Widespread Muslim anti-Semitism in France
Widespread Muslim anti-Semitism in France

In most European countries no quantitative data is available on Muslim anti-Semitism. Yet it is known that members of the Muslim community are behind much aggression and conduct extreme verbal attacks and slurs against Jews. A number of Jews have been murdered by Muslims in France over the past decades. There have also been attempts at pogroms.

A 2014 study by Fondapol titled Anti-Semitism in French Public Opinion and authored by Dominique Reynié provides many insights into anti-Semitism in France. Muslims are one segment of society on which the study focuses. The authors have also investigated the extreme right and extreme left. These however require separate analysis.

In French general society, 25% of the population has anti-Semitic prejudices. The study concludes that such prejudices against Jews among Muslims are two or three times as widespread. The study’s authors have divided the Muslim population into three categories: practicing Muslims, who both believe and practice Islam, those who only believe, and those who are of Muslim origin. The category of those who practice accounts for 42% of Muslims in France. Those who believe are 34% and those of Muslim origin are 21%. Another 3% self-define as not being religious.

The Fondapol researchers asked six questions for this particular study;

1) Do Jews use the story of victims of Nazi genocide during the Second World War for their own purposes?

2) Do Jews have too much power in the field of economy and finance?

3) Do Jews have too much power in the media?

4) Do Jews wield too much political power?

5) Is there a Zionist conspiracy at world level?

6) Are the Jews responsible for the current economic crises?

A few examples of the study’s findings will serve to show the strong anti-Semitism among Muslims in France. Nineteen percent of the general French population are of the opinion that Jews have too much power in politics. Among all Muslims, the percentage is 51%. Yet, if we break this figure down by category, among those who self-define as only of Muslim origin, the figure is 37%. For those who believe in Islam it is 49% and for practicing Muslims the figure is 63%.

The percentage of Muslims who answer negatively to all six questions about anti-Semitic prejudices is small. Only 17% of the Muslims answered ‘no’ to all questions. There is hardly a distinction between practicing Muslims and those who just believe, respectively 13% and 14%. For those of Muslim origin, the percentage is substantially higher, yet again they are only a minority, 27%.

A study in France in 2005 had already shown that anti-Jewish prejudice was prevalent particularly among religious Muslims. Forty-six percent held such sentiments compared to 30 percent of non-practicing Muslims. Only 28 percent of religious Muslims in France were found to be totally free of such prejudice. Even though the studies are not comparable, their main findings about Muslim anti-Semitism point in the same direction.

The high percentages of anti-Semitism among French Muslims shouldn’t come as a surprise. The great majority of these are immigrants from North African countries or descendants from such immigrants. The population of these countries is among the most anti-Semitic in the world.

The French comedian, Dieudonné, is considered one of the most extreme French anti-Semites. Finally many cities decided to prohibit his performances. Fifty seven percent of French Muslims consider that this anti-Semite was right in saying that Zionism is an international organization which tries to influence the world and society for the benefit of the Jews; 64% of practicing Muslims agree with this.

Forty six percent of Muslims think that Zionism is a racist ideology as opposed to 23% of the French general population. 66% of Muslims think that Zionism is an ideology that serves Israel to justify a policy of occupation and colonization of Palestinian Arab territories. All the above answers group Jews as a collectivity which is typical of anti-Semitic thinking. In reality, attitudes concerning many issues and political convictions among Jews vary. greatly.

Concerning attitudes toward individual Jews, prejudices of Muslims are also more pronounced than of the general population. 33% of Muslims and 43% of those who practice do not want a Jew as president of France as opposed to 21% of all French citizens. 26% of Muslims and 33% of those who practice do not want to vote for a Jewish mayor as opposed to 14% of the French. 22% of Muslims and 30% of those who practice do not want a Jewish boss as opposed to 10% of the general population. 18% of Muslims and 23% of those who practice do not want a Jewish banker as opposed to 10% of the general population.

Twelve percent of the French do not agree with teaching the Holocaust in schools. 24% of Muslims and 28% of those who practice do not agree with such Holocaust education. 3% of the French population are Holocaust deniers either to a certain extent or totally. Among Muslims overall the figure is 5% agreeing to the false claim that the number of victims is greatly exaggerated. Yet among those who practice the figure is 8%.

All this leads to a clear conclusion: over the past decades French governments, whether socialist or right of center, have let huge numbers of anti-Semitic immigrants into their country.