Today's Telegraph has a very sad story concerning Jewish families leaving the Swedish city of Malmo, many having originally settled there having escaped the Nazi concentration camps, because of a sharp rise in anti-Semitic hate crimes.
Reading the Telegraph story one is struck by the similarities with similar reports filed elsewhere in recent years. First, anti-Semitic incidents emanate disproportionately from among the Muslim population. Now it would be quite easy to focus on this aspect, as well as challenge the architects and champions of multiculturalism to justify one community's treatment of another. But I think there is another aspect to the story here. In quite a few of the reports I've read many of these hate crimes are by young Muslims, suggesting what we see against Malmo's and other cities' Jews owes something to the radicalisation of young Muslims in recent years. I do not recall such anti-Semitic (indeed anti-Israel) vitriol on European streets during previous stages of the Arab-Israeli conflict.
Second, whenever Jewish communities are subject to harassment or attack it is often explained away as a direct consequence of events in the Middle East. Leaving aside the narrative of Israel as somehow worse than any other country, which I consider ideologically-driven and also plain wrong, how do events in the Middle East possibly justify racism towards Jews living several thousands of miles away, many of whom have never even been to Israel? It is often said racism is an irrational mindset, and on that basis such attacks in Malmo and elsewhere prove it. Meanwhile, it seems the Jews remain the only ethnic group for which racism is understandable and tacitly accepted. For more on this, read here.
Lest we focus solely on the young Muslims disproportionately involved in such attacks, a third recurring theme is that these incidents tend to be concentrated in Europe. Of course, anti-Semitism exists everywhere, but we hear far less of such hate crimes in, for example, the US or Latin America (where there are various Jewish communities and quite a large number of Arab immigrants). In short, this is a European problem across a continent that has a centuries-old history of anti-Semitism which climaxed just a few years ago with the murder of six million Jews. I think one of the reasons young Muslims feel it is acceptable to be anti-Semitic is because they live in a continent where such views find fertile ground.
A fourth recurring theme in this and similar stories is that the end result is many more European Jews emigrating to Israel. I've read about their views and indeed met some there. "If I'm going to be hated and attacked, it might as well be here - among my own people - than back in Manchester" is a sentiment I've come across several times in Israel.
Meanwhile, such attacks, together with Europe's failure to stop them even with the Holocaust so fresh in the continent's psyche, the subsequent return of Jews to Israel as a result of such attacks, the demonisation of Israel, and finally calls for Israel's destruction emanating from the Middle East all help to bolster the narrative believed by millions of Christians that God is continuing to restore His people to the land of their forefathers.