In France and Germany, synagogues and Jewish community centres have been firebombed. In Britain, a rabbi was attacked near a Jewish boarding school. And in Australia, a bus carrying Jewish schoolchildren was targeted by teenagers shouting “Heil Hitler” and threatening to slit the children’s throats.
As a result, newspapers have reported a “rising tide of anti-Semitism in Britain”, that Europe is facing the “worst times since the Nazis” and that we’re witnessing a “dramatic rise in global anti-Semitism”.
But while anti-Semitism is clearly a problem, is it correct to say that it is increasing?
In Britain, the Jewish organisation the Community Security Trust (CST) monitors anti-Semitic incidents. These include violent attacks on people or property, threats, anti-Semitic graffiti and online expressions of anti-Semitism.
The CST says it received around 240 reports of anti-Semitic incidents in July, which it describes as five times the monthly average. The UK Association of Chief Police Officers, which has released statistics on hate crime since 2009, has talked of a “significant rise” in anti-Semitism since the latest fighting began in Gaza in early July.