Jewish people around the world feel increasingly threatened by “harsh anti-Semitic expressions,” according to a new study from Tel Aviv University’s Kantor Center.
While instances of violent anti-Semitic acts dropped by 9% between 2016 and 2017, Jews are gripped by a “prevalent ominous feeling of insecurity” due to an increase in “all other manifestations” of hate, including harassment in schools and on social media, according to the report.
“A certain corrosion of Jewish communal life has been noticed, and Jews suspect that anti-Semitism has entered a new phase: expressions of classic traditional anti-Semitism are back, and for example, the term ‘Jew’ has become a swear word,” the report states.
It blames the spike on “the constant rise of the extreme right, a heated anti-Zionist discourse on the left, accompanied by harsh anti-Semitic expressions, and radical Islamism.”
The center’s latest study concludes that European Jews “are experiencing a normalization and mainstreaming of anti-Semitism not seen since the Second World War.”
“There has been an increase in open, unashamed and explicit hatred directed against Jews. The Jew as exploiter, the Jew as killer, the Jews as banker. It is like we have regressed 100 years,” European Jewish Congress President Moshe Kantor said in a statement.
The study attributes the dip in violence against Jews to improved security, but suggests that Jewish communities are overwhelmed by a “feeling of distress.” It notes that violent incidents are what made security measures necessary in the first place, meaning that little progress has been made.
The study’s authors argue that Jewish life in the public sphere has eroded.
“That main damage that anti-Semitism has recently caused a certain corrosion of Jewish life: once there are Jews who do not participate in Jewish traditional gatherings, or do not appear in the public sphere identified as Jews – the ability to live a full Jewish communal and individual life is jeopardized, and so is Jewish identity,” the study reads.