When two gunmen murdered 12 people at the offices of Charlie Hebdo and another killed four Jews at a kosher market in Paris in January, some commentators immediately identified the real problem with the slaughter: looming “Islamophobia.” This pattern is now well-established. An Islamic extremist perpetrates a horrific act of violence, the act is condemned, the perpetrator is idiotically deemed to be “un-Islamic” or “not a true Muslim,” and then the bulk of the concern is directed at possible anti-Muslim backlash rather than the very real violence that has just occured. For good measure, some might even use the opportunity to invoke the sins of Western foreign policy.
Yet for all the talk of “Islamophobia,” it is anti-Semitism that’s risen sharply in much of Europe, and quite dramatically as we have recently seen, sometimes at the hands of assailants beholden to radical Islam. But as we’ve been told by clueless liberal commentators, there is no such thing as radical Islam — a canard that persists despite its total disconnect with reality.
And speaking of disconnect with reality, the recent case in Germany of three German-Palestinian men firebombing a synagogue with Molotov cocktails in July furnishes another example of non-reality based thinking. The incident seemed to be textbook example of anti-Semitism, but not for the person whose opinion on this mattered most. Last week a judge in Wuppertal found that the men were not motivated by anti-Semitism, but instead wanted to bring “attention to the Gaza conflict.”
The synagogue firebombing is indicative of a broader trend France. Attacks on Jews there between January and July 2014 nearly doubled relative to the same period of time in 2013. In 2012, a French Muslim of Algerian descent murdered four people, including three children at a Jewish school in Toulouse. His motive? “[T]he Jews kill our brothers and sisters in Palestine.” At one rally in Paris several years ago, Muslims chanted “Khaybar ya-Yahud!” — an anti-Jew battle cry. These types of incidents have led thousands of French Jews to pack up and leave the country, and some synagogues receive round-the-clock protection by French soldiers.
The graph below comes from a report by National Consultative Commission on Human Rights of France has the highest population of both Muslims and Jews in Europe. While it shows that anti-Muslim hate crimes were on the rise from 2010 to 2013, the number of anti-Semitic incidents still doubled these:
Meanwhile in the U.K., Jews are being warned that anti-Semitic attacks in the country last year hit a record high, having more than doubled from 2013. Many of them were spurred on by Israel’s war on Gaza — protesters of which nonsensically and successfully pressured a London supermarket to remove kosher food from its shelves, as if all kosher food is made in Israel. In some areas, “sharia patrols” consisting of young Muslim men harass Britons for not following their ultra-conservative code of conduct.
In Belgium in 2014, a Frenchman of Algerian descent who had spent time in Syria fighting with jihadists shot and killed four people at a Jewish museum. In Malmo, Sweden, some neo-Nazis, but mostly Muslims have made life difficult for Jews, so much so that the city has become “a place to move away from” for the diaspora there. In Norway last year, a pro-Israel rally was shut down by police after pro-Hamas demonstrators kept shouting anti-Semitic comments.
By no means does Islam have a monopoly on anti-Semitism. In fact, Christians have committed far more violence against the Jewish people throughout history. But fundamentally, the anti-Semitism of both is grounded in the same tradition that’s authored 2,000 years of Jew-baiting. Blamed for rejecting and killing Jesus, “the Jews” have been scapegoated and oppressed ever since, most frequently by the messiah’s earthly representatives. This is why blaming the Holocaust merely on the rise of Nazism is a dangerous mistake. Hitler did not whip up Germans into a frenzy of anti-Semitism in a vacuum, but was working with two millennia of hate.
The Quran has done its fair share to contribute to this animosity. While the Bible doesn’t explicitly condemn “the Jews” as a people (it was after all, written by Jews), the Quran isn’t so circumspect. Written about six centuries after the gospels, the Quran is by and large a poorly written extension of the tradition in which Jews are viewed with great suspicion:
“[D]o not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are friends of each other; and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people.” (5:51)
“And the Jews say: The hand of Allah is tied up! Their hands shall be shackled and they shall be cursed for what they say… [T]hey strive to make mischief in the land.” (5:64)
“And We had made known to the children of Israel in the Book: Most certainly you will make mischief in the land twice, and most certainly you will behave insolently with great insolence.” (17:4)
If you can stomach them, more instances of Allah-approved anti-Semitism can be found here.
After the attacks on Charlie Hebdo, we have quite predictably seen a rise in the popularity of Europe’s far-right, anti-immigration parties: the UKIP in Britain, the Front National in France, the Party for Freedom in the Netherlands, the PEGIDA movement in Germany, and others. This is not a positive development, but it’s happening because Europe’s multiculturalist Leftist parties are failing to address the problem of radical Islam or even recognize it, and Jews and are suffering as a result (not to mention gentile cartoonists).
The worst part about the far-right’s new-found popularity in Europe isn’t that its rhetoric consists of the kind of blatant, over-the-top hate speech we’ve seen in the past. Rather, it’s the fact that it doesn’t have to. A simple recognition of the reality of the situation is all that suffices to stand out quite brilliantly as a truth-teller on the issue of Islamic extremism. When Francois Hollande said the Charlie Hebdo and kosher market attacks had nothing to do with Islam, he essentially invited the French right-wing to fill the reality void left by his otherworldly remark, and it has.
Ironically, the Left’s refusal to recognize the source of much of Europe’s anti-Semitism is the same thing that may eventually give rise to groups that aren’t just anti-Muslim, but anti-Semitic as well. Given the current trajectory, a showdown is going to ensue in Europe between a small but growing minority of radical Muslims, and a small but growing minority of white nationalists, both of which are going to make life very unpleasant for not just Jews, but many gentiles as well.