The Community Security Trust (CST) recorded 1,309 anti-Semitic incidents around the UK in 2016, which represents a 36 per cent increase over the previous year and a new record total. Before that the highest annual total was 1,182 incidents recorded in 2014.
And the CST received another 791 reports of incidents in 2016 that were not deemed to be anti-Semitic and so were not included in the total.
The CST say there is no obvious single cause for the record total, but warn that anti-Semitism has increased to “unprecedented” levels between 2014 and 2016 following a string of high-profile problems in the Labour Party.
The highest monthly total for attacks came in May last year, shortly after Labour MP Naz Shah was suspended from the party, along with the former mayor of London, Ken Livingstone.
Apparently the most common type of incident involved verbal abuse directed in public at people who are clearly Jewish. But even verbal abuse is of significant concern so shortly after Holocaust Memorial Day on 27th January 2017, with its theme of ‘How can life go on?’
This Memorial Day occurs every year in recognition of the fact that there is a continuing need for vigilance in light of the troubling repetition of human tragedies in the world today, and the fact that genocide takes place as a process that starts with relatively minor incidents.