It was the onset of a phenomenon that later became known as “new anti-Semitism,” in which Jews are targeted as Israel’s agents or as payback for the Jewish state’s perceived abuses.
But over the past four years, anti-Semitism in Western Europe has mutated yet again, reverting to its 20th-century economic elements and gaining a strong foothold in swelling populist movements. Purveyors don’t necessarily share a common political view, but they agree that Jews are the exemplars of an establishment they seek to overthrow.
But the main and possibly most troubling distinction of the latest new anti-Semitism is how it cuts across major religious and ideological differences among its propagators, uniting unlikely bedfellows such as neo-Nazis, communists and jihadists under a single cause.
In Spain, the leader of the rising far-left Podemos party, Pablo Iglesias, has hosted guests many times who inveigh against “the Jewish control on Wall Street,” as one of them defined it recently on his show “Fort Apache,” which airs on the Iranian regime’s propaganda channel HispanTV.
“You’ve always had this sentiment under the surface,” he said. “It’s coming out as a result of the collapse of the political center, loss of faith in democratic institutions and economic crises, for which Jews are being blamed.”