A new poll conducted by the EU has found that British Jews expressed the highest level of concern about “anti-Semitism in political life”, with 85% of those surveyed seeing it as a problem.
This coincides with the rise in popularity of Jeremy Corbyn, the anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic leader of the Labour party and the increase of anti-Semitism emanating from his party as a result of his leadership.
Dr. Jonathan Boyd, executive director of the London-based Institute for Jewish Policy Research, said it was “highly probable that a Corbyn factor can be found in the UK results.”
“Simply looking at the proportions of Jews in the UK who highlight ‘anti-Semitism in political life’ as a problem indicates this,” he suggested.
“Given everything that has happened recently around Corbyn, and given other research data on the political preferences of British Jews which show a dramatic drop in support for the Labour party, there can be little doubt that there is a Corbyn factor here.”
The poll was part of a large study conducted and commissioned by the FRA, the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights, and surveyed more than 16,000 Jews in 12 European countries.
The research is a follow-up to a 2012 survey conducted by the FRA. The 12 EU countries surveyed — Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom — are home to 96% of the EU’s estimated Jewish population. The online survey was conducted from May to June this year.
Britain, Germany and Sweden saw the sharpest increases in those saying anti-Semitism is a “very big” or “fairly big” problem with 95% of French Jews seeing it as a problem. Interestingly, France, Germany and Sweden have been three countries most affected by mass immigration in recent years whilst Britain is said to be seeing the effects of the “Corbyn factor”.
Interestingly, Hungary, a country that is often accused of having an anti-Semitic government, showed that Jews thought anti-Semitism was less of a problem this year than it has been in previous years.
One of the most shocking parts of the survey found that whilst 28% of Jews say they have been harassed at least once in the past 12-months, almost 80% of these victims said they do not report serious incidents to the police, often because they feel nothing will change.
The survey findings suggest that people face so much anti-Semitic abuse that some of the incidents they experience appear trivial to them,” argues the report.
“Decades after the Holocaust, shocking and mounting levels of anti-Semitism continue to plague the EU,” said Michael O’Flaherty, director of the EU’s Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), which published the research. “In many ways,” he suggested, anti-Semitism had become “disturbingly normalized.
To read an in-depth analysis of the findings, click here.
to read the report in full, click here.