History of anti-Semitism since 1945

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Anti-Semitism , a hostility towards Jews that has arisen since the Enlightenment , has largely lost its function as a political ideology since 1945 with the end of the Nazi state , but persists in diverse forms among sections of the population of every social class, religious and political orientation.

The anti-Semitism until 1945 had the Holocaust out. After that, the anti-Semitism of political organizations with openly anti-Jewish goals and traditional stereotypes of Christian anti-Judaism receded. Favored by a lack of coming to terms with the era of National Socialism and historical revisionism , there are still considerable anti-Semitic prejudices and attacks on Jews in Germany and many other countries. These increased in many places after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 .

Today the following are common:

  • secondary anti-Semitism , a defense against guilt and guilt projection onto Jews, perpetrator-victim reversal ,
  • structural anti-Semitism , which does not name Jews but does mean and is easily referred to Jews,
  • Anti- Zionism or Israel- related anti-Semitism, which rejects this state, makes it liable for all possible political evils or all Jews for its policies. The EUMC's 2005 working definition of anti-Semitism names some of the most virulent anti-Israel stereotypes today:
    • to reject the right of self-determination of Jews,
    • Portray Israel as a racist project,
    • to apply double standards, i.e. to demand behavior from Israel that is not expected of any other democratic nation,
    • to apply classic anti-Semitic symbols and images such as the accusation of the murder of God or the legend of the ritual murder to Israel or Israelis,
    • Compare Israel's current policy with the extermination policy of National Socialism ,
    • to assert collective responsibility of the Jews for Israel's policies.
    • Criticism of Israel, which is similarly expressed against other countries, cannot be classified as anti-Semitic, however.

Public anti - Semitic agitation has been punishable in Germany since 1994 as incitement to hatred , in Austria as incitement to hatred or re-engagement with Nazism , and in Switzerland under the racism penal norm .

Eastern bloc

Soviet Union

The Soviet Union (SU) under Josef Stalin had the Jews of the country since the invasion of Germany considered in June 1941 differently from other minorities as loyal Soviet patriots and 1942, a Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee (JAK) allowed international aid to the Red Army in the fight against Wehrmacht recruited. At the same time, the regime ignored the anti-Semitism of the Nazi regime as a separate phenomenon, largely withheld the Holocaust from 1941, deleted the word “Jews” from reports on Nazi crimes from 1944 and instead emphasized the crimes of fascism against “peaceful Soviet citizens”. This followed from the state theory of fascism and was directed against the Jewish national consciousness, which had been awakened and strengthened by the acute danger of annihilation, even among loyal Soviet Jews. After the end of the war, the regime began to suspect the Soviet Jews as well as other minorities as disloyal and to censor their texts. At the same time it allowed anti-Semitic pogroms in its own sphere of rule (as from 1945 in Kiev and Ukraine) and presented local reports about it as anti-Soviet propaganda by "Zionists". Anti-Semitism in non-Jewish sections of the population and their collaboration with Nazi criminals were ignored or only as Declared the late effects of the German occupation. Even before the war, the SU had failed to overcome anti-Semitism that had been promised ideologically.

Because the SU expected socialism in Israel and regional political advantages, they supported Israel's founding of the state (May 1948). This inspired the Soviet Jews. Because their pro-Israel stance endangered the SU nationality policy from the point of view of the regime, it changed its course and switched to the elimination of Jewish activists in the SU and Jewish party cadres in other Eastern Bloc countries.

As early as 1946, the SU had initiated a repressive cultural policy against “bourgeois decadent ” tendencies in culture and science in order to bring representatives of the intelligentsia, who had been given freedom during the war, back under state control. From autumn 1948 the Soviet press attacked allegedly subversive activities of “ rootless cosmopolitans ”. The campaign specifically used anti-Semitic stereotypes of the "homeless Jew" and the "Jewish world conspiracy". In January 1949 the Central Committee decided to launch a nationwide campaign against “anti-patriotic” critics, and released and imprisoned hundreds of intellectuals, mostly Jews. Because of their origin, they were equated with “cosmopolitans” and “Zionists”, although these accusations could also affect non-Jews. The campaign was supposed to suppress any Jewish autonomy in the country, offer the majority of the population a scapegoat for catastrophic economic conditions and consolidate the party dictatorship. There were also secret trials against leading JAK members. They too were accused of an allegedly Jewish, “cosmopolitan”, vagabond way of life, “tribal” solidarity and a conspiracy with the US government and Israel against Stalin's regime. In the course of a power struggle in the Politburo, from 1951 onwards, Stalin's supporters invented a large-scale “ doctors' conspiracy ” against the Soviet regime, arrested and tortured many mainly Jewish accused, had some of them murdered or executed in show trials. The exact number of victims is not known. The procedure continued until Stalin's death in 1953 and increased anti-Semitism considerably among the Soviet population. Pogroms were expected. The anti-Semitic campaign also had a major impact on the other Eastern Bloc countries.

Under Nikita Sergejewitsch Khrushchev , public-state anti-Semitism declined in the Eastern European countries (except Poland). After Israel's Six Day War in 1967, it was revived as anti-Zionism. Anti-Zionist caricatures, writings and films with obvious parallels to the Striker style were created under Kosygin . Jews ("Zionists") were again portrayed as a threat to the world, and "World Jewry" or "international Zionism" were characterized as allies of US imperialism.

Jews were also accused of aspiring to rule over the last tsar and of being behind Poland's anti-Soviet independence efforts and the Prague Spring .

From 1985 on, Gorbachev stood for a new policy towards the Jews. At the end of the 1980s, the Soviet Union allowed many Jews to travel to Israel. Because of the anti-Semitism, which was partly promoted and partly tolerated by the state, around 16,000 Jews left the Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic by 1989 .


At the Soviet request, Czechoslovakia supplied weapons to Israel in 1948, which enabled Israel to win the Palestinian War. But in 1951 Stalin charged 14 leading Czechoslovak Communist Party members around Rudolf Slansky , including twelve Jews, with Zionist anti-Soviet agent activities. According to victim reports, anti-Semitic admirers of Adolf Hitler were also used for the interrogations . The Czech press emphasized that the accused were Jewish and claimed, according to the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion", that Slansky had secretly arranged to meet Western Jews such as Henry Morgenthau and Georges Mandel in the USA to form a Jewish spy ring in the Eastern Bloc regime. So that was Zionism represented as a variety of US imperialism and a new form of fascism.


After the war, Polish Jews who had survived the Holocaust by fleeing to the Soviet Union returned to their places of origin in Poland and wanted to move into their houses again. This led to pogroms such as the Krakow pogrom (1945) or the Kielce pogrom (1946). Up to 1,500 Jews were killed in the process.

The historian Feliks Tych cited demoralization and dulling of the Polish population as the background to the attacks and the anti-Jewish attitudes , for whom it had become a habit during the German occupation that Jews could be mistreated or killed, as occupied Poland was the main arena for extermination of the Jews in Europe had been selected. The population also benefited from the deportations, the ghettoization and the murders. The return of Jewish survivors aroused fear among the profiteers that they would lose what they had gained. Anti-Jewish attitudes continued to be widespread in the Catholic Church in Poland. The Primate of Poland , Cardinal August Hlond , blamed the Jews for the pogrom in Kielce.

Jews were also among the staunch communists who helped the Polish Communist Party to establish a Stalinist regime in Poland in 1944. With anti-Semitic propaganda, their opponents in the Communist Party tried to overthrow them from 1949: Jews were to be blamed for all crimes of Stalinism in Poland, only their elimination in the Communist Party could counteract this. In 1953 a Communist Party newspaper accused the “Zionists” of having worked with Hitler on the Holocaust and, on the instructions of the US State Department, kept this a secret. Israel’s Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion is waging an extermination campaign against the Arabs in Israel with the approval of the USA and is like Hitler in it. In 1957 there were violent attacks against Jews and the desecration of Jewish cemeteries in Szczecin, Wałbrzych, Poznań, Dzierżoniów and other cities. The Communist Party soon monitored all Jewish state officials, and until 1965 all Jewish citizens in Poland. After the Six Day War in the Middle East, anti-Zionism continued to grow. A "Department for Jewish Affairs" set up a large police apparatus that registered all Poles with Jewish ancestry back to the third generation. In connection with the March 1968 riots in Poland , there were anti-Semitic attacks and Polish Jews were fired en masse. Almost all of them then left the country.

In 1992, 25 percent of Poles believed that between three quarters of a million and 3.4 million Jews lived in Poland. 10 percent believed that there were up to 7.2 million Jews in the country, and 25 percent believed that Jews had too much power in politics, economics, and culture. In reality, there were around 5,000 Jews in Poland in 2005 and in the 2011 census only 7353 Poles classified themselves as Jews, that is 0.019 percent of the population. In 1997 the synagogue in Warsaw was set on fire. Anti-Semitism continues to be used in the rhetoric of nationalists inside and outside the Church who try to portray Poland as a homogeneous state. Various media such as the fourth largest newspaper, the Catholic-nationalist Nasz Dziennik , or the fourth largest radio station Radio Maryja continue to spread anti-Semitism.


The situation in Hungary was similar to that in Poland, but here it weakened over time compared to other Eastern Bloc countries. By the early 1950s, around 150,000 Eastern European Jews had to flee their homeland for a variety of reasons and lived in the DP camps in Western Germany, where most of them were waiting to be allowed to enter Israel. Overall, the flight from anti-Semitism in Eastern Europe brought 425,000 Jews to Israel in the years 1950–1951.

Bulgaria, Romania, Yugoslavia

By 1956, 90% of Bulgarian Jews emigrated. Although Romania was the only Eastern bloc state to have normal relations with Israel, 300,000 Jews left their Romanian homeland by 1975 (see also History of Romania ).

In Yugoslavia the development was particularly violent.


In the Soviet Zone there was a discrepancy between the official party line, which recognized the Jews as victims of fascism (even though they were materially worse off than those who were politically persecuted, the fighters against fascism), and parts of the population who expressed their hatred of Jews, especially in years Revealed in 1947 through anti-Semitic acts such as cemetery desecrations. In the Soviet Zone, only Thuringia followed the example of the West German states to compensate surviving Jews. The GDR had no law comparable to the Federal Compensation Act.

In the GDR, for example, the Holocaust was not ignored, but also not particularly emphasized. This was in line with the Soviet line of viewing the murder of Jews only as a secondary feature of the National Socialist dictatorship. The Jewish victims were seen as second class victims compared to communist victims:

"Victims of fascism are Jews who were persecuted and murdered as victims of fascist racial madness, are the Bible Students and the 'contract sinners'. But we cannot draw the term 'victim of fascism' that far. They all tolerated and suffered hardships, but they did not fight! "

However, here too, Stalin's influence on the SED was not without consequences. In 1949 in the GDR, based on the language used by the CPSU, a series of articles against “cosmopolitans” and against “Americanism” appeared in the journal Unity published by the SED . The situation worsened in the course of the Slansky trial against Rudolf Slansky and other Czechoslovak politicians. The dealings with Paul Merker , for example, were affected by the new Israel policy . Merker was initially a member of the Politburo of the SED, was expelled from the party in 1950 and later sentenced to eight years in prison. He was accused of a. "Zionist" positions. Trials against Jews were also being prepared in the GDR. In the spring of 1953, a large part of the Jewish community leaders and several hundred members of the Jewish community in the GDR fled. Among them was the president of the regional association of Jewish communities in the GDR, Julius Meyer . After an interrogation by the SED Party Control Commission, he fled to West Berlin on January 15, 1953.

There was a revival of popular anti-Semitism in the Soviet Union after 1967. The GDR followed the anti-Zionist policy. In the current camera , the Six Day War was commented on with anti-Israeli slogans, Zionism was equated with racism and National Socialism and, in connection with the hostile image of the Jew as a capitalist spread through Nazi propaganda, alleged " imperialist backers of the Israeli aggressor" were referred to in the New York Stock Exchange referenced. In the indoctrination of children and adolescents, anti-Israeli emotions were aroused by propagating international solidarity with Palestinian children, whereby here, too, a connection to the tradition of anti-Jewish ideologues can be ascertained.

From 1958 to 1989, Albert Norden and the Auschwitz survivor Hermann Axen were consistently represented in at least one Jew in the Politburo of the SED, the actual center of power in the GDR .

The Foundation for Social History of the 20th Century has listed anti-Jewish excesses, predominantly cemetery desecrations, in the Soviet Zone and GDR from 1947 to 1989.

Federal Republic of Germany


After the Second World War in 1945 that ended allies the National Socialist propaganda , punished and ostracized continued. But anti-Semitism persisted among the Germans. Almost everywhere they reacted to the Allied re- education and confrontation with the Nazi crimes with protective claims such as “ We didn't know anything about it ” or averting them, aggression, silence and defiance. In the first post-war years, everyday worries dominated; The Nazi era and personal involvement in Nazi crimes were suppressed.

The 250,000 or so Jewish displaced persons in particular were exposed to massive prejudice and attacks. These Holocaust survivors had to flee from new pogroms from Eastern Europe and were interned in their own camps and confiscated apartments in the western zones until 1954 without a work permit. The local population attacked them with frequent petitions to the authorities as black marketeers, criminals and "a danger to the Germans". Contrary to the statistics of the Allies, they were accused of dominating the black market, enriching themselves with exorbitant prices and unproductive work and abusing housing. The effective clichés of “ usury Jews” had nothing in common with the real situation of impoverished and displaced Eastern Jews. The allegations put the blame for their persecution and situation on them. This perpetrator-victim reversal served to ease the burden so as not to deal with one's own behavior during the Nazi era. The German police reacted with raids in the camps and provoked protests by the DPs. When a police officer shot and killed an Auschwitz survivor in Stuttgart in 1946, the US military government forbade the German police from entering Jewish DP camps. After the Allied press censorship was relaxed, newspaper articles described the DPs as "Germany's parasites " (June 1, 1947); the Süddeutsche Zeitung printed an anti-Semitic letter to the editor (August 9, 1949). In contrast, around 1,000 Jewish DPs demonstrated in front of the editor-in-chief the following day and demanded that their printing license be revoked. The German police wanted to drive them apart, provoked a commotion, shot into the crowd and injured three participants. Only the American military police put an end to the tumult. In 1952, the DPs prevented an official raid in the Föhrenwald camp by blocking vehicles. The officers responded with shouts like “The crematoria still exist” or “The gas chambers are waiting for you” and fired a warning shot.

From 1947 onwards, Jewish cemeteries in the western zones were again frequently desecrated with anti-Semitic slogans and symbols. West German state governments could not agree on a law on compensation for victims of " Aryanization ". Shortly before the 1949 federal election , the US High Commissioner emphasized : "The life and well-being of the Jews in Germany will be a touchstone for democratic development in Germany." However, Chancellor Konrad Adenauer did not mention the Jews in his first government statement. Only later did he declare that he wanted to promote the fight against anti-Semitism, the punishment of National Socialist crimes , a German reparation policy and the development of Jewish communities in the Federal Republic. From 1951 the federal government negotiated directly with Israel and concluded the Luxembourg Agreement in 1952 and the Federal Compensation Act in 1956 .

Because right-wing extremist magazines were allowed, “ Nation Europa ” and the “ Deutsche Soldatenzeitung ” were founded in 1951 , which to this day spread anti-Semitism and historical revisionism. The trial of Veit Harlan , the director of the Nazi propaganda film Jud Süß from 1940, uncovered the continuities of the Nazi era in the West German police, judiciary, film industry and the public. Karina Niehoff, a Jew, who testified to Harlan's massive anti-Semitic interference in the film's script, was insulted in the courtroom as a “Jewish pig ” and needed police protection. Judge Walter Tyrolf , a former NSDAP member, denied the connection between anti-Semitic film propaganda and the state persecution of Jews, alleged Harlan's “coercion” and acquitted him of crimes against humanity . Harlan made a comeback as a film director in 1951. The Hamburg Senate Director Erich Lüth called for a boycott of new Harlan films and, with his campaign "Peace with Israel", promoted the coming to terms with the Nazi era, recognition of Israel and reparations. Until 1954, students, academics and victims' associations across the country protested against cinema premieres of the Harlan films and legal boycott bans. In Salzburg, Freiburg and Göttingen, police beat and arrested students who were considered “Jewish”, while spectators cheered them on with anti-Semitic shouts, which in turn threatened and beat students. In 1958, the Federal Constitutional Court approved the call for a boycott with the Lüth judgment, thereby strengthening freedom of expression in civil law as well .

The Society for Christian-Jewish Cooperation , established in 1948, specifically dealt with anti-Semitism in order to provide a comprehensive education for democracy. Only a few surviving Jews took part. The annual Week of Fraternity (from 1952) remained a neglected philosemitic ritual. In 1952, the Federal Constitutional Court banned the right-wing Socialist Reich Party (SRP), thus ousting right-wing extremist parties from the state parliaments and the Bundestag for ten years. Many West Germans were now expecting a “final stroke” under coming to terms with the past . However, there were several anti-Semitic scandals and a swastika smear wave in 1959/60. Books such as the “ Diary of Anne Frank ”, films such as “ Nacht und Nebel ” (1955/56), the Eichmann Trial (1961) and the Auschwitz Trials (from 1963), on the other hand, intensified public debate and sympathy for the Nazi era Jewish Holocaust victims. After the exhibition “ Unpunished Nazi Justice ” (1959/60) and the first criminal charges against former Nazi lawyers, the federal states founded a central office of the state justice administrations to investigate National Socialist crimes .

In 1967, however, the psychoanalysts Margarete and Alexander Mitscherlich stated that most Germans had hardly come to terms with their involvement in National Socialism and continued to taboo on Nazi crimes. Emotional ties to authoritarian and anti-Semitic thought patterns could therefore continue to have an effect: “For the time being, there is a lack of a sense of the need to make an effort - from kindergarten to university - to include the catastrophes of the past in our wealth of experience, not just as a warning, but as a the specific challenge facing our national society to cope with the brutally aggressive tendencies it has revealed. "

The National Democratic Party of Germany (NPD), founded in 1964, only narrowly missed entry into the Bundestag in the 1969 Bundestag election . Its supporters propagated the "Auschwitz lie" and claimed that the Holocaust was an invention "of the Jews" in order to brand Germany as a perpetrator people and to "extort" political and financial reparations. This Holocaust denial became common in German-speaking right - wing extremism .

As a result of the social-liberal federal government's Ostpolitik , the NPD lost a large percentage of the vote. The neo-Nazi groups of Michael Kühnen and Manfred Roeder , Action Front National Socialists / National Activists , German Action Groups , People's Socialist Movement in Germany and the Freedom German Workers' Party , were radical Holocaust deniers, anti-Semites and racists. However, their attacks were directed against asylum seekers , foreigners and their supporters.

The television film " Holocaust - The History of the Weiss Family ", broadcast in 1979, reinforced the collective condemnation of anti-Semitism. But even bourgeois politicians continued to express themselves hostile to Jews. For example, Hermann Fellner (CSU) said of the compensation demanded for forced laborers during the Nazi era in 1986 that, according to his impression, “the Jews” always reported quickly when money was jingling in German coffers.The mayor of Korschenbroich , Degenhardt Wilderich Graf von Spee-Mirbach (CDU), declared in a council meeting in 1986 that “a few rich Jews had to be killed” to rehabilitate the city's budget. Violent protests prompted Fellner to apologize and Spee to resign. Accordingly, the sensitivity to violations of the social rejection of anti-Semitism had grown since 1960.

Anti-Semitism became visible in the Bitburg controversy and the Fassbinder affair of 1985, in the Historikerstreit (1987) and in the Jenninger case (1988), for example when living Jews were seen as “vengeful”, “concerned about their financial gain” or as troublemakers in German -american relationship were attacked. Ernst Nolte's historical revisionist theses were invalidated in the historians' dispute, but remained widespread: he had relativized German concentration camps in 1986 as a reaction to Josef Stalin's mass-destroying gulags and explained racial anti-Semitism from the anti-communism of the National Socialists.


From 1945 allied authorities, from 1949 also German institutes and social researchers collected empirical data on the extent, types and carriers of anti-Semitic prejudices. According to surveys in the US occupation zone, 23% in 1945, 21% in 1946 and 19% in 1948 saw themselves as anti-Semites. Up to 40% others shared anti-Semitic attitudes.

According to surveys by the Allensbach Institute for Demoscopy , the proportion of "confessing" anti-Semites in the context of the debate about reparations to Israel rose to 23% in 1949 and 34% in 1952. The question "Would you say it is [would] be better for Germany not to have any Jews in the country?" Answered the questioned Germans proportionally as follows:

year Yes No No matter
1952 37 19th 44
1956 26th 24 50
1958 22nd 38 40
1963 18th 40 42
1965 19th 34 47
1983 9 43 48
1987 13 67 20th

According to this, anti-Semitic attitudes fell continuously, but rose again at times. Only in 1987 did the majority vote in favor of Jews in Germany. Many other surveys confirmed a stable proportion of 14 to 30% clearly anti-Semites as well as considerable latent or diffuse anti-Semitic prejudices among the other federal Germans. According to a study by Alphons Silbermann (1974), this proportion was 50%. In a study by Badi Panahi (1977/78) 14% agreed with the statement “that the Jews exert a harmful influence on the Christian-occidental culture”. 37% agreed with the statement: "The Jews are primarily out to control everything that has to do with money and thereby to exercise a power". Allensbach and TNS Emnid surveys from 1986, 1987 and 1989 confirmed the proportion of 15% unambiguous and 30–40% latent or potential anti-Semites across all sections of the population despite different methods and question items. With an overall downward trend, this potential remained and was available until 1990. The relative decrease is mainly attributed to the education and democratic upbringing of the younger generation.

Germany since 1990

Center of society

Anti-Semitism has also been evident in the middle of German society since 1990. Representatives of the CDU / CSU used German reunification as an opportunity to call for a conclusion to the Nazi past and to reinterpret German history. The conservative candidate for the Federal Presidency, Steffen Heitmann , said in 1993: He does not believe that the Holocaust "can lead to a special role for Germany until the end of history". With German reunification, the time had come to “classify this event”. In response to criticism from Ignatz Bubis ( Central Council of Jews in Germany ) and the JWC , Klaus-Jürgen Hedrich (CDU) warned the “Jewish representatives” to “instrumentalize the Holocaust against us against the background of anti-Semitism”. The CDU parliamentary group responded with derisive laughter to criticism from Bundestag President Rita Süssmuth that Heitmann played down the Holocaust. As a result of strong protests, Heitmann withdrew his candidacy. The Federal German ban on anti-Semitism continued to have an effect.

Anti-Semitic reactions emerged in nationwide debates about mere suspended sentences for the Holocaust denier Günter Deckert (1992; 1994), Daniel Goldhagen's book “Hitler's willing executors” (1996) and Norman Finkelstein's book “The Holocaust Industry” (2001), during the Wehrmacht exhibitions (1995–1998, 2001–2004), in the dispute over compensation for forced labor (until 2000), especially since Martin Walser's speech on the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade in 1998 and his debate with Ignatz Bubis. Walser's novel “Death of a Critic” (2002) was certified as having anti-Semitic tendencies. Jürgen Möllemann's anti-Semitic campaign leaflet (2002) and his quarrel with Michel Friedman , then on the Central Council of Jews in Germany, as well as the Hohmann affair in 2003 showed that the relationship between majority society and the Jewish minority was deteriorating. The Second Intifada (from 2000), the Islamist terrorist attacks since 2001, the Iraq war in 2003 increased approval of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. The disguise of illegal party donations as "Jewish legacies" by Prime Minister Roland Koch and Interior Minister Manfred Kanther (both CDU) in the Hessian party donation affair of 1999/2000 was intended to deter federal authorities from investigating and served the anti-Semitic cliché that Jews are rich backers of politics.

Finkelstein's thesis of a "Holocaust industry" reinforced the prejudice common in secondary anti-Semitism that Jews would abuse the coming to terms with the Nazi past out of pursuit of profit for excessive claims for compensation. With Möllemann's campaign leaflet, a top politician from an established party tried for the first time in 2002 to win votes from the right-wing spectrum through resentment-laden public criticism of Jews and Israel. This breaking of a taboo triggered anti-Semitic reactions. The trendy magazine Kult , which appears in Coburg, publicly demanded in 2002: “Don't buy Jewish!” The speech of the Bundestag member Martin Hohmann , according to which Jews could be described as perpetrators just like the Germans because of their alleged leadership role in the October Revolution of 1917 and the following Soviet crimes , was put down a perpetrator-victim reversal is near.

According to some anti-Semitism researchers, these processes gradually shifted the limits of what can be said and combined anti-Semitism related to the past and the present to ward off guilt. For Lars Rensmann , the Goldhagen debate began to remove the taboo from anti-Semitic resentment, which continued in debates about Walser's speech, compensation for forced laborers and Möllemann. Werner Bergmann assumes a decrease in these attitudes in West Germany since 1990, but also notes a higher susceptibility among East German young people. In a paper on the new anti-Semitism written with Wilhelm Heitmeyer , he admits that the “limits of what can be said” may have moved with the Möllemann affair and that disguised anti-Semitic slogans are increasingly tolerated. It was always about how we deal with Nazi crimes today. The responsibility that the “people of perpetrators” ( Lea Rosh ) have to bear for it is felt time and again as a burden, not as an opportunity. New anti-Semitic allegations emerged: “The Jews” wanted to prolong the Germans' feelings of guilt (Goldhagen debate), enrich themselves from the Holocaust (Finkelstein debate) and make their own “crimes against the Palestinians” taboo (Möllemann debate). Politicians like Möllemann and Hohmann served requests for “relief” from past guilt and today's responsibility and normalized right-wing extremist ideas for votes. Whereas earlier calls were made to end the debate about German guilt, it was now said that a debate about Israel's supposed guilt must be "possible again". The situation of the Jewish minority living here was always ignored. German Jews experienced increased hostility and threat in every public quarrel. Many reactions showed an anti-Semitic “sediment” as well as “secondary” anti-Semitism, which rejects and devalues ​​Jews not despite but because of the Holocaust and its consequences.

Right-wing extremists

Right-wing extremist groups and parties are still among the main carriers of anti-Semitic agitation and crimes in Germany in 1990, although foreigners, asylum seekers and immigrants have become the main target group of their attacks. Only a few neo-Nazi groups openly affirm the racist extermination anti-Semitism of the Nazi era. For reasons of tactical power and to avoid prosecution, they mostly represent secondary, historical revisionist and Israel-related anti-Semitism, which poses as anti-Zionism. They use "the Zionists" as a code word for "the Jews". However, their propaganda, as it appeared in the National-Zeitung , unmistakably falls back on traditional stereotypes of the “greedy Jew”, who morally burdens the German people, squeezes it financially and “corrodes” it culturally .

Other code words used by the right and allusions to anti-Jewish stereotypes are, for example, the terms “Israel lobby”, ie the idea of ​​Jewish domination of politics, “finance capital”, “international high finance”, “interest bondage” or “east coast” (of the USA), which means one alleged supremacy of Jewish bankers on Wall Street is indicated. Buttons and stickers from the NPD-related environment with the slogan “No power to the noses!” In turn use a stereotype that was also to be found in the Nazi propaganda paper Der Stürmer , which in his caricatures often describes Jews with a special nose shape, the so-called crooked shape. or hook nose, pictured.

Right-wing extremists in Germany distribute forbidden Holocaust-denying texts on foreign servers and in pseudoscientific format on the Internet . Even where they do not explicitly mention Jews, they accuse the Holocaust survivors, in the anti-Semitic tradition, of a conspiratorial, systematic manipulation and fabrication of Holocaust documents for "historical lies".

The NSDAP organizational structure founded by Gary Lauck (USA) distributed posters and stickers with anti-Semitic slogans, such as "Fight the Jewish parties", "Communism - tool of the Jews" and "Do not buy from Jews", as well as games like "Jude ärgere dich nicht" , "Concentration camp managers" or instructions for shooting "children of the Jews". The right-wing rock band Macht & Ehre rushed with lines like "He is not a person, he is a Jew, so don't think about it and beat him to death". Right-wing esotericists describe "the Illuminati" as secret world conspirators and identify them with "the Jews". Jan Udo Holey's pamphlet Secret Societies (1993; 1995) resorted to the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion" and linked them with UFO and alien fictions.

In contrast to other groups excluded and opposed from the “ Volksgemeinschaft ”, right-wing extremists attribute a very large, insidious and dangerous power to Jews. Anti-Semitism is a basic consensus and an integration factor in the otherwise inconsistent scene. They see Jews as morally depraved, as an exploitative “financial power” or as a biological threat to the German “race”. West German neo-Nazis used German reunification to increase their influence through contacts in eastern German states. In 1991, a series of neo-Nazi marches, racist and xenophobic attacks began. Anti-Semitic crimes also increased significantly from 1990 onwards. Right-wing extremist parties such as the NPD, the German People's Union (DVU) and the Republicans (REP) found their way into some state parliaments. After the federal government banned some neo-Nazi groups in 1992, they undermined the bans as decentralized “ Free Comradeships ”.

German right-wing extremists enthusiastically took up Walser's peace prize speech and Finkelstein's thesis of a Holocaust industry about the alleged exploitation of Jewish suffering, as they confirmed their anti-Semitic image that “the Jews” are the collectors of excessive claims for compensation and cause financial burdens for “the Germans”. Behind the entire culture of remembrance during the Nazi era and Holocaust research, there is an exploitative Jewish network for power and profit. Finkelstein served as a classic "alibijude" who ought to know. Because, like Ernst Nolte , he had honored authors who have revised history, Holocaust deniers like Ernst Zündel celebrated him in particular.

The terrorist group National Socialist Underground (NSU), which undetected nine specifically selected Muslims murdered between 2000 and 2007, was also anti-Semitic. In 1996, her member Uwe Böhnhardt hung a doll's torso with a yellow Jewish star on a motorway bridge , showing that the NSU was also targeting Jews.

The left

The left in general

Anti-Semitism researchers also find anti-Semitic tendencies among the German left. Since the Six Day War in 1967, these have been expressed as anti-Zionism, the generalized criticism of Israeli policy towards the Palestinians to reject the Jewish state. Anti - imperialists see Israel as a bridgehead of US imperialism to the oppression of the Palestinians and domination of the Middle East region. They often show uncritical solidarity with terrorist groups like Hamas and Hezbollah , who deny Israel's right to exist and want to destroy this state. This solidarity also shows ideological similarities with Islamists, such as Linksruck .

A shortened critique of capitalism is also widespread among leftists , which distinguishes “creating” (national, German) from “raving” (Jewish) capital. The comparison has been common since the economic crises in the German Empire : When capitalism did not keep the promises of equality of civil rights , right and left anti-Semites identified "the Jews" with the circulating finance capital , which was increasing without work, and presented them as global "Jewish" that determined the fate of humanity Money power ”, for example with symbols of octopuses, snakes and spiders. Such metaphors also appear today in the context of anti-Americanism , for example when the members' magazine of IG Metall portrayed US companies as a mosquito with a crooked nose and called it “suckers”, or when Franz Müntefering (SPD) compared US hedge funds with locusts threatening German capital .

In the globalization criticism of Attac Germany in 2003, anti-Semitic interpretable posters and statements from “finance capital” and “ Wall Street ” were noticed. The criticism led to an intense membership debate, accompanied by scientists. Trends towards the division of the world into good and bad, towards the construction of conspiracy theories and the personalization of abstract relations of domination were perceived, but equating any criticism of financial markets with anti-Semitism was rejected. In other left groups, too, criticism from anti-Germans, for example, led to a critical reflection on anti-Semitic statements, to their attitudes or to the isolation of those affected within the left movement.


Many left - wing non-governmental organizations support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign launched in 2005 . In contrast, anti-Semitism researchers point to the aims of the BDS founders to dissolve the State of Israel and the historical continuity with the National Socialist boycott of Jews .


From 2002, during the second Intifada, Muslim youths from immigrant families attacked Jews more often in Germany, as in Europe in general, but only committed isolated anti-Semitic crimes. Religion was hardly identified as the motive for the crime, but rather a diffuse hostility towards Israel, intensified by the media presence of the Middle East conflict, in which the perpetrators identify with the Palestinians because they feel excluded and have no prospects, experience discrimination and racism. According to a study for the Federal Ministry of the Interior in 2007, 15.7% of the Muslim schoolchildren surveyed, compared with 7.4% of non-Muslim youth with a migration background and 5.7% of non-Muslim locals, agreed with the sentence that “people of the Jewish faith are arrogant and greedy”. Since, according to other surveys since 2002, around 20% of all Germans questioned indiscriminately consider Jews to be greedy for money and 36% to be “too powerful” in the economic and financial world, differences between Muslims and non-Muslims in Germany are not reflected in these anti-Semitic prejudices, but in their motives searched. An anti-Semitism study carried out by the IFES institute on behalf of the Austrian parliament also came to the conclusion that hostility towards Jews is massively increased among Turkish- or Arabic-speaking people in Austria. In this group, anti-Semitism is 50 to 70%, while in the total Austrian population a value of only 10% was recorded.

In a study of the " group-focused enmity " of the University of Bielefeld in 2010 voted 20.2% of the surveyed young Germans without, 26.7% with Polish immigrant background the statement "I am sorry to hear from the crimes against the Jews “Full to. The statement "What the State of Israel does with the Palestinians is basically nothing else than what the Nazis did with the Jews in the Third Reich" was fully agreed by 7.2% of the German young people surveyed, 25.5% more likely; proportionally about the same number of respondents from the Soviet Union or Poland. 40.7% of the respondents with a Muslim-Arab socialization context fully agreed with this statement, 18.7% somewhat agreed. The authors attribute this higher level of approval to the greater role played by the Middle East conflict for Muslim young people, as well as more frequent experiences of discrimination and failure. The latter factors also correlated with other respondents with a higher level of agreement with secondary anti-Semitic stereotypes. German schoolchildren also compensated for their own experience of devaluation by upgrading their own group to the “foreigners” and brought an Islamophobic everyday discourse to school.

Since around 2010 anti-Semitism researchers have noticed a growing media interest in anti-Semitic attitudes among Muslims, especially young people of Arab or Turkish origin. Juliane Wetzel suspects that it serves Islamophobic sentiments and fulfills a proxy function in order not to deal with anti-Semitic stereotypes in the majority society. Many media reports disregarded the historical fact that Christian missionaries and European colonial powers brought anti-Semitism to the Arab world, not the other way around. The isolated consideration of anti-Semitic tendencies among Muslims could increase their marginalization. The topic should not be left out, but must be viewed as a general social phenomenon. Klaus Holz emphasized as early as 2006 that there is no monocausal relationship between origin and anti-Semitism and that anti-Semitism among immigrant Muslims often only develops because of experiences in the country of immigration.

As a result of the refugee crisis in Germany in 2015/2016 , problems with anti-Semitic migrants were feared. Since many refugees come from countries such as Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq, where anti-Semitism and rejection of Israel are strong, fear of imported anti-Semitism developed, especially in Jewish communities . The terrorist attacks targeted against Jews since 2012 and the riots during the Gaza War also played a role here. Josef Schuster , President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany , feared that an uncontrolled influx of refugees could endanger Jewish life in Germany. He warned of anti-Jewish and anti-Israel tendencies among refugees from countries hostile to Israel and suggested making anti-Semitic resentment a central theme in integration courses and visiting concentration camp memorials or Jewish museums with the course participants . To what extent such prescribed visits z. According to Embacher / Edtmaier / Preitschopf , for example, a quick change of attitudes caused by concentration camp memorials is questionable, especially since “ empathy with Jewish victims does not necessarily have to result in a positive image of Israel”.

A survey of teachers at 21 Berlin schools in eight districts carried out on behalf of the American Jewish Committee Berlin (AJC) in 2015/16 showed growing Salafist influences and hostility towards Jews among students with Turkish and Arab migrant backgrounds. The hatred against Jews is a central component of the Salafist ideology.

Some studies on anti-Semitism among refugees from Arab and North African countries or regions of the Near and Middle East show that there is a relatively high level of anti-Semitic attitudes and clear gaps in knowledge about Judaism as well as the Holocaust and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict , albeit with differences between the countries of origin. Rejection of Israel is widespread, with many respondents trying to distinguish between Jews, Israelis and the State of Israel. According to an expert report for the Federal Government's Commissioner for Integration, however, the delegitimation of the State of Israel combined with anti-Semitic motives, for example at the annual demonstration on al-Quds Day in Berlin, "repeatedly asserts the distinction between Zionists and Jews" makes an absurdity.

A study carried out in 2016 and 2017, in which 152 refugees from Syria and Iraq were interviewed, found that anti-Semitic stereotypes were more the rule than the exception, even if there was little evidence of open hatred. Conspiracy fantasies about developments in the Middle East and the belief that the world was controlled by Jews or Israel were often perceived as normal and legitimate. Corresponding ways of thinking were also widespread among those who emphasized that they “respect” Judaism or that the coexistence of Jews, Muslims and Christians in their countries of origin or Germany was unproblematic. For almost all the Arab interviewees, a negative image of Israel or a questioning of Israel's right to exist was a matter of course; However, especially in view of the crimes of IS and the Syrian regime, the enemy image of Israel broke out occasionally. Kurdish interviewees were often neutral or even positive about Israel (at least in purely Kurdish groups). Other members of ethnic and religious minorities in their respective countries of origin, such as Yazidis, also showed pro-Jewish and pro-Israeli attitudes. However, these were partially interspersed with philosophers , that is, "the Jews" were admired for their supposed power and cleverness.

Anti-Semitic attitudes

A social science study by the University of Erlangen in the new federal states in 1990 showed the following approval ratings:

statement percent
"Jews work more with tricks than others" 11.6
"All Jews should go to Israel" 11.4
"There are mistakes that run in the blood of the Jews" 10.9
"Jews only care about their own well-being" 10.8

In contrast, Emnid found an average of only 4% agreement with other anti-Semitic items in 1991 among East Germans compared to 16% among West Germans. For almost all questions except Israel, the East German value was well below the West German value. This is attributed to the aftermath of GDR propaganda (tabooing of anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism at the same time).

During the series of xenophobic attacks from 1991 onwards, anti-Semitic attitudes did not increase in the general population, but did so among young East German men: 14% of 14- to 18-year-olds agreed with the statement "The Jews are Germany's misfortune", 33% of them apprentices (female 10%), 16% pupils (female 4%), especially those who are politically right-wing. In Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt, 12% of this age group agreed with anti-Semitic guidelines, 29% xenophobic and 50% nationalist. While from 1990 to 1996 fewer adult East Germans than West Germans were anti-Semitic, the proportion among young people in Brandenburg was twice to three times as high as in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), especially among students in their 8th and 9th grade. Grade (34% / 11%) and third-year apprentices (44% / 25%). Against the national trend towards a decrease in anti-Semitic prejudices, especially in the youngest age group surveyed (1998: 10% among 14 to 20-year-olds), the poorly educated, manual and right-wing young men in East Germany became increasingly anti-Semitic, xenophobic and nationalistic. The right-wing extremist DVU received the most votes among 18 to 30-year-old men in Saxony-Anhalt in 1998, and in Brandenburg in 1999 proportionately. The increase in anti-Semitic prejudices can only partially be explained by factors such as the unemployment of fathers, isolation, feelings of external control and powerlessness, and a lack of future prospects.

According to Allensbach surveys from 1995, 15 to 25% of Germans tended to or represented anti-Semitic opinions. In 1996 surveys by the University of Potsdam in individual federal states, the approval ratings for anti-Semitic statements (such as understanding the desecration of Jewish cemeteries) in the east were about twice as high as in the west. A representative Forsa survey from 1998 showed the following percentage approval values:

Statement / question percent
"The influence of Jews on the economy is disproportionate to their share of the population." 41
"Many Jews try to take advantage of the past and make the Germans pay for it." 38
“Jews feel connected to Israel. They are not very interested in the concerns of their home country. " 25th
"Jews have too much influence." 21st
"Jews have something special and peculiar about themselves and therefore do not suit us." 18th
"You can recognize Jews by their appearance." 18th
"Because of their behavior, Jews are not entirely innocent of their persecution." 17th
"The Jews have so much trouble because God punishes them for crucifying Jesus Christ." 8th
"Would it be best for us Germans if all Jews went to Israel?" 9

According to this, in 1998 an average of at least 20% of Germans were clearly anti-Semites. In the case of latent anti-Semitic prejudices, there were no longer any East-West differences. The proportions were highest among those over 65, at 38%. Among the younger ones, they were highest among secondary school students with 30% compared to 12% among high school graduates. Among those who classified themselves “right”, they were 24, “middle” 20, “left” 11%. In the new Forsa survey in 2003, an average of 23% expressed anti-Semitic views. 61% agreed with the statement “One should finally draw a line under the discussion of the persecution of the Jews”. The east-west divide among young people increased: In 2000, an average of 29.5% of young people in Brandenburg and 11% in North Rhine-Westphalia were anti-Semitic.

According to surveys from 2002 and 2003, anti-Semitic attitudes increased considerably among Germans:

statement percent
"Israel is a great threat to world peace" 65 (Europe-wide: 59)
"The Jews use the Holocaust memory for their own benefit" 52
"The Jews exert too great an influence on world affairs" 40
[One can] "well understand that some people are uncomfortable with Jews" 36 (1999: 20)
"Vengeance and retribution play a bigger role for Jews than for other people" 35
“Jews feel connected to Israel. They are not very interested in the concerns of their home country " 35
"The Jewish influence on US politics was a decisive factor in the military action against Iraq" 26th
"The Jews are to blame that we have such great world conflicts" 20th
[Possible] "that the US government might have commissioned the 9/11 attacks itself" 19th

The study by the Frankfurt Sigmund Freud Institute and the University of Leipzig in June 2002 showed an average of 36% German anti-Semites. The sharp rise is also explained by the removal of taboos on anti-Jewish behavior in the anti-Semitism debate triggered by Jürgen Möllemann.

According to a country comparison by the Anti Defamation League, an average of 27% of the Germans surveyed represented anti-Semitic attitudes in 2014. The increase goes hand in hand with increased global acceptance of anti-Semitism and defense, relativization and trivialization of this problem, especially on the Internet.

According to a Mitte study published by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation in 2019, only eight or 7.5 percent of the population agreed with the theses that “Jews in Germany have too much influence” or are “complicit in persecution through their behavior”. In contrast, 21.6 percent of those surveyed agreed with statements about secondary anti-Semitism such as B. "Many Jews try to take advantage of the past of the Third Reich today". Anti-Semitism , disguised as criticism of Israel, was much more pronounced: The statement "With the politics that Israel is doing, I can understand that one has something against Jews" was approved by 26.6 percent. Almost 40 percent agreed with a perpetrator-victim reversal such as the thesis that Israel behaved towards the Palestinians in the same way as Germany did towards Jews during the Nazi era.

A representative survey by the World Jewish Congress with 1000 participants published in early October 2019 (before the attack on the synagogue in Halle ) showed that 27 percent of all Germans and 18 percent of a population group categorized as “elite” (university graduates with an annual income of at least 100,000 euros ) have anti-Semitic thoughts. According to the study, 41 percent of Germans are of the opinion that Jews talked too much about the Holocaust. 28 percent of the university graduates surveyed also claimed that Jews had too much power in the economy, and 26 percent attested Jews “too much power in world politics”. Forty-eight percent believed that Jews were more loyal to Israel than to Germany. 12 percent of all respondents said Jews were responsible for most of the wars in the world, and 22 percent said Jews were hated for their behavior. 11 percent said the Jews have no right to a state of Israel of their own. In the opinion of the respondents, the far right-wing extremists (39%), right-wing politicians and parties (36%), Muslim extremists (33%) and Muslim immigrants (18%) are responsible for anti-Semitism in Germany, but left-wing extremists and left-wing parties and politicians only 3%. Two thirds of the so-called elite respondents would sign a petition against anti-Semitism and one third of all respondents would take to the streets against anti-Semitism.

Anti-Semitic crimes

The police crime statistics state protection (PKS-S) of the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) did not show anti-Semitic crimes until 1993, but subsumed them under "xenophobic" or "normal" crime. From mid-1993 a criminal police reporting service was set up for attempted and executed anti-Semitic, xenophobic and right-wing extremist crimes. These statistics record more such offenses in a timely manner, but do not provide any information about further investigations.

From 1990 to 1994 the registered anti-Semitic crimes quadrupled and then fell to around 150% more than at the beginning by 1999. Overall, they rose more slowly and far less than (other) right-wing extremist acts, which increased ninefold by 1993.

year amount
1990 339
1991 388
1992 628
1993 649
1994 1366
1995 1155
1996 846
1997 976
1998 991
1999 817

Since 2001, anti-Semitic crimes reported to the police have been recorded as hate crime in the Politically Motivated Crime (PMK) category . Anti-Semitic is considered to be “that part of hate crime that is committed from an anti-Jewish attitude.” These include, above all, Holocaust denial, defamation of Jewish institutions and their representatives, and damage to property on Jewish memorials, memorials and graves. Such acts are generally considered to be extremist , but can be classified into several statistics depending on the objective circumstances and the subjective motives for the crime.

However, only a fraction of anti-Semitic attacks are known in Germany. According to surveys, only 28% of the victims reported the crime in 2013 and only 23% in 2016; only 2% had others reported the crime or the police themselves had investigated. The reason for not reporting the offense was given by 47% that nothing happened or changed after a report, 27% that such offenses happen all the time, and 18% that reporting was too bureaucratic and time-consuming. Anti-Semitic graffiti and other propaganda crimes are often not reported because they do not affect anyone directly. Anti-Semitic crimes during demonstrations are rarely registered. In the case of anti-Semitic attacks that include insult, robbery, bodily harm and the like, only the most heavily punished offenses are counted statistically. Anti-Israeli crimes are recorded partly as anti-Semitic, partly as hate crime related to the Middle East conflict; The PMK catalog of topics does not explain how the two are to be distinguished. German police officers do not know all the codes, symbols and slogans, such as those used by foreign right-wing extremists, and can therefore overlook anti-Semitic motives. These can only be guessed at in the case of unidentified perpetrators, such as graffiti. Police reporting offices that are oriented towards the concept of extremism often avoid recognizing evident political motives for an anti-Semitic act. On the other hand, unspecific crimes (such as a graffiti “Jews out”) by unknown perpetrators, for whom other clues are lacking, are usually registered as “rightly motivated”. For all these reasons is a large dark-field did not accept registered and incorrectly classified anti-Semitic crimes. The “Independent Expert Group on Antisemitism” set up by the Bundestag therefore emphasized in 2017: “One must not misunderstand the numbers of the PMK statistics as a reflection of reality, rather, due to the structure of the PMK recording system and the routines of the police survey practice with a systematic Antisemitic incidents are likely to be underestimated. "

The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution cites the following figures in its annual reports from 2001:

year Anti-Semitic crimes including acts of violence Anti-Israel Crimes including acts of violence
2001 1,691
2002 1,771
2003 1,344
2004 1,449
2005 1,748
2006 1,809
2007 1,657
2008 1,559
2009 1,690
2010 1,268
2011 1,239
2012 1,374
2013 1,275 51 41 0
2014 1,596 45 575 91
2015 1,366 36 62 1
2016 1,468
2017 1,504 37
2018 1,799 69
2019 2,032 73

Above all, acts of destruction against Jewish cemeteries are anti-Semitic . These have a long tradition, especially in German-speaking areas , since the Middle Ages . Even today they happen increasingly during Holy Week and around November 9th (the anniversary of the November pogroms in 1938 ). In contrast to other Jewish graves, beds are usually not trampled, flowers or lights stolen, but tombstones or tombstones are overturned and destroyed, the boundaries of the grave are torn out, cemetery gates are kicked in and the like. In addition, there are slogans as graffiti such as "Juda verrecke", "Death to the Jews", "Jews out", "Sieg Heil", "Blood and Honor", "Fourth Reich", " SS ", " SA ", "Judenschwein" or " Judensau ".

The desecration of Jewish cemeteries has been tried to record statistically since 1945. Around 1,000 reported cases were registered in Germany up to 1990; the assumed number of unreported cases is much higher. From 1990 to 2000 there were 409 registered cases, more than twice as many as from 1970 to 1990. The tomb of Heinz Galinski , the former head of the Jewish Central Council, was blown up twice in 1998, so that his successor Ignatz Bubis is buried in Israel let. According to a study by Adolf Diamant from 1982, only 36.5% of the previously known cases could be cleared up; The authorities assigned almost all of them to anti-Semitic perpetrators, 0.3% of whom were “young people” without “political motives”. Inquiries at the time revealed that most of the state authorities did not keep records of this and that the motives given were based on pure assumptions. In 2017, 20 and in 2018 27 anti-Semitic desecrations of Jewish cemeteries were recorded; only three cases were resolved.

Attacks on synagogues (2017: 27; 2018: 21) and places of remembrance of the Holocaust, for example with graffiti , have increased enormously since German unification. The perpetrators are rarely found, especially in Germany. The prosecution of desecrations of graves is usually stopped after five months. The clearance rate is almost in last place in a European comparison.

Journalists such as Anton Maegerle , the media such as the SPD-affiliated Blick nach Rechts , the Amadeu Antonio Foundation and private initiatives register anti-Semitic crimes, for example as the regularly published “Chronology of anti-Semitic incidents”. The Research and Information Center for Antisemitism (RIAS), founded in Berlin in 2015 , also registers anti-Semitic attacks that are not criminally relevant and not reported by victims. In 2018 it listed 1083 (2017: 947) offenses for Berlin alone, including 46 (2017: 18) attacks, 46 (2017: 23) threats, 43 (2017: 42) property damage, 831 (2017: 679) cases of violent behavior ( 442 of them online - 2017: 325) and 117 (2017: 185) further propaganda incidents. On average, such acts occur at least four times a day in Germany. Due to the lack of uniform criteria, the Independent Expert Group on Anti-Semitism advised the German police and judiciary to work with non-governmental organizations to create the most realistic possible picture of anti-Semitic crimes. In 2018, RIAS classified 18% of the incidents as right-wing extremists, 9% as anti-Israel, 2% as Islamist, and 49% as unknown. For the first half of 2019, RIAS became aware of an average of two anti-Semitic incidents per day, the number of unreported cases was estimated to be much higher. Particularly at risk are people who are “recognizable as Jewish” in Hebrew , for example by wearing a kippah or talking on the phone .

In 2018, the police in Berlin recorded 324 anti-Semitic acts. She classified 253 of them as “right” motivated, three as not. When asked, she said that no perpetrators had been found in 191 cases. Accordingly, 120 cases were classified as right-wing extremists with no apparent motive. The reason was that only 111 of all cases (34 percent) were cleared up and right-wing extremist motives were assumed for unspecific slogans such as “Jews out”.

The BKA identified a total of 1,799 anti-Semitic crimes in 2018, almost 20% more than in the previous year. 90% of them were classified as “PMK right-wing”, as were 49 of 69 anti-Semitic acts of violence. In response to criticism of possible incorrect allocation, the BKA stated that the evaluation of political crimes goes through a “multi-level quality control”. In the last few years this did not give any indications of a “statistically distorting effect of this allocation rule”. In contrast, in a survey, 81% of the victims of anti-Semitic violence questioned assigned the alleged perpetrators to a “Muslim group”. The initiators of the survey questioned its informative value because only 16 participants reported violent acts they had experienced themselves, had often suspected the origin of the perpetrators based on their appearance and multiple answers were possible.

For January to June 2019, the BKA registered 442 anti-Semitic crimes nationwide. In 2019, Berlin's crime statistics showed 281 anti-Semitic incidents (14.6% fewer than 2018). The police classified 230 of them as right-wing extremists, 40 as “foreign ideology”, three as “religious ideology”, and one case as left-wing extremist. According to the annual report of the Berlin anti-Semitism commissioner Claudia Vanoni, the law enforcement authorities initiated proceedings for 386 anti-Semitic acts in Berlin in 2019 . 169 of these proceedings (44%) were discontinued due to lack of evidence of perpetrators or traces. Only 27 proceedings were legally concluded in 2019, mostly with a fine, two with a suspended sentence.

On Yom Kippur , the highest Jewish holiday on October 9, 2019 failed in Halle (Saale) an attempt at a mass murder of Jews : After the right-wing extremists Stephan Balliet had not succeeded in the synagogue in Paulusviertel penetrate to assembled there people to kill, he responded to his frustration by murdering two people he met by chance (see main article: Attack in Halle (Saale) 2019 )

According to a response from the federal government to regular inquiries from Bundestag Vice- President Petra Pau , there were more anti-Jewish crimes nationwide in 2019 than ever since 2001, the year in which the criteria for recording crimes by right-wing, left-wing, Islamist and other political fanatics were expanded and specified . According to the anti-Semitism officer for Bavaria, Ludwig Spaenle , there were almost 37 percent more cases in 2019 than in the previous year. As Die Welt am Sonntag reported in May, citing the Interior Ministry's 2019 annual report on “Politically Motivated Crime” (PMK), there were around 2000 crimes against Jews and Jewish institutions nationwide in 2019. This means an increase of around 13 percent compared to the previous year.

Corona pandemic

Felix Klein, the Federal Government's Commissioner for Anti-Semitism, warned at the end of March 2020 of mass anti-Jewish and anti-Israeli agitation and related conspiracy theories on the Internet in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic . The crisis provides a breeding ground for accusations from individual groups of people. "Crudest anti-Semitism" breaks the ground. It is absurdly claimed that the pandemic was triggered by a failed bio-weapons test by the Mossad . There is also talk of Jewish profits from a possible vaccine, weapons developed by Israel and a Jewish attempt to reduce the world's population. Klein called for anti-Semitic defamations to be reported to the platform operators. He also sharply criticized the fact that participants in Corona demos wore simulated Jewish stars to defend themselves against an alleged mandatory vaccination. The Shoah is also put into perspective at such demonstrations by comparing mandatory masks with wearing the Jewish star under National Socialism . This is "absolutely unacceptable and should also be prosecuted if necessary," said Klein. The director of RIAS Bayern Annette Seidel-Arpacı described wearing Jewish stars at these demos as a "slap in the face of the Jewish population". In addition, anti-Semitic caricatures appeared online, such as that of a Jew on a Trojan horse who smuggled the virus into a city. It was alleged that the virus had been produced by "the Zionists " in Israeli laboratories, and it was asked to deliberately infect Jews with the pathogen.

Nora Goldenbogen , the chairwoman of the Saxony State Association of Jewish Congregations , said she was "expecting" conspiracy theories. These would "keep coming up in crises, with patterns and accusations that have been known in some cases since the Middle Ages". The regional association filed criminal charges after anti-Semitic slogans were hung in Leipzig's main train station and Jewish online church services were hacked and attacked by right-wing extremists.

According to a confidential report by the Israeli foreign ministry, which was available to the magazine Die Welt , an analysis showed that - after the USA and France - most anti-Semitic statements in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic come from Germany. According to this analysis, such hate speech is spreading mainly on the common social media platforms, in particular Twitter , Telegram , Reddit and Facebook . When it comes to anti-Semitic propaganda, Israel is a major target for conspiracy theorists, including groups that support Palestinian terrorism.

In April 2020, Josef Schuster, President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany , warned against making common ground with right-wing extremists who spread anti-Semitic conspiracy myths and their radical view of the world during demonstrations against corona-related restrictions. Therefore you have to be aware of whose side you are demonstrating. Taking to the streets against the current measures and using symbols reminiscent of the Holocaust is also in bad taste and mocks the victims.

At the presentation of the annual report of the VBRG umbrella association , the political scientist Gideon Botsch from the Moses Mendelssohn Center for European-Jewish Studies in Potsdam said in May 2020: "In some protests against the infection control measures of the last few weeks , despite all the differences in the participants, the persistently latent existing anti-Semitism behind the conspiracy thinking is now openly visible. ”The“ very rapid dynamism of the heats ”gives rise to“ fear of new right-wing terrorist waves of radicalization ”.

Current trends

Since September 11, 2001, some researchers have been speaking of a "new" anti-Semitism. Klaus Holz sees the new in the unification of radical Islamists, neo-Nazis and some left-wing extremists on anti-Semitic anti-Zionism: They all see the world and themselves as victims of some Jewish-Zionist-capitalist conspiracy in politics, business and the media. They imagined “the Jews” as driving forces behind the scenes who, together with the US government and Israel, wanted to establish world domination and destroy the peoples. The social scientist Samuel Salzborn also sees "connecting lines between right, left and Islamic anti-Semitism". He regards these forms as "the negative central idea of ​​modernity". The hatred of freedom and equality is projected in them . Their worldview excludes the abstract structures and logics of modern society and the bourgeois state. In a “cold instrumentality”, on the other hand, the feeling is not directed at individuals, but at the “ homogeneously fantasized collective .” The responsibility of the middle of society lies in the fact that “in a public climate in which hatred of Israel and anti-Semitic defense against guilt are continuously communicated in public, right-wing, left-wing and Islamist anti-Semitism would become more common again. At the beginning of 2019, Salzborn criticized the fact that there was hardly any confrontation with "current, and even current, anti-Semitism" in German schools. Schoolchildren get "the feeling that anti-Semitism had been removed from the world with the suppression of National Socialism". According to Salzborn, there are even school books that fuel the perpetrator-victim reversal directed against Israel and depict Israel as the sole aggressor in the conflict with the Palestinians. A binding reporting system for anti-Semitism in schools is necessary and teachers have to “orient themselves solely to the truth and not to a vague, arbitrary diversity”.

According to Salzborn (2019), the “anti-Semitic sediment in Germany” is still at a high value of 15 to 20 percent, but the more intensive global networking of anti-Semites with one another in social media , for example in online games, forums and chatboards, has changed. Political scientist Florian Eisheuer from the Amadeu Antonio Foundation also confirmed that “there is a tendency to cross borders, especially in the online area”. The sharp rise in online anti-Semitism "of course also has effects on the offline world".

The former President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany Dieter Graumann warned of a new anti-Semitism in Germany at the 2014 Holocaust Remembrance Day . He pointed out that “Jude” is again being used as a swear word in schools, that Jewish people cannot safely enter some German places and cannot wear Jewish symbols such as the Kippah or the Star of David there. Nobody in Germany should accept that. Also, Charlotte Knobloch , president of the Jewish Community of Munich and Upper Bavaria, lamented the end of 2018 a radicalization of anti-Semitism in Germany. In the past, "anti-Semitism was the rejection of a certain population group". Today it is “plain and simple hatred of Jews”. It is true that “Muslim anti-Semitism has an influence in Germany”, but it is not permissible for refugee policy to be named as the cause of the increase in anti-Semitism. She stated: "We do not have an anti-Semitism problem because people from other cultures come to us." At the beginning of 2019, the Vice President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany Abraham Lehrer said that in addition to classic right-wing anti-Semitism, there is a "decreasing respect" the majority society towards Jews. This manifests itself in the defense against guilt and memory, for example through criticism of supposedly “exaggerated forms” of Holocaust remembrance, as well as in hatred of Israel. The Jewish community had to fight for its basic rights "as vehemently as it has not for a long time." One is worried, but “do not live in fear,” said teachers.

On May 25, 2019, the Federal Government's Commissioner for Anti-Semitism, Felix Klein, advised Jews against wearing the kippah anywhere in Germany . He justified this with the "increasing social disinhibition and brutality", which represent a fatal breeding ground for anti-Semitism. About 90 percent of the crimes can be attributed to the right-wing extremist environment. In the case of Muslim perpetrators, it is mostly people who have lived in Germany for a long time. "Many of them watch Arab channels that convey a fatal image of Israel and Jews."

According to Poensgen / Steinitz (2019), anti-Semitic aggression is an “everyday experience” for Jews in Germany due to their heterogeneity (comments, insults, damage to property, threats, violent attacks). They are therefore “forced in their everyday life to permanently negotiate the relationship between their diverse Jewish identities and the potential and actual confrontation with anti-Semitic articulations”.

The sociologist Julia Bernstein (2020) criticized the fact that anti-Semitism "is often only equated with its advanced manifestations ", so there is a lack of "understanding of its development in gradations of anti-Semitic patterns of thought and action and their structure". He starts "not with hatred, but with negative categories, generalizations, stereotypes, prejudices, skepticism and caution, ignorance, emotional aversion, a subliminal devaluation or an unreflective use of everyday verbal abuse". Anti-Semitism aims “at annihilation” and is based “on the fundamental idea, terrifying in its simplicity, that 'the world would be more beautiful without Jews'”. In addition, the current anti-Semitism undermines social ostracism by bypassing it in relation to Israel; anti-Semitic ideology and resentment would be projected onto the state of Israel .

For a number of years now, public figures have been complaining about the omission of anti-Semitism accusations, such as Xavier Naidoo against the Amadeu Antonio Foundation , Jürgen Elsässer against Jutta Ditfurth and “ The Bandwidth ” against the taz . German courts are more and more often deciding in favor of the plaintiff, thus valuing their personal rights higher than freedom of expression and freedom of the press. Josef Joffe ( Die Zeit ) criticized with a view to the debate about Jakob Augstein that it is worse today to "call someone an anti-Semite than to be one."

In April and May 2020, there was a controversy about the African historian and philosopher Achille Mbembe , who had been designated as the opening speaker for the Ruhrtriennale by Stefanie Carp , accusing him of making anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli statements. In an open letter, members of the state parliament of North Rhine-Westphalia demanded that his appearance be prevented, in which they were supported by the Federal Government's anti-Semitism commissioner Felix Klein . A number of scholars who are active in the fields of the history of anti-Semitism and National Socialism, colonialism and racism as well as genocide research defended Mbembe against accusations of anti-Semitism. Science should be allowed to make analytical comparisons, otherwise it could not fulfill its task and one could not learn from the past. An overly broad term anti-Semitism, which includes any criticism of Israel and its government, ultimately harms the absolutely necessary fight against anti-Semitism. In a second letter to Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, 37 Jewish scholars and artists who were critical of Israel and who teach in Israel and the USA, among others, demanded the recall of the anti-Semitism commissioner Felix Klein and criticized his statements on Mbembbe's planned appearance. Jewish and civil society organizations in Germany then defended Klein in an open letter to Seehofer. Anyone who “doesn't just focus on easily recognizable, obvious anti-Semitism” when seriously combating anti-Semitism, they wrote, must “be ready to get down to business”. The President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Josef Schuster, also called the criticism of Klein “unjustified”, “unacceptable” and “defamatory”. 700 African intellectuals, writers and artists wrote a letter to Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel and Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. In it, they criticized the "false accusations of anti-Semitism" that had been made against Mbembe by "right-wing extremists" and "conservative and racist groups" in Germany. The accusation of anti-Semitism is not only unfounded, but also damages the right to “criticism, freedom of thought and expression, academic and artistic freedom and freedom of conscience”. This letter also called for Felix Klein's release. Tobias Rapp , on the other hand, recalled in Der Spiegel that the Israeli psychology professor Shifra Sagy had been removed from a conference at Mbembé's 2018 because she was Israeli. This is documented and the corresponding emails are available. Mbembe has "a problem with Israel and Israelis". There is no real conspiracy against him and he has never commented clearly on the allegations. Claus Leggewie regrets that in the debate about Mbembe, above all, the culture of discussion is losing . The Holocaust, racism and colonialism can “hardly be discussed without foaming at the mouth”. A precise examination is required as to whether one “can speak of a forerunner of the Holocaust in colonialism and its aftermath in today's contexts”. He hopes that in the end there will be a “common opposition to white Suprematism”, which “should be the undeniable main adversary”. Felix Axster from the Center for Research on Antisemitism wrote on Friday 22nd 2020 that the tension between postcolonialism and postnazism cannot simply be resolved. When Klein defends his criticism of Mbembe with the words: "The Holocaust and the confrontation with it are part of German identity.", This does not take into account that for many people worldwide - especially from the southern hemisphere - colonialism is the central experience and for them the German culture of remembrance must therefore appear provincial.

In June 2020, the Amadeu Antonio Foundation published three “Civil Society Situation Images Antisemitism” from Saxony, Baden-Württemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate, which show that Jews feel threatened by anti-Semitism. Hatred of Jews is an "everyday phenomenon that can be found in the entire breadth of society". This has been fueled since the beginning of the corona pandemic. "The claim that a powerful, greedy elite invented the corona virus in order to establish a global dictatorship leads to anti-Semitism and Nazi comparisons," said the foundation. An anti-Semitism defending against guilt is also constantly widespread, calling for an end to the “ guilt cult ” and a “line to be drawn” under the memory of National Socialism. Anti-Semitism aimed against Israel is also increasing. The chairwoman of the foundation, Anetta Kahane , stated that anti-Semitism was "without a doubt the operating system of every conspiracy ideological program". The respective state governments were asked to "urgently strengthen" civil society structures.


The German Bundestag recommended the EUMC working definition from 2008 “for the work of state authorities”. The Simon Wiesenthal Center has published an annual ranking of the Top Ten Anti-Semitic / Anti-Israel Slurs since 2010 . Statements by German authors and journalists landed on this until 2013.

The Springer Group was founded by its founder, the newspaper publisher Axel Springer , according to his principle 2. Bringing about reconciliation between Jews and Germans, this also includes supporting the rights of the Israeli people to live. on the fight against anti-Semitism - as well as any criticism of the Israeli government policy comprehensively. According to the Bild newspaper, there is a network of “German politicians, associations and journalists” who “make anti-Semitism socially acceptable” and to which the Center for Research on Anti-Semitism at TU Berlin belongs.

On January 19, 2015, the Federal Ministry of the Interior formed the eight-person expert group on anti-Semitism , including Werner Bergmann , Klaus Holz, Armin Pfahl-Traughber and Juliane Wetzel . The lack of Jewish scholars was heavily criticized, and subsequent appointments were made accordingly. His second report from 2017 emphasized the current importance of "anti-Semitism without anti-Semites" and other forms and presented recommendations for action.

In debates about the Middle East conflict, the anti-Semitism commissioner Felix Klein observed that church representatives also expressed anti-Semitic views: "If German Jews are made responsible for Israeli settlement policy - then that is anti-Semitic, and I expect the church leaders to distance themselves from it." According to Klein Anti-Semitism is not only fueled by extremists online, but also by people from the “so-called middle of our societies, who leave no doubt about their rejection of Judaism”. The fight against it is a "task for society as a whole".

Vigil in Hanover against anti-Semitism after the attack in Halle , October 10, 2019

In June 2019 the website www.stopantisemitismus.de was activated by the foundation of the weekly newspaper Die Zeit . It aims to educate people about anti-Semitism in everyday life, gives situational recommendations for action and offers a continuously updated address database, which also contains contact points for people who are confronted with anti-Semitism. The idea and concept come from the journalist Sarah Levy , the concept and implementation were also the Central Council of Jews in Germany , the Central Council of Muslims in Germany , the Technical University of Berlin with its Center for Research on Antisemitism , the Federal Agency for Civic Education and initiatives such as Young Muslims involved in Auschwitz .

After an attack on Jews coming from a Senate reception for survivors of the Holocaust in the town hall on June 20, 2019, including Shlomo Bistritzky, board member of the Jewish community, he and Mayor Peter Tschentscher (SPD) started the anti-discrimination initiative "We are Hamburg".

In connection with the attack on a synagogue in Halle in October 2019 , ZdJ Vice President Abraham Lehrer called for a review of all educational concepts since 1945 to combat anti-Jewish and right-wing extremist ideas. You have to ask yourself: “Was that right? Why didn't it lead to the desired success? What do we need to change? What else is needed? ”That has to be“ discussed in detail with educators and social scientists ”.

On October 15, 2019, the Free State of Bavaria introduced a bill to tighten the penalties for anti-Semitic crimes. The draft envisages adding anti-Semitic motives and goals as a further example of inhuman motivation to act in accordance with section 46 (2) sentence 2 of the Criminal Code. So far, the text of the law includes "racist, xenophobic or other inhumane motives". The application was submitted to the Bundestag on January 8, 2020 after acceptance by the Bundesrat on November 29, 2019. The federal government supports the concerns of the bill.

Since, according to Salzborn / Kurth (2020), anti-Semitism is the inability or unwillingness to think abstractly and feel concretely - in anti-Semitism the two are interchanged, thinking should be concrete, feeling abstract - every lesson is based on the ability of the students promotes abstract thinking and concrete empathy , an important part of anti-Semitism prevention. Abstract thinking can be trained in humanities as well as natural science subjects and concrete empathy, also conveyed in various subjects, consists in “directing one's feelings not towards collectives, but towards concrete events and people”. However, pedagogy also has its limits, since anti-Semitism is an authoritarian worldview and not just a prejudice. School intervention against anti-Semitism is therefore “necessarily always a mixture of education, prevention, intervention and repression”.

At the beginning of April 2020, Research Minister Anja Karliczek presented a funding program for science to combat anti-Semitism, into which twelve million euros are to flow between 2021 and 2025.



It was only in 1990 that sociological surveys of anti-Semitic attitudes in Eastern Europe became possible again. It showed that anti-Semitism generally followed the lines from before the Second World War. In Poland and Slovakia there were more anti-Semitic ideas in the population than in the Czech Republic or Hungary.

A continuity or even a strong resurgence of anti-Semitic tendencies in the Eastern European countries that have since joined the EU was discussed intensively; Around 1900, as after 1989/90 (the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Eastern Bloc), anti-Semitism was closely linked to reservations about liberal elites and urban modernization pioneers.

In a 2009 survey by the Anti Defamation League in seven EU countries, an average of 44% of those questioned and more than 55% in Austria, Poland and Hungary found that Jews spoke too often about the Holocaust. In an Emnid survey in eight European countries, 42% of those questioned found that “Jews use the past to extort money”. The defense against the memory of the Nazi era and hostility towards Jews in Europe therefore grow correlatively with one another.

According to a comparative study carried out at the Berlin Science Center for Social Research (WZB) in 2013, 28% of the German Muslims surveyed said that Jews could not be trusted (for comparison: 43.4% of Muslims in France, 56.7% in Belgium, 64.1 % in Austria, 36.8% in Sweden).

Anti-Semitism in Eastern and Southeastern Europe according to a survey commissioned by the Pew Research Center 2015–2016

Between June 2015 and July 2016, three polling institutes from Great Britain, Russia and Georgia carried out a survey on the religious attitudes of adults in 18 countries in Eastern Europe and Southeastern Europe on behalf of the Pew Research Center . Participants were asked if they would accept Jews as compatriots and members of their society. 5% of the surveyed Ukrainians, 7% each of the Bulgarians and Serbs, 22% of the Romanians, 23% of the Lithuanians and 32% of the Armenians said no.

In a representative FRA survey from 2018 with 16,395 Jewish participants from twelve EU countries over a period of five years, 30% of those questioned indicated Muslims, 21% left-wing extremists and 13% right-wing extremists as perpetrators of anti-Semitic attacks (in Germany, 41% of those surveyed named Muslims and 20% right-wing extremists as perpetrators). In eight of the participating states, extreme Muslims landed in the top three of the perpetrator ranking. At the same time, 70% of those questioned said that they were concerned about growing intolerance towards Muslims. An average of 28% (Germany: 41%) stated that they had had an anti-Semitic experience in the past year or had been confronted with hostile harassment. 75% of German Jews stated that they “sometimes, often or always” refrain from wearing Jewish symbols in public; almost 50% avoided visiting certain areas in their city. 71% observed negative prejudice in the media. 89% perceive anti-Semitism worst on the internet and on social media . The vast majority of respondents agree that developments in the Middle East conflict have an impact on the intensity of anti-Semitic incidents in Europe. For 73% of German Jews (in Belgium and France 85%) the Middle East conflict affects their sense of security. Moreover, victims of anti-Semitism only turn to the police 25% of the time, as they did not expect any change and did not find the incident serious enough. According to EU Justice Commissioner Věra Jourová , Germany, Belgium, France and Poland fall into the “very problematic” category.

Anti-Semitic Attacks

The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 were followed by other Islamist terrorist attacks against Israel. During the second Intifada from spring 2002, there was a wave of anti-Semitic attacks on Jews and Jewish institutions, schools, cemeteries, meeting places and Holocaust memorials in Europe. Synagogues were even set on fire in France. Rhetorical references to the Holocaust were now often used to attack Jews and Israel and to blame them for the attacks on them. Posters were put up equating Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon with Hitler and linking the Star of David with the swastika. Israel was accused the more the attacks by Palestinians on Israel increased.

During and after the Euromaidan protests in Ukraine, there were allegations of anti-Semitic violence. However, this was contradicted by Jewish circles based in Ukraine.


The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) agreed in 1990 on legal standards for the protection of minorities. It condemned anti-Semitism as a separate problem alongside "racial hatred", "hatred between ethnic groups", "xenophobia and discrimination" and obliged its member states to take appropriate measures against it. In 2004, the OSCE's Berlin Declaration on the occasion of anti-Semitic attacks in France "unreservedly condemned all manifestations of anti-Semitism", specifically all attacks on Jews, synagogues and other religious sites, and excluded any justification, for example with Israel's politics and the Middle East conflict. It pledged the OSCE states to protect all areas of life from anti-Semitic attacks, violence and discrimination, to keep the memory of the Holocaust alive, to act against hate crimes and the corresponding propaganda in the media and the Internet, and to provide reliable, up-to-date data on anti-Semitic crimes, their prevention and control collect and publish, establish procedures for periodically reviewing the problem, working with all expert panels.

The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), founded in 1998, adopted the EUMC working definition for its 31 member states. The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) removed the 2013 EUMC Working Definition from its website, but practically kept it. A 2013 FRA survey confirmed the timeliness of Israel-related anti-Semitism in the EU. By then, the OSCE had adopted the definition of police training; the US State Department, British and Canadian parliamentary commissions recommended it. In 2018, a European group of experts on behalf of the OSCE and UNESCO published practical guidelines for identifying and combating anti-Semitism, which are based on the IHRA working definition.


Due to the designation of the country as the “first victim of National Socialism”, which the Allies cited in the Moscow Declaration in autumn 1943, the pressure and willingness to compensate the Jewish victims or recall emigrants was far less than in West Germany. The Jewish returnees and Holocaust survivors were often marginalized and the proportion of Austrians in the crimes of National Socialism to the Reich Germans passed. For example, State Chancellor Karl Renner , who had already acted grossly anti-Semitic before 1945, played down the National Socialist crimes or the Holocaust or said, with regard to reparation, that he basically did not see it as a principle to compensate “every little Jewish merchant or peddler”. Even Oskar Helmer was to significantly involved in the deportation of compensation for the victims of Nazism and championed during his time as interior minister for the premature pardon of convicted Nazis. Within the social democracy, Helmer and Adolf Schärf, described as deliberate anti-Semites, campaigned against the return of Jewish social democrats.

There were also considerable efforts to reintegrate former National Socialists into the new party landscape. Social democrats, conservatives and the Association of Independents (VDU) founded in 1949 campaigned for their support. The Israelitische Kultusgemeinde, which was large before 1938 and only had about 4,000 members after the war and only grew to 8,000 members by 1949, was not funded. The search for Nazi criminals carried out by Simon Wiesenthal was a thorn in the side of many Austrians. During the Cold War era and later, there was no political, legal or academic study of Austria's Nazi past and anti-Semitism for a long time. On the other hand, National Socialist re-employment and Holocaust denial have been forbidden since 1947 .

After 1960 there was anti-Semitic graffiti and the desecration of Jewish cemeteries without clear condemnation from the Austrian federal government.

Franz Murer , the "butcher of Vilnius", lived in Austria from 1955 to 1962 undisturbed. He was arrested at the instigation of Simon Wiesenthal and charged with 15 murder cases. The 37 witnesses summoned were brought before Murer's defense attorney in the courtroom, mocked and accused of lying. Murer was acquitted, which was cheered by part of the Austrian public.

In 1965, in the course of the Borodajkewycz affair , Viennese students demanded the dismissal of the openly anti-Semitic historian Taras Borodajkewycz , who continued to sympathize with the Nazi ideology and who had already joined the NSDAP as an illegal worker in 1934. In clashes between supporters and opponents of Borodajkewycz, the resistance fighter and concentration camp survivor Ernst Kirchweger was fatally injured by a right-wing extremist.

The New Left that emerged in the 1960s was predominantly pro-Israel until 1967. In the context of the 1968 movement , but especially after the break-up of the New Left into many small groups during the 1970s, the anti-Israel and pro-Palestinian stance intensified, which in some of these groups was accompanied by violent verbal radicalism. In the (partisan) Austrian left, anti-Semitic and anti-Zionist statements and NS comparisons were made in the course of the Lebanon war , especially after the Sabra and Shatila massacres . After internal left discussions about anti-Zionist anti-Semitism, a pro-Israel left, comparable to the anti-Germans , was able to gain a foothold in Austria , especially with the Café Critique group .

In the 1970s the Kreisky-Peter-Wiesenthal Affair broke out , a violent personal conflict between Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal and Austrian Chancellor Bruno Kreisky , both of whom were of Jewish descent. Wiesenthal addressed the Nazi past of ministers from Kreisky's minority government and FPÖ chairman Friedrich Peter . Kreisky suspected that Wiesenthal was himself a Nazi collaborator and Gestapo informant. Kreisky's statement aroused worldwide outrage in an interview that the Jews were not a people, and if so, a "lousy people".

To fierce public debate about anti-Semitism and Austria's Nazi past came in the 1980s in connection with the candidacy of Kurt Waldheim as President ( Waldheim affair ) and the rise of the Freedom Party under Jörg Haider .

In 2010 the FPÖ switched from a previously anti-Israel to a pro-Israel course and stylized itself as the “true” anti-anti-Semitic party in order - according to Embacher / Edtmaier / Preitschopf - to present itself as a party capable of governing. Accusations of anti-Semitism against migrants - regardless of ongoing anti-Semitic incidents in the party - can be combined with one's own anti-Islamic orientation and serve to exonerate against corresponding allegations to one's own address.

In May 2017 it became public that law students and representatives of the ÖVP -near action group (AG) and the young ÖVP had shared NS-downsizing and anti-Semitic content; photos of Aschehaufen with the comment “Leaked Anne Frank nudes” were posted in chats and Facebook groups . Those responsible were excluded from the AG, but there were no legal consequences; one of the former members worked as a consultant in the integration section of the Kurz / Strache government .

In January 2018 it became known that the fraternity of Germania zu Wiener Neustadt had published a songbook with anti-Semitic and Holocaust-ridiculous songs until the 1990s (“The Jew Ben Gurion stepped into their midst : 'Give gas, you old Germans, we create the seventh million ”) was in use. The Austrian Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen commented on the debate that was developing into a songbook: “It turns out that there is no place for anti-Semitism in Austria. That is the unanimous opinion, apart from very few personalities. But we also always have to remember how it started. Auschwitz did not fall from the sky. This was preceded by years of systematic discrimination, degradation, I would say dehumanization of the Jewish fellow citizens, so that it was finally possible. ”In October 2019, texts from a songbook published in 2005 for the 125th anniversary of the Pennales Corps Austria fraternity were added Knittelfeld published, in which “ Rothschild ” - this name is used in the right-wing extremist scene as a code word for anti-Semitic stereotypes - was defamed in a corresponding manner (“Rothschild has the most money [...] and is the biggest pig”).

A Six Country Immigrant Integration Comparative Survey carried out at the Berlin Science Center for Social Research (WZB) in 2013 showed that 64.1% of Muslims in Austria are of the opinion that Jews cannot be trusted. A study by the Center for Political Education at the University of Education in Vienna found that anti-Semitic prejudices are particularly widespread among Muslim youth. Another study by the sociologist Kenan Güngör in 2015 and 2016 showed that 47 percent of young people with a Muslim background had a disparaging attitude towards Jews. Gügör sees an "imported anti-Semitism among Muslims" in Austria. The first results of a study on the Bosnian community in Austria show differences between the generations (older Bosnians, for example, are still influenced by anti-Zionist prejudices adopted in " Tito Yugoslavia") as well as comparisons between the Srebrenica massacre and the Holocaust, which Jews allegedly instrumentalized, while - as it is claimed - the genocide of the Bosnian Muslims is largely ignored.

After the start of the European refugee crisis , the Austrian anti-Semitism report (publisher: Forum against Antisemitism of the Ministry of the Interior) found a marked increase in incidents with an Islamist background in 2015. Oskar Deutsch , President of the Israelitische Kultusgemeinde Wien, said that anti-Semitism on the Islamic side was getting stronger and called for better integration of immigrants with better communication of the Austrian values ​​as well as an action plan at European level. The psychoanalyst and ÖVP national councilor Martin Engelberg , former member of the board of the Israelitische Kultusgemeinde in Vienna (IKG), stated that those who shout anti-Jewish slogans in Vienna today are Muslims. It is from them that “the real anti-Semitic threat” comes in Austria. Engelberg's demand not to “fixate” on the FPÖ when it comes to anti-Semitism, and his marginalization of anti-Semitism among right-wing extremists was again contradicted by Oskar Deutsch.

The anti-Semitism report of the Forum against Antisemitism for 2017 listed 503 reported anti-Semitic incidents, twice as many as in 2014. A significantly higher number of unreported cases is assumed. In addition to acts by the right, left and Muslims, 62 percent of the incidents are not ideologically attributable. The President of the IKG Vienna and the Federal Association of Israelite Religious Communities in Austria, Oskar Deutsch, stated that anti-Semitism was “becoming more and more normal” and that the “disinhibition of the perpetrators” was increasing; the FPÖ denied German credibility in the fight against anti-Semitism.

In March 2019, the President of the National Council, Wolfgang Sobotka, presented the study “Antisemitism in Austria 2018”. The results of the survey, which were based on more than 2,700 individual interviews, showed that ten percent agreed with these statements for racist anti-Semitism, while the approval rates were significantly higher for secondary or Israel-related anti-Semitism. There were connections with socio-demographic characteristics such as age, education or the presence of right-wing authoritarian attitudes. The respondents from the groups of Arabic and Turkish speakers agreed with most of the anti-Semitic statements more frequently than the general population.

According to the anti-Semitism report presented at the end of May 2020, there were 550 registered anti-Semitic incidents in 2019, an increase of 9.5 percent compared to the 2017 reporting year. Of these incidents, six were physical attacks, 18 threats, 78 cases of property damage, 209 cases of bulk mail, and 239 cases of harmful behavior. The number of physical attacks stagnated and the number of reported threats fell by almost half, but the number of property damage increased by more than half.

The general secretary of the Israelitische Kultusgemeinde Vienna Benjamin Nägele said that the corona crisis could cause a further increase in anti-Semitism. Above all, so-called “hygiene demos” against the corona measures are increasingly leading to anti-Jewish actions that cannot be assigned to the classic categories such as politically right or left motivated. Also in the esoteric scene or among vaccination opponents, the susceptibility to stereotypes is growing.


In 2018, the number of anti-Semitic incidents rose in French-speaking Switzerland. In German-speaking Switzerland, the war rhetoric used by the National Socialists of an alleged " Jewish world conspiracy " increased considerably.

The Swiss Association of Israelites (SIG) registered 42 anti-Semitic incidents in German-speaking Switzerland in 2018, without the incidents on social networks. In German-speaking Switzerland, the number of recorded anti-Semitic incidents has remained largely constant compared to previous years. In French-speaking Switzerland, the Coordination Intercommunautaire Contre l'Antisémitisme et la Defamation (CICAD) counted 174 incidents of hatred of Jews over the same period, 64% of which took place on social networks.


From the turn of the millennium, the number of anti-Semitic attacks rose in France; numerous French Jews emigrated. In 2016, every third victim of a racist crime in France was a Jew, even though the Jewish community there does not even make up one percent of the total population. According to Georges Bensoussan , an expert on Jewish cultural history in 19th and 20th century Europe at the Shoah memorial in Paris, 14 Jews were murdered in France in anti-Semitic attacks in the years prior to 2017. In 2012, according to statistics from the Israeli Ministry of Immigration, around 1900 Jews emigrated from France to Israel (" Aliyah "); In 2013 there were 3,288, in 2015 already 7,800.

According to the Jewish organization SPCJ (Service de protection de la communauté juive; for example: Protection Service of the Jewish Community) and the Jewish umbrella organization CRIF ( Conseil Représentatif des Institutions juives de France ), the number of anti-Semitic acts in France rose by 58% in 2012 2011 to. In 2013, the Crime and Prosecution Observatory (ONDRP) recorded 423 anti-Semitic crimes, including violence, in France.

According to a 2013 study by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights , 88% of French Jews observe increasing hostility towards their religion over the past five years, while 46% were considering emigration.

In 2014, a discussion about Dieudonné M'bala M'bala , who became known as a comedian or cabaret artist, moved France. His program contained anti-Semitic statements. The then interior minister Manuel Valls held Dieudonné's appearances for political events at which he spread anti-Semitic and racist slogans. A performance in Nantes and later in Tours were banned. The Conseil du français culte musulman (CFCM) condemned on January 8, 2014 , all provocations under the guise of humor and ridicule .

According to a 2013 study by the Berlin Social Science Center (WZB), 43.4% of Muslims in France said that Jews cannot be trusted.

Over the years there have been Islamist attacks and other acts of violence explicitly against Jews or Jewish institutions, for example the kidnapping and brutal murder of 23-year-old Ilan Halimi in 2006 , the attack on a Jewish school as part of the series of attacks in Midi-Pyrénées in 2012 and in 2015 the attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris.
In 2015, the Israeli online magazine NRG filmed in Paris how a reporter with a kippah on his head walked through various districts for 10 hours while being insulted and followed. The documentary Chosen and Excluded - The Hatred of Jews in Europe , made in 2015/16, addressed the anti-Semitism of the time, especially in Germany , France and the
Palestinian territories occupied by Israel .

After the murder of Sarah Halimi (April 2017), the attack on a Jewish family near Paris and some violent anti-Semitic incidents, the topic of anti-Semitism was discussed again in France. The French government identified anti-Semitism as a major problem in France; mostly young Muslims would abuse and beat Jews.
In 2018, French authorities registered 541 anti-Semitic attacks in France, 74 percent more than in 2017 (311 attacks). In 2017 there were around 456,000 Jews in France. (2002: about 500,000)

In 2019, the historian Denis Peschanski attributed the new wave of anti-Semitism in France to a mixture of right-wing and left-wing extremist with Islamist currents; the common denominator is the search for a scapegoat . He also saw an increased susceptibility to anti-Semitic conspiracy theories in the yellow vests movement . On the question of whether anti-Zionism as a form of anti-Semitism should be criminalized, Peschanski said that anti-Zionism often only disguises hatred of Jews; however, if one were to forbid anti-Zionist statements, one would allow "the authors to stage themselves as victims". They would then "quickly find a new cover word for their hostility to Jews".

A study by the Jewish Claims Conference , the results of which were released in early 2020, found that 57 percent of the French are unaware that six million Jews were murdered during the Holocaust. For younger people born after 1980, this ignorance was as high as 69 percent. 44 percent of these so-called millennials and the subsequent generation "Z" assume that there were not even 2 million deaths. Two thirds of the French interviewed knew the Auschwitz extermination camp at least by name, but not even one in five had heard of the Dachau and Buchenwald camps . Only two percent of those questioned were also aware of the Drancy assembly camp , from which more than 60,000 Jews were deported to the extermination camps. The Claims Conference also noted that the dwindling knowledge of the Holocaust was "accompanied by increasing anti-Semitism in France."

Great Britain

In 2016, former London Mayor Ken Livingstone claimed that Adolf Hitler supported Zionism, specifically the deportation of Jews to Palestine, before he went mad and killed six million Jews. His party colleague John Mann therefore called him a "Nazi apologist".

The 2015 party chairman of the Labor Party elected Jeremy Corbyn called the terrorist organization Hamas and Hezbollah as "friends". At a memorial service in Tunisia, he laid a wreath on the grave of a PLO terrorist who was involved in the 1972 massacre of Israeli athletes at the Summer Olympics in Munich . The sociologist David Hirsh accuses Corbyn of "support for terrorism and tolerance of anti-Semitism".

An investigation by Parliament's Home Affairs Committee found that the Labor Party's failure to respond consistently and effectively to anti-Semitic incidents in recent years gave substance to claims that sections of the Labor movement were institutionally anti-Semitic.

The scientific study "What British Muslims really think" found that 26 percent of Muslims believe that Jews are responsible for most of the wars in the world.

According to the 2017 Staetsky study by the London Institute for Jewish Policy Research , anti-Semitic attitudes are two to four times more common among British Muslims than in the general population. Relatively few of the respondents (eight percent religious or ten percent less religious - according to their own definition) viewed the Holocaust as a myth , 25 and 29 percent were of the opinion that Jews would use the Holocaust for their own purposes, 27 and 33 percent believed, that Jews were getting rich at the expense of others, and 27 and 32 percent, respectively, felt that Jews in Britain were too powerful. 61 and 59 percent agreed with the sentence “A British Jew is just as British as any other British person”. With regard to British society as a whole, 62 percent of the British surveyed supported Israel's right to exist , but 24 percent were of the opinion that Israel would commit mass murder of the Palestinians.

In the Labor Party, anti-Semitic tendencies have increased since 2000, such as anti- Zionism mutated into anti-Semitism , too little distance from radical Islam, Holocaust relativization through comparisons with Israel's policy towards the Palestinians and with slavery , but also traditional anti-Semitism through the use of the cliché of " Jewish lobby ”as well as the categorization of Jews into Zionists (synonymous with“ bad Jews ”) and anti-Zionists (synonymous with“ good Jews ”). The main problem appears that against the background of a simplified left, anti-racist and at the same time anti-Zionist worldview, anti-Semitism is often not recognized as such. However, the current strong focus on the Labor Party and the Muslim community must also take into account society as a whole. According to recent surveys, radical right with 14 percent show the highest proportion of "hard-core" anti-Semitism, while the radical left differs little from society as a whole with regard to anti-Semitic attitudes.

A survey by Oxford University in the spring of 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic found that a fifth of British respondents expressed at least some agreement with the claim that "Jews created the virus to cripple the economy and make financial profit from it".

Arab and Islamic states

Anti-Semitism in Islam is - despite some anti-Jewish polemics in the Islamic tradition - above all "the product of a cultural transfer from Europe". Greek Christians had propagated the ritual murder legend in the Ottoman Empire around 1840 . In 1908 the Turkish journalist Ebüzziya Tevfik attributed the reforms of the Young Turks to a Jewish conspiracy based on the European model. In 1926 the Protocols of the Elders of Zion had been translated into Arabic and used by pan-Arab nationalists against Jews. The Palestinian leader Mohammed Amin al-Husseini , a friend of the National Socialists and later an aid to the Holocaust, played an essential role. However, anti-Semitic stereotypes remained marginal in Islam until 1970. Anti-Semitism researchers such as Wolfgang Benz , Klaus Holz and others therefore reject the thesis, which has been advocated by Robert S. Wistrich , Hans-Peter Raddatz and others since September 11, 2001, of an “Islamic anti-Semitism” which is constitutive for all of Islam and instead speak of imported, retrospective "Islamized Anti-Semitism".

It was not until the founding of Israel in 1948 that the “Protocols” and other anti-Semitic writings from Europe and North America were widely distributed in the Arab region. In his book “Our fight against the Jews” (1950), Sayyid Qutb combined their stereotypes with anti-Jewish motifs from Islamic tradition and thus created anti-Semitic Islamism . He described the Jews as representatives of a "soulless materialism" and the collective destroyer of the previously morally intact Muslim community. The later Sheikh of Azhar Muhammad Sayyid Tantawi claimed in 1966 in his doctoral thesis The People of Israel in the Koran and in the Sunna that “greed for life and this world” and “excessive egoism ” are unchangeable characteristics of the Jews. They are responsible for the decline in values, the French Revolution and the October Revolution . To do this, he relied on the "protocols".

After the Six Day War in 1967, this Islamism gradually supplanted Arab nationalism. Therefore, today's programs of many Islamist organizations contain three main anti-Semitic motifs from Europe: the Jewish conspirator striving for world domination, the juxtaposition of (here Muslim) community and (Jewish) society and the attribution of an incomprehensible, destructive, infinitely influential, internationally ramified power of Jews to resolve all differences between peoples, races and religions ("Figure of the Third", Klaus Holz). For example, Article 32 of the Hamas Charter of 1988 refers explicitly to the “Protocols” and describes Israel as an illegitimate pseudo-state of an international, homeless “we” group, not as an ordinary nation-state. She describes Jews as secret rulers of the world and at the same time poor cowards by quoting the early anti-Jewish hadith : “Judgment day will not come until the Muslims fight against the Jews and kill them, so that the Jews stand behind trees and Hide stones. And every tree and stone will say: O Muslim, O servant of God, there is a Jew behind me. Come and kill him. "

The anti-Semitic motives of Islamism are intended to delegitimize the State of Israel as allegedly only created through deception and forgery. In a speech on the Palestinian Intifada (April 24, 2001), the Iranian leader Ali Khamene'i claimed that “a large number of non-Jewish rioters and thugs from Eastern Europe were forced to emigrate to Palestine” in order to found Israel can. The German-language Internet portal Muslim-Markt also always speaks of the “pseudo state of Israel” or of the “Zionist entity” without clear borders and clearly identifiable people.

Iran propagates anti-Semitic anti-Zionism as a state ideology with events such as al-Quds Day and supports terror groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah. Iranian officials describe Israel as a "cancerous tumor" to be removed. In February 2006, the Iranian newspaper Hamschahri announced a cartoon competition entitled “Holocaust International Cartoon Contest”, which rewarded Holocaust denial . The competition was repeated in 2010, 2013 and 2015. In 2014, the 2nd New Horizon Conference of Independent Thinkers was held in Tehran , where not only classic Holocaust deniers but also 9/11 Truther lectures. In 2018 the invitation to tender for the First International Hourglass Festival took place; The submitted submissions should illustrate the hoped-for end of Israel in 25 years at the latest. The festival symbol was a star of David that dissolves when you run through an hourglass . Since the state rhetoric of Iran regularly uses clearly anti-Semitic connotations and images, Iranian anti-Zionism is considered inseparable from anti-Semitism.

Beşir Atalay , the deputy head of the Turkish government Erdogan , claimed during the protests in Turkey in 2013 that they were organized by the Jewish diaspora in Turkey; the international press and other “foreign forces” also participated in a “destabilization” of Turkey.

The ADL-100 study by the Anti Defamation League , published in 2014 , which summarizes the results of surveys on attitudes towards Jews in 100 countries, showed that the extent of anti-Semitism in predominantly Muslim countries is high, but varies greatly from country to country ( West Bank / Gaza 93 percent, Iraq 92, Turkey 69). On the other hand, more respondents (67 percent) in Christian Orthodox Greece tended to have anti-Semitic attitudes than in Muslim Iran (56 percent). In Cameroon and Nigeria, on the other hand, anti-Semitism is more widespread among the Christian population than among the Muslim population , and in Lebanon it is almost equally strong among both population groups (82 percent Muslim, 75 percent Christian). The Independent Expert Group on Antisemitism comes to the conclusion that it is less religion as such than religious dogmatism that correlates with anti-Semitic attitudes. Family and group-specific narratives and identifications play an equally influential role . The majority (56 percent) of the Arab (predominantly Muslim) population in Israel, however, had a positive opinion of Jews, 35 percent a negative one. The attitudes of Sunnis and Shiites towards Jews hardly differed. Alevis show far fewer anti-Semitic attitudes than they do .

According to a global survey from 2018, 56% to 83% of the Muslims surveyed represent anti-Semitism. For Christians, the values ​​were between 16% and 20%.

United States of America

In the 1940s, anti-Semitic prejudice was widespread in evangelical circles in the United States . Popular preachers like the Baptist William B. Riley spread conspiracy theories such as that Jews, along with the Illuminati, are behind world communism and supranational organizations like the UN . Their goal would be to establish an anti-Christian world domination which, according to the prophecies of the Bible, would precede the second coming of Christ . The majority of all Jews would then be killed in the inevitable final battle . Among other things, the evangelical anti-Semites based themselves on the " Protocols of the Elders of Zion ". In spite of the possibility of connecting with the allegedly Jewish Bolshevism , anti-Semitic tendencies declined significantly overall during the Cold War.

Left-wing Jews - often emigrants from Europe - were disproportionately represented in the Soviet nuclear espionage against the USA: The married couple Ethel and Julius Rosenberg were a prominent example of this. This helped that the anti-communist campaigns of the McCarthy era of the 1950s also had anti-Semitic features. However, the US governments traditionally support the State of Israel as a model of democracy for the Middle East. Holocaust commemoration and research have also had strong support here, especially since 1967. American Judaism is highly secularized: Today, around 60% of Jews in America - up from less than 10% before 1914 - marry people of different faiths.

After the collapse of Soviet communism, anti-Semitism did not decrease in the United States. Although Jews were no longer accused of being allied with the Soviet Union, they were now criticized as representatives of international or supranational organizations such as the UN, the World Bank or the IMF : The basic conspiracy-theoretical pattern remained, only the alleged conspiracy was exchanged. Since the mass crimes of the Holocaust became more publicly aware, these suspicions were less often expressed openly, but rather through allusions to high finance and other code words. Arch-conservative Christians, evangelicals and fundamentalists insinuate to some extent to this day that the “Jewish influence” of the culture industry in Hollywood as the vanguard is responsible for the weakening of “traditional family values”. In some country clubs , neighborhoods and corporations Jews are not welcome: They orientate themselves towards the elite of the White Anglo-Saxon Protestants ("WASP"), i. H. the white-skinned Protestants of Anglo-Saxon (north-west European) origin. Individual Christian Right preachers such as Jerry Falwell and John Hagee have described the Antichrist as Jewish within the framework of their apocalyptic worldview .

Anti-Semitism remains completely undisguised among American right-wing extremists. In the militia movement , in the Christian Identity movement , which declares Aryans to be the chosen people of the Bible and Afro-Americans to be subhumans , in the Ku Klux Klan , the Aryan Nations and other supporters of white supremacy , the catchphrase is “ Zionist Occupied Government "Popular, the" Zionist "(meaning: Jewish)" occupied government "with which the government of the United States is to be delegitimized as being remotely controlled by a foreign power. These groups have committed anti-Semitically motivated acts of violence since the 1980s, such as the murder of radio host Alan Berg by the terror group The Order or the drive-by shoots by Benjamin Nathaniel Smith, a supporter of the Creativity Movement in 1999.

Since the 1980s, American anti-Semitism gained a new following among African-Americans, which attracted a great deal of attention. The Nation of Islam , in particular , represents anti-Semitic standpoints to this day, making use of the religious, economic, racist and conspiracy-theoretical stereotypes that European anti-Semitism had produced up to then. In addition, resolute anti-Zionism plays a role in the polemics of its leader, Louis Farrakhan , who blames “ Jewish bloodsuckers ” for the centuries-long oppression of the supposedly “superior black minority” .

The proportion of Americans with anti-Semitic views has been around twelve to fifteen percent for years (as of early 2017).

In the context of right-wing extremist demonstrations in Charlottesville on August 11 and 12, 2017, some participants shouted the slogan "We will not be displaced by Jews".

End of October 2018 shot and killed a man in a synagogue in Pittsburgh eleven people. The 46-year-old perpetrator had previously been noticed several times on social media through anti-Semitic comments. According to Jonathan Greenblatt , head of the Anti Defamation League , it was "probably the deadliest attack against the Jewish community in US history".

On April 27, 2019, the last day of the Jewish festival of Passover , an assassin attacked a synagogue in Poway, California. He killed a 60-year-old woman and three other people were injured, including an eight-year-old girl and the rabbi of the synagogue. According to eyewitnesses, the weapon then malfunctioned. The alleged perpetrator, a 19-year-old student, was arrested. A manifesto published under his name containing right-wing conspiracy theories and a reference to the Pittsburgh assassin (see above) and the shooter who carried out a terrorist attack on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand in March 2019 , was discovered on the Internet.

Additional information

See also



  • Wolfgang Benz (Ed.): Handbook of anti-Semitism: hostility to Jews in past and present. De Gruyter / Saur
Volume 1: Countries and Regions. Munich 2008, ISBN 978-3-598-24071-3
Volume 2: People. Berlin 2009, ISBN 978-3-598-44159-2
Volume 3: Terms, Theories, Ideologies. Berlin 2010, ISBN 978-3-598-24074-4
Volume 4: Events, Decrees, Controversies. Berlin 2011, ISBN 978-3-598-24076-8
Volume 5: Organizations, Institutions, Movements. Berlin 2012, ISBN 978-3-598-24078-2
Volume 6: Publications. Berlin 2013, ISBN 978-3-11-025872-1
Volume 7: Film, Theater, Literature and Art. Berlin 2005, ISBN 978-3-11-025873-8

German-speaking countries

  • Wolfgang Benz (Ed.): Controversy against anti-Semitism. Right to interpretive power and political interests. Metropol Verlag, Berlin 2020. ISBN 978-3-8633-1532-0 .
  • Ronen Steinke : Terror against Jews. How anti-Semitic violence grows and the state fails. An indictment . Berlin Verlag, Berlin 2020, ISBN 978-3-8270-1425-2 .
  • Enrico Heitzer, Martin Jander , Anetta Kahane , Patrice G. Poutrus: After Auschwitz. Difficult legacy of the GDR. Plea for a paradigm shift in GDR contemporary history research . Wochenschau Verlag Wissenschaft, Frankfurt am Main 2018, ISBN 978-3-7344-0705-5
  • Maximilian Gottschlich: Unsaved shadows. The Christians and the new anti-Semitism. Ferdinand Schöningh, Paderborn 2015, ISBN 978-3-506-78247-2
  • Dana Ionescu, Samuel Salzborn (ed.): Anti-Semitism in German parties. Nomos, Baden-Baden 2014, ISBN 978-3-8487-0555-9
  • Claudia Globisch: Radical anti-Semitism: for the analysis of current anti-Semitic semantics from left and right in Germany. Springer VS, Wiesbaden 2013, ISBN 978-3-531-93156-2
  • Monika Schwarz-Friesel , Jehuda Reinharz : The language of hostility towards Jews in the 21st century. De Gruyter, Berlin 2013, ISBN 978-3-11-027768-5
  • Monika Schwarz-Friesel (Ed.): Current anti-Semitism. A phenomenon of the middle. Saur, Munich 2010, ISBN 3-11-023010-0
  • Klaus-Michael Bogdal , Klaus wood, Matthias N. Lorenz (eds.): Literary anti-Semitism after Auschwitz. JB Metzler, Stuttgart / Weimar 2007, ISBN 978-3-476-05224-7
  • Birgit Schmidt : No light on the gallows. A contribution to the discussion about KPD / SED and anti-Semitism. Unrast, Münster 2005, ISBN 3-89771-436-1
  • Working group on anti-fascism / anti-racism in the student council of the University of Halle (ed.): Despite and because of Auschwitz: national identity and anti-Semitism after 1945. Unrast, Münster 2004, ISBN 3-89771-428-0
  • Lars Rensmann : Democracy and the image of the Jews. Anti-Semitism in the political culture of the Federal Republic of Germany. Springer VS, Wiesbaden 2004, ISBN 3-531-14006-X
  • Wolfgang Benz: What is anti-Semitism? Beck, Munich 2004, ISBN 3-406-52212-2
  • Wolfgang Benz: Pictures of the Jews. Studies on everyday anti-Semitism. Beck, Munich 2001, ISBN 3-406-47575-2
  • Joachim Perels : Anti-Semitism in the judiciary after 1945? In: Fritz Bauer Institute (Ed.): Elimination of Jewish Influence ...: Anti-Semitic Research, Elites and Careers in National Socialism. Campus, Frankfurt am Main 1999, ISBN 3-593-36098-5 , pp. 241-252.
  • Werner Bergmann, Rainer Erb: The survival of anti-Semitism after 1945. Anti-Semitism in Germany 1945–1996. In: Wolfgang Benz, Werner Bergmann: Prejudice and Genocide. Lines of Development of Anti-Semitism. Herder, Freiburg im Breisgau 1997, ISBN 3-451-04577-X
  • Wolfgang Benz (Ed.): Anti-Semitism in Germany. On the timeliness of a prejudice. dtv, Munich 1995, ISBN 3-423-04648-1
  • Werner Bergmann, Rainer Erb (ed.): Anti-Semitism in political culture after 1945. Westdeutscher Verlag, Opladen 1990, ISBN 3-531-11923-0






  • Juna Grossmann: Closed time over: About living with daily anti-Semitism. Droemer, 2018, ISBN 978-3-426-27775-1

Web links



Anti-Semitism in right-wing extremism

Anti-Semitism among left-wing groups

Contemporary discussion


Chronicles of anti-Semitic incidents

Individual evidence

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