Letter - From the ADL - Anti-Semitism in Sweden - NYTimes.com
To the Editor:
Re “Even Sweden” (editorial, Sept. 28):
The perception of Sweden’s “reputation for fairness and tolerance” has taken many hits before the election of the Sweden Democrats to Parliament and is undeserved.
In 2009, Sweden recorded its highest number of anti-Semitic incidents ever. Over the last four months, a synagogue was firebombed, a rabbi was attacked in the street, and a bomb threat was called in to a Jewish community center.
While the Sweden Democrats are clearly anti-Muslim (and should be shunned), there were fewer reported anti-Muslim incidents last year than there were anti-Semitic incidents despite the much larger Muslim community.
The Swedish Committee Against Anti-Semitism has also lamented that “prejudice against Jews is spreading under a very thin veneer” of anti-Israel activity. Riots greeted an Israeli tennis team at a Davis Cup match in Malmo, whose mayor said (on another occasion), “We accept neither Zionism nor anti-Semitism,” equating Jewish national self-determination with the oldest form of bigotry in the world.
Yes, even Sweden needs to tackle racism — in all its guises.
Abraham H. Foxman
National DirectorAnti-Defamation League
New York, Sept. 28, 2010