Tags: antisemitism | uk | jews | oct.7

British Jews Consider Exodus, Compare UK to Nazi Germany

By    |   Saturday, 02 March 2024 06:40 PM EST

Jews residing in the U.K. are contemplating leaving the country, equating their experiences to the horrors of Nazi Germany amid a surge in antisemitic incidents following the Oct. 7 Hamas massacre in Israel, reported the Independent.

Physical assaults, threats, and accusations of heinous acts against Jewish residents in the U.K. have increased, totaling over 4,000 reported incidents of antisemitism last year alone.

This week, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak pledged an additional $68 million to the Community Security Trust (CST), a charity that "protects British Jews from antisemitism and related threats," according to its website.

Statistics from the CST indicate 4,103 antisemitic incidents in the U.K. last year, an 82% increase over the previous record of 2,261 in 2021.

On Friday, the Board of Deputies of British Jews condemned George Galloway's victory in the by-election to represent Rochdale in Parliament as a "dark day" for the U.K.'s Jewish community.

Galloway, who has consistently denied allegations of antisemitism, clinched the seat from Labour amid controversy over remarks made by Labour candidate Azhar Ali suggesting that Israel was complicit in Hamas' Oct. 7 attack on Israel.

One victim of such abuse, 25-year-old Jack Christie, expressed his shock at the recent escalation of antisemitism. Recounting an incident on a train following a march against antisemitism in November, Christie described how he and his friends were verbally attacked with racial slurs and threats of violence.

"There was nothing to do with the conflict, just a few people holding signs about antisemitism like never again means now," he told the Independent.

"Some people were wearing kippahs on their heads and there were quite a few visibly Jewish people on the train."

One man accused visibly Jewish passengers of "supporting killers," called them "donkeys," and branded them "child molesters."

"It wasn't even about Israel; it was just plainly antisemitic," said Christie, a tech professional.

Following his decision to share footage of the incident online, Christie faced a barrage of hateful comments and threats, leaving him fearful for his safety.

"I got many hate comments and even had people say to find the boy in the orange jumper [himself] and that I should be lynched," he said. "I was scared as this happened near where I lived. I was looking over my shoulder for a long time ..."

Another Jewish victim, a 47-year-old woman who wished to remain anonymous, described an incident where she was physically assaulted and had her phone destroyed while putting up posters in east London. She also said she faced verbal abuse in Kensal Rise, an area of London.

"Every time this happens, it's like someone is reaching out and ripping out my heart," she said. "I don't feel safe anymore. None of us feel safe. I feel like I have to put another lock on the door because Britain feels like Nazi Germany."

Such sentiments are echoed by the Campaign Against Antisemitism, which describes the scale of antisemitic incidents since Oct. 7 as "terrifying."

According to its polling, over six in 10 British Jews have either personally experienced or witnessed antisemitic incidents, contributing to a pervasive sense of fear and unease within the Jewish community.

Jim Thomas

Jim Thomas is a writer based in Indiana. He holds a bachelor's degree in Political Science, a law degree from U.I.C. Law School, and has practiced law for more than 20 years.

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Jews residing in the U.K. are contemplating leaving the country, equating their experiences to the horrors of Nazi Germany amid a surge in antisemitic incidents following the Oct. 7 Hamas massacre in Israel, reported the Independent.
antisemitism, uk, jews, oct.7
Saturday, 02 March 2024 06:40 PM
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