Skip to main content

Europe’s Jews Are Making an Exodus



Over the last several weeks, Jewish families across the continent of Europe have been making tough decisions. Despite the fact that their lives and the lives of their extended family and friends have been rooted in Europe for generations, many have made the decision to pack up and start anew in Israel and America. After the Charlie Hebdo and Kosher market attacks in Paris, many Parisian Jews have accelerated their plans to flee. The Washington Post tells the story of one family,

The French government has scrambled to persuade them not to go, aware that if Jews see little future for themselves in Saint-Mandé — where Muslims, Christians and Jews have long lived in harmony — then there’s no chance for the European ideal of interfaith coexistence.

And yet, for a rapidly rising number of Jews, here in Saint-Mandé and across France, the decision has already become clear.

“The question is not will they leave or won’t they leave,” said Alain Assouline, a prominent Saint-Mandé doctor and president of a Jewish community center. “The question has become when they will leave.”

For [Jennifer] Sebag, her husband and their three young sons, the answer is within months. After pondering a move for economic reasons, the attack on a market where they regularly shop erased all doubts.

They will travel this summer from the only home they have ever known to Israel, where they have no close friends or relatives, where they don’t speak the language, and where war flares all too regularly. There they will start anew, much as Sebag’s grandparents did decades ago.

While French emigration to Israel has been on the rise in the last decade, numerous Antisemitic events have only increased the wave of those fleeing to build new lives. Hotlines created for French Jews with questions about ‘making aliyah,’ as moving to Israel is known, have lit up like never before. The Jewish Agency predicts unprecedented numbers of immigrants in the next year, as violence in France has seemingly hit a breaking point.

Jews across the English Channel are facing a similar decision. The Telegraph profiled one family, the Goulds, who are leaving their upper middle class lives in Britain to pack up and move to Arizona due to an uptick in Antisemitism immediately surrounding the family and throughout Europe.

Comment below! Do you think Europe’s Jews should flee?