Anti-Semitism in Russia in 2000: An Overview

Introduction
Violence Against Jews
Anti-Semitism in Politics
Ultranationalist Organizations
Hate on the Internet
Russia's Response to Anti-Semitism
What Needs to be Done

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David Duke in Russia

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Introduction

Anti-Semitism remains one of the most common expressions of ethnic and religious intolerance and xenophobia in Russia today. Russia's record of anti-Semitism throughout most of its history is well known.

Statistics do not reflect the full extent of Russian anti-Semitism and make the problem seem less serious than it actually is.
But anti-Jewish prejudices and conduct are not only a heritage of the Tsarist and Communist past. At any given moment in Russian history, anti-Semitism and the type of response it receives reflects the current economic, social and political situation in Russia and the level of maturity of its civil society. In 2000, similar to previous years in post-Communist Russian history, the Russian response to anti-Semitism remained ambiguous while the number of anti-Semitic incidents remained consistent with levels reported in 1999.

Based upon statistics, it might seem that anti-Semitism is not a major problem. This, however, is not the reality. The situation is more serious than any available numbers suggest. It is difficult to get precise figures because of the lack of a monitoring structure and a justified lack of public trust in the willingness and ability of law enforcement to combat hate-based crimes and activities.

The problem of anti-Semitism in Russia remains an issue of considerable concern to the Jewish community in Russia and abroad mainly due to two reasons.

  • Contemporary Russian anti-Semitism is rooted in the language and ideology of Soviet anti-Jewish campaigns, and Russian society has yet to realize the extent of this bias to be able to remedy the situation.


  • Russian officials and law enforcement do not do enough to combat anti-Semitism and to openly condemn its manifestations when a need arises. Russian leaders’ statements criticizing anti-Semitism are usually intended for the international community. Officials do not feel comfortable enough to come out domestically against anti-Semitism and xenophobia.


Next: Violence Against Jews


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