Tuesday, March 20, 2007

French Jews Seek

Political Asylum

In United States

We are watching history repeat itself like a ghost living out the traumatic events of its life over and over again.

More than seven thousand French Jews have signed a petition asking America for political asylum because of rampant anti-Semitism in France:

French Jews petition U.S. for asylum

JTA "Following the barbarous murder of a young Jew because he was Jewish, in the context of the rise in anti-Semitic acts committed by Islamic fundamentalists, numerous members of the community no longer feel safe in France," reads the petition, which was sent to the U.S. Congress. The reference was to Ilan Halimi, a 23-year-old Parisian Jew who was kidnapped and tortured to death last year by an anti-Semitic gang.

The petition asks Congress to enact a law according refugee status to French Jews. "We believe that the United States, known for its traditional welcome to those under threat in their native lands, must open its doors to us," the petition says. French communal officials reacted with outrage. "This petition is bizarre, stupid and out of place," Haim Musicant, director of CRIF, the umbrella organization of secular French Jewish groups, told Israel's Ma'ariv newspaper. "I don't feel threatened in France, and the authorities are doing everything they can to protect the Jewish community. French Jews don't need this kind of petition."

Will the United States lift its hands to help the Jews this time?