The Kantor Center’s 2018 antisemitism annual report
Israeli researchers reported Wednesday that violent attacks against Jews spiked significantly last year, with the largest reported number of Jews killed in antisemitic acts in decades, leading to an “increasing sense of emergency” among Jewish communities worldwide.
Capped by the deadly shooting that killed 11 worshippers at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue on Oct. 27, assaults targeting Jews rose 13% in 2018, according to Tel Aviv University researchers. They recorded nearly 400 cases worldwide, with more than a quarter of the major violent cases taking place in the United States.
But the spike was most dramatic in western Europe, where Jews have faced even greater danger and threats. In Germany, for instance, there was a 70% increase in antisemitic violence.
“There is an increasing sense of emergency among Jews in many countries around the world,” said Moshe Kantor, president of the European Jewish Congress, an umbrella group representing Jewish communities across the continent.
“It is now clear that antisemitism is no longer limited to the far-left, far-right and radical Islamist’s triangle — it has become mainstream and often accepted by civil society,” he said.
Tel Aviv University’s Kantor Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry releases its report every year on the eve of Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day, which begins Wednesday at sundown. This year, the report comes just days after another fatal shooting attack Saturday against a synagogue in southern California. The attack on the Chabad of Poway synagogue on the last day of Passover killed one woman and wounded three other people, including the rabbi.
In addition to the shooting attacks, assaults and vandalism, Kantor also noted the increased antisemitic vitriol online and in newspapers, including a recent antisemitic cartoon that appeared in The New York Times’ international edition. It depicted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a dog wearing a Star of David collar and leading a blind and skullcap-wearing President Donald Trump.