Attacks, insults, hostility, intimidation, violence and property damage of Jewish institutions: For Jews in Germany anti-Semitism is part of everyday life. A targeted attack, as in Halle by a presumed right-wing culprit, in which several people are killed and much more should be targeted murdered, fortunately rare - but the number of attacks, hostility and threats for people of Jewish faith in the Federal Republic since Years high.
This is shown by the figures of the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA), which has been conducting public statistics on politically motivated crime since 2001. Accordingly, the anti-Semitic attacks, which had a political background, increased from 1,691 cases in 2001 to 1,799 in 2018 - that was a good five attacks per day. The least of these offenses existed in 2010, but for this year, too, the statistics list 1,239 offenses.
The police statistics also shows that most attacks have a right-wing extremist background. Thus, most anti-Semitic acts of violence are right-motivated. This is also stated by the Expert Group on Anti-Semitism of the Federal Government in its most recent report.
The case numbers are collected by the police authorities of the Länder and transmitted to the Federal Criminal Police Office for nationwide registration and evaluation via the Land Criminal Police Offices. However, the statistics have some pitfalls. For one thing, not all acts involved physical violence, such as recently in Bavaria, when a man threw a stone at a woman's head in the Rottal-Inn district because he had heard her speak Hebrew or, as in Berlin, where a young man Man was punched in the face by a stranger because he had talked to friends in the early morning in front of a disco in Hebrew.
Often these are also forms of desecration and insult. In August, for example, a man spit on a rabbi and insulted him and his families in front of a synagogue in Munich. In July, unidentified persons threw 30 gravestones in the local Jewish cemetery and smeared them with Nazi symbols.
According to BKA statistics, there were 69 violent attacks last year with a political hate motivation for Jews in the Federal Republic - that was more than one action per week. The number has risen slightly. In 2001 there were 28 such police reported attacks, in 2007 there were 64.
Police statistics do not reflect reality, experts say
The expert group anti-Semitism of the Federal Government, however, points out that these numbers must not be one-to-one transmitted to reality, but must assume a higher number of unreported cases. The Central Council of Jews also warned that anti-Semitic incidents would increase and become more brutal.
In fact, the police can only list the acts in their statistics that they themselves know about - if incidents are not reported, they can not appear in the official data. And sometimes deeds are recorded, but not classified as anti-Semitic. Because that depends on the perception and certain criteria, which presuppose a problem awareness. "Ultimately it depends on the experience, the sensitivity and the level of knowledge of the investigating officials, whether an anti-Semitic offense is recognized as such and correctly classified," it says a report of the Commission of Experts of the Federal Government. If it concerns, for example, graffiti and no perpetrator can be determined, the motive must be indirectly opened up by a hypothetical motivational subordination.
And then there are problems with the definition of anti-Semitism. In general, anti-Semitism is considered to be a specific perception of Jews, which can be expressed as hatred of this group of people. This may be directed in words or deeds either against Jewish persons and against their property or Jewish community institutions or religious institutions. But there are also anti-Semitic attacks directed against non-Jews. Overall, experts also differentiate five different forms of anti-Semitism - religious, social, political, national and racist. All five forms are differentiated by the ideology behind the hatred. Sometimes there are attacks on Jews, who are actually motivated anti-Israeli. Thus, the group of experts anti-Semitism finds that there is a connection between the police-documented cases and about the Israel-Palestine conflict.