Jul 13, 2019

Report: The political left and the right feed "the new wave of anti-Semitism"

Mourners stand outside a memorial at Pittsburgh's Tree of Life synagogue on October 29, 2018 after the fatal shooting. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

Rising bipartisan political forces in Europe and the U.S. have "revived old patterns that scapegoat Jews for society’s ills," Yaroslav Trofimov writes in the Wall Street Journal.

The big picture: Jewish Americans experienced "near-historic levels of anti-Semitism" in 2018, according to the Anti-Defamation League. Meanwhile, one-third of Europeans believe that Jewish people use the Holocaust to "advance their own positions or goals," according to a 2018 CNN poll — and another third say they know little or nothing about the Holocaust.

Key highlights from the WSJ:

  • "In France and other Western societies, the proliferation of new political forces that challenge the established liberal order" is spurring latent-anti-Semitism.
  • "[U]nfiltered social media has pushed these anti-Semitic tropes, long confined to the fringes, into the mainstream of public debate."
  • "[O]ld and new conspiracy theories blaming the Jews have gained new traction," on issues from immigration, economic inequality and terrorism.

The bottom line: "The West’s new wave of anti-Semitism, however, is increasingly coming from new quarters: from the nativist far right, with its fear of 'the other' and dreams of racial purity, and from the extreme left, which often identifies Jews with the capitalist elites it seeks to destroy and glorifies Palestinian militants."

Go deeper: The world's white supremacy problem

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Israeli education minister backs off "second Holocaust" remark

Rafi Peretz. Photo: Getty

Israeli Education Minister Rafi Peretz is backing off his characterization of intermarriage by Jewish people in the U.S. as a "second Holocaust." In a letter, Peretz asked Isaac Herzog, chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel, to convey his regret to Jewish communities around the world.

Why it matters: Peretz's remarks came during an Israeli Cabinet meeting and sparked a wave of condemnations from Jewish organizations in the U.S. after they were reported by Axios. Peretz had claimed that due to intermarriages over the last 70 years, Judaism "lost 6 million people."

Go deeperArrowJul 16, 2019

The era of white nationalism

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

White nationalism — a racist extremism that was confined to the ugly fringes for most of our lives — is a growing major danger in America.

The big picture: Racial resentment and anxiety have been a central appeal for Donald Trump and his rhetoric among the working-class, forgotten Americans who put him over the top, and who are at the core of his re-election strategy.

Go deeperArrowAug 6, 2019

Religion is fueling a new wave of immigration activism

Protestors on July 16, 2018. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images

Never Again Action, a Jewish activist organization formed last month, led a protest of hundreds on Tuesday that closed ICE's headquarters in Washington, D.C., for several hours, NBC reports.

Why it matters: Religion is fueling a new wave of immigration activism. Clergy members rallied for immigrants from their pulpits over the weekend, offering sanctuary as ICE carried out a small number of raids on undocumented migrant families. Never Again Action, which has organized over 1,000 protestors at more than 10 events this summer, is led by mostly young Jews.

Go deeperArrowJul 17, 2019