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February 4, 2016 6:18 am

France: An Antisemitic Hell for Jews

avatar by Judith Bergman

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French soldiers guarding a Jewish institution in Paris. Photo: The Blaze

French soldiers guarding a Jewish institution in Paris. Photo: The Blaze

In France, it is not just antisemitism from Muslim North Africans and Arabs from the Middle East that is ‎haunting the Jewish community. In a recent poll, conducted over 18 months by Ipsos and sponsored by ‎the French Judaism Foundation, the “native” French showed that they are still as antisemitic as ever.‎

Fifty-six percent of the French believe that Jews “have a lot of power,” and 40% said that Jews are ‎‎”a little too present in the media.” Thirteen percent believe that there are too many Jews in France, ‎whereas an unbelievable 60% believe that Jews are at least partly to blame themselves for the rise ‎in antisemitism, with 91% saying that Jews “are very insular.”

Nevertheless, despite this obvious hatred, only 4% of the French consider the Jews “problematic.” ‎In contrast, 26% of the French said that Muslims were problematic. This is not so surprising. ‎French Jews mind their own business, contribute tremendously to society in every possible way, and do not commit violent crimes or terrorism. This has not, however, stopped the ‎French from hating the Jews.‎

In 2015, 808 antisemitic attacks were reported to the police according to a report by French Jewish ‎watchdog Jewish Community Security Service (SPCJ), with statistics supplied by the French Interior Ministry. That represents a 5% drop from 2014, but one would be deceived to think this means that ‎antisemitism is on the wane in France. ‎

As pointed out by the SPCJ, for the first time, antisemitism in France reached an extremely high level ‎independent of any armed conflict in the Middle East. The high number in 2014 was partly caused by ‎the effect of Operation Protective Edge in Gaza in the summer of 2014. As SPCJ pointed out, antisemitism ‎in France in 2015 was entirely endogenous and capable of reaching unprecedented heights without any ‎outside impetus. ‎

In 2015, Jews were the targets of 40% of all racist acts and 49% of violent racist acts committed in France, though they comprise less than 1% of the total population. Those ‎are monstrous statistics, which display the failure of French authorities to protect the Jews. ‎

On average, two antisemitic acts were registered by the police each day, and this ‎does not represent the full extent of antisemitic acts, since, as SPCJ points out, numerous testimonies ‎from victims show their reluctance to even file complaints for antisemitic ‎insults, threats or violence. Far from having experienced a 5% fall from 2014, it ‎is much more likely that the number of antisemitic acts went up from 2014.‎

The report by the SPCJ highlights that many French Jews no longer understand their role or place in ‎France, and they feel unease even beyond the question of physical security. Nearly 8,000 Jews left France in ‎‎2015, a 10% increase from the previous year. According to various polls, between half and three-quarters of all French Jews are considering leaving.‎

Prospects for 2016 are bleak. The year barely started and already a new record was made: In January, a ‎machete attack on a Jewish man in Marseilles by a 15-year old teenager, which sparked the so-called “‎kippah debate,” about whether Jews should stop wearing kippot in public. As the SPCJ pointed out, this ‎debate completely missed the mark by debating the Jewish response rather than the causes for this ‎extreme spike in violence against Jews. Also in January, French Jewish politician Alain Ghozland, a ‎prominent leader of the Jewish community, was stabbed to death in his apartment in a possible antisemitic attack, which remains unresolved, although two suspects have been apprehended in a Paris suburb.‎

The SPCJ is aware of the bleak prospects, including the lack of proper protection from official France, when ‎it proposes the following:‎

‎”Let us learn to identify a suspicious individual in a familiar environment; learn the right reactions in case ‎of an attack; learn to give a proper alarm to the police or assist the victim of an attack. Let us learn new ‎and necessary reactions. This is the way to be legitimately reassured. It is an individual and a collective ‎decision to learn how to face danger and protect ourselves as much as we can. We are all trained and ‎aware of what to do in case of fire. Now that France is shaken by terror attacks and renewed threats, isn’t ‎it time we learned and mastered preventive actions against terrorism?”‎

The question is, will such training be enough? I think we all know the answer.

Judith Bergman is a writer and political analyst living in Israel. This article was originally published by Israel Hayom.

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  • Antonio Costa Serafim

    Please i beg your comprehension, you drop your tearas for your souls who leave, and i do the same in Brasil due to have a lot of people killed by terrorists as Geraldo Alckmin from PSDB a nazi party inside the gov. in São Paulo.think about when that man are coming into your temples.

  • Francois

    The problem with France, as with some other European countries, is immorality and amorality in the populace. They do what comes naturally. Say what they want about Jews, the Jews live their morality. The Torah means something to them. Aliyah will continue unabated.

  • art frank

    Don’t forget the french helped the nazis in their extermination of french Jews. French Jews should make aliya as they have no future in what will be francistan.

  • Betty Schneck

    What would you have done with Jesus. The guy died as a Jew and the apostles wanted the fame pertaining to his death. How come they want Jesus to save them?
    The French should get with it.
    The church gave them the responsibility of working with money because they wouldn’t touch it. Now they accuse my tribe of handling it responsibly.
    I enjoy France but the non-thinkers.

  • George Rosenbaum

    Jews in central Europe between 1880-1930 have thrived in ani-semitic environments. But, in those environments there was little or no violence. This makes it so terrible for Jews when a red line is crossed, when anti semitism produces violence. The survey findings measuring anti semitism are probably little changed from what would have been found prior to WW2 in France. But, what has changed is restraint. Anti semites now feel freer to act out their hostility in violence and even murder. Contributing to this contagion is the fact that a second city of Algerian and Arab immigrants is separated from French norms many not seeing themselves as French and thus not within the rule of law. It is possible that France has now more to lose when Jews leave than Jews departing a dangerous society. Unless,
    France comits to a major and contining offensive to preserve the rule of law and to prosecute violators, the tipping point that reverses violent anti- semitism may still be far off.

  • PPC

    if people of France has brain enough, they will concentrate against ISIS supporters fast spreading among french Nationals of Algerian origin. They are menace all over the world. Let them (original French speaking people ) prove, they are intelligent enough not fool.

  • Glenda Urmacher

    Jews worldwide should start separating ourselves from everything French.
    Stop buying French wines, perfumes, and stop traveling, and spending our dollars and shekels in France and everything French.
    They don’t have to like us, or who we are, but we don’t have to financially support them.
    It is a pity, as France, and her culture are my favorite in the whole world.
    I will have to find a new favorite.
    And many Jews fought in two world wars, and are buried on French soil.
    That won’t happen again, as well.
    Let them enjoy their muslims.
    They deserve each other.

    • Lisa Rubin

      I agree. I used to see myself as something of a Franco-phile. But just like with all things Swedish, I no longer will purchase French wines, chocolates or perfumes. I shop on Etsy for Israeli clothes and other items. I’ll buy Israeli spices and olive oil at the kosher butcher. Israeli wines are readily available and usually not hard to find. So… we won’t have a cute beret to wear, but we will be doing the right thing.

  • Bella

    The fate of French Jews is heartbreaking…but now the French have imported a ‘certain’ population, the French will soon get the response they deserve. ….and then I wonder whether they will miss those ‘insular’ doctors, lawyers and business folk who contributed to French society rather than the criminal and welfare system and did not rape women.

    Let’s not forget which TV Channel instigated the second intifada with the Mohamed al Dura blood libel and which French President gave the instigator (regrettably a Jew!!) the French legion of Honour for perpetrating the blood libel. Of course both Enderlin and Sarkozy have blood on their hands for this, but the fact is media plays to what it believes its audience will lap up…and lap it up the French did sufficiently well for the Legion of Honour to follow.

  • JIm Briggs

    I read that many French Jews are going to England to live.

  • Franklin Delano Paskutnik

    Nothing will ever satisfy the bloodlust of the French and other European anti-semites.On the one hand the Jews are accused of being “insular”,but on the other hand,as soon as the Jews begin playing a role in general society they are accused of having “too much influence”!The arch anti-semite Charles de Gaulle once accused the Jews of belonging to an “exclusive club”! De Gaulle was of course incensed at Israel’s military victories in the 1967 Six Day War – something he so miserably failed to achieve in his military career – and consumed by jealousy he cut off all aid to Israel and gave his unstinting support to the Arabs.Perfidious,deceitful France!Israel learnt an important lesson then : do not trust any European country for political or military support.As for Israel – the country has been accused of importing a European culture of “Mendelsohn concertos and chopped liver” into an essentially Oriental Middle-Eastern society;but when the Jews reside in Europe they are denounced as “Asiatics” and aliens!Never mind that a very large percentage of Israel’s population originally came from Arab and Muslim countries,from where they had to flee due to the murderous ant-Jewish policies pervasive in the Arab and Muslim world.The bottom line is that Israel must remain strong and must be supported by all Jews wherever they may be.Israel is the guarantee of the Jewish people’s future – without Israel the Jews are nothing but helpless victims at the mercy of Christian,Far Left and Muslim Jew-haters.

  • stevenl

    Old Christianity and those convert to secularism cannot free themselves from their ingrained antisemitism. It is part and parcel of their genome. Environmental factors after 2,000 years can affect the psychogenome.

  • Natan

    As an ex pat who lived around the channel, we always believed that the French disliked everyone, including themselves.

    The French people should really focus on their real current endmy….the Islamic Radicals !!