“Together we’ll burn Jews, because Jews burn the best.”
This is the vile anti-Semitic soccer chant often heard during matches connected to Amsterdam’s Ajax football team. Their players and supporters are often dubbed “Jews” because of the historic Jewish presence in the city, which is sometimes colloquially called “Mokum” after the Yiddish word for “place.”
However, high school pupils of Elde College in the town of Schijndel, 70 miles southeast of Amsterdam decided to repeat the chant during their recent graduation gala ceremony, the Brabants Dagblad daily reported on Wednesday.
The student body and organizing committee of the Elde College gala expressed their sincere apologies for the incident, but Dutch Chief Rabbi Binyomin Jacobs said the guilty parties “must be prosecuted for hate speech.”
Jacobs referenced the incident during his speech earlier this week in Vught, at a ceremony for Jewish Holocaust victims at a former Nazi internment camp. “Only six years ago, we were profoundly shocked when two young men screamed ‘Heil Hitler’ during a commemoration ceremony at Vught,” he said. “But today, this wouldn’t be so shocking anymore. It is happening all the time in the Netherlands, and we must face this change with honesty, and combat it with education and severe punishments for violators.”
The Chief Rabbi’s own home in Amersfoort has been attacked five times in recent years, especially during periods of unrest in Israel.
AntiSemitismWatch.com brings you its latest global news update:
Austria: Bosnian football fans staged a pro-Palestinian protest that quickly turned Antisemitic while in Vienna, Austria for a soccer match.
The incident was captured in a video where the fans-turned-political-activists set up a protest in Vienna’s central Stephanplatz square.
At first they stood calmly shouting pro-Palestinian slogans. Then, a single voice among the protesters shouted “Kill the Jews.” The calls to violence swelled as the other protesters joined in. In a swarm of rage, they began to jump up and down shouting “Ubij, ubij Židove,” which means “Kill, kill the Jews.”
The enraged protesters were in town for an international friendly soccer match between Austria and Bosnia at the Ernst Happel stadium in Vienna.
Neither Bosnian nor Austrian officials have responded to the incident so far.
Relations between Bosnia and Israel are generally friendly and the country even has a small Jewish community. In May 2014, Israel sent millions of tons of aid to the country when the region experienced record flooding that killed thousands.
Iran: Over 300 artists from Iran and countries such as France, China sent in entries for controversial competition
Hundreds of people from Iran and around the globe submitted entries for the Islamic Republic’s Second International Holocaust Cartoon Contest, a competition official announced Monday.
“839 artworks have also been sent to the secretariat, 686 of them have been sent to the cartoon section and 153 more are related to caricature section,” Secretary Masud Shojaei-Tabatabaii told the semi-official Fars News Agency, marking the second time since 2006 that the country has held the controversial contest, which makes light of the killing of 6 million Jews in Europe during WWII.
Organizers launched the cartoon contest centered on the theme of Holocaust denial in late January in response to French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo’s decision to publish caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed.
In February, Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations, Ron Prosor, demanded that United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and other UN member countries condemn Iran’s planned international cartoon contest on Holocaust denial.
“This contest legitimizes Holocaust denial and encourages Holocaust deniers to continue their incitement,” Prosor said. “It ridicules one of the darkest events in human history, and it cheapens the death of millions of Jews who were murdered. The horrors of the Holocaust are still fresh in the collective memory.”
Netherlands: A Dutch soccer club is working to identify fans who chanted Antisemitic slogans about the Holocaust during a match with a rival team from Amsterdam.
The chants were documented at Galgenwaard Stadium in Utrecht, a city situated 40 miles southeast of the Dutch capital Amsterdam, during an honor division match between Amsterdam’s Ajax team and FC Utrecht, the De Telegraaf daily reported.
Utrecht supporters chanted the slogans to insult rival fans, whom they often call “Jews” because of the historical Jewish presence in Amsterdam, which is sometimes colloquially called “Mokum” after the Yiddish word for “place.”
During the match, dozens could be seen and heard chanting: “My father was in the commandos, my mother was in the SS, together they burned Jews cause Jews burn the best” and “Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the gas.” The chanting went on for several minutes.
Ronny Naftaniel, a prominent Dutch Jewish anti-discrimination activist, called on Ajax to stop future matches featuring anti-Semitic chants.
“When will Ajax players walk off the field? Take action against anti-Semitism,” wrote Naftaniel, who is the executive vice chairperson of CEJI, a Brussels-based Jewish organization promoting tolerance through education.
FC Utrecht said in a statement it is investigating suspected chanters and vowed to punish those identified.
Israel: Vandalizing graves and monuments with swastikas is a popular Antisemitic attack method, particularly in Europe, but the phenomenon has found its way into Israel as well.
Over Passover weekend, vandals graffitied a swastika and hateful slurs on a monument for fallen members of southern town Omer, who died fighting for Israel. The monument is located in the Omer Industrial Park.