So what can governments and civil society in Europe do to combat anti-Semitism?
First, we need more leaders such as Mr. Valls speaking the truth and showing zero tolerance. When demonstrators at so-called “pro-Palestinian” rallies scream slogans like “Hamas, Hamas, Jews into the gas,” as has frequently happened around Europe, political leaders and the media can not stay silent. Public hate speech must not be tolerated and anti-Semitic acts need to be systematically prosecuted and punished.
Second, not all expressions of anti-Semitism should be fought with the same weapons. Regarding the Muslim community, for example, improving social cohesion is key. Better integrating Muslim Europeans is not only a virtue and a necessity in itself, it can also help lower the susceptibility of these communities to anti-Semitism and radicalization.
It is equally important to empower moderate Muslims. People such as Latifa Ibn Ziaten, whose son Imad was one of the French soldiers murdered by Merah, and who now visits France’s most difficult neighborhoods, speaking to youth groups and trying to steer them away from the influences of anti-Semites and extremists. There are many other such voices—Muslim entrepreneurs, writers, media personalities, students with the moral courage to confront the extremists within their communities. Let’s support their work and help build their networks.