Anti-Semitism Is Still Flourishing Throughout Germany, Study Shows

Ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, study reveals that one in five Germans' 'latent' hatred for Jews starts at a young age.

Ofer Aderet
Ofer Aderet
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Ofer Aderet
Ofer Aderet

About 20 percent of Germans have a "latent" hatred for Jews, according to a new study published by an independent committee of experts appointed by the German parliament.

The German-language study was published in advance of International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27.

A gravestones desecrated with swastika, seen at the British World War I cemetery in Loos-en-Gohelle, northern France, Friday June 11, 2010. Credit: AP

The study found that hatred of Jews is common throughout large swathes of German society: Far from being the exclusive province of the far right or radical Islamists, it is deeply rooted in the German mainstream.

At a very young age, German schoolchildren are already using the word "Jew" as an insult, the report found, and "Jew" is commonly heard as a curse word in the playground. In local soccer leagues throughout Germany, anti-Semitic jeers aimed at Jewish teams are common, including "Jews to the gas," "Bring back Auschwitz" and "Burn the synagogues."

"Anti-Semitism in our society is based on widespread prejudices, cliches with deep roots and pure ignorance about everything to do with Jews and Judaism," wrote one of the report's authors, Dr. Peter Longerich.

The report interwove quotes from the individual authors into its general factual findings.

The committee of experts was appointed by the Bundestag in 2008 - the 70th anniversary of the Nazis' Kristallnacht pogrom - as part of a parliamentary bid to boost Germany's efforts to fight anti-Semitism. The committee was supposed to give the Bundestag periodic reports as well as recommendations for combating Jew-hatred.

The study criticized the way Germany deals with anti-Semitism. "There is no comprehensive strategy for fighting anti-Semitism in Germany," said another of the authors, Dr. Juliane Wetzel.

But despite the grim situation in Germany, the report noted that anti-Semitism is much worse in many other European countries, including Poland, Hungary and Portugal.

The 204-page report, titled "Anti-Semitism in Germany," can be read in German at http://dipbt.bundestag.de/dip21/btd/17/077/1707700.pdf.

Read this article in Hebrew.

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.
From $1 for the first month

SUBSCRIBE
Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

Charles Lindbergh addressing an America First Committee rally on October 3, 1941.

Ken Burns’ Brilliant ‘The U.S. and the Holocaust’ Has Only One Problem

The projected rise in sea level on a beach in Haifa over the next 30 years.

Facing Rapid Rise in Sea Levels, Israel Could Lose Large Parts of Its Coastline by 2050

Tal Dilian.

As Israel Reins in Its Cyberarms Industry, an Ex-intel Officer Is Building a New Empire

Queen Elizabeth II, King Charles III and a British synagogue.

How the Queen’s Death Changes British Jewry’s Most Distinctive Prayer

Newly appointed Israeli ambassador to Chile, Gil Artzyeli, poses for a group picture alongside Rabbi Yonatan Szewkis, Chilean deputy Helia Molina and Gerardo Gorodischer, during a religious ceremony in a synagogue in Vina del Mar, Chile last week.

Chile Community Leaders 'Horrified' by Treatment of Israeli Envoy

Queen Elizabeth attends a ceremony at Windsor Castle, in June 2021.

Over 120 Countries, but Never Israel: Queen Elizabeth II's Unofficial Boycott