“it is emblematic of broader concerns that French Jews, like their brothers and sisters across Europe, are finding it increasingly difficult to reconcile their faith with the changing demographics of the continent.”
Who would ever have thought that after the lessons of World War 2 we’d see this sort of thing in Europe again. Well, we are, and we may not do if our node bleeds, or turn our heads when a car drives over the pavement to hit Jewish pedestrians, or have our ears shut when people shout
“Dirty Jews, You’re going to die!”
The third largest Jewish community in the world has seen growing anti-Semitism in France since the 2000s. Increasingly, the Jewish community in France no longer feels safe. The most salient events were the murder of Ilan Halimi in 2006, the attack on a Jewish school in Toulouse in 2012 and the attack on the Hypercasher in Paris in 2015. These three events alone accounted for the murder of nine Jews, including three children who were murdered at close range.
In 2014, there were 851 antisemitic acts of violence in France as recorded by the Protection Service of the Jewish Community. Indeed, some Jews in their private lives in France have given up wearing their kippa or the Star of David for fear of insults or aggression. This video from 2015 shows the kind of intimidation a Jew can face depending on what part of Paris they walk through.
The Aliyah In Israel
The growing antagonism towards them has led some French Jews to make the drastic decision to leave the country.
For several decades now, Jews in France have been leaving for Israel. The attacks of 2015 doubled the figure of departures, which is now about 6,000 to 7,000 per year. Following the 2015 attacks, Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu traveled to Paris, and while there did not miss the opportunity to mention that Israel was open to French Jews. The president of the Jewish Agency for Israel went further, stating that there was “no future for Jews in France.”