American Jews (illustrative)
American Jews (illustrative)Thinkstock

A recent audit by the Anti-Defamation League showed that anti-Semitism was up 21% in 2014, as counted by the number of incidents reported – but according to ADL chairman Abe Foxman, the problem is much worse.

Speaking at a recent educational forum, Foxman, according to the NRG news site, said that nearly a third of Americans believe that the Jews are responsible for killing Jesus, a marked increase over the past, and that Jews are more loyal to Israel than America.

It's not just actor Mel Gibson who believes this,” Foxman told some 900 participants in a recent gathering sponsored by Limmud FSU, referring to recent statements on religion by the Hollywood actor. “It's even more worrying that one in very three Americans – over 30% - believe that Jews are more loyal to Israel than America,” another statistic the ADL Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents yielded.

As all Jews know, the issue of dual-loyalty is an essential ingredient of modern anti-Semitism all over the world, said Foxman, and the fact that it is a given in a country as supporting of Israel as the United States is should be taken very seriously. “The people who hold this belief are not actively anti-Semitic, but their attitudes should be taken as a warning sign,” said Foxman.

Foxman, himself a Holocaust survivor, said that he believed he could speak for most Jews when he said that “just 70 years after the Holocaust, I don't believe that any of us, especially survivors, would believe that anti-Semitism would sprout like this. For many people around the world, these statistics come as a surprise, as they thought anti-Semitism was a thing of the past. It's not. We find anti-Semitic acts and attitudes not only in countries that are hostile to Jews and Israel, but in countries that are friendly to Israel as well.

We have already learned that if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it's a duck,” Foxman added. “We need to pay special attention to this.”