Article Library / 2015

2014-2015 Annual Assessment

Public opinion polls examining attitudes toward Jews have shown, time and again, contradictory findings regarding the state of anti-Semitism in queried countries. For example, a 2013 Pew Research Center survey found that 87 percent of Europeans held positive views of Jews. In contrast, a 2014 ADL survey found negative attitudes toward Jews in Europe at an all-time high – 24 percent held anti-Semitic views (that is, 79 million Europeans). In France, the gap between the outcomes was even more pronounced: Pew assessed that 7 percent held anti-Semitic views and found an overall decline in anti-Semitism, while the ADL survey showed a rise in anti-Semitic views from 35 to 51 percent.1 Moreover, the level of negative opinions among the general population does not reflect the gravity of the situation, because it does not take into account the influence of social standing on those surveyed. However, complementary information regarding social status can be found in fieldwork, such as focus groups conducted recently by pollster Stanley Greenberg among French elites uncovered views such as: “Jews are controlling, manipulative and with split loyalties to France.” They think they have a monopoly on “suffering.” Many similar descriptions resounded in the Greenberg groups, often said in candid off the cuff speech.

Previous
Next