Jews leaving Sweden....
Why stay in Sweden...the country is increasingly beyond the pale....
Threats and harassment are becoming increasingly commonplace for Jewish residents in Malmö in southern Sweden, leading many Jews to leave the city out of fear for their safety.
“Threats against Jews have increased steadily in Malmö in recent years and many young Jewish families are choosing to leave the city,” Fredrik Sieradzki of the Jewish Community of Malmö (Judiska Församlingen i Malmö) told The Local.
“Many feel that the community and local politicians have shown a lack of understanding for how the city’s Jewish residents have been marginalized.”
Last year there were 79 crimes against Jewish residents reported to the police in Malmö, roughly double the number reported in 2008, according to the Skånska Dagbladet newspaper.
“That probably doesn’t tell the whole story because not everyone chose to make a report. Perhaps they fear they will add to an already infected situation,” Susanne Gosenius, a hate crimes coordinator with the Skåne police, told the newspaper, which has published series of articles about the growing anti-Semitism in Malmö.
In addition, Jewish cemeteries and synagogues have repeatedly been defaced with anti-Semitic graffiti, and a chapel at another Jewish burial site in Malmö was firebombed in January of last year.
There are currently an estimated 3,000 Jews living in the south of Sweden, with most residing in Malmö, Helsingborg, and Lund.
About 700 currently belong to the Jewish Community of Malmö, but the group's membership rolls have been dropping steadily in recent years.
“It’s sort of a downward spiral,” Sieradzki told The Local.
“People want to maintain their Jewish traditions, but when they see others leave after being threatened, they begin to question whether or not they want to stay here.”
Skånska Dagbladet highlighted the case of Marcus Eilenberg, a 32-year-old father of two who has decided to move to Israel.
“My children aren’t safe here. It’s going to get worse,” he told the newspaper
Eilenberg’s family on his mother’s side has roots in Malmö that date back to the 1800s, while his father’s parents came to Sweden in 1945 after surviving Auschwitz.
He describes for the newspaper how people call him “damn Jew” (‘jävla jude’) when he walks to synagogue and that his friends are frequently harassed and threatened.
“Imagine that my family can’t feel safe in fantastic Sweden. It’s really terrible,” Eilenberg told Skånskan.