ADL: 21 Million Americans Harbor Anti-Semitic Attitudes

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 01:56 PM

By Drew MacKenzie

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A new survey has found that 21 million Americans, or nearly one out of every 10 adults, have anti-Semitic prejudices.

The study of 102 countries by the Anti-Defamation League, called the ADL Global 100, found that overall, one in every four adults throughout the world harbors some form of anti-Semitic attitude.

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Respondents were asked a series of 11 questions based on Jewish stereotypes, including those on Jewish power, loyalty, money, and behavior, according to the Jewish news agency JTA. People who replied "probably true" to six or more negative statements about Jews were considered to hold anti-Semitic feelings.

In America, 9 percent of respondents showed that they had anti-Semitic sentiments, with the same percentage of Christians being prejudiced, while only 7 percent of atheists showed such attitudes.

The survey found that 31 percent of Americans feel that Jews "are more loyal to Israel" than to the United States. It also showed that 22 percent of Americans think Jews "still talk too much about what happened to them in the Holocaust."

The research also discovered that 18 percent of Americans believe the statement that "Jews have too much power in the business world" is probably true.

However, the survey showed that there has been a massive plunge in anti-Semitic tendencies in America since a 2002 ADL study, when it was revealed that 35 million Americans, 17 percent, had anti-Semitic attitudes, which raised concerns at the time that "an undercurrent of Jewish hatred persists in America."

The survey of 1,000 Americans had a margin of error of 3.3 percent.

The largest number of respondents holding anti-Semitic attitudes was found in the Middle East and North Africa, at 74 percent, while 34 percent of Eastern Europeans and 24 percent of Western Europeans harbor ill feelings toward the Jewish race.

The territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip had the highest anti-Semitic attitudes with 93 percent.

Anti-Semitic feelings also run high throughout the Middle East: Yemen, 88 percent; Algeria and Libya, both 87 percent; Tunisia, 86 percent; Kuwait, 82 percent; Bahrain and Jordan, 81 percent; and Morocco, 80 percent.

"For the first time we have a real sense of how pervasive and persistent anti-Semitism is today around the world," said ADL's national director Abraham Foxman.

"The data from the Global 100 Index enables us to look beyond anti-Semitic incidents and rhetoric and quantify the prevalence of anti-Semitic attitudes across the globe. We can now identify hotspots, as well as countries and regions of the world where hatred of Jews is essentially nonexistent."

The ADL survey found that several countries had very little anti-Semitic beliefs, with Laos having just 0.2 percent of its adult population being prejudiced.

Philippines had 3 percent; Sweden, 4 percent; the Netherlands, 5 percent; Vietnam, 6 percent; the United Kingdom, 8 percent; Denmark, 9 percent; Tanzania, 12 percent; and Thailand, 13 percent.

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