vendredi 21 novembre 2014

La détresse des jeunes juifs européens, Deborah Lipstadt @ The Forward

"Young Jews repeatedly spoke of their contemporaries who “are going underground.” Students feel it increasingly uncomfortable to say “I’m Jewish.” They disengage from campus Jewish life."  Quel sentiment d'humiliation! 

L'historienne américaine Deborah Lipstadt faisait partie de la délégation de la Maison Blanche qui a participé à la conférence de l'OSCE sur l'antisémitisme qui s'est tenue à Berlin les 12-13 novembre.

Ce ne furent pas habituels discours officiels des différents intervenants qui retinrent essentiellement son attention.  Mais ce qu'elle a entendu en privé.  Autour d'une tasse de café des Juifs européens se sont confiés.  Cette spécialiste du négationnisme et du révisionnisme et les membres de la délégation américaine furent bouleversés par le vécu notamment des jeunes.  Voici son témoignage publié dans Forward -  clair et concis sans pathos et hystérie. Anti-Semitism Creeps Into Europe's Daily Routines.  Extraits:

[...] But in addition to the physical assault another attack is occurring. But for the fact that it does not take lives or break bones (no small thing), its long-term consequences may be more profound. Jews face an inner spiritual and psychological assault. Young people described being Jewish as having become a negative, a burden. “We are continuously on the defensive. It’s depressing.” Guy, a young Dutchman, recalled that not long ago a bunch of his Jewish friends gathered to celebrate his birthday. “What,” he asked us with an ironic smile, “do a group of young men talk about when they gather to drink beer and enjoy themselves? The Holocaust, anti-Semitism, and insecurity.”

In certain countries children who attend Jewish schools are warned — if not “forbidden” — from wearing anything that would single them out as Jews. No school insignias on the book bags, no school symbols on their jackets, no kippot. Nothing.

Many Jews feel abandoned by former allies. Jewish groups, both on campus and in the broader community, have long participated in coalitions of human rights organizations. “The problem is,” a young Belgian Jew observed, “that these human rights groups don’t consider Jews to be ‘victims.’ We may not face job discrimination. But we face violence.” Even after four Jews were murdered at the Brussels Jewish museum, some European human rights activists dismissed anti-Semitism as “only words” and of no real importance. Some of their colleagues even suggested that this all happened “because of Israel,” i.e. it was justified. “In short,” one young woman observed, “we have no allies.” [...]

Some Jews, unsure that they have a “future” in Europe are leaving countries where generations of their families have lived. They head to Israel, London, the United States, and Canada. Their friends predict: “They will never come back.”

Many will probably stay put — emigrating is not an easy task — but will become “invisible Jews.” Young Jews repeatedly spoke of their contemporaries who “are going underground.” Students feel it increasingly uncomfortable to say “I’m Jewish.” They disengage from campus Jewish life.

Over the past two decades there has been a resurgence of Jewish life in much of Europe. Jewish cultural celebrations, schools, kindergartens, camps, and learning festivals have multiplied. Many are flourishing but, as one American who has lived in Germany for over thirty years observed, “if this atmosphere continues it will undo all these good things.” Recently her eleven-year-old daughter saw a man at a bus stop. His attire made it clear that he was a Jew. Turning to her mother, she announced: “He can’t walk around that way.” When her mother assured her that it was his right to wear whatever he wanted, the daughter insisted that he should not do it because “it’s not safe.”
When your young children understand that it is not safe for them to express who they are, the future is not bright.

Deborah E. Lipstadt is Dorot Professor of Modern Jewish and Holocaust Studies at Emory University. She chairs the US Holocaust Museum’s Committee on Anti-Semitism and State Sponsored Holocaust Denial. She was a member of the Presidential delegation to the OSCE Conference last week in Berlin.

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