Many in the Jewish community’s worst nightmare came to life on Saturday when an armed gunman stormed a synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, murdering eleven worshippers. It is the worst attack on the Jewish community in US history, and comes after a steady rise in antisemitic incidents and rhetoric across the country and around the world.
Hajar El Jahidi, from Get The Trolls Out! partner European Forum of Muslim Women, wrote an article for the Middle East Eye discussing a recent co-authored an op-ed piece denouncing the discrimination faced by Muslim women in Europe in the jobs market, and the reaction to it. Being one of the authors of the op-ed piece, Hajar explains how one journalist from the French magazine Marianne claimed the piece was an organised attack on French secularism.
In recent weeks, Chemnitz became the focus of public attention, in Germany as well as abroad. Over the course of several days, there were right-wing extremist attacks on counter-demonstrators, journalists, Muslims, and the Jewish establishment.
If one analyses the media in Europe today it becomes evident that there has been a rise and acceptance of xenophobic, racist and anti-religion narratives. This has evidently run parallel to – and quite possibly has been one of the effects of – the surge of right-wing extremism movements and of ultra-nationalist groups in many parts of the region. Some media outlets have been echoing such narratives, thus reinforcing them. Media and journalists face a serious challenge in tackling these discourses of prejudice, intolerance and hostility towards the other and otherness.
Boris Johnson, the UK’s former foreign secretary, wrote a piece for the Telegraph about Denmark’s recent burka ban, and whether we should adopt the same laws in the UK. Upon reading the title of the piece, which claims that Demark has “got it wrong”, you might be cautiously optimistic.
Our partner in Hungary, Centre for Independent Journalism, commissioned an interview with Professor Daniel Monterescu, Associate Professor of Urban Anthropology at the Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology at the Central European University. Prof. Monterescu talked about anti-Semitism and Jewish responses to the “refugee crisis”. The interview was published in 168óra (168 Hours, a weekly political news magazine in Hungary) both online and in printed version in July.