Report Shows Surge in Global Antisemitism in 2023

By Hamodia Staff

A plane bearing a banner that reads “We Stand With Israel, Jewish Lives Matter” flies overhead before the University of Michigan’s Spring 2024 Commencement Ceremony at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Mich., on May 4. (Jacob Hamilton/Ann Arbor News via AP)

The Annual Antisemitism Worldwide Report, jointly published by Tel Aviv University (TAU) and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), and released Sunday, highlights a disturbing trend: a significant surge in global antisemitism throughout 2023 compared to the previous year. This increase was particularly pronounced in Western nations, with a notable escalation following the Oct. 7 Hamas terror attacks. However, even before the conflict erupted, the first nine months of 2023 witnessed a concerning rise in antisemitic incidents across various countries with significant Jewish populations, including the United States, France, the U.K., Australia, Italy, Brazil, and Mexico.

In New York City, home to the world’s largest Jewish community, the NYPD reported 325 anti-Jewish hate crimes in 2023, up from 261 in 2022. Similarly, LAPD documented 165 incidents compared to 86 the previous year, while CPD saw an increase from 39 to 50 cases. The ADL’s data revealed a staggering total of 7,523 incidents in 2023, compared to 3,697 in 2022, with assaults rising from 111 to 161 and vandalism from 1,288 to 2,106.

This alarming trend extended beyond the United States. In France, antisemitic incidents surged from 436 in 2022 to 1,676 in 2023, with physical assaults doubling from 43 to 85. The U.K. experienced a similar escalation, with incidents rising from 1,662 to 4,103, including a rise in physical assaults from 136 to 266. Other countries, including Argentina, Germany, Brazil, South Africa, Mexico, the Netherlands, Italy, and Austria, also reported significant increases in antisemitic attacks.

Even before the Oct. 7 events, the first nine months of 2023 witnessed a troubling uptick in antisemitism in many countries with large Jewish populations. For instance, in the United States, ADL data showed a rise from 1,000 incidents in October-December 2022 to 3,976 in the same period in 2023. France and Britain also saw increases during the January-September period, as did Australia, albeit to a lesser extent. In contrast, Germany and Austria, where proactive measures against antisemitism are in place, reported decreases.

Professor Uriya Shavit, head of The Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry and the Irwin Cotler Institute, expressed deep concern about the escalating antisemitism, stressing the urgent need for targeted efforts to combat hate speech and violence. He criticized the lack of a cohesive strategic plan to address antisemitism, particularly highlighting the shortcomings in Israel’s approach.

ADL’s CEO and national director, Jonathan Greenblatt, echoed these concerns, emphasizing the need for collective action to confront the rising tide of antisemitism. Greenblatt emphasized the importance of the Annual Antisemitism Worldwide Report in informing governments and civil society about the gravity of the situation and mobilizing support to counter antisemitic trends.

Former Canadian Justice Minister and Attorney-General Irwin Cotler contributed a detailed plan for combating antisemitism globally, emphasizing the necessity of a united effort across governments and societies. Cotler warned that antisemitism poses not only a threat to Jewish communities but also undermines democracy and human security.

The report also delves into the roots of antisemitic rhetoric in various regions, including the Arab world, Turkey, and Iran, following the Oct. 7 attacks. It highlights the need for diplomatic efforts to eradicate antisemitism from these societies.

Despite the surge in antisemitic incidents, the report cautions against attributing them solely to the war in Gaza, emphasizing that antisemitism existed before the outbreak of hostilities. It notes the dangerous convergence of far-right and far-left extremism, complicating efforts to combat antisemitism.

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