France’s government has released a public plan outlining measures it will enact to fight online racism and anti-Semitism.
A Europe-wide effort to force internet giants to remove “heinous, racist and anti-Semitic” content – be it in cartoons (see above), stories or fabricated journalism – is a key part of Prime Minister Edouard Philippe’s plan that is focusing on social media and prevention in schools.
AP reports Philippe said “I’m upset that nowadays, it seems easier to remove a pirate video of a soccer match than anti-Semitic comments” on social media.
The move follows months of unrest in parts of France, with some areas experiencing the worst instances of anti-Semitic behaviour since the end of World War II.
The emergence of a new kind of anti-Semitism, in a country with the largest Jewish population in western Europe, is well documented.
Last December French-Jewish families were reportedly being forced from their homes in Paris suburbs as part of an exodus fleeing daily assaults and threats, as Breitbart Jerusalem reported.
The sensation of “not feeling welcome” is nothing new to French Jews. In 2015, journalist Zvika Klein recorded the reaction to his taking to the streets of Paris wearing a traditional kippa. See the result for yourself below:
As Breitbart Jerusalem has reported, more and more French Jews are feeling so unsafe that they now feel they have no other choice but to move to Israel for safety.
They are continuing a trend that has seen tens of thousands of Jews quit the country.
More than 5,000 departures were recorded in 2016 on top of the record 7,900 who left in 2015 and 7,231 in 2014. In total, 40,000 French Jews have emigrated since 2006, according to figures cited by AFP.
On the evidence, that number will not be falling anytime soon, although Phillipe believes that legal action and education is the key.
He said French law will be changed to force internet platforms to detect, signal and remove illegal content. Philippe suggested substantial fines could be applied.
In schools, Philippe wants to create a team of experts to help teachers facing difficult situations related to racism and anti-Semitism.
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