Rabbi Sessler D’var Torah

Solidarity with Europe’s Jews

It’s been 12 years since the Chief Rabbi of France called upon French Jewry to stop wearing a kippah in public, because it is too dangerous. In numerous other cities and countries in Europe the situation is very much the same.

Last week, a Torah teacher was stabbed in the French city of Marseille. As a result, an unprecedented campaign of solidarity with French and European Jewry ensued. Many supporters of the Marseille soccer team declared that they intend to wear a kippah as an expression of solidarity with the local Jewish community this weekend. On Facebook and on the internet, hundreds of people throughout France and Europe uploaded their photos wearing a kippah, including the celebrated British soccer player David Beckham.

It is refreshing and encouraging, indeed heartwarming, to finally see mainstream Europeans standing up vocally and powerfully against the hatred and violent attacks against our people. It seems that after 25 years of Jews living in fear in Europe, finally, Europeans are relearning again what they had to learn the hard way seventy years ago during World War Two, namely – that antisemitism always starts with Jews, but it never ends with Jews, it always metastasizes and infiltrates other elements of the body-politic, and contaminates it with senseless and unspeakably cruel and barbaric violence.

Antisemitism is anti-Humanity, and it is very encouraging to see Europeans waking up from their illusory political slumbers, and starting to realize just that.

Shabbat Shalom,

Tal Sessler

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