Imagine this.READ THE REST
May – June 2008
Four Molotov cocktails are thrown into a Jewish neighborhood in
. Two days later, assailants burn down another Jewish neighborhood causing approximately 800 residents to flee. Crowds of people are seen cheering live on the main national TV channel RAI yelling: Jews out! The riot police is not even alerted at the time the broadcast takes place. Italy
During the next weeks, a number of similar incidents happen. The minister of interior, known for his anti-Semitic stands during his previous job as the minister of employment, decides the Jewish children should be fingerprinted for what he calls “safety reasons”.
The OSCE, organization which deals mainly with security issues and conflict prevention and resolution, known for taking extensive commitments to combating racism and promoting tolerance, announces it will discuss in one month’s time, during its next meeting in
, on Jewish-related issues. Vienna
The OSCE plans to have the following three sessions:
- Role and responsibility of regional and local authorities to assist in integrating Jews
- Good practices and major challenges in improving the situation of Jews at local level: examples from municipalities
- Policies to facilitate equal access of Jews to public services, in particular social services and education
Indeed the above are hard to imagine. Both the incidents and the reactions would be hardly believable even to the existing wishful European hardcore anti-Semites. It would be out-of-the-question that the OSCE would address only issues on the extreme margins of the relevant issue, and avoid mentioning ethnically motivated attacks or the blatant Italian officials anti-Semitism. Would be expected from leaders of the democratic world to speak harshly against
and condemn the acts of hate targeting Jews. Italy
The European Jews and Roma as ethnic groups have been primary targets for European racism for centuries and were the main targets of extermination policies of the Nazi Germany. There are many similarities regarding between anti-Semitism and anti-Gypsyism which makes the comparison salient.
Unfortunately when it comes to Roma the European Union, the UN and the OSCE seems to have a blind spot. Blatant racism, hate speech and nazi style demonstrations against Roma are rather justified than fought against.
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