A report on antisemitism in schools in the Swedish multicultural city of Malmo has made the claim that much of the hatred toward Jewish students comes from students of Arab and Middle Eastern backgrounds.
The February report “Schoolyard racism, conspiracy theories and exclusion,” looked specifically at antisemitism and discrimination toward Jewish people in the city’s school system and found that issues such as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict played a large role.
Some Arab-background students, particularly those linked to Palestine, are said to even praise Nazi leader Adolf Hitler in the playground according to testimony from school staff.
“It was Arabic students who had a passion for Hitler and I just assume and conclude that it comes from antisemitism. They had well recently learned about the Holocaust and got to the fact that Hitler was on their side in some way and that he was good in some way because he had killed so many Jews,” the school official said.
According to a report from Nyheter Idag, some member of the school staff were also accused of naming antisemitic remarks and using antisemitic jargon.
Mirjam Katzin, the author of the report, claimed that only 27 of the city’s 63 primary school principals actually sent the survey to their staff and the report even claimed that there were several schools in the city where Jews were simply not welcome.
“Jews stay away from certain schools because they do not feel safe going to certain schools. There is a list of schools that are okay for Jews and not. Actually, all high schools are blacklisted except a few,” an unnamed student said.
The report comes after some young Jewish people spoke out about antisemitism in Malmo in 2019, with teen Daniel Vaknine also claiming that many high schools in the city were not safe for Jewish students.
“Uncertainty means that you cannot go to school with a visible Star of David because then there is a high risk of being threatened, or that someone follows you from the school or even being beaten,” he said.
In that same year, the city’s Jewish congregation claimed Malmo was becoming a no-go area for Jews and that the number of Jews in the city had shrunk from 842 people in 1999 to just 387 members in 2019.