The same Parliamentary Assembly just ruled that male circumcision is a “clear violation of Human Rights” when practiced on individuals who cannot make that decision. The Assembly determined that the appropriate age would be 15 or older. This leaves Jewish circumcision at 7 days of age and Muslim circumcision at 13 years of age on the wrong side of the law. The fact that the ban attacks the fundamental right of freedom of religion did not even occur to these highly intelligent legislators.
One doesn't have to be exactly paranoid to feel that the Assembly is targeting non Europeans, particularly Jews and to some extent Muslims, for discrimination and limitation of civil rights. The brief respite gained by Jews in Europe for the last 60 years or so seems to be over. Why?
A wave of Nationalism is now covering Europe as a reaction to the anti European attitude of many of its most recent immigrants. The attitude of these immigrants is leading Europeans to wonder if they should not have the right to tell people what to do and not to do when they come to live among them. Many Europeans, according to recent surveys, are beginning to feel alien in their own countries and they react by attacking what they perceive to be the cause.
In addition, 58 years have already passed since the end of World War II. While in past decades many of those who lived through the Nazi aggression and who witnessed the scale of the Nazi genocide first hand began to retire of Public life or dying, the memory of World War II begins to feel more remote, more abstract, less credible. The reality of the Holocaust is being questioned more often even in Germany; Jews are -again- seen as a foreign intrusion. The barbarism of the German and their allies 60 years ago is starting to feel for many in the younger generation as “an exaggeration”, and more and more often studies are being published about how this or that aspect of the Holocaust did not really happened the way it was presented...
In sum, European Anti Semitism has been rearing its ugly head, especially since the beginning of the XXI Century. European politicians have been attacking the Jewish State and Jewish life in Europe. Contrary to what Europeans (and Arabs) seem to believe, it is not that Israel's policies promoted Anti Semitism and thus justified European attitudes. The equation is slightly different: As Anti Semitism becomes no longer “politically incorrect”, attacking Jews and Jewish life is again becoming fashionable. Jews can do no right and their enemies can do no wrong.
Even ten years ago, I hesitated in calling European attitudes towards Israel “Anti Semitic”. I was to some extent convinced that it was only the effectiveness of Arab propaganda and the European socialists' need for a cause that pushed them into anti Israel positions. But as the evidence kept (and still keeps) mounting, is becoming increasingly difficult to deny the strong undercurrent of irrational hatred that underlies European policies toward Jews and Israel. A few years back, a German think tank conducted a comprehensive study of European prejudices in the areas of race, religion, gender, etc.
Initially, the results of this study (commissioned by the European Union) were suppressed. Eventually, however, were brought to the light. While reading the report, I was struck by the fact that the study analyzed the attitudes of the Europeans toward immigrants of all kinds, as well as other “different” populations. Jews were among these “different” populations along with groups that arrived in Europe over the last 30 years. Considering that Jews have been living in Europe for about 2,000 years, it is fair to ask the question why they are still perceived as “non-mainstream”. Religion? Most Jews are not religiously observant – neither are most Europeans. Ethnicity? Most European Jews are integrated into European cultural life. So what is it?
Anti Semitism is a strange phenomenon which defies rational explanation because it is, at its root, completely irrational. Hatred of Jews as it developed in Europe is based on the Church's initial attack on Jews to reassert itself as a separate religion. Consider that less than 100 generations have passed since the destruction of the Temple and the first significant settlement of Jews in Europe; less than 90 generations since the consolidation of Christianity as the unifying characteristic in Europe; less than 25 generations since Torquemada and the Inquisition, and barely 3 or 4 generations since the Holocaust. Europe is still enslaved to its own darkness whether Europeans accept it or not.
The impact of the Holocaust led many Europeans to suppress their feelings either because they were scared of where they has led them or because it became “politically incorrect”. But lately, Jews are being seen in a kinder light as the object of Museums and Memorials than as a living, thriving, Human group. The Jew of the Museum can be objectified – the Jew living next door cannot.
As the World is again being threatened by a regime with world control aspirations; a regime that is rejecting the world's demands of accountability for its Nuclear Weapons program; a regime which – again – makes the Jews a focal point of their hatred, I can only hope that the voices of those Europeans who do recognize the problem will rise and be heard.
One of those voices is that of Pilar Rahola. Follow the links below to read her biography as well as some of her articles. Her thinking, along with that of a few others, represent the last best hope for Europe to re encounter itself...