Top European Rabbi Voices Alarm as Antisemitic Incidents in Germany Reportedly Jump Threefold
The number of antisemitic incidents in Germany jumped threefold in 2015, the Times of London reported on Tuesday.
According to the report — which cited German Justice Ministry data obtained by the Munich-based Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper — there were 2,083 cases of “attacks on Jews, Jewish property and hate speech against Jews” last year, up from 691 the previous year.
In a statement made in response to the report, Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt — president of the Conference of European Rabbis — said, “We are in a new era of antisemitism globally. There is a rejection of mainstream politics and we need to be aware of the waves of antisemitism sweeping across Europe. As a society we must take measures to reject antisemitism and ensure that it does not become a new norm.”
The data, the report said, was compiled as part of the German Justice Ministry’s first-ever nationwide analysis of xenophobic and far-right crime.
Overall, the data showed there were 24,600 criminal cases in Germany in 2015 involving xenophobic or far-right motives.
In September, as reported by The Algemeiner, a German Jewish leader called the dramatic success of the new far-right populist Alternative for Germany (AfD) party in local elections in a northeastern German state “a nightmare come true.”
And, as reported by The Algemeiner in August, the ongoing rise in support for far-right parties across Europe has widely been attributed to the Syrian refugee crisis, escalating Islamic terrorism and dissatisfaction with political elites.
“The refugee crisis speaks to a fear of aliens taking the native land,” Cas Mudde, a Dutch political scientist and an associate professor at the University of Georgia’s School for Public and International Affairs, said. “Authoritarianism is a reaction to the terrorism, and the connection made between refugees and terrorism. Populism plays into the European Union and its inability to deal with terrorism and the refugee crisis.”