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The perverse consequences of western antisemitism denial

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A new study of antisemitism in Europe has found that the country with the lowest rate of antisemitism, despite having a relatively large Jewish population, is… Russia.

The study, by the Oslo-based Center for Studies of the Holocaust and the University of Oslo, looked at France, Britain, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Russia. The author, Johannes Due Enstad, observed that Russia does not treat Muslims’ transgressions with near impunity as Western Europe does. The relatively few antisemitic acts that do occur in Russia are committed mainly by the far right. That’s why the numbers are low.

In certain western European countries such as Sweden, moreover, the assumption is that all antisemitism is committed by the far right. “Absurdly,” Enstad remarks, “whenever a perpetrator draws a swastika, the Swedish government automatically considers it a ‘right-wing’ act”.

In both Sweden and Germany, he says, the statistics are fishy because the numbers are massaged to conceal certain “uncomfortable facts” about antisemitic crime.

Anyone care to guess what uncomfortable facts those might be?

His conclusions, as depressing as they are unsurprising, are that “…right-wingers, in all four of the major Western European countries… constitute a clear minority of perpetrators… in France, Sweden and the UK (but not in Germany) the perpetrator was perceived to be left-wing more often than right-wing.”

Well, just fancy that.

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