Report Shows Surge In Anti-Semitic Incidents In The US, Other Report Mentions Drop Of Violent Attacks Against Jews But Other Forms Of Anti-Semitism Are On The Rise Worldwide

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Anti-Semitic incidents in the United States have surged by 34 percent in 2016 compared to 2015, and have jumped 86 percent in the first quarter of 2017, according to new data released by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). ADL reported in its annual ‘‘Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents’’ that there has been a “massive increase” in the amount of harassment of American Jews, particularly since November, the month of the US presidential election. A separate annual report,  by the Tel Aviv University on worldwide anti-Semitism released ahead of Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremonies, shows violent attacks on Jews dropped for a second straight year in 2016, but other forms of anti-Semitism are on the rise worldwide, particularly on American university campuses.

Anti-Semitic incidents in the United States have surged by 34 percent in 2016 compared to 2015, and have jumped 86 percent in the first quarter of 2017, according to new data released by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).

ADL reported in its annual ‘‘Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents’’ that there has been a “massive increase” in the amount of harassment of American Jews, particularly since November, the month of the US presidential election.

The report stated that there was a total of 1,266 acts targeting Jews and Jewish institutions in 2016, nearly 30% of which occurred in November and December. These incidents included 720 incidents of harassment and threats, 510 vandalism acts and 36 physical assault incidents.

During the first three months of 2017, another 541 incidents took place including 380 harassments and 161 bomb threats. In addition, the beginning of the year saw 155 vandalism acts – including three cemetery desecrations- and six physical assault incidents.

The reported acts of anti-Semitism were spread out across the country. The states with the highest number of incidents were California, New York, New Jersey, Florida and Massachusetts, where large Jewish communities live.

 “What’s most concerning is the fact that the numbers have accelerated over the past five months,” ADL CEO Jonathan A. Greenblatt said.  “Clearly, we have work to do and need to bring more urgency to the fight.”

A separate annual report,  by the Tel Aviv University on worldwide anti-Semitism released ahead of Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremonies, shows violent attacks on Jews dropped for a second straight year in 2016, but other forms of anti-Semitism are on the rise worldwide, particularly on American university campuses.

The report was released by the Kantor Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry in cooperation with the European Jewish Congress,

There was a 45% rise in anti-Semitic incidents, mostly insults and harassment of Jewish students, on U.S. university campuses, the report said. These were usually connected to increased anti-Israel activities by pro-Palestinian groups on campus, said Dina Porat, a historian who led the team of researchers behind the report.

The report shows that assaults specifically targeting Jews, vandalism and other violent incidents fell 12% last year. Researchers recorded 361 cases compared to 410 in 2015, which had already been the lowest number in a decade.

The report attributed much of the drop to increased security measures in European countries, the focus of the far Right on immigration and the fact that more Jews avoid appearing in public spaces with identifying attributes such as Yarmulke and a Star of David.

“While the number of anti-Semitic incidents, especially violent ones, has decreased worldwide in 2016, the enemies of the Jewish people have found new avenues to express their anti-Semitism – with significant increase of hate online and against less protected targets like cemeteries,” said EJC President Moshe Kantor. “This means that in fact, the motivation has not declined and the sense of security felt by many Jewish communities remains precarious.”