jewish
attitude.

So what is driving the phenomenon? Valls, the French
prime minister, has acknowledged a “new”, “normalised” antisemitism that
he says blends “the Palestinian cause, jihadism, the devastation of
Israel, and hatred of France and its values”.

Mark Gardner of the
Community Security Trust, a London-based charity that monitors
antisemitism both in Britain and on the continent, also identifies a
range of factors. Successive conflicts in the Middle East he said, have
served up “a crush of trigger events” that has prevented tempers from
cooling: the second intifada in 2000, the Israel-Lebanon war of 2006,
and the three Israel–Hamas conflicts in 2009, 2012 and 2014 have “left
no time for the situation to return to normal.” In such a climate, he
added, three brutal antisemitic murders in the past eight years – two in
France, one in Belgium, and none coinciding with Israeli military
action – have served “not to shock, but to encourage the antisemites”,
leaving them “seeking more blood and intimidation, not less”.

In 2006, 23-year old Ilan Halimi was kidnapped, tortured and left for
dead in Paris by a group calling itself the Barbarians Gang, who
subsequently admitted targeting him “because he was a Jew, so his family
would have money”. Two years ago, in May 2012, Toulouse gunman Mohamed
Merah shot dead seven people, including three children and a young rabbi
outside their Jewish school. And in May this year Mehdi Nemmouche, a
Frenchman of Algerian descent thought to have recently returned to
France after a year in Syria fighting with radical Islamists, was
charged with shooting four people at the Jewish museum in Brussels.

If
the French establishment has harboured a deep vein of anti-Jewish
sentiment since long before the Dreyfus affair, the influence of radical
Islam, many Jewish community leaders say, is plainly a significant
contributing factor in the country’s present-day antisemitism. But so
too, said Gardner, is a straightforward alienation that many young
Muslims feel from society. “Often it’s more to do with that than with
Israel. Many would as soon burn down a police station as a synagogue.
Jews are simply identified as part of the establishment.”

While he
stressed it would be wrong to lay all the blame at the feet of Muslims,
Peter Ulrich, a research fellow at the centre for antisemitism research
(ZfA) at Berlin’s Technical University, agreed that some of the
“antisemitic elements” Germany has seen at recent protests could be “a
kind of rebellion of people who are themselves excluded on the basis of
racist structures.”

Arfi said that in France antisemitism had
become “a portmanteau for a lot of angry people: radical Muslims,
alienated youths from immigrant families, the far right, the far left”.
But he also blamed “a process of normalisation, whereby antisemitism is
being made somehow acceptable”. One culprit, Arfi said, is the
controversial comedian Dieudonné: “He has legitimised it. He’s made
acceptable what was unacceptable.”

A similar normalisation may be
under way in Germany, according to a 2013 study by the Technical
University of Berlin. In 14,000 hate-mail letters, emails and faxes sent
over 10 years to the Israeli embassy in Berlin and the Central Council
of Jews in Germany, Professor Monika Schwarz-Friesel found that 60% were
written by educated, middle-class Germans, including professors,
lawyers, priests and university and secondary school students. Most,
too, were unafraid to give their names and addresses – something she
felt few Germans would have done 20 or 30 years ago.

Almost every
observer pointed to the unparalleled power of unfiltered social media to
inflame and to mobilise. A stream of shocking images and Twitter
hashtags, including #HitlerWasRight, amount, Arfi said, almost to
indoctrination. “The logical conclusion, in fact, is radicalisation: on
social media people self-select what they see, and what they see can be
pure, unchecked propaganda. They may never be confronted with opinions
that are not their own.”

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Link (1): http://www.theguardian.com/flag-isis-jihadi-islamic-state-flown-poplar-east-london

Link (2): http://www.theguardian.com/antisemitism-rise-europe-worst-since-nazis

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