Skip To Content

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Breaking News

Australia Anti-Semitism Rises by 35%

Anti-Semitic incidents in Australia soared by more than a third in the past year.

The annual Report on Anti-Semitic Incidents in Australia, presented Sunday at the Executive Council of Australian Jewry’s annual general meeting, logged 312 incidents between October 2013 and September 2014, about a 35 percent increase from 231 incidents the previous year.

Much of the increase in incidents was triggered by Israel’s operation against Hamas in Gaza, and encouraged by the hostile media it generated, according to the report.

Of great concern was that the number of physical assaults tripled, according to the report’s author, Julie Nathan.

Among the most serious incidents was an attack on a group of five Orthodox Jews in Bondi as they were walking home from Shabbat dinner. In Melbourne, a 28-year-old man wearing a T-shirt with Hebrew on it was assaulted and called in Arabic a “Jewish dog.” In Perth, a visiting rabbi was confronted by a gang who threatened him and surrounded his car. And in Sydney, young school students were threatened on a bus by a gang of drunken youths.

The report also cited un-moderated comments on the ABC’s website following the screening of “Stone Cold Justice,” a documentary that claims some Palestinian children were being physically abused by Israeli soldiers, forced into false confessions and targeted in order to gather intelligence on Palestinian activists. The comments were not removed for weeks until numerous complaints were made by the council, the report claims.

The report also cited an anti-Semitic cartoon published by the Sydney Morning Herald that provoked outrage from Jewish leaders and a threatened lawsuit, before Fairfax Media published an apology.

“When major media outlets, including the national broadcaster, are prepared to publish or host unsubstantiated claims and irrational bias that is combined with outright demonizing of Jews, a signal is sent that anti-Semitism is acceptable and even respectable,” Nathan wrote.

The Executive Council of Australian Jewry has produced the annual report since 1989. In 2009, it logged a record 962 anti-Semitic incidents.





    Hybrid: Online and at the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan

    Oct 2, 2022

    6:30 pm ET · 

    A Sukkah, IMKHA, created by artist Tobi Kahn, for the Marlene Meyerson JCC of Manhattan is an installation consisting of 13 interrelated sculpted painted wooden panels, constituting a single work of art. Join for a panel discussion with Rabbi Joanna Samuels, Chief Executive Director of the Marlene Meyerson JCC of Manhattan, Talya Zax, Innovation Editor of the Forward, and Tobi Kahn, Artist. Moderated by Mattie Kahn.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.