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– Twenty-First Century Crusades?
An increase in anti-Semitism
MPs to look at
Hugh Muir - The Guardian
MPs yesterday launched an all-party inquiry into anti-semitism amid
fears that incidents have reached record levels.
Denis MacShane, the former minister for Europe, will lead the
investigation, which will take submissions from groups and members of
the public as well as oral evidence during sessions at the House of
Earlier this year the Chief Rabbi, Jonathan Sacks, warned that
anti-semitism was rising to "uncomfortable levels". There were 532 anti-semitic
incidents last year, the highest number since records began in 1984. Dr
Sacks has warned that even speeches by public figures appear to contain
"undertones of anti-semitism".
Mr MacShane said many British Jews were living with an unacceptable
level of anxiety and discomfort. "They are forced to spend much-needed
resources on securing their schools, places of worship and community
John Mann, chairman of the parliamentary committee against
anti-semitism, said the problem had moved into the mainstream.
"Anti-semitism is back in fashion," he said. "It was once considered
solely a problem of the far right, but this is no longer the case."
He said the "liberal and progressive left" could not absolve itself.
"With the levels of anti-semitic incidents at their highest for over a
generation, an investigation of this type is much needed and overdue."
The committee requires written submissions by December 30. A report will
be published next spring.