Amid the Coronavirus, Germany Sees a Spike in Anti-Semitism

Feb. 25 2021

According to data recently released by German police, anti-Semitic crimes were at their highest levels since such records first started being kept in 2001. Soeren Kern writes:

German police reported a total of 2,275 anti-Semitic hate crimes—an average of six per day—in 2020, according to preliminary data provided by the federal government. The tally represents a more than 10-percen increase over the number of anti-Semitic crimes reported in 2019, itself a record-breaking year for such offenses. The official numbers represent only the crimes reported to the police; the actual number of incidents is presumably much bigger.

The new data . . . shows that police were able to identify 1,367 suspects — but that only five individuals were ultimately arrested. The statistics also show that 55 (roughly 2.5 percent) of the crimes involved violence. This implies that most of the other incidents appear to involve anti-Semitic hate speech on the Internet, property damage, or “propaganda crimes” such as anti-Jewish graffiti.

Also disturbing, Kern argues, is the habit of German police and officials to assume all anti-Semitic incidents are the work of the far right, even though such cases are probably a minority compared to those whose perpetrators are either left-wing or Muslim extremists. And then there is the new phenomenon of anti-Semitism among the so-called Querdenker, who are united in their objection to measures taken to stop the spread of the coronavirus:

One of the largest Querdenker demonstrations to date took place in Berlin on August 29, 2020. An estimated 40,000 people—libertarians, constitutionalists, Greens, esotericists, naturopaths, LGBT activists, pandemic deniers, anti-vaccine and anti-mask activists, and families with children—gathered to protest the government’s coronavirus policies. The protests turned violent after being infiltrated by several hundred far-right agitators waving Nazi-era flags.

Since then, dozens of anti-Semitic incidents have been reported at such rallies. Some protesters have been seen wearing t-shirts with Nazi-era yellow stars in which the word “Jew” was replaced with “unvaccinated.” Others have carried posters with the inscription, “Vaccination makes you free,” a reference to the “Work makes you free” slogan placed at the entrance to the Auschwitz concentration camp. Some have referred to the “final solution of the corona question” as well as of “vaccination in Dachau.”

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Read more at Gatestone

More about: Anti-Semitism, Coronavirus, German Jewry, Germany

 

Will Tensions Rise between the U.S. and Israel?

Unlike his past many predecessors, President Joe Biden does not have a plan for solving the Israel-Palestinian conflict. Moreover, his administration has indicated its skepticism about renewing the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran. John Bolton nevertheless believes that there could be a collision between the new Benjamin Netanyahu-led Israeli government and the Biden White House:

In possibly his last term, Netanyahu’s top national-security priority will be ending, not simply managing, Iran’s threat. This is infinitely distant from Biden’s Iran policy, which venerates Barrack Obama’s inaugural address: “we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.”

Tehran’s fist is today otherwise occupied, pummeling its own people. Still, it will continue menacing Israel and America unless and until the internal resistance finds ways to fracture the senior levels of Iran’s regular military and the Revolutionary Guards. Netanyahu undoubtedly sees Iran’s growing domestic turmoil as an opportunity for regime change, which Israel and others can facilitate. Simultaneously, Jerusalem can be preparing its military and intelligence services to attack Tehran’s nuclear program, something the White House simply refuses to contemplate seriously. Biden’s obsession with reviving the disastrous 2015 nuclear deal utterly blinds the White House to the potential for a more significant victory.

To make matters worse, Biden has just created a Washington-based position at the State Department, a “special representative for Palestinian affairs,” that has already drawn criticism in Israel both for the new position itself and for the person named to fill it. Advocated as one more step toward “upgrading” U.S. relations with the Palestinian Authority, the new position looks nearly certain to become the locus not of advancing American interests regarding the failed Authority, but of advancing the Authority’s interests within the Biden administration.

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Read more at 19FortyFive

More about: Benjamin Netanyahu, Iran, Joe Biden, U.S.-Israel relationship