ADL: 24% of French harbor anti-Semitic attitudes

Levels of anti-Semitism up in 9 out of 10 European countries, poll shows; nearly half those polled believe Jews more loyal to Israel.

By ELIEZER SHERMAN
March 20, 2012 22:25
1 minute read.
French police photograph neo-Nazi graffiti

French police photograph neo-Nazi graffiti 311 (R). (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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Nearly a quarter of French citizens still show anti-Semitic attitudes, the Anti-Defamation League revealed in a new poll published on Tuesday.

The findings were released a day after the brutal murder of three children and a rabbi in front of a Jewish school in Toulouse, France.

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According to the poll, "the overall level of anti-Semitism increased to 24 percent of the population, an increase from 20% in a previous ADL poll conducted in 2009."

In addition, 45% of respondents said violence against European Jews was based on "anti-Jewish feelings," rather than anti-Israeli sentiment, an increase from 39% in 2009.

ADL executive director Abraham H. Foxman commented on the findings, saying that "Those increases are all the more disturbing in light of the shooting attack at the Jewish school in Toulouse."

The results were part of a larger study on anti-Semitism in Europe, which included nine other countries: Austria, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Spain Italy, the Netherlands, Norway and the United Kingdom.

Respondents in those ten countries where asked to identify whether or not they subscribed to certain statements labeled by ADL as "classical" anti-Semitism. Those questions included whether respondents felt Jews were more loyal to Israel than their home European country, whether Jews have too much power in the business world or international markets and whether Jews discuss the Holocaust too often.



Nine out of ten countries showed increases in anti-Semitic attitudes, according to the poll.

The most anti-Semitic country was Hungary, the ADL found, with 63% of the population expressing anti-Semitic sentiments as compared with 47% in 2009.

Spain also showed high marks, with over half the population (53%) harboring  "deep-seated anti-Semitic attitudes." Poland hovered at 48%, the same as in 2009.

The UK and Germany showed the lowest levels of anti-Semitism, at 17% and 21%, respectively.

The question that resonated the most in all countries was whether European Jews were more loyal to their European home state or Israel. In none of the 10 countries did less than 45% of respondents believe Jews were more loyal to their European country, with as many as 72% in Spain and 61% in Poland and Italy questioning Jewish allegiance.

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