Murder of Holocaust survivor shocks France

Mireille Knoll, an 85-year-old Holocaust survivor, was stabbed last week in her apartment in Paris. The key suspect is a petty criminal from her neighbourhood believed to have acted on Islamist motives. For many the case is reminiscent of the death of the 65-year-old Jewish woman Sarah Halimi, who was pushed from a nearby balcony by her neighbour a year ago amid cries of "Allahu akbar".

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Le Figaro (FR) /

Don't give anti-Semitism a chance

France must resolutely counter anti-Semitism, Le Figaro urges:

“We must open our eyes! The drop in the number of anti-Semitic acts in recent years can't conceal the hatred of Jews that has long been prevalent in many mosques, schools and neighbourhoods. The social networks and websites facilitate its propagation. The Islamist preachers contaminate the minds of innocent youths by hammering odious slogans into their heads. And by defending them some intellectuals and leftist politicians become guilty accomplices. ... Such barbarity must not become normality. We know full well where it comes from and how it's spread. So let's all reject it without mercy.”

La Repubblica (IT) /

An attack on the core of the European project

Historian Umberto Gentiloni also warns that the threat posed by anti-Semitism must not be underestimated. In La Repubblica he writes:

“This monster is not dead. It comes back to life every time our alertness wanes and people look away and act as if it were not necessary to value and defend the diversity of cultures and identities. After the end of the Second World War this was at the very core of the European project: the idea of creating a living space for everyone. A space of peaceful coexistence in which, after the horrors of the past, a new course would be adopted. A course against hate and oppression. This is why it is so disturbing that France is once again at the centre of anti-Semitic violence.”