Italian Jews Decry Recent Spiral of Anti-Semitism

Marches and Attacks Target Community and Israel

getty images

By JTA

Published November 25, 2012.
  • Print
  • Share Share

In the wake of mounting anti-Semitic and anti-Israel incidents, Italy’s Jewish leadership has “forcefully denounced” a “spiral of violence” that has erupted in the country over the past few weeks.

“It would be too long to enumerate the individual episodes, but we cannot refrain from drawing attention to a climate of tension that is increasingly worrying,” said a statement by Renzo Gattegna, president of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities.

Apparently prompted by Israel’s recent rocket attacks on Gaza, anti-Semitic slogans were scrawled on synagogues in several cities – the latest was in Genoa, where the slogan “Israel is a Nazi state” was discovered on the front door of the synagogue on Saturday.

Anti-Israel and anti-Semitic slogans were chanted during student and other demonstrations in Rome the past two weekends, and a “Free Palestine” banner was unfurled during an international soccer match in Rome between Rome’s Lazio team and England’s Tottenham Hotspur on Nov. 22.

In addition, Lazio’s far-right militant fans chanted “Juden Tottenham” during the game, and the night before the match dozens of masked men brutally attacked a group of Hotspur fans in a downtown pub. Hotspur has a large Jewish support base in London, who sometimes are referred to as the “Yid Army.”

“Racist, anti-Semitic, homophobic: the proponents of hate fall into different conceptual categories and different modes of action,” Gattegna said. “Linking them, however, is the same contempt for the most basic principles of democracy and the sharing of ideologies that are re-emerging in a growing and alarming way from the folds of a past that did not teach some people anything.”


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • “This is a dangerous region, even for people who don’t live there and say, merely express the mildest of concern about the humanitarian tragedy of civilians who have nothing to do with the warring factions, only to catch a rash of *** (bleeped) from everyone who went to your bar mitzvah! Statute of limitations! Look, a $50 savings bond does not buy you a lifetime of criticism.”
  • That sound you hear? That's your childhood going up in smoke.
  • "My husband has been offered a terrific new job in a decent-sized Midwestern city. This is mostly great, except for the fact that we will have to leave our beloved NYC, where one can feel Jewish without trying very hard. He is half-Jewish and was raised with a fair amount of Judaism and respect for our tradition though ultimately he doesn’t feel Jewish in that Larry David sort of way like I do. So, he thinks I am nuts for hesitating to move to this new essentially Jew-less city. Oh, did I mention I am pregnant? Seesaw, this concern of mine is real, right? There is something to being surrounded by Jews, no? What should we do?"
  • "Orwell described the cliches of politics as 'packets of aspirin ready at the elbow.' Israel's 'right to defense' is a harder narcotic."
  • From Gene Simmons to Pink — Meet the Jews who rock:
  • The images, which have since been deleted, were captioned: “Israel is the last frontier of the free world."
  • As J Street backs Israel's operation in Gaza, does it risk losing grassroots support?
  • What Thomas Aquinas might say about #Hamas' tunnels:
  • The Jewish bachelorette has spoken.
  • "When it comes to Brenda Turtle, I ask you: What do you expect of a woman repressed all her life who suddenly finds herself free to explore? We can sit and pass judgment, especially when many of us just simply “got over” own sexual repression. But we are obliged to at least acknowledge that this problem is very, very real, and that complete gender segregation breeds sexual repression and unhealthy attitudes toward female sexuality."
  • "Everybody is proud of the resistance. No matter how many people, including myself, disapprove of or even hate Hamas and its ideology, every single person in Gaza is proud of the resistance." Part 2 of Walid Abuzaid's on-the-ground account of life in #Gaza:
  • After years in storage, Toronto’s iconic red-and-white "Sam the Record Man" sign, complete with spinning discs, will return to public view near its original downtown perch. The sign came to symbolize one of Canada’s most storied and successful Jewish family businesses.
  • Is $4,000 too much to ask for a non-member to be buried in a synagogue cemetery?
  • "Let’s not fall into the simplistic us/them dichotomy of 'we were just minding our business when they started firing rockets at us.' We were not just minding our business. We were building settlements, manning checkpoints, and filling jails." What do you think?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.