Monitoring Report: Mobilizations of Israel-Related Antisemitism in Germany in 2021

An international mobilization of Israel-related antisemitism by organizations affiliated with or sympathetic to the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood and the terrorist groups Hamas and PFLP provided the backdrop for numerous incidents of violence and threats against Jews last May. Many anti-Semitic incidents occurred in the context of anti-Israel rallies, but for Jewish communities the threat of antisemitism was felt in many ways in everyday life. This is according to the joint report by the Federal Association of Research and Information Centers on Antisemitism e.V. (Bundesverband RIAS) and the International Institute for Education and Research on Antisemitism (IIBSA) on antisemitic incidents in the context of the escalation of violence in the Middle East in May 2021.

The report, “Mobilizations of Israel-Related Antisemitism in Germany in 2021,” looks at the international and nationwide mobilization of Israel-related antisemitism in May 2021, as well as the antisemitic incidents in Germany that became known between May 9 and May 24, 2021, during the period of armed conflict between Hamas and Israel.

The IIBSA research institute’s analyses show a broad mobilization of antisemitism that ranged from leftist/anti-imperialist spectrum to the political center to nationalist, neo-Nazi, and Islamist milieus. Various international actors and their sympathizers were involved in inciting antisemitic hatred, violence or terrorism, such as the Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), the Millî Görüş movement, the Grey Wolves and the Turkish Presidency for Religious Affairs, Diyanet. Organizations close to or sympathetic to the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood and the terrorist groups Hamas, such as the Palestinian Community in Germany (PGD), played a special role in the run-up to the armed conflict.

Coinciding with the escalation in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict between May 9 and May 24, 2021, the federal association RIAS documented 261 antisemitic incidents with a corresponding reference throughout Germany – an average of more than 16 incidents per day. Among other things, 10 attacks, 22 targeted damage to property and 18 threats were known.

Antisemitism was not only observed at anti-Israel rallies, but was an everyday phenomenon for Jews: they encountered it at work, in conversations and discussions among acquaintances or friends, in the vicinity of synagogues, during chance encounters in the supermarket, on public transport, on the street and in their own living environment.

Link to report (German)