Israelis Suffer Abuse at Berlin Beyonce Gig

Dozens of Germans Rained Anti-Semitic Remarks

Curvy Star: Did German fans hurl anti-Semitic abuse at a group of Israelis at Beyonce’s show in Berlin?
getty images
Curvy Star: Did German fans hurl anti-Semitic abuse at a group of Israelis at Beyonce’s show in Berlin?

By JTA

Published May 27, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

An Israeli soldier said he was among 10 young Israelis who were subjected to an anti-Semitic verbal attack before a Beyonce concert in Berlin.

The soldier, Nathanel Zerad, told JTA that the incident last week at the O2 World Stadium left him and his friends fearful.

Spokespeople for the Berlin police and the concert organizer, Go-On Promotion, said no incident had been reported. The incident was first reported in the Israel Hayom newspaper.

Zerad said the Israelis had come to Berlin for a long weekend, which started with the Beyonce concert on May 23. Standing at the head of the line to enter the venue, Zerad said the Israelis were verbally attacked by a group of about 50 Germans who wanted to move ahead of them.

“Some of them noticed that we were speaking Hebrew,” Zerad told JTA. “One of them said, ‘You stink, you should go back to Israel.’ A girl said, ‘You guys smell so bad. Why didn’t he die in the Holocaust?’ ”

The young Germans began to shout at the Israelis to “go, go, go,” he said. They accused the Israelis of pushing, “which was not true because we were first in line. We had no need to push. We were there already.

“So they started pushing us; they said ‘You are Jewish, go back to Israel, we wish that the Holocaust would succeed so you all die,’” Zerad recalled. “One guy came up to me and said, ‘Don’t mess with my girls, I will hurt you,’ and things like that.”

Zerad said the Israelis reported the incident immediately to nearby security personnel, “But the security guy believed the Germans; he said, ‘You are 10 and they are 50,” and “The Germans told us that you are pushing and if you continue we will send you out.’ ”

The Israeli concert-goers moved back in the line to defuse the situation, the soldier said.

“There were no police there,” Zerad said. “If there were, I would definitely go to them.”

Zerad said he and his friends are seeking a way to report the incident via the Israeli authorities.

“During all the concert, I was concerned and afraid that they would come to me after the concert and beat me or my friends,” he said.

He added, “I cannot even tell you how I feel even now, for being in such a racist moment that I thought would never be, especially in Germany with all the history there.”

A spokesperson for O2 World, Moritz Hillebrand of Anschutz Entertainment Group, referred JTA to Go-On Promotion, and its spokesperson, Janine Lerch, said no incident had been reported.


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!
  • “I don’t want to say, ‘Oh oh, I’m not Jewish,’ because when you say that, you sound like someone trying to get into a 1950s country club, “and I love the idea of being Jewish." Are you a fan of Seth Meyers?
  • "If you want my advice: more Palestinians, more checkpoints, just more reality." What do you think?
  • Happy birthday Barbra Streisand! Our favorite Funny Girl turns 72 today.
  • Clueless parenting advice from the star of "Clueless."
  • Why won't the city give an answer?
  • BREAKING NEWS: Israel has officially suspended peace talks with the Palestinians.
  • Can you guess what the most boring job in the army is?
  • What the foolish rabbi of Chelm teaches us about Israel and the Palestinian unity deal:
  • Mazel tov to Idina Menzel on making Variety "Power of Women" cover! http://jd.fo/f3Mms
  • "How much should I expect him and/or ask him to participate? Is it enough to have one parent reciting the prayers and observing the holidays?" What do you think?
  • New York and Montreal have been at odds for far too long. Stop the bagel wars, sign our bagel peace treaty!
  • Really, can you blame them?
  • “How I Stopped Hating Women of the Wall and Started Talking to My Mother.” Will you see it?
  • Taglit-Birthright Israel is redefining who they consider "Jewish" after a 17% drop in registration from 2011-2013. Is the "propaganda tag" keeping young people away?
  • Happy birthday William Shakespeare! Turns out, the Bard knew quite a bit about Jews.
  • 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.