Find the latest in our global update specials:
Czech Republic: Hundreds of demonstrators marched in Prague to protest the rising levels of anti-Semitism in Europe.
The 12th annual event, titled “A March of Good Will,” was held Sunday in the centre of the Czech capital. The demonstration was organized by the Czech branch of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, a Christian Zionist group.
Read more here.
France: The French government is allocating €100 million to battle racism, anti-Semitism and Muslim hate in the wake of recent hatred-driven violent attacks in the country.
Other new government measures include introducing a ban on hate speech in penal law, instead of the regulation of the press. Racist or anti-Semitic speech will be designated as an aggravating factor, leading to harsher punishments for other crimes. In addition to this, victims will be allowed to join forces in class action lawsuits for discrimination.
Another novelty will be the establishment of a national police unit to monitor and battle hate crimes online.
“Racism, anti-Semitism, hatred of Muslims, of foreigners and homophobia are growing in an insufferable manner in our country,” Prime Minister Manuel Valls said on Friday as he unveiled his plans. With close to five million Muslims and around 600,000 Jews in the country, French people should not be “afraid of being Jewish” or “ashamed of being Muslims,” said Valls.
In addition particular emphasis is being placed on educational institutions, especially schools, where staff will be encouraged to report racist or discriminatory incidents. “It is through education, teaching skills and understanding of the other that we can counter the stereotypes and negative images,” said Valls.
Read more here.
UK: Nazi sympathisers, Holocaust deniers and their supporters from across the world have held a sickening secret rally in Britain at which speakers unleashed anti-Semitic rants, referring to Jews as ‘the enemy’ and ‘children of darkness’.
The meeting of the shadowy organisation will fuel fears of a growing resurgence in hatred towards Jews across Europe. Held in London’s Victoria, the meeting was, said experts, the most significant gathering of Holocaust deniers Britain has ever seen, with speakers invited from Spain, Canada and the United States.
In a room draped with the Union Flag, as the event called the London Forum unfolded, the audience:
- Sniggered at the mention of ‘ashes rising from the death camps’ crematoria’
- Applauded as they were urged to ‘identify, counter and break … Jewish-Zionist domination’
- Laughed at the Charlie Hebdo massacre, and as an African leader at the Paris memorial ceremony was described as ‘some Negro’
- Cheered at the mention of a brigade of Spanish Fascists who fought for the Nazis
- Heard gay parents branded ‘monster families’ and mixed race children described as ‘blackos’.
Last night, there were calls from Jewish community leaders for police to investigate the group for race hate crimes.
‘The material from this white supremacist group makes ugly reading,’ said barrister Jonathan Arkush, vice-president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews.
‘On the face of it, their proceedings should be investigated to ascertain whether criminal offences have been committed, including incitement to racial hatred.’
Read more here.
UK: Dave Hill writing in The Guardian reports on a Neo-Nazi protest in Stamford Hill over the weekend: “You don’t get many neo-Nazis assembling in my neck of the woods. So it came as a surprise to get a phone call early on Saturday afternoon alerting me to a bunch of Hitler freaks dragging their knuckles along a street ten minutes from my front door.
The call came from my wife who was walking home from a friend’s house when she chanced upon the scene: a small but menacing congregation of 20-odd fascists encased and heavily outnumbered by officers of the Metropolitan Police Service and pursued by a growing crowd of people objecting to their presence, with Unite Against Fascism (UAF) in the vanguard.
At first we were told the marchers were Polish. There certainly were Poles among the fascists on Saturday, as confirmed by two far more agreeable Polish people among those protesting against them. But it turns out these were a minority within the group, which was organized and led by a seasoned British fascist who, according to UAF and Hope Not Hate, has had connections with every collection of far right rabble and tinpot fuhrer-fancier since the British Movement. UAF also reports that former National Front leading light Martin Webster was present.
According to advance publicity the event was aimed at the Orthodox Jewish Londoners up the road in Stamford Hill – the largest Haredi community in Europe – and in particular its street patrol organization or Shomrim. This is a sort of Neighbourhood Watch-plus, and has been operating against what it calls “quality-of-life nuisance crimes” since 2008. There’s another in Golders Green. Such citizen-run anti-crime initiatives, including this one, aren’t always welcomed by the police. But 18 months ago Hackney’s then borough commander spoke warmly of the local Shomrim. They seem to be getting along quite well.
The mini-march was, needless to say, a nasty little spectacle. It was also rather pitiful. The tiny pack of fascists managed to hang up a banner saying Equal Rights For Indigenous Whites but never poisoned the Jewish Sabbath by making it to Stamford Hill.
Iran: Over the past two weeks, many Iranian websites have reproduced a long article accusing Jews of murdering gentile children in their synagogues, draining their blood and mixing it in their matza for Passover.
Perhaps the most prominent site was news site Alef, under the title “What group has been the biggest criminals in the history of mankind?”
The article includes the most grotesque artwork of Jews as murderers, both medieval and modern,.
It goes through many countries and lists every Jewish blood libel. It claims that the reason Jews were expelled from Spain was because of their habits of murdering Christian babies.
The article even reproduces a cover of Der Sturmer from 1939 showing the Nazi paper accusing Jews of ritual murder as evidence that it must be true!
Beyond that, the article claims that rabbis mix human blood with wine and place it on the lips of the infant boy during circumcision. It claims that the Talmud says “Anyone who kills a non-Jew, his reward is in heaven.”
Other news sites that reproduced the article, verbatim, include Mashregh News, Asredena, Harfeakhar, Khabarist, Khabarkhoon, Habbe, and Ghatreh. From there it has spread to blogs and other secondary sites.
Most of the comments are virulently antisemitic as well.
Read more here.