A charity that monitors antisemitism and provides security for British Jewish groups has recorded a “horrific surge” in racist attacks in the past month which campaigners said “surpassed anything we have seen before”.
The Community Security Trust (CST) recorded 351 antisemitic incidents between 8 and 31 May, more than for any single month since records began in 1986.
The CST said the rise was fuelled by antisemitic reactions to the escalation of violence in Israel and Gaza. It called the situation “utterly predictable and completely disgraceful”.
The previous highest number of antisemitic incidents, 314, was recorded in July 2014, which also coincided with an escalation in violence in the Middle East.
The Campaign Against Antisemitism cited physical beatings and vandalism, chants and placards at rallies, social media abuse and threats to Jewish children at schools and universities as examples of the hostility faced by British Jews.
“None of these should be features of life in Britain in 2021, but they are for Jewish people,” a spokesperson said. “Ultimately, the blame lies with the racist perpetrators of these cowardly incidents. But some politicians, the media, social media companies and others have done their part in tolerating or even stoking the hate. It is vital that the police investigate incidents as they arise and bring offenders to justice.
“In a year defined by solidarity against racism worldwide, it is extraordinary how little support there is out there for Britain’s Jews. Racism against Jews just doesn’t seem to count.”