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News Releases 2023

by Shimon Samuels, Director for International Relations of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre

Paris, 24 November 2023

The Years of Hamas Charter’s incendiary “articles on the Jews” have now become “the Hamas Doctrine”, with 7 October dubbed as their “first large-scale military exercise”.

They have been using access to the Arab press as a propaganda outlet for their Charter, in particular articles 22, 32 and 35, that speak of “the evils” of the Zionists worldwide, controlling the UN (sic!), peddling imperialism and colonialism, etc. a language taken nearly verbatim from “the Protocols of the Elders of Zion” (the Russian 19th century antisemitic forgery).

Hamas has also berated Israel’s Arab interlocutors, who will “pay the price” of negotiating with Israel, in particular:
- Saudi Arabia, as custodian of the Holy Sites (Mecca and Medina) “may once again be attacked by the Houthis”;
- the King of Morocco, as leader of the Al-Quds (Jerusalem) Committee, “has to join the fight as custodian of the third Holy Site in Islam”.

What are the lessons learned from antisemitic chants in Paris metro

Paris, 16 November 2023

Paris Metro commuters were shocked by a gang of eight youths singing hateful Hitler chants, screaming: “F-ck the Jews and their mothers, long live Palestine, yeah, yeah! F-ck the Jews and their grand-mothers, we are Nazis and proud!”

Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr Shimon Samuels, noted, “Just like the nauseating Hamas videos of elated terrorists brutalizing babies, teenagers, women and elderly on 7 October, this gang also filmed its hate and distributed it through social media. Similar chants were repeated in school corridors and at ‘pro-Palestine’ rallies...”

by Dr Shimon Samuels, Director for International Relations

Paris, 15 November 2023

In March 1979, I was invited to Cairo in my capacity as Deputy Director of the Leonard Davis Institute for International Relations of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The occasion was to celebrate the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel.

Our group was graciously received by Hamdy al-Gamal, Chief Editor of the State owned newspaper, Al Ahram. Al-Gamal fully supported the peace process.

Answering my question regarding those opposing the process, his response was chilling: “The train has left the station. We must see that there is not another train, pummelling towards us on the same tracks.”

Paris, 5 November 2023

Dr Shimon Samuels, Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, has tabulated the number of antisemitic acts in France until 3 November.

In less than 4 weeks since Hamas’ 7 October terror attack against Israel and its people, there have been 887 antisemitic incidents (more than double the number for 2022) and 442 arrests in France. Of these, 257 antisemitic acts occurred in Paris and its suburbs, where about 90 suspects were arrested.

Cases included:

Paris, 2 November 2023

1) I arrived in Paris in 1979, following the bombing of a centre for Jewish students (33 wounded). The perpetrators claimed to be an “anti-Zionists Collective”.

2) On 3 October 1980, the day of Succoth, I accompanied Aliza Shagrir, visiting from Israel, to a fruit shop. I went straight, she walked towards the Copernic synagogue and died in the blast of a terrorist attack (4 dead and about 40 wounded). The following morning, then French Prime Minister, Raymond Barre, stated: “This heinous attack which wanted to strike the Israelites who were going to the synagogue struck innocent French people.” Aliza was Israeli.

3) Over the following decade, a string of terror pervaded France. This included the murder of Israeli Embassy official, Yacov Bar-Simantov, by Georges Ibrahim Abdallah, leader of the FARL (a pro-Palestinian Marxist group based in Lebanon). Abdallah is presently serving a life sentence in France, but extreme-left militants are campaigning for his release daily. In 1982, the Palestinian Abu-Nidal Organization gun rampage killed 6 and wounded 33 in the Rue des Rosiers “Chez Goldenberg” restaurant. Israel responded by entering Southern Lebanon, to hit the training camps for European terrorists. Fleeing back home and endangering the so-called "innocents”, the French, German and Italian authorities had to crack down effectively.