JEFFREY GOLDBERG INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM
Here is an outstanding, if pretty long online article by Jeffrey Goldberg --- a journalist who has written impressive investigative reports on a variety of topics (mainly foreign and US affairs) that have appeared in several distinguished weeklies, the Atlantic online blogs, and for the New York Times magazine. He has won awards both his journalism and a book that appeared in 2006. A former Israeli soldier, he returned to the USA and is now a national correspondent for The Atlantic, the oldest ongoing magazine in the USA. His reputation enables him to interview not just high government officials and politicians in the USA, but elsewhere in the world too. Source of his article: Click here
The Subject of the Article?
Growing anti-Semitism in Europe, something prof bug has written about several times on his blog. Except that Goldberg, to his great credit, has done a lot of investigative interviews in Europe, especially in France. What was especially surprising to me was the number of hate-crimes against Jews in Britain --- where only 300,000 Jews live (about 6-7 million in the USA, and about 500,000 in France). In concrete terms, there were almost the double number of hate-crimes in Britain last year (about 1100 reported to the police) than in the USA with a population of 310 million people vs. about 62 million in both France and Britain. The high number in Britain exceeded those in France, even though France has a much larger number of serious attacks than in Britain.
What is even more surprising is that the most recent survey of anti-Semitism in several dozen countries by the ADL (Anti-Defamation League) found that France had the 2nd number of higher reported anti-Semites in Western Europe --- 37% vs 8% in Britain vs. 27% in Germany (the anti-Semitic findings were very low in Netherlands and Scandinavia), but much higher in East Europe such as : Lithuania (65%), Poland (62%), Hungary (61%) and Austria (52%). The source of these findings is the most recent ADL survey of anti-Semitism, reported in the spring of 2014 for 2013. All over Eastern Europe, every country subject to the ADL survey has a very high rate of anti-Semitism with one exception: Czech Republic. It's only 13%, about 1/4th to1/5th of the high percentages elsewhere.
The survey dealt with 102 countries around the world, surveying about 53,000 people. One quarter of the world's population shared a clear percentage of strong dislike to hate of Jews. No need to explain why it was far far higher in Muslim countries, though less so, now and then markedly, in Asian Muslim countries compared to Iran, Turkey, and Middle East Arab countries.
USA and Jews
In the USA, anti-Semitism is at an all-time low. Jews are roughly 2% of the US total population at 310 million. The ADL 2013 survey found about 9% of the US population was anti-Semitic. Then, too --- a big surprise --- Judaism was found to be in another survey the most admired religion in the USA. The contrast with Europe, never mind the rest of the world, couldn't be more striking than that. Click here for the ADL interactive data. And here for the Pew Research Center's findings on how Americans rate other religions in our country:
Three Further Points to Keep in Mind:
1) Reports to the police of all kinds of crimes may differ across countries, just as the definitions of the serious nature of a crime --- say, assault as an example --- can differ too. That's why victims of crime-surveys are also carried out nationally and reported to Interpol and other police agencies globally. Generally, victims surveyed report more crimes than those who call the police. Even so, the two sorts of crime-stats will usually rise or fall jointly.
A further way to discover unreported crime is to interview prisoners, with promises of keeping the interviews secret. Usually academics carry out those reports, prisoners not confident about the police. One unusual study in 1995 found in two different prisons visited by the interviewers --- one in New England, the other in Wisconsin (maybe Michigan) --- that the inmates in both prisons reported the same number of crimes they committed that weren't ever reported to the police: 11 for each criminal. That same number was undoubtedly a coincidence.)
2) Despite the rise of radical right-wing groups in Europe, most of their animosity is directed toward the much larger (than Jewish) Muslim populations. In France, there seem to be 5 - to - 6 million Muslims (about 9-10% of the total population), and in Britain there are 2.8 million Muslims. Remember, the population of the two countries is about the same (true also of Italy) at roughly 62 million.: Germany, since unification, has 30% more at about 80 million. In Britain --- something that clarifies the relatively high anti-Semitic attacks yearly --- about 95% of all those attacks are done by Muslim hoods and jihadis.
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