Why Jews are Fleeing Europe and the U.S. for Israel

Why Jews are Fleeing Europe and the U.S. for Israel

Since October 7, 2023, antisemitism has risen to alarming levels in Europe and the United States (U.S.). CBS News reports that “Nearly 40% of antisemitic incidents in the world last year took place in Europe, and there was a spike after that Oct. 7 attack by Hamas. In Germany, they nearly doubled. In the U.K., they more than doubled. And in France, they nearly quadrupled” (Yahoo News).

The Anti-Defamation League reports there has been “8,873 antisemitic incidents in the United States in 2023 – the highest number of incidents reported since the organization began tracking in 1979. . . Last year, the number of antisemitic incidents outpaced the all-time high set in 2022 by 140%” (CNN). Hillel International reported there has been 1,826 “reported antisemitic incidents on college campuses since October 7 – a 700% increase compared to last year.”

This wave of antisemitism has become the catalyst for Jews in Europe and the U.S. to make Aliyah, to immigrate to the Promised Land of Israel. Jews in Europe and the U.S. believe they will be safer in Israel, even though it is continually threatened by the likes of Iran and under attack by Iranian-backed terrorist organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah. “Requests from French Jews to relocate to Israel have soared by 430% since October” (MSN). Israel National News also reported that “Last year, 1,100 French Jews left for Israel. This year there will be 4,500. Since 1972, over 100,000 French Jews moved to Israel (out of half a million). Before 2012, 500 Jews left France every year. Number multiplied tenfold.”

Sirpa Rautio, Director of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights noted “Europe is witnessing a wave of antisemitism, partly driven by the conflict in the Middle East. . . This severely limits Jewish people’s ability to live in safety and with dignity” (The Guardian).

The rise of antisemitism in France prompted the chief rabbi of the Great Synagogue of Paris, Moshe Sebbag, to observe, “There is no future for the in France. I tell all young people to go to Israel or a safer country” (Israel National News).

Germany’s antisemitism commissioner, Felix Klein, has condemned the increase in “anti-Jewish violence, warning, “People are shocked to hear news of houses where Jews live being marked with a Star of David. . . Because that, of course, rings a bell and brings us back to the most horrific times we had in this country” (The Guardian).

Well-known Dutch author, Leon de Winter, whose parents survived the Holocaust, predicts, “I think Jewish life in Europe will be a thing of the past by 2050. There is no future for them here and their desperate love for the old and beloved continent will die” (Israel National News).

Recently, I wrote in an article for Blessors of Israel that “All forms of antisemitism have Satan as their source” (What’s at the Heart of the Hatred for the Jews?). Yet it is important to remember that God is not done with Israel (Romans 11:1-2). In fact, God will use for good what Satan has meant for evil (Genesis 50:20). And God has promised to gather the Jews from the nations and bring them into the Promised Land in order to bless them through their Messiah (Ezekiel 37:21-27).

Now, like never before, Christians must pray for Israel and also her enemies, that the Holy Spirit will convict the lost of their need for the Savior of the world. Jesus Christ is coming back and when He does, “Every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and. . . every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:10-11).

by Dr. Matthew Dodd | July 19, 2024

The Majority of Americans Still Stand with Israel

It’s been almost five months since Hamas terrorists barbarically attacked Israel, murdering 1,200 people, burning and beheading babies in front of their parents, brutally raping women and young girls, and taking approximately 240 people hostage. Since that time, Israel has sought to remove the existential threat against its citizens by systematically and strategically attacking Hamas terrorists while also seeking to protect and preserve innocent Palestinians who have suffered under the diabolical Hamas regime.

While initial support for Israel’s right to defend and protect its people from future attacks was widespread, it did not take long for antisemitism to reveal its ugly face and turn the global narrative against Israel. Protests in major cities and college campuses filled the headlines along with calls from world leaders for a ceasefire.

Not much has changed. In fact, the anti-Israel propaganda has only intensified. In many ways, October 7, 2023 will go down in history as one of the most polarizing events in modern history.

Yet, there is a ray of hope when it comes to the Israel vs. Hamas narrative. On Monday, Harvard-Harris published the results from its latest poll and the findings reveal that the majority of Americans still support Israel. “The survey was conducted online within the United States from February 21-22 among 2,022 registered voters.”

The survey reported that 82% of respondents declared their support for Israel when asked, “In this conflict do you support more Israel or more Hamas?”  What is especially encouraging is that the poll found that 72% of 18-24 year olds support Israel even though U.S. colleges and universities are inundated with antisemitic professors and administrations, especially at the elite Ivy League institutions.

Harvard-Harris also reported that 68% of respondents said they believed “Israel is trying to avoid civilian casualties in fighting its war against Hamas. . .” Again, the polling results from the younger age groups is promising with 65% of 18-24 year olds and 70% of 25-34 years stating that they believe Israel is trying to avoid civilian casualties.

In terms of a ceasefire, 67% of respondents believe that a “Ceasefire should happen only after the release of all hostages and Hamas being removed from power.” And 63% of respondents also said they “support Israel continuing its ground invasion into Southern Gaza to root out the final elements of Hamas” even though “1.2 million civilians have taken shelter there and will be under significant risk of harm if Israel  pushes forward.” Finally, 78% of respondents believe Hamas must not be allowed to run Gaza after the war is over.

The results from the Harvard-Harris Poll were cause for encouragement for Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Yesterday, Netanyahu said, “Since the beginning of the war, I have been leading a political campaign whose purpose is to curb the pressures intended to end the war before its time, and on the other hand also to gain support for Israel. We have significant successes in this area, because today the Harvard-Harris poll. . . shows that 82% of the American public supports Israel. That means four out of five citizens in the United States support Israel and not Hamas. This gives us further strength to continue the campaign until complete victory.” (Israel National News)

While these polling results are encouraging to those of us who stand with Israel, we must remember the battle is not over yet. With Ramadan, Islam’s holy month, just days away, there are calls for the attacks against Israel to intensify.

But God is on the throne. He is the God who sees all, hears all, and knows all. Nothing escapes is watchful eye. And our God is answering our prayers.

So, may we stand with Israel as Isaiah the prophet declared in Isaiah 62:1, “For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not keep quiet, until her righteousness goes forth like brightness, and her salvation like a torch that is burning.” Blessors of Israel will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake we will not keep quiet. Please stand with us as we stand with Israel and pray for Israel and the leaders of these United States. Our God is mighty to save.

by Dr. Matthew Dodd | February 28, 2024

Why is Antisemitism Increasing at U.S. Colleges after October 7?
Columbia University in New York City

A lawsuit was filed today which alleges civil rights violations “due to an antisemitic hostile education environment” at Columbia University and Barnard College according to The Jerusalem Post. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Students Against Antisemitism, Inc., StandWithUs Center for Legal Justice along with several individual Jewish students.

The plaintiffs’ complaint alleges that “Columbia and Barnard’s Jewish and Israeli students have been physically assaulted, spat at, threatened, and subjected to relentless intimidation and vilification.”

In addition, the complaint “further alleges that Columbia and Barnard practice a double standard by which Jewish students are deemed unworthy of the protections afforded to non-Jewish students; hire and promote professors who support anti-Jewish violence and spread antisemitic propaganda; and repeatedly ignore Jewish and Israeli students’ safety concerns, even in the face of intolerable abuse.” (The Jerusalem Post)

The Jerusalem Post article also notes that the US Department of Education is currently investigating Columbia University for Title VI violations.

Unfortunately, the horrific events of October 7, 2023, when Hamas terrorists brutally murder 1,200 Israelis, raped women and young girls, beheaded and burned babies, and took 240 people hostage, did little to halt the rise of antisemitism at US colleges and universities. In fact, the opposite has been true because antisemitism at institutions of higher learning has been on the rise for some time.

Last year, Pastor Rich Jones rightly observed in an article for Blessors of Israel, “The toxic atmosphere on US campuses has been long in the making. . . . Volatile accusations against Israel of colonialism, ethnic cleansing, apartheid and war crimes, however, are often rooted in a lack of knowledge of history. Instead of colonialism, Israel has found itself on the receiving end of aggression resulting in numerous wars since Israel’s statehood in 1948. Pro-Palestinians on college campuses often chant, ‘From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.’ The meaning is clear, if Palestine will be free from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, the Jews must be defeated and annihilated.”

Former Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett was once asked in an interview, “When will the tension between the Palestinians and Israelis end?” Bennett’s reply captures the reality for Jews not only residing in Israel but around the world, when he said, “The answer is simple, tensions will end when they stop trying to kill us.”

The rise of antisemitism among our youth is cause for great concern because these young men and women will become tomorrow’s leaders and influencers.

Will you please join me in praying for Israel and her people?

by Dr. Matthew Dodd | February 22, 2024

What’s at the Heart of the Hatred for the Jews?

On Tuesday, February 13, the American Jewish Committee (AJC) published the survey results from their “2023 State of Antisemitism Report.” The AJC has been conducting similar surveys since 2019. This survey was conducted in the United States by telephone and online from October 5 – November 21, 2023. The nationally represented sample included 1,528 Jews who are 18 years of age or older. The survey results are deeply troubling.

The survey reported that “78 percent of respondents felt more insecure” following the Hamas terrorist attack against Israel on October 7, 2023. The survey also revealed that “63 percent of American Jews believe that their overall status in the US is ‘less safe’, compared with 41 percent in 2022 and 31 percent in 2021.”

Question: What’s really at the heart of antisemitism?

Answer: Spiritual Warfare.

The Apostle Paul wrote, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places” (Eph. 6:12).

All forms of antisemitism have Satan as their source. Ever since the Fall of Adam and Eve, Satan has attempted to destroy the Messianic line that would ultimately defeat him (Gen. 3:15).

Bible scholar, Arnold Fruchtenbaum rightly observes,

“[A]ll anti-Semitic campaigns throughout Jewish history have been instigated by Satan. . . . Satan works on the principle that whomsoever the Lord loves, he will hate. God, throughout the Prophets and the New Testament, spelled out His eternal love for the people of Israel; therefore, Satan has had a perpetual war against the Jews, seeking to destroy them at every possible opportunity” (Arnold Fruchtenbaum, The Footsteps of the Messiah, third edition, Ariel Ministries. Kindle, loc. 8852).

Prior to the first advent of Jesus Christ, Satan tried to rid creation of the Jews through repeated attacks. For example, Satan attempted to exterminate the Jews through Pharoah’s order to kill all male infants born to Hebrew families (Exod. 1:15-16; 22). Later, Satan sought to end the Hebrew people through Haman’s nefarious plot against the Jews as recorded in Esther 3. Satan also tempted Jesus Christ in order to disqualify Him from being our Savior (Matt. 4:1-11).

But on the cross at Calvary, Jesus Christ not only sealed our victory over sin and death, He sealed Satan’s fate forever. The Apostle Paul triumphantly declared, “When He disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him” (Col. 2:15).

Though Satan’s future is sealed, he has not given up the fight. He wants to destroy Israel to prevent the return of Jesus Christ and the establishment of the Millennial Kingdom. Through antisemitic warfare, Satan seeks to remove Israel from the face of the earth so that there will not be a remnant from Israel for Christ to rule over. But again, Satan’s future is sealed. Jesus Christ will return as the “KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS” (Rev. 19:16). And after the thousand-year reign of Christ, Rev. 20:10 states, “And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.”

As Christians, it is important for us to understand what is behind all forms of antisemitism. The truth is, we are in a real battle. This is spiritual warfare.

The Apostle Paul recognized there is a real war and that Satan is trying to eternally destroy those whom God loves. In his last letter to Timothy, Paul did not say, “I have danced the good dance.” Paul said, “I have fought the good fight” (2 Tim. 4:7).

We must rise up and do likewise. We must rise up and pray for Israel. We must rise up and reject all forms of antisemitism. We must also rise up and proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ because it is only through Jesus Christ that Israel and the world will be truly blessed. Will you please join me in praying for Israel and her people?

by Dr. Matthew Dodd | February 16, 2024

In an August 7, 2023 Jewish News Syndicate (JNS) article, Menachem Wecker reports on an all-too-familiar antisemitic activity, this from one of America’s most prestigious universities, Princeton, which is apparently allowing one of the most outrageous anti-Jewish accusations to be propagated. And it is not the first time this has happened at Princeton. In fact, these experiences are too common on liberal university campuses in the United States.

In what is described as a “modern-day antisemitic blood libel,” one of many spread through the centuries, a forthcoming Princeton University course reading list includes The Right to Maim: Debility, Capacity, Disability by Jasbir Puar, a Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies and Director of the Graduate Program in Women’s and Gender Studies at Rutgers University.

Published in 2017 by Duke University Press, the book won the National Women’s Studies Association’s Alison Piepmeier Book Prize in 2018. The book is part of a sample reading list for an upcoming Princeton University Humanities course.

The book promotes “queer”/homosexual/transgender, progressive liberal agendas along with Black Lives Matter propaganda and other social justice themes. The book blames nearly all of the world’s ills on the United States and Israel. 

Arsen Ostrovsky, CEO of the International Legal Forum, a network of lawyers, wrote a letter to Christopher Ludwig Eisgruber, President of Princeton, and Behrooz Ghamari-Tabrizi, Chair of Princeton’s Near Eastern Studies Department.

In the letter he writes, “The book in question contains a number of very serious and defamatory accusations, primarily that the Israel Defense Forces is harvesting the organs of Palestinians, including by ‘shooting to maim, rather than to kill,’ in order to create a ‘mass debilitation of Palestinian bodies.’ This charge is not only demonstrably false, but a modern-day antisemitic blood libel.”

Ostrovsky reminds that Princeton hosted a lecture in February by Mohammed El-Kurd, who he describes as “a notorious Jerusalem-based Palestinian activist, whom the Anti-Defamation League has called an ‘unvarnished, vicious’ antisemite, and who himself has also sickeningly accused Israelis of harvesting and eating the organs of Palestinians.”

Ostrovsky told JNS that his group requests the book be removed because it lacks educational value and scholarly merit, and because of the “potential for incitement to racial hatred and violence against the Jewish community by the use of age-old antisemitic blood libels.”

As reported in the JNS article, Morton Klein, National President of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA), Susan Tuchman, Director of the Center for Law and Justice, and Jonathan Ginsburg, Managing Director of ZOA Campus, also wrote to Satyel Larson, Assistant Professor of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton, and the Professor for the course The Healing Humanities: Decolonizing Trauma Studies from the Global South, listed as an offering in fall 2023-24, stating “Puar’s book is filled with anti-Israel falsehoods. Mandating your students to read this antisemitic book will likely lead them to unwarranted animosity toward Israel and Jews.” They added, “We strongly urge you to replace Puar’s book with a book that is based on the facts.”

They urge Princeton to rethink the “misguided and dangerous decision,” suggesting “If the goal is to educate, rather than indoctrinate Princeton students with false anti-Israel propaganda, then there are accurate books about the Israeli-Palestinian Arab conflict to include on your syllabus.” They conclude “Puar’s book is not worthy of a place on any reading list at Princeton and should be removed from yours.”

In a follow-up JNS opinion article, Davis Suissa summarizes “In his book Israel Denial, scholar Cary Nelson asserts that Puar’s work ‘suffers from basic flaws in the principles and practices that guide it—her methodology, her standards of evidence, her style of argumentation, her lack of interest in opposing views, her penchant for drawing conclusions unsupported by facts, and her willingness to let political convictions guide every aspect of her anti-Zionist project.’”

Blessors’ Key Takeaways

  • Antisemitism is on the rise in colleges and universities across the United States (See “Anti-Semitism on College Campuses across US”).
  • Books that lack educational value and scholarly merit should not be part of an educational curriculum.
  • Books passed-off as scholarly works should be reviewed by educational institutions, especially when they are grossly antisemitic and when they make outrageous claims that have no substantiation, which is the “luxury” of Israel’s enemies, who regularly fabricate stories, alter events, misreport, or purposely mislead receivers of their messages/reports.
  • Efforts to indoctrinate students in discredited conspiracies should be challenged, and blatant antisemitic propaganda promoted by any institution should be exposed and rejected.

Blessors’ Bottom Line

  • All forms of antisemitism have Satan as their source (See “What’s at the Heart of Anti-Semitism?”). 
  • Though Satan’s future is sealed, he has not given up the fight. He wants to destroy Israel to prevent the return of Jesus Christ and the establishment of His Millennial Kingdom (Revelation 19-20).
  • Christians must understand what is behind all forms of antisemitism and reject whatever form antisemitism takes.

Geoff Hetrick and Dr. Matthew Dodd

August 11, 2023