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The situation of Jews in Europe and the UK today has been described as a slow pogrom. Pogrom is a Russian word pronounced with the accent on the second syllable (pogrom‘). These were small scale actions during the late 19th Century against Jews in the area known as the “Pale of the Settlement”. Which is an area comprised of parts of Belarus, Moldova, much of Ukraine and parts of Poland. This was where Jews were directed to settle starting in the reign of Catherine the Great. This restriction was ended by a decree of Kerensky’s Provisional Government in March 1917. Melanie Phillips in Commentary is first with “Time to Leave?”
These are alarming times for Jews in Britain and Europe.
The British Labour Party is convulsed over the realization that it is riddled with anti-Semitism. Jeremy Corbyn, its leader and a friend to Hamas, has been exposed as belonging to Facebook groups hosting claims that the Jews were behind ISIS and 9/11, that the Rothschilds controlled the world’s finances, and other such paranoid theories. The backwash from the exposure of these groups revealed a tsunami of anti-Jewish insults, smears, and libels by Labour supporters. Corbyn’s responses, often truculent and insulting to the Jewish community, have only deepened the crisis.
Last year, according to the Community Security Trust, saw the highest number of anti-Semitic incidents in Britain since the CST started recording such data in 1984. In the past, surges in these incidents had occurred in response to the reporting of Israeli military action. That’s disturbing enough. But what was more disturbing here was that this record surge had occurred in the absence of any such Israeli activity.
Worse is happening in mainland Europe. In Paris, an 85-year-old survivor of the Shoah, Mireille Knoll, was stabbed to death and her body burned by a young Muslim. Last year, a man shouting “Allahu akbar” beat up Jewish schoolteacher Sarah Halimi and threw her to her death out of her Paris apartment window. In January, a teenage girl in the Paris suburb of Sarcelles wearing the uniform of her Jewish school was slashed in the face with a knife. Later that month, an eight-year-old boy was beaten in the same area because he was wearing a kippah. In February, two Jewish men in Paris were attacked with a hacksaw amid a volley of Jew-hating abuse. …
… There are three different sources of anti-Semitism in Britain and Europe: on the left, on the right, and in the Muslim community. All these threats to the Jews are connected to one another. All are rooted in threats to Britain and Europe. All are creating a perfect anti-Jewish storm. …
… ANTI-WEST LEFT-THINK
This left-wing prism is responsible for eroding Western values, undermining the defense of Britain and Europe against jihad, and exposing Jews to attack. These are all connected. You cannot understand the resurgence of paranoid, unhinged anti-Semitism unless you understand that the West has been tearing up the very idea of reason itself along with the moral codes at the heart of Western civilization.
Leftists view the West as the historic and current oppressor of the entire developing world. This Western cultural self-hatred has a complex history, at the root of which lies the erosion of biblical morality by the tides of secularism. But in my view, the key political driver of this cultural demoralization was the Holocaust.
It simply smashed to smithereens Europe’s belief in itself as the exemplar of superior cultural values. The Holocaust was conceived and directed, after all, in the heartlands of high European culture, the supposed crucible of enlightenment and rationality. It wasn’t just the Jews who died in the extermination camps: It was also the West’s (or Europe’s) concept of itself as moral and rational.
Lethally demoralized, Western cultural elites took an axe to the building blocks of their civilization: an axe to education as the transmission of that civilization, an axe to the traditional family as the best way to generate emotionally resilient inheritors of that civilization, and an axe to national identity as the political expression of that civilization.
Policies and laws passed by national governments now had to take second place to transnational institutions, such as the UN and EU, and legal frameworks, such as international human-rights law. With no Western nation or values thought worthy of defending to the death, wars to establish justice and freedom were deemed inferior to conflict resolution, negotiation, and peace processes. Between God and the devil, Western liberals would split the difference and broker a triumphant compromise. …
… WHY LEFT-ING ANTI-SEMITISM?
This is the new anti-Semitism. Trying to understand it, however, is like peeling a rotten onion: Beneath every rancid layer lies a yet more rancid layer.
The outer, most visible layer is fairly obvious. The left in general now subscribes to beliefs once considered extreme. It has absorbed the Marxist concept that everything has to be understood in terms of political power. The world is divided into the powerful and the powerless. Those with power can never be good; those without power can never be bad. Those who make money have power over those who don’t make money. Those who make money are bad; those without money are good. Jews make money. Therefore Jews are powerful and bad.
The 19th-century German anti-Semite Wilhelm Marr, who is credited with inventing the term, ascribed to the Jews the attribute of global power. Israel —which isn’t really Western at all—is seen as menacingly powerful. That is its crime, and that is also why anti-Israelism is umbilically connected to anti-Semitism. Even though Jews are now equipped with military power solely to defend themselves against annihilation, this breathes life into the paranoid delusion that the Jews are so powerful that they pose a threat to everyone else.
The next layer of the onion is even more rank. This is that—as the black joke that isn’t a joke at all would have it—the West will never forgive the Jews for the Holocaust. This isn’t just because of the terrible legacy of guilt carried by the West. It is because of jealousy.
What on earth about the Holocaust can provoke such jealousy? It gives the Jews what many in the West perceive as the trump card of victimhood. …
After a recitation of French events cited by Melanie Phillips above, Guy Milliere, a University of Paris professor goes on in a post from last February.
… Those French Jews who can leave the country, leave.
Those who have not yet decided to leave or who do not have the financial means, move to safer neighborhoods.
Most departures are hasty; many Jewish families sell their homes well below the market price. Some families end up in apartments that are too small, but prefer discomfort to the risk of being mugged or killed.
The French Jewish community may still be the largest in Europe, but it is shrinking rapidly. In 2000, it was estimated at 500,000, but the number now is less than 400,000, and sinking. Jewish districts that once were thriving are now on the verge of extinction.
“What is happening is an ethnic cleansing that dare not speak its name. In few decades, there will be no Jews in France,” according to Richard Abitbol, president of the Confederation of French Jews and Friends of Israel.
Without the Jews of France, France would no longer be France, said Former Prime Minister Manuel Valls in 2016 . But he did not do anything.
Recently he said that he had done his best, that he could not have done more. “The problem,” he said, “is that anti-Semitism today in France comes less from the far right than from individuals of the Muslim faith or culture”.
He added that in France, for at least two decades, all attacks against Jews in which the perpetrator has been identified have come from Muslims, and that the most recent attacks were no exception. …
… Politicians see that the number of Muslims in France is now so large that it is virtually impossible to win an election without the Muslim vote, and that the difference in birthrate between Muslims and non-Muslims will make that arrangement even more obligatory in years to come.
Politicians also see that the country’s 600 “no-go zones” are growing; that radicalized Muslims may kill, and that violent riots can break out at any time. In France, more than 500 people were murdered or maimed by Islamic terrorists in less than four years.
Politicians also see that waves of migrants from the Middle East and Africa have created slums largely beyond the control of the police; that French prisons are on the verge of exploding, and that Jews have no electoral weight and are essentially powerless.
Politicians therefore choose inertia, denial, cowardice.
In French Muslim neighborhoods, Islamist imams denounce the “bad influence” of Jews and spread anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. French politicians stay silent.
Islamic bookstores in France sell books banned elsewhere, such as the fraudulent Protocols of the Elders of Zion, and CDs and DVDs of violent anti-Semitic speeches by radical preachers. For instance, Yussuf al-Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, who is prohibited from entering France and the US, says he regrets that Hitler did not “finish the job”. French politicians stay silent.
Although synagogues in France have not been attacked since 2014, they all are guarded around the clock by armed soldiers in bulletproof vests who are protected behind sandbags, as are Jewish schools and cultural centers.
Meanwhile, laws meant to punish anti-Semitic threats are now used to punish those who denounce the threats.
Six years ago, the author Renaud Camus published Le Grand Remplacement (“The Great Replacement”), a book noting that Jews and Christians are not only being replaced by Muslims, but that they are often harassed and persecuted. He lamented the destruction of churches and described attacks on Jews as a “slow pogrom”. …
Since we’ve been away for awhile, there’s lots of cartoons from Krauthammer to the Red Hen.