Tuesday, February 17, 2015

France: Authorities unsure if cemetery desecration was antisemitic

Via the New York Times (h/t Kenneth L. Marcus):
 Teenage vandals are suspected of overturning as many as 250 gravestones in a cemetery in a rural part of eastern France near the German border, where many Jews once lived but have long since left.

The desecration, which was carried out Thursday but not discovered until Sunday, was perceived by the Jewish community in France as another reminder of the increasingly anti-Semitic mood in the country.

However, according to the local prosecutor, Philippe Vannier, who announced Monday that the police had detained five youths, ages 15 to 17, after one of them confessed, it was not clear if the cemetery was targeted because it was Jewish, or rather because it was thought to be abandoned.

Number 3 on my list of reasons for why French Jews feel unsafe in France:
The media and the police are quick to deny antisemitic motives for antisemitic crimes - they denied Ilan Halimi's murder was antisemitic, and they denied the recent robbery and rape of a Jewish couple was antisemitic
It's not a French-only phenomenon.  In Belgium, for example, it took them two months to conclude that antisemitism was the motive behind a stabbing of a Jew on the street.

If Europeans wants Jews to feel safe, the first step, before making all those announcements about 'Europe won't be the same without ya", is to define antisemitic crimes as antisemitic crimes.

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