The question of granting asylum and vetting anti-Semitic attitudes.
There was no genius behind the prediction that the influx of Muslim migrants into Europe would cause a sharp rise in anti-Semitism, and anti-Israel propaganda. The Muslim immigrant anti-Semites from Syria, Iraq and elsewhere, didn’t need President Donald Trump’s recent recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital as an excuse to express their hate for Jews and Israel. They have been honed on Jew-hatred in their own mosques, through President Erdogan’s demagoguery, and through the Arab media.
The Washington Post reported (December 20, 2017) that, “A recent survey commissioned by AJC Berlin found ‘widespread anti-Semitism’ among refugees. Officials have also expressed concerns over the influence of the Turkish government on the almost 2 million German Turks, even though many of them have lived here for decades, especially after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called the recognition of Jerusalem a “red line” for the Muslim world and threatened to cut ties with Israel.”
Thousands of recently arrived immigrants from the Arab and Muslim world protested in Berlin, Germany. Ironically, the anti-Trump turned anti-Semitic protest took place 100-yards from the city’s “somber Memorial to the murdered Jews of Europe.” The demonstrators burned Israeli flags while chanting anti-Semitic slogans and threatening violence against Israelis. The German authorities chose not to interfere. In this reporter’s mind, it conjured a scene from the late 1930’s of brown-shirted Nazis protesting in front of Jewish stores in Berlin, threatening violence and harassing Jews or would be customers, while the local police stood by, doing nothing.
Chancellor Angela Merkel’s invitation to over one million migrants to come to Germany (overwhelmingly Muslims) from the Middle East, was bound to aggravate the already heightened anti-Semitism throughout Europe and Germany. Ms. Merkel should have known that many of these migrants came seeking to transform Europe and Germany into part of the “Muslim ummah (community).” Others entered Germany posing as migrants to terrorize and kill non-Muslims infidels, and the majority of them are carrying the malignant virus of anti-Semitism.
From early grades onward, Syrian school textbooks portray Jews as being rejected by Allah for their evil deeds, including the killing of their prophets. School children are taught that Israel is an illegitimate creation. They are also taught that Israel is committing crimes against Arabs and Muslims and that Israeli “occupation of Arab lands” is a crime. For Syrian men or woman in their 20’s, whether they supported the dictator Bashar al-Assad or not, one thing is certain. Whatever the circumstances may be for arriving in Europe or Germany, they have been poisoned with hate and been prejudiced about living side by side with Jews.
The Tower (December 12, 2017) reported that, “Sweden has been rocked by a series of anti-Semitic attacks, following the announcement by U.S. President Donald Trump that America would recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and initiate a process to move the U.S. embassy there…Palestinian flags were waved and anti-Semitic slogans heard, when 200 angry protesters took to the streets of Malmo on Friday (December 8, 2017). According to a report by Sveriges Radio, they were chanting: ‘We want our freedom back and we are going to shoot the Jews’ among other hateful slogans.”
Protests spiraled out of control on Saturday (December 9, 2017), when during a second anti-Jewish attack in the Nordic country in two days, masked men threw Molotov cocktails at a synagogue in Gothenburg. Teens from the local Jewish community who were attending a party inside had to hide in the basement until security arrived. Three suspects have been arrested in relation to the attack and are said to be asylum seekers who came to Sweden this year, two from Syria and one from the Palestinian Authority. On Monday (December 11, 2017) Sweden hit the headlines again. Two burning objects were thrown at a chapel located at a Jewish cemetery in Malmo.
Freddy Gelberg, spokesperson for Malmo’s Jewish community, told the police that, “We are careful. You don’t want to display the Star of David around your neck or other Jewish symbols. An Orthodox Jew does not find life easy in Malmo, he is subjected to discrimination…I was never attacked because of my religion. What is happening now is another type of anti-Semitism whereby we are being attacked because of the political situation in the Middle East.”
Mr. Gelberg was clearly reluctant to point a finger at the Arab-Muslim migrants who have brought with them the hateful and violent anti-Semitism, which the Swedish government has only encouraged by its hostility to the Jewish state. Moreover, Gelberg knows it is a taboo in Sweden to accuse Muslims or migrants. To do so is to violate the new Swedish “religion,” which has engulfed European life: multiculturalism.
In Germany, Jewish pupils are being bullied by Arab schoolmates, and Jewish elders offer advice on which districts it is risky to wear a skullcap (kippah). Chancellor Merkel’s decision in 2015 to open the nation's arms to 1 million mostly Muslim refugees has created a double threat for Jews: rising anti-Semitism from the newcomer Muslim migrants, and a resurgent right-wing nationalist movement spawned by the arrival of so many immigrants.
Mikhail Tanaev, 32, a Jewish telecommunications manager whose parents immigrated to Germany from Russia in 1998, had this to say in an interview with USA Today (December 21, 2017) “The anti-Semitic sentiment has become more pubic and virulent… When I arrived in Germany ... I never saw such displays." He added, “I never thought that could happen in the middle of Berlin (a reference to the protests and burning of the Israeli flags). That's something you see in other parts of the world. It's really disturbing. It feels like we're being threatened because you never know how people will react further when something like this occurs.”
Last month, thieves made-off with cobblestone-sized plaques embedded in sidewalks memorializing victims of the Holocaust. In 2016, Germany recorded 1,468 anti-Semitic incidents, an increase from previous years. According to a recent survey at the Bielefeld University in Western Germany, 62% of Jewish respondents said they experienced anti-Semitism in their everyday lives, 28% said they were victims of verbal attacks or harassment. The survey also points to an increase of anti-Semitism by Muslim immigrants. Rabbi Daniel Fabian, a Berlin rabbi, revealed that members of the Jewish community center have been spit upon and harassed by Muslim immigrants in predominantly Muslim neighborhoods since 2014.
Although the rise of anti-Semitism was predictable with the arrival of over a million Middle Eastern migrants and refugees into Germany, the Merkel government has done little to weed out the Jew-haters among the immigrants from Muslim countries. The German government must make the granting of asylum conditional on full vetting of possible anti-Semitic attitudes. Likewise, as German authorities screen for potential terrorists, they could assume that a Jew-hater from Syria or the Palestinian territories might be a potential terrorist. Admission of young families following background checks ought to be prioritized, while restricting the entry of single males aged 18-45. The families with young children will be educated with German and European values rather than Middle Eastern or Islamist values.
Admitting more than million Middle Eastern migrants into Germany, whose culture and upbringing threatens once again the lives of its Jews, cannot assuage German guilt over the Holocaust and the murder of Six Million innocent Jewish people.