(JNS.org) Anti-Semitism has increased by 35 percent over the past year in Australia, according to a new report by the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ). There were 312 incidents of anti-Semitism recorded in the country during that time.
The report cited the anti-Israel protests and rhetoric related to last summer’s Operation Protective Edge in Gaza as part of the reason for the spike in Australian anti-Semitism.
“The Israel-Gaza war produced mass protests in Australia, and the world, condemning Israel. There is a correlation between the intensity of conflict involving Israel and the level of anti-Semitism recorded in the western world, of which Australia is part,” said ECAJ.
Among the incidents documented in the report was the attack on five Jewish people in Bondi as they were walking home from a Shabbat dinner, a rabbi who was threatened by a gang in Perth, and students who were threatened on a bus in Sydney by a gang of drunken teenagers.
The report also cited an “escalating use of anti-Semitism motifs” in the Australian media as part of the increase in anti-Semitism incidents. It specifically mentioned claims by former Australian foreign minister Bob Carr, who said that Australian politics suffered from a “very unhealthy influence” by the pro-Israel lobby, as well as a cartoon in the Sydney Morning Herald last July that “unambiguously portrayed an ugly stereotype of a Jew.”