Yisro’el Shalom, 52, is a Londoner, widower, and former comedian of Jewish descent. According to Shalom, he has been the target of anti-Semitic attacks for years — 30 attacks in three years, to be precise.
Shalom used to live in Newham, east London, where he reportedly suffered numerous attacks including getting beaten up and having swastikas spray-painted over his home.
“After the graffiti attack I only ever went out for Shabbat to the synagogue,” Shalom recalled, according to the Daily Express. ” … All my doors and windows were double-locked and I spent four months ordering food online, and just walking from room to room.”
Shalom was even forced to wear a stab-proof vest and put a metal gate and iron bars over his home to protect himself.
“I couldn’t even put music on because I needed to hear if anybody was trying to get into the house,” Shalom said.
Shalom has since moved to Finchley, a less hostile part of London. But he fears he is suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) since the spate of attacks.
“When you see these things, we are at the beginning of what we said ‘never again’ to 70 years ago,” he said, referring to the common declaration among Jews in reference to the Holocaust, the Daily Express reports.
London’s Metropolitan Police said the number of anti-Semitic crimes reported in Newham — Shalom’s former neighbourhood, where the attacks took place — have doubled since 2015.
“We will not tolerate hate crime and take positive action to investigate all allegations, support victims and arrest offenders,” a spokesman for the Met Police said.
Unfortunately, that assurance comes too little, too late for Shalom.
“I’m supposed to be able to walk down any damn street that I want in this country,” he said, “but sadly that’s just not how it is.”