Calls for action over anti-Semitism poll

20th November 2003, Comments 0 comments

20 November 2003 , BERLIN - Jewish leaders in Germany issued an urgent appeal for government action after an opinion poll Wednesday showed anti- Semitism is on the rise nationwide and almost a quarter of all Germans are "latent anti-Semites". Central Council of Jews leader Paul Spiegel said it was imperative that government leaders to step up educational programmes dealing with the Holocaust and the rise of Nazism. "Federal, state and local governments must be doing much more to break the vicious cycle of

20 November 2003

BERLIN - Jewish leaders in Germany issued an urgent appeal for government action after an opinion poll Wednesday showed anti- Semitism is on the rise nationwide and almost a quarter of all Germans are "latent anti-Semites".

Central Council of Jews leader Paul Spiegel said it was imperative that government leaders to step up educational programmes dealing with the Holocaust and the rise of Nazism.

"Federal, state and local governments must be doing much more to break the vicious cycle of word-of-mouth anti-Semitic attitudes which unwittingly are passed from one generation to the next," said Spiegel.

"Constant work is needed to counter these negative stereotypes based on ignorance," he said.

The Stern magazine poll found 23 percent of Germans - up from 20 percent in 1998 - answered a series of questions about Jews in a way which led pollsters to classify them as latently anti-Semitic.

Among questions posed was whether Jews were trying to profit from the Nazi past and seeking to make Germans pay. Some 36 percent of those asked this question responded with "yes".

A total of 28 percent said Jews have too much influence in the world while 61 percent said 58 years after the end of Adolf Hitler's Third Reich it was time to start talking less about the persecution of the Jews.

The poll carried out by Germany's Forsa agency surveyed 1,301 people last Friday and Saturday.

Germany has one of the world's fastest growing Jewish populations with immigrants coming from the former Soviet Union. The number of German Jews is now over 100,000 - up from about 30,000 in 1989.

This is still a small minority within Germany's total population of 82 million.

 

DPA
Subject: German news 

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