Sunday, January 01, 2006

For New Years: Rising Anti-Semitism in Britain and the World

For the third times in recent months, the normally circumspect Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks in Britain speaks out about the rise of anti-semitism:
Dr Sacks admitted he was "very scared" by the rise in anti-Jewish feeling, which had led to Holocaust denial, attacks on synagogues and a boycott of Jewish groups on university campuses.

He said: "I am very scared by [it] and I'm very scared that more protests have not been delivered against it, but this [anti-Semitism] is part of the vocabulary of politics in certain parts of the world."

Figures produced by the London-based Community Security Trust and the Israeli government show that anti-Semitism is on the rise in Britain. The trust recorded 532 anti-Semitic incidents in 2004, including 83 physical assaults...

"A number of my rabbinical colleagues throughout Europe have been assaulted and attacked on the streets. We've had synagogues desecrated. We've had Jewish schools burnt to the ground - not here but in France … So it's the kind of feeling that you don't know what's going to happen next, and that is making some European Jewish communities feel uncomfortable."

Dr Sacks, who was being interviewed to mark the 350th anniversary of the re-entry of Jews to England, said he hoped that the Jewish voice would become more "articulate" over the coming year.


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