Every third Norwegian believes Israel treats Palestinians like Nazis treated Jews, study says

While antisemitism in Norway in general on the decline, one in ten respondents say violence against Jews is justifiable

Itamar Eichner|
Every third Norwegian believes that Israel treats the Palestinians as badly as the Nazis treated the Jews, according to a survey by the Norwegian Center for Holocaust and Minority Studies.
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  • The survey also found that one in ten Norwegians believes violence against Jews is justifiable and that 63.3% of Muslims living in Norway agree that the Israeli treatment of Palestinians is similar to that of the Nazis toward Jews in World War II.
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    A protest at a Jewish synagogue in Norway
    A protest at a Jewish synagogue in Norway
    A protest at a Jewish synagogue in Norway
    (Photo: AFP)
    However, the study showed that antisemitism in Norway was on the decline. In 2011, the first year of the study, 12.5% of Norwegians had expressed prejudice toward Jews. This year, the number dropped to 9.3%.
    The study further revealed that 14% of Norwegians believe that Jews secretly conspire to promote their interests and that they have too much influence on the international economy. Eight percent of Norwegians think the Jews themselves are guilty of being oppressed.
    When asked which side of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict they come down on, 23% of Norwegians said they side with the Palestinians while 9% sided with Israel. The rest said they supported neither.
    Ervin Kohn, head of the Jewish community in Oslo, said that the figures regarding Jews were concerning. "We will never get rid of antisemitism. Even the Holocaust couldn't do that. Antisemitism must be fought continuously through information and creative work. Antisemitism must be illegitimate", he said.
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    אלימלך נורבגיה אוסלו הפגנה תמיכה בעד פלסטינים דגל דגלי פלסטין 2018
    אלימלך נורבגיה אוסלו הפגנה תמיכה בעד פלסטינים דגל דגלי פלסטין 2018
    A pro-Palestinian protest in Oslo
    (Photo: Shutterstock)
    "The claim that Israel treats Palestinians as bad as the Nazis treated the Jews is fundamentally wrong."
    Kohn pinned the blame on Norwegian media, from which the public draws information about Israel. "The public wants distorted headlines. The media ascribe false motives to Israel. Most of the media in Norway gives the impression that Israel enjoys bombing children in Gaza or that Israel wants to kill civilians," he said.
    "At the same time, the media downplays reports about Israeli actions being a response to the launching of 4,000 rockets."
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