UK antisemitic incidents at all-time high following the outbreak of Israel-Hamas war News
Andrew Davidson, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
UK antisemitic incidents at all-time high following the outbreak of Israel-Hamas war

British charity and advisory body, the Community Security Trust, released a report Thursday finding that antisemitic incidents were more common in 2023 since the group began tracking incidents in 1984. In 2023 there were 4,103 reported events, almost double the previous 2021 record of 2,255. Community Security Trust linked the 147-percent rise in anti-Jewish hate events to the October 7, 2023 Hamas attack on Israel, finding that two-thirds of the 2023 incidents reported took place on or after that date. This follows a global trend of rising antisemitism.

The report is divided into multiple sections, discussing incident categories, discourse, motivation, and ideology. The report also covered reporting on victims, offenders, trends and geography. Community Security Trust found that, although the vast majority of events (at least 85 percent) were motivated by anti-zionism or were related to the Israel-Hamas war, attacks were already on the rise before the October 7 attack.

However, the October 7 attack is shown to be a significant “trigger event.” The report shows that while trigger events involving Israel typically sparked a rise in antisemitism, the October 7 event had a particularly large impact. The report stated, “This trigger event had a seismic effect on antisemitic incident levels in the UK that outweighs the impact of previous wars involving Israel, and the impact was instant.” Community Security Trust suggested the increase “was a celebration of the Hamas attack on Israel, rather than anger at Israel’s military response in Gaza.”

The report also noted the nuance surrounding whether the hate events were antisemitic or anti-Israel, as the two are not interchangeable. Community Security Trust demonstrated the overlap between antisemitic and anti-Israel discourse and showed how they determined the motivation of the event for the report.

The report’s release coincides with a 600 percent rise in Islamophobic hate crimes—as reported by Tell MAMA—and represents the UK’s acknowledgment of a need to focus on hate crime reform.