Tuesday, June 30, 2015

France: "If you're pro-Israel in France, you're finished!"

Ynet News reports:

If locating synagogues in the alleyways of Paris used to be a complicated navigational task, lately it has become easy to spot them by the soldiers stationed outside. Outside La Tournelle Synagogue in Paris there were no less than seven armed soldiers, who were questioning passersby and asking them to take pictures only from a distance. At the Place des Vosges Synagogue, seven armed soldiers were providing security to a bar mitzvah celebration taking place there.

The young Jews we met outside the synagogue told us that at the beginning of prayer services there were no less than 20 armed soldiers outside. This is also the situation at Jewish schools.

There is a big question mark hanging over the future of France's large Jewish community, numbering about half a million, with the rise of radical Islam in the country and the recently added threat of terror attacks.
The young Jews we met paint a complex picture: They are more careful about displaying their Jewish identity, and fear anti-Semitic incidents and terror attacks. Some believe that immigration to Israel or the United States is the solution. Others believe that this would only reward the terrorists. [...]

Solel Sabah, 21, a Jewish student who lives in Paris, told Ynet that other than some safe areas in the center of Paris, which he describes as a "bubble," there are many places where it is not advisable to walk around wearing a kippah. There are areas in Paris and in its suburbs where you cannot show that you are a Jew. If you enter the Metro with a kippah, you will have a problem. It has always been like that for us. For our parents, maybe not."

Yaakov Ben-Said 25, a Jew who lives in Paris and works in hotel management, claims that the areas where you can still walk around with a kippah are becoming more and more scarce. 

"I disagree with the term 'bubble' - it is in fact a 'mini-bubble.' 500 meters from where we are standing right now I would not walk around with a kippah. Even at 2 am I wouldn't not wear a kippah, and I will not tell anyone I'm a Jew."

Nathan Sabah, 23, a high-tech entrepreneur, says that hiding one's Judaism does not just mean not wearing Jewish symbols, but also fearing to show solidarity with Israel. 

"When there is war, as there was last summer, you cannot say you are against the Palestinians or pro-Israel in the streets," he says. "You do not want to explain to someone why Israel has to do what it does and why people die in war. If you start explaining something and they think you are pro-Israel – you are finished! You can not say such things in the Metro or in place with a lot of people. If you are at a café talking about the situation in Israel with the Palestinians, you cannot raise your voice." 

Sabah adds that the terrorist attacks in Toulouse and Paris were a turning point.

"The situation was always difficult but now we see it every day. Things have changed - Toulouse, Hyper Cacher, Charlie Hebdo - and look what happened yesterday (the Grenoble attack). What will we do in a year if something like what happened at Hyper Cacher happens again? Friends of mine say that when they go to a kosher supermarket to buy something and see someone suspicious, they do not go in. There are Jews afraid to go to any kosher places."  More.

No comments :

Post a Comment