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March 6, 2015 3:08 pm

First Paris, Now Britain: Journalist Wearing Kippah Faces Shocking Antisemitism; Abuse Started Within 1 Minute (VIDEO)

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Jonathan Kalmus filmed his experience walking in the streets of Britain while wearing a kippah. Photo: Screenshot.

Not long after a Jewish journalist was cursed and spat on as he walked the streets of Paris wearing a kippah, another Jewish reporter faced similar antisemitic abuse in Britain while donning the religious skullcap, the UK’s Daily Mail reported on Friday.

“It took me just one minute. One minute of walking one single, busy major street in Manchester before abuse was flung at me,” said British journalist Jonathan Kalmus, who secretly filmed himself walking in both Manchester and Bradford while wearing the kippah.

During the 25 minutes that he walked on a single street in Longsight, Kalmus said he was spat at by one man and called “a Jew” repeatedly by those passing by, even by a young boy walking with his father. A youngster on a bike later rode up to him and shouted in his face, “You’re a Jew,” according to the Daily Mail.

The situation in the streets of Bradford was “more shameful,” he said.

“It took 13 minutes, during which I was stalked by a man who repeatedly took pictures of me. He followed me on foot for five minutes and 30 seconds according to my footage,” he said. “There was a shout of ‘you Jew’ at me as I crossed the road to Bradford City Park. Minutes later a man turned his head and yelled ‘fight the Jewish scum’ just behind my back.”

While in Bradford, three youths repeatedly yelled at Kalmus from across the street, “You’re a Jew, not a Muslim…Jew, Jew, Jew run!”

Kalmus was shocked by the anti-Jewish harassment he received while wearing a kippah. He said he expected to walk for hours without being bothered but instead “I was left speechless that antisemitism is so obvious.”

“No one could accuse me of targeting Muslim neighborhoods to provoke a reaction. This was the center of an ordinary English city and I was minding my own business,” he added. “No one could accuse me of wearing something provocative or political. A Jewish person or any peaceful person walking in a British street anywhere, let alone a city center, should be welcome.”

As he faced the antisemitic hate while merely walking in the street, Kalmus said many people were content to ignore it. They heard the discriminatory remarks being hurled at Kalmus and were caught on camera turning their backs to the abuse taking place in front of them. Kalmus noted, “When someone spat on my back no one stopped to intervene.”

One uplifting instance that stood out to Kalmus was his encounter with a Muslim man at Bradford City Park’s branch of Starbucks. Kalmus said as soon as he walked into the shop, the man, who was “sporting traditional Islamic dress and a heavy black beard, raised his eyes from his drink, looked at me with wide eyes, stood up, raised his hand and said ‘Shalom, Shalom.'”

“Whatever was the reason for this man’s gesture and insistence that I shake his hand, it was warm and hopeful,” Kalmus said.

The British journalist said he chose the streets of Bradford  as the location for his experiment because during the height of Israel’s Operation Protective Edge last summer, 5,000 people, most of whom were young Muslim men, gathered for a mass rally in Bradford City Park. At the rally, the city’s MP, George Galloway, declared the city “an Israel-free zone” while flanked by two muscular men wearing T-shirts saying “Palestine’s army you are not alone.”

Kalmus pointed out that Galloway “has repeated on many, many occasions that his message and political struggle is with Israel and Israelis, not Jews.”  Nevertheless, he pointed out that “statistics show that bringing the Middle East’s struggles onto the streets of Britain has a direct effect on how people treat Jews.”

Kalmus’ journey through the streets of Britain was inspired by a similar exercise in February undertaken by Jewish journalist Zvika Klein throughout Paris. Klein, who also wore a religious skullcap and filmed the public’s reaction to it using a hidden camera, was cursed at by locals, called a “dog” and threatened as he walked silently in the French capital for 10 hours. Afterwards he said, “I am asked if I was scared. The truth is I was.”

Kalmus, who calculated the number of antisemitic hate incidents he faced in the two British cities, said he suffered “two more than those in Zvika Klein’s video and achieved in one-tenth of the time here in Britain. What a horrible reality.”

“It is completely understandable that anyone who does not feel the threat would not realize the extent of antisemitism, how common it is and how it effects Jews in our country every day. But antisemitic attacks and verbal abuse are everyday concerns for British Jews,” he said. “Many thoughts raced through my mind as I continued to walk and film, but one thought screamed out silently. If you see racism on our streets, stand up against it. And even if you do not see it, stand up against it.”

In response to the video, UK Prime Minister David Cameron on Friday told the Daily Mail “there are no excuses for the shocking antisemitism” filmed in Manchester and Bradford. He explained: “The idea that Jewish people feel unsafe again in Europe strikes at the heart of everything we stand for. We must fight antisemitism with everything we have got and make sure Britain remains a country that our Jewish communities are proud to call home.”

Labour leader Ed Miliband said any antisemitism in Britain “brings shame on those who demonstrate hatred and intolerance towards each other.” A spokesman for the Board of Deputies of British Jews said those who can be visibly identified as Jewish suffer similar abuse and antisemitism to that which Kalmus faced. The Community Security Trust (CST) admitted that it was shocked by the number of antisemitic remarks Kalmus received in such a short amount of time.

“The fact incidents like this take place of that nature still takes place does not surprise us. The frequency with which they took place – he experienced 10 in an hour’s walking – that is worrying,” the spokesman for CST said. “It suggest lots of these types of incidents maybe going unreported.”

The Daily Mail also published videos of men walking with kippahs taken in other European capitals including Copenhagen, Stockholm, Berlin and Rome. While the journalists faced some antisemitism in Copenhagen and Rome, the footage filmed in Berlin and Stockholm was mostly uneventful.

Watch the video of Kalmus on the streets of London below:

[iframe frameborder=”0″ width=”698″ height=”503″ scrolling=”no” id=”molvideoplayer” title=”MailOnline Embed Player” src=”” >]

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  • Linda Golden

    Any Jewish person who thinks he is safe in Europe, the largest Jewish cemetery on the planet, needs to have his head examined. The antisemistism of the Muslim population in Europe and elsewhere,does not change the antisemitism that has existed in Europe for centuries. It may have been underground for 60 years due to embarassment by some at the brutality and horror of the holocaust, but no more apparently. That Europeans think Israeli’s are worse than Boko Haram or Isis tlls the real story.

  • Let us be fair. Bradford elected an MP notorious for his anti-Israel rhetoric. Galloway is a one MP political party who lost his London seat and got elected in Bradford, a heavily Muslim area. Bradford is not London, nor is Manchester. In France they filmed in Paris, the most cosmopolitan city in France. They should have, for a valid comparison, filmed in central London. Judging by the growing French Jewish community in London, London cannot be compared to the anti-Semitism in Paris. As far back as 1971 when I first visited Paris I have been advised by French colleagues not to wear a kippa in public. In Central London no one would give that a thought. When school caps became an optional part of school uniform here in London, many, many hundreds of boys took to wearing kippot instead, either in school uniform colours or plain black velvet.

  • Wm. J. Levy

    It’s not getting better when you have so many Muslim living there.

    These are cowards and the only response from Jews should be strength. You have to make these cowards be afraid of Jews.

  • Isaac Haskiya

    Some would call it freedom of speech!?
    Allow me to use mine.
    Europe is heavily infected by Muslim anti-semitism.

  • richard sherwin

    as for sweden, try either malmo or the swedish parliament


    Europe is foolish for importing haters and their culture of hate into their countries. Their future will be one of strife as more generations of children are inculcated with hate. Europe needs laws that bar people who follow a culture of hate from entering.

  • RiverKing

    Did the people telling Kamus he is a Jew think that he was not aware of that fact? How infantile!

  • The quick remedy to exponentially minimise Kippah-realated antizio-semithesm is by massive solidarity to encourage non-Hebrews to wear Yarmulke. And one of the tactics is to introduce or improvise contemporary fashion that involves a kippah or embarking on a massive campaign to wear kippah by non-Hebrews as an expression of solidarity. Let it be a sort of ‘Jesuis Charlie’, this one would be ‘ we are all Jews’ Ani Yehudi a sort of.

  • Robert Davis

    Today democracies and Jews in particular are faced with the same enemies as in the 30 : then it was nazis first,arabs next. Now it is arabs first,nazis next. The only difference is that today Jews and Israel can defend themselves and that 3rd ww will be nuclear and arabs as well as europe will be devastated and probably gone for ever. NOT A BIG LOSS THOUGH!

  • I dont know of ANY country that Arabs/Muslims have invaded since and including Mohamed’s times whose civilisation and people were not destroyed if they did not convert to islam.

    As to INVITING muslim/arab/sub-saharan immigration to the West is geno-suicidal

  • June Grant

    Horrifying. But the bright spark was the salute by the Moslem gentleman in Starbucks. All honour to him.

    • Sandi

      I agree.

  • David Goshen

    What is required is that the British Police should do the same.Get security police dressed in civilian clothes being filmed and the minute any anti semetic action takes place
    immediately stop the person committing the crime identify himself as a policeman tqake a picture of the person and his personal particulars and in cases necessary arrest the person and have them taken to the nearest police station to be charged.I am quite confident that the will be a sharp drop in this antisemetic behavior.Muslims do not want to fall foul of the law and placed on Black Lists or be inconvenienced by being stoped for lengthy questening or being arrested

  • judithg

    well, the brits can igore a Jew with a kippah but when the moslems rape and kill the royal family they may raise themselves out of their crippling stupor. maybe. maybe not.

  • Carla Isselmann

    When I forwarded these stories to friends in Europe ,thay all were deeply impressed and saddened.But what struck everyone most was the fact that no newspaper took up these brave men’s stories for publication.
    Who can trust the European media any longer…?

  • Ivan Gur-Arie

    Why be surprised? Any society breast fed on the New Testament and on the teachings of the dark side of Christianity will respond with hate toward Jews. All they need is an excuse such as the Gaza War to bring to blossom the two thousand year old hatred.

  • Julian Covelley

    You walked through Bradford wearing a kippah

    That is like taking a pork chop into a synagogue

    Get real!

  • Donna Selett

    I am so saddened and disturbed by thiese actions taken out against a Jewish Man.
    It is the Radical Muslims that are ruining the World and poisoning others.
    They are not a peaceful group calling themseleves Muslims for that is not what being a Muslim does!
    It is sickening!
    It is disgusting how thesse poeple are acting.
    I will probably not ever go there and waste my money.

  • Paul Cerar

    All the more reason for the Free World to mass-deport these Hypocrite sons of pigs!

    Paul Cerar
    Toronto, Canada

  • zorka

    They need to return to the mud with pigs, shame on those who are devils!!!

  • What is to be expected from A Satanic World?Do not be surprised PRAY to the Judaic-Christian God,Yeshua/Jesus!Shalom!

  • Historian

    Do not expect anything else from the French people.. As bigoted as they come in Europe. French are garbage,
    Good food but terrible racists,
    Gave up many of their Jewish citizens to the Nazi’s during WWll . Also et many Islamic people in to their country which they will regret.

  • rudy hoffmann

    A kippa on my head and a ready gun in my pocket, London calling…!

  • Jonesy

    There are streets in Chicago and New York where a white person, should he/she dare to walk, would be beat up or targeted for violence. I guess my point is, stick to safe neighborhoods, regardless of creed, if you don’t want to get yourself into trouble.

  • Howie Subnick

    Had I been in his shoes, there would have been bodies lying all over the streets. Not dead, just out. Those that spit would be spitting for the last time. If the JEWS do not start defending themselves this will go on, and on, and on.
    These MORONS only understand pain! Make them hurt continuously and they will slow down or stop. Learn what you can carry to protect yourself and use it wisely. Shalom

  • Very very sad. It’s time to leave. Go To Israel Now!

  • Noah Levine

    The most scary thing here is not the abuse and hatred, but how easily it occurs and how little (if anything) is done to stop it by people on the street. I wonder how it would be if a Protestant, of any specific denomination such as Anglicans, walked through a Jewish neighborhood.

    Would Jewish people respond to any of the churches below?

    It England, and France, it seems to be the status quo:

    Jews tolerate and Christians hate.

    Sad times, sad bloody times. Shame on the Crown and her people.

    UK Interchurch
    Holiness & Pietist
    Methodist & Wesleyan
    New Church Movement
    Presbyterian & Reformed

  • Sofia

    What can one say about this terrible, sad, video, that a Jewish man wearing a kippa, is attacked verbally and spat on.

    Europe is no longer a destination for American, Canadian tourists, there is nothing there to see, except the destruction of a civilization that started many many years ago, just now its down in the pits of evil.

    Shalom to that great man who endured this treatment.