See the previous installments of P. David Hornik’s fascinating series:
This summer a total of about 800 Jewish immigrants from France are expected to arrive in Israel. They’re part of a total of about 2500 who are expected to make their way here from France over the course of the year—an increase of 40 percent over last year.
As Sabrina Kozirov, arriving in August with her husband and two teenage daughters, told Israel’s Ynetnews:
The situation in France had become unbearable. There is a large Muslim community and harsh political criticism of Israel. Therefore we preferred to leave.
Her words dovetail with a report by an Israeli institute on the bleak situation of France’s Jews and Europe’s generally, and with a much-read article by French Jewish intellectual Michel Gurfinkiel on the same theme.
Along with the problems Sabrina Kozirov alludes to—the animosity (not infrequently violent) of Muslim populations and an intense anti-Israeli atmosphere generally—many of the European countries have been banning or trying to ban kosher slaughter and even circumcision, a Jewish practice going back to Abraham’s time in the Book of Genesis.
The attempt to “rebuild Jewish life” in post-Holocaust Europe was, of course, problematic from the start. A continent that could have produced the Holocaust could not, realistically, have been expected to make an abrupt about-face and become Jew-friendly. But the form European antisemitism now takes—particularly the animus against Israel—is not without some striking ironies.