Anti-Semitism in Sweden

“There is no place for Jews in Sweden.”

Anti-Zionism and anti-Israel sentiments in Sweden have morphed in recent times into blatant anti-Semitism.  In the city of Malmo (known for its violent Arab and Muslim population), a Jewish teacher in a Swedish public school was fired last month for being Jewish.  The teacher identified only as A, is an Israeli-Jewish woman who immigrated to Sweden 39 years ago with her native born Swedish husband who served with the UN Observers Force in the region.  A claimed that her school principle warned her that the students “hate the Jews,” and added that she would be “abused by both the Swedish and the Arab students.”

A’s experience is not unique in 2016 Sweden, and not just in Malmo.  Naomi Lind, another Israeli woman living in a Stockholm suburb, also encountered the same anti-Semitism as a teacher in Swedish public schools.  Lind moved to Sweden from Israel in 1982, and taught computer science to adults and youngsters.  She recalled that on one occasion a young female student who was upset by a grade Lind gave her, responded with “I hope Hitler would rise from his grave and finish his work.”  Lind remembered the difficult situations in her work that compelled her to leave her job.  “I always felt that the school administration felt uncomfortable with me because I was an Israeli and a Jew.”

Lind, a daughter of Holocaust survivors, pointed out that her school administration refrained from dealing with the anti-Semitic and hurtful remarks of the girl that invoked Hitler.

Visiting Sweden late last summer, this reporter witnessed the fear and discomfort Jews in Sweden now feel.  In discussions with Swedish Jews, I was told of avoidance to wear Jewish identifying symbols such as a kippah or a necklace with a Star of David.  Ralph, 29, a veteran of the Swedish army, put it plainly by stating, “There is no place for Jews in Sweden.” He added that he was planning to move to the U.S.  Many young Jews have moved to Israel.

A synagogue in central Stockholm had its windows boarded to hide the fact that it was a Jewish place of worship.  There was no sign at the entrance to mark it as a synagogue.  This was not happening in a remote village but just a few miles from the seat of the Swedish government and its people’s parliament.

The Algemeiner reported (April 5, 2016) that “A Muslim mob in Uppsala, last week set upon and severely beat a Jewish mother of four, for wearing a Jewish Star of David necklace.”  Anna SjAgren lamented, “I cannot go the police.  The worst thing is that the assailants will get my name and address.  They know where to find me and know I am the Jew who reported them.”  The Muslim (Arab) immigrant mobs have free reign in Sweden.  The citizenry is intimidated and the leftist and multi-cultural Swedish government will always consider the sensitivities of Muslims over that of ordinary citizens, especially Jews.  In fact, the Swedish government has instructed the police not to identify Muslim rapists, lest the anti-immigrant political party, called the Sweden Democrats, seize upon the issue.  

The factors that have caused the rise of anti-Semitism in Sweden include a large scale immigration from Muslim countries, where anti-Semitism is openly preached and taught.   Swedish politicians are pandering to the Muslim voters by expressing strong pro-Palestinian views, especially among the leftist parties led by the governing Social-Democratic party. The demonization of Israel and Jews has filtered through the major Swedish media.  Sweden’s deep investment in multiculturalism makes it impossible to be critical of the violent Muslim cultures.  At the same time, the Swedish obsession with multiculturalism makes it impossible to differentiate between culture and racism. The same hang-up with multiculturalism constrains Swedish society from being critical of Muslim immigration.  In addition, there are major Swedish institutions who legitimize anti-Semitism.  As a case in point, the Church of Sweden has endorsed the anti-Israel and pro-Palestinian Kairos document.

The current Social-Democratic party led government has been the first European state to endorse a Palestinian state at the UN without the Palestinians having to negotiate with Israel.  Sweden’s Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom put on public display her anti-Israel and anti-Jewish bias.  Last November, following the terror attacks in Paris, she charged that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was one of the factors explaining why “There are so many people who have become radicalized.” The Israeli government responded by calling her remarks “appallingly imprudent.”  During the same month, Wallstrom complained that “the Jews are campaigning against me.”

The Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet, one of Sweden’s most popular newspapers published a report in August, 2009, claiming that Israel Defense Force (IDF) soldiers, “snatched Palestinian youth, and returned their dismembered bodies a few days later.” _Aftonbladet_ accused Israel of “selling” body parts.  Israel’s Foreign Ministry called this blood libel “a shocking example of Israel’s demonization.”

Swedish history has not been particularly kind to Jews either.  It was not until 1910 that the Swedish Riksdag (parliament) granted the Jews equality before the law.  During WWII, Sweden was neutral and traded heavily with Nazi Germany, providing it with essential iron ore.  German employers were allowed to fire Jewish workers.  Swedish immigration policy in the 1930’s was restrictive, unkind, and even hostile towards Jewish refugees trying to escape the Nazi terror and mass murder.  Jewish refugees were systematically discriminated against by the immigration authorities compared to other refugees.  

While Sweden restricted peaceful and productive Jewish immigrants in times of peril, it is eager to admit violent Arab and Muslim immigrants from the Middle East and North Africa.  This gesture of goodwill toward un-acculturated and un-assimilated Arab and Muslim immigrants has rewarded Sweden with the title of “rape capital of the West.” James Zumwalt reported in the Daily Caller (10/23/2015) that, “A 1996 Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention report bears this out. It noted that Muslim immigrants from North Africa were 23 times more likely to commit rape than Swedish men. It is no wonder why today Sweden is deemed the rape capital of the Western world.

Zumwalt added, “Even more shocking, however, is the political correctness overshadowing the reporting of these crimes. Sensitive about accusations of Islamophobia, the Swedish press refuses to sound a warning alarm for native women about who these sexual predators are. Thus, when a Muslim commits a rape, the media only refers to him as a Swedish male.”  

According to Euro-Islam, since 2007 there were 350,000 Muslims in Sweden.  There are at most 20,000 Jews in Sweden who have no voice and are in fear. Since the influx of Middle Eastern immigrants into Sweden, violent crime has risen by 300%, rapes by a whopping 1472%.  The Swedish people can “thank” their “caring,” multiculturalist government for that.

Back to A, the Israeli – Swedish teacher, fired essentially because of her origin and religion.  Driving home after being dismissed by the school principle, she described her feelings. “On the way home, alone in a train car, I allowed the tears of my frustration to flow.  I was angry with my tears, was angry about maybe having to find other work not as a teacher.  Above all, I was angry at Sweden in 2016.” A might also recognize that Sweden is no longer a place for Jews.