An unprecedented comprehensive worldwide survey by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) found that anti-Semitic attitudes are persistent and pervasive around the world.
More than one-in-four adults around the world, 26 percent of those surveyed, ‘’are deeply infected with anti-Semitic attitudes,’’ said Abraham H. Foxman Tuesday as he presented to the mediaThe ADL Global 100: An Index of Anti-Semitism. This figure represents an estimated 1.09 billion people around the world.
The highest concentration of respondents holding anti-Semitic attitudes was found in Middle East and North African countries (“MENA”), where nearly three-quarters of respondents, 74 percent of those polled, agreed with a majority of the anti-Semitic stereotypes that comprise the 11-question index.Non-MENA countries have an average index score of 23 percent.
Outside MENA, the index scores by region were as follows:
Eastern Europe: 34 percent
Western Europe: 24 percent
Sub-Saharan Africa: 23 percent
Asia: 22 percent
The Americas: 19 percent
Oceania: 14 percent
The 16 countries with the highest index scores of anti-Semitic views are all in the Middle East and North Africa.
Greece, with 69 percent of the adult population falling into the anti-Semitic category, was the highest country outside of MENA.
In other countries in the index anti-Semitism was found to be virtually non-existent, particularly in the Scandinavian countries and in Vietnam, Laos and the Philippines.
“While it is startling to see how high the level of anti-Semitism is in the Middle East and North African countries, the fact of the matter is even aside from those countries, close to a quarter of those polled in other parts of the world is infected with anti-Semitic attitudes,” said Foxman. “There is only a three-point difference when you take world attitudes toward Jews with the Middle East and North African countries, or consider the world without.”
Only 54 percent of those polled globally have ever heard of the Holocaust. Two out of three people surveyed have either never heard of the Holocaust, or do not believe historical accounts to be accurate.
“The level of anti-Semitism in some countries and regions, even those where there are no Jews, is in many instances shocking,” said Barry Curtiss-Lusher, ADL National Chair. “We hope this unprecedented effort to measure and gauge anti-Semitic attitudes globally will serve as a wake-up call to governments, to international institutions and to people of conscience that anti-Semitism is not just a relic of history, but a current event.”
At the same time, there are highly encouraging notes in the ADL survey. In majority English-speaking countries, the percentage of those with anti-Semitic attitudes is 13 percent, which is half the worldwide average.
Protestant majority countries in general have the lowest ratings of anti-Semitic attitudes, as compared to any other majority religious country.And 28 percent of respondents around the world do not believe that any of the 11 anti-Semitic stereotypes tested are “probably true.”
The top countries/territories in the ADL 100 Global Index are:
West Bank and Gaza – 93 percent of the adult population holds anti-Semitic views
Iraq – 92 percent
Yemen – 88 percent
Algeria – 87 percent
Libya – 87 percent
Tunisia – 86 percent
Kuwait – 82 percent
Bahrain – 81 percent
Jordan – 81 percent
Morocco – 80 percent
The lowest-ranked countries in the ADL Global Index are:
Laos – 0.2 percent of the adult population holds anti-Semitic views
Philippines — 3 percent
Sweden – 4 percent
Netherlands – 5 percent
Vietnam – 6 percent
United Kingdom – 8 percent
United States – 9 percent
Denmark – 9 percent
Tanzania – 12 percent
Thailand – 13 percent
TheADL Global 100 surveyed 53,100 adults in 102 countries and territories in an effort to establish, for the first time, a comprehensive data-based research survey of the level and intensity of anti-Jewish sentiment across the world.
“For the first time we have a real sense of how pervasive and persistent anti-Semitism is today around the world,” said Foxman, ADL National Director.“The data from the Global 100 Index enables us to look beyond anti-Semitic incidents and rhetoric and quantify the prevalence of anti-Semitic attitudes across the globe. We can now identify hotspots, as well as countries and regions of the world where hatred of Jews is essentially non-existent.”
ADL commissioned First International Resources to conduct the poll of attitudes and opinions toward Jews.The data was culled from interviews conducted between July 2013 and February 2014 in 96 languages and dialects via landline telephones, mobile phones and face-to-face discussions. Respondents were selected at random and constituted a demographically representative sample of the adult populations.
Respondents were asked a series of 11 questions based on age-old stereotypes about Jews, including classical stereotypes about Jewish power, loyalty, money and behavior. Those who responded affirmatively to six or more negative statements about Jews are considered to hold anti-Semitic attitudes.
The most widely accepted anti-Semitic stereotype worldwide is: “Jews are more loyal to Israel than to this country/the countries they live in.”Overall, 41 percent of those surveyed believe this statement to be “probably true.”This is the most widely accepted stereotype in five out of the seven regions surveyed.
The second most widely accepted stereotype worldwide is “Jews have too much power in the business world.” Overall, 35 percent of those surveyed believe this statement to be “probably true.”This is also the most widely held stereotype in Eastern Europe.
Among the 74 percent of those surveyed who indicated they had never met a Jewish person, 25 percent harbor anti-Semitic attitudes.Of the 26 percent overall who harbor anti-Semitic attitudes, 70 percent have never met a Jewish person.
Three out of 10 respondents, 30 percent, believe Jews make up between 1 to 10 percent of the world’s population. Another 18 percent believe Jews make up more than 10 percent of the world’s population. Sixteen percent (16%) responded less than 1 percent. (The actual number of Jewish people as a percentage of the world’s population is 0.19 percent).
“When it comes to Holocaust awareness, while only 54 percent of those polled had heard of the Holocaust — a disturbingly low number — the numbers were far better in Western Europe, where 94 percent of those polled were aware of the history,” Abraham Foxman said.
He added :“At the same time, the results confirm a troubling gap between older adults who know their history and younger men and women who, more than 70 years after the events of World War II, are more likely to have never heard of or learned about what happened to the six million Jews who perished.”