Many European Jews are afraid to identify themselves as Zionists and supporters of Israel, the leaders of several national branches of the Women’s International Zionist Organization told The Jerusalem Post on Monday.
Speaking at the organization’s annual meeting in Tel Aviv, the heads of the WIZO branches in France, Belgium, Germany and Sweden described the difficulties facing their constituents in a Europe in which Jewish nationalism is decreasingly acceptable.
“There is a very bad atmosphere around Jewish people,” said Joelle Lezmi, the president of WIZO France.
“People do not have the right to wear kippot; Jewish people are afraid to put on their Star of David; Jewish people have no place to say I am Jewish, just to say I am Jewish. If you are to say ‘I am a Zionist’ it’s quite a revolution.”
A similar situation exists in Sweden, admitted Susanne Sznajderman, Lezmi’s Swedish counterpart.
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