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5 March, 2024 17:49

Anti-Semitism and the law against anti-Semitism

According to the German legislation, Nazi's propaganda and sharing the ideology of Fascism is punishable. Even posting and sharing it on social media provides appropriate sanctions. Germany condemns hate speeches, in which antisemitic ideology can be implied.

It is well known to the civilized world, the horrors Nazi Germany brought the world – the mass genocide of the Jewish people for the sake of forming a new “Favorite Nation” and as a criminal experiment.

However, it is probably worth to better understand the next - post-Nazi stage, which brought about a significant turning point in the consciousness of some nations, including, first of all, the German people. This shift reflected the policies and legal regulations of the states in order to weaken the deep roots of anti-Semitism as much as possible.

Today it can be said that there is an already a precedent of Germany, the experience of the German people, which is polarly different from the aspirations of the Third Reich.

All this reflects a fundamental change in German culture, morality, dignity, responsibility and humanism.

According to studies, no other nation has such a clear policy against anti-Semitism as Germany has in today's reality. According to German legislation, propaganda of Nazi’s and sharing the ideology of fascism is punishable. Even posting and sharing it on social media provides appropriate sanctions. Germany condemns hate speechs, in which antisemitic ideology can be implied.

Similar regulations and policies of various countries came under special attention after the terrorist attack on Israel on October 7th, 2023, which is rightly described as an attempt to perform a new holocaust. Israel's defensive measures were soon followed by another wave of anti-Semitism around the world. Soon, on October 22nd, 2023, German Interior Minister Mrs. Nancy Faeser, after a meeting with Israeli Ambassador Mr. Ron Prosor, presented to the German parliament an additional new law to deny citizenship and block all persons who seek citizenship and exhibit anti-Semitic attitudes and/or involve direct anti – Semitic activities. This was followed later a demonstration against anti-Semitism which was held in Berlin, in the capital of Germany.

During the current Israeli-Hamas war, Germany took a tough position against anti-Semitism. German Chancellor Mr. Olaf Scholz emphasized how unacceptable, shameful and reprehensible are the expressions of modern anti-Semitism in a country that once committed the Holocaust. German President Mr. Frank-Walter Steinmeier also had a tough position, saied that the attack on Jews and Jewish institutions is a personal insult to Germany. The President considers the fight against anti-Semitism to be a civic duty of the German people.

From 2021 state of Ukraine also maintains right possition regarding anti-Semitism. The Parliament of Ukraine approved a law containing the definition of anti-Semitism and banning it in the country. Verkhovna Rada approved the draft law on the second reading with 283 votes, making it available for signature by President Vladimir Zelensky.

As of today, Ukraine has a law "On Prevention and Counteraction of Anti-Semitism in Ukraine" N5110.

In particular in Ukraine, anti-Semitism is punishable by a fine of 200 to 500 USD non-taxable minimum income of citizens (3400 - 8500 hryvnias) or restriction of freedom for a period of up to 5 years, with the deprivation of the right to hold certain positions or engage in certain activities for a period of up to 3 years.

The same actions related to violence, deception or threats, as well as committed by an official, are punishable by a fine of 8,500 - 17,000 hryvnias or imprisonment for 2-5 years, with the deprivation of the right to hold certain positions or engage in certain activities for a period of up to 3 years. Same actions committed by an organized group of persons or resulting in serious consequences are punishable by imprisonment for a period of 5 to 8 years.

On the same possition stands France, on 8th November, 2023 Macron announced "Antisemitism is resurfacing, in words, on the walls, the Republic of France does not and will not compromise, and we will be ruthless against those who carry that hatred. We will never accept anti-Zionism, because it is a new form of anti-Semitism." No previous president of France, neither Nicolas Sarkozy nor François Hollande, has ever connected these two words so precisely. More than 1,500 anti-Semitic acts and comments have been recorded in France since the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war, a total of 330 investigations have been opened into anti-Semitic acts and justifications of terrorism since October 7.

In 1998, former Prime Minister of Sweden Goran Göran Persson founded the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) as an intergovernmental organization with 35 member and 9 observer countries. Among the members of the alliance are France, Germany, the USA, Albania and Turkey. The formation of the mentioned organization was due to both the Holocaust and the Roma genocide.

Each member country of the Alliance supports an international political position that is correct in combating anti-Semitism and discrimination against the Roma. Each country that intends to join the IHRA must establish its own delegation, which will be staffed with leading experts on the Holocaust.

Today it is easier than ever to brainwash people with targeted propaganda, to control their minds and emotions, but at the same time nothing is easier than seeing reality if you want to.

To see the obvious signs, which by their very nature take us back to the past and once again puts us in the greatest of danger. When we talk about the tragedy of the Holocaust, only one word comes to mind for all of us - "Let it never happen again". But just the words "Never again", are meaningless, if the actions show otherwise! Today is the exact time when the world should unite and use all the necessary measures to follow words with actions, so that past mistakes won’t be repeated.

Due to recent events, special attention is needed for the clear combat against any manifestation of anti-Semitism. A clear stance of any friendly country on this is extremely important. Since Germany takes a leading position in this regard, other countries need to take an example and follow in order to stop the new, very powerful wave of anti-Semitism. This with united forces.

Ideally the main concern of people should be peaceful coexistence on this planet and not to persecute each other. Another shame will be hard for humanity. Blaming terrorism is not enough, the flourishing of terrorism is the fault of all those naïve people with an attitude to choose neutrality and calmness in crucial moments instead of a bold action in fighting for the truth and standing on the side of justice.

The Israeli House NET began actively working with the leaders of friendship groups in the Knesset to jointly prioritize and resolve this issue. Our team is doing its best to raise awareness about anti-Semitism, trying to find all the necessary ways to solve this problem.

Nani Jabadari

Attorney, Project Manager of Israeli House NET

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