Article Library / 2015

2014-2015 Annual Assessment

While the far-right populist parties, obsessed with a threat to their national identities, perceive Judaism as an alien influence they want to neutralize, the far-left populist parties associate the Jews with the cosmopolitan elites and the global capitalism they battle against. Regarding Israel, the simplistic Marxist narrative remains popular: Israel is a colonialist state that oppresses and displaces the indigenous population and is one of the puppeteers of the global financial system. Moreover, out of socialist traditions of justice and welfare, they campaign to welcome more migrants, who in large measure come from countries with high levels of anti-Jewish resentment. Officially, they distance themselves from the “old anti-Semitism” (hatred of Jews per se, belief in the worldwide Jewish conspiracy, belief that Jews generated communism, belief that Jews are racially inferior and so on) but because of their strong political alliances with local Muslims and their consubstantial sympathy for the Palestinians (often perceived in Europe as the “ultimate underdogs”), they advocate a radical anti-Zionism and adopt elements of Muslim anti-Semitic rhetoric (worldwide Jewish conspiracy, Jewish control of capitalism and U.S. foreign affairs, and so on).8 All over Europe, the parties that court the very substantial Muslim vote tend to be unfriendly to Jews.9 Consequently, diminished prospects of Jewish thriving could be expected in the shadow of these kind of populist regimes.

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