The number of violent anti-Semitic assaults taking place in the United States rose dramatically last year, contributing to a 3 percent rise in the total number of anti-Jewish incidents reported in 2015, according to new data from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) which was presented to the Committee for Immigration, Absorption and Diaspora Affairs on Tuesday.

ADL’s annual Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents, issued today, recorded a total of 941 incidents in the US in 2015, an increase of about 3 percent from the 912 incidents recorded in 2014.

Fifty-six incidents were assaults, the most violent anti-Semitic category – representing a more than 50 percent rise from the 36 assaults reported in 2014.

Anti-Semitic assaults across the US doubled; MK Neguise: ”There is a general atmosphere of helplessness”

(Committee Chairman MK Avraham Neguise, archives)

Another troubling finding: anti-Semitic incidents at colleges and universities nearly doubled last year. A total of 90 incidents were reported on 60 college campuses in 2015, compared with 47 incidents on 43 campuses in 2014.

Campus anti-Semitic incidents accounted for 10 percent of the total incidents reported in the US in 2015.

Committee Chairman MK Avraham Neguise (Likud) said, ”During my visit to the United States I met with students who projected helplessness. I also met with the consul general, and there is a general atmosphere [of helplessness] due to the lack of resources at their disposal in the face of the giant organizations and foreign governments, also with regards to the lack of cooperation on the part of university heads.”

According to Yogev Karasenty, the Diaspora Affairs Ministry`s Director for Combating Anti-Semitism, ”Precisely in the most liberal states in the US there is the largest number of attacks. This is a worrying phenomenon connected to the spirit of the boycott movement.”

He said that there is a monitoring center which aims to examine the purchasers of ”Mein Kampf” online.

MK Yehuda Glick (Likud) added that ”The social media brutalized the society and there is an increase in hate crimes. It could very well be that the anti-Semitic trend is linked to that. We must remember that this is a negligible percentage out of 200 million Jews in the US. The US is not France, and the Jews there do not live in constant fear. Obviously each case should be dealt with, but we need to keep things in the right proportions.”

Elisheva, a student from New York, interning at the office of MK Aliza Lavie (Yesh Atid), said ”I do not encounter anti-Semitism on a daily basis. However, on my first day at university, I placed a mezuzah on the door, and two days later it was no longer there.”

Akiva Tor of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, ”There is no fundamental issue of anti-Semitism in the US. There are incidents, the cases are treated by the law authorities, and two of the presidential candidates have a child who is married to a Jew. In the case of online incitement, Twitter and Facebook have internal rules that forbid hate speech, but they are not enforced.”