German Antisemitism Increased by More than 80% Last Year, According to Watchdog

German Antisemitism Increased by More than 80% Last Year, According to Watchdog

Watchdog RIAS claimed on Tuesday that antisemitic events in Germany—from graffiti to attempted arson—rose by around 83 percent in the previous year as a result of Israel’s military incursion in the Gaza Strip and the attack on Israel by Hamas on October 7.

According to RIAS, of the 4,782 antisemitic occurrences that were reported, about half were connected to anti-Israel action, and many of them involved downplaying or denying the existence of the Nazi Holocaust, which claimed the lives of 6 million Jews.

Antisemitism has been increasing globally, but in Germany, where Jewish institutions are heavily guarded by the police, it is a particularly delicate topic.

Prominent Jewish-German thinkers are among the critics who claim that this has limited free speech by preventing German authorities and media from making a clear enough distinction between criticism of Israel and antisemitism.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz reaffirmed the notion that Israel’s security is a “reason of state,” or matter of national interest for Germany, one week following the attack spearheaded by Hamas.

RIAS included occurrences like the destruction of Israeli flags flown in support of Israel following October 7 in its antisemitic report. In a different instance, the words “Save Israel” and the Star of David were scraped off and “Free Palestine from Zionists” was written on a bathroom door.

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