Moscow, November 24, Interfax - The main cause of anti-Semitism in the world is the unpunished dissemination of false information, the Chief Rabbi of Russia Berel Lazar said.
"There are a lot of myths and hate speech being replicated on the Internet. Unfortunately, we often do not see any serious reaction from the authorities to such phenomena," the rabbi said at the 3rd Moscow International Conference on Countering Anti-Semitism and Xenophobia Let's Protect the Future.
He cited as an example one of the anti-Semitic ideas that appeared recently. "During the coronavirus epidemic, many versions could be read that the epidemic is allegedly the result of a Jewish conspiracy, that Jews invented this virus and similar fabrications... When disputes about vaccinations flare up, it doesn't matter whether a person speaks for or against, you can still hear versions that Jews are to blame for the spread of the disease," Lazar complains.
He also pointed to the leading role of the state in the eradication of anti-Semitism. The rabbi told a story from his childhood, when he heard stories from his parents who miraculously escaped from the Holocaust. Then he asked his father at what point a Jew should understand that he should flee from this country. The answer was this: at the moment when the state refuses to protect its citizens.
Rabbi Lazar noted that certain successes have been achieved in Russia in the fight against xenophobia, the situation is improving. Nevertheless, he added, there is still a lot of work in this area.