Photo Credit: Asher Schwartz

The chairman of the Jewish community in Bamberg, Bavaria, dispatched a scathing letter to a German Green Party parliamentary leader, accusing him of failing to confront Islamic-animated antisemitism in his recent speech on Jew-hatred.

Andreas Schwarz, the party’s leader in the legislature of Baden-Württemberg, delivered a speech earlier this month titled “Baden-Württemberg takes a clear stance against antisemitism.” In it, he failed to mention the spread of Iranian regime-, Palestinian- and Turkish-animated antisemitism in the southwestern state.


The Jewish Press obtained the March 12 German-language letter by Martin Arieh Rudolph, the Bamberg Jewish leader, in which he wrote to Schwarz: “Unfortunately, you didn’t comment anywhere in the speech or speech draft on Islamic antisemitism, Iranian antisemitism and Palestinian antisemitism, i.e. the entire eliminatory hatred of Jews.”

Rudolph’s letter is a rare example of explicit criticism from a German Jewish community of the Green Party’s appeasement of Muslim antisemites.

Rudolph has taken the lead among German Jewish community leaders in addressing the dangers of the Islamic Republic of Iran. He asked Schwarz, “If you’re giving a speech on the subject of a ‘clear stance against antisemitism,’ why don’t you address the Iranian mullah regime’s worst hatred of Jews, which is about to destroy Israel, our religious and spiritual homeland, and is again targeting millions of Jews for murder, with atomic bombs?

He added that Schwarz also failed to “mention the exponentially increasing number of incidents based on antisemitism among Muslims in this country.”

Rudolph also took a German civil servant, Michael Blume, to task for incompetence and alleged antisemitism.

“Now it is well known that the government of Baden-Württemberg permits itself to have an antisemitism commissioner who, to put it mildly, has not properly done his job so far,” Rudolph wrote in his letter. “According to a decision of the Hamburg Regional Court, this antisemitism commissioner, his name is Dr. Michael Blume, can even be called antisemitic.”

Rudolph continued, “The Simon Wiesenthal Center in the US—this is not just any institution—had Dr. Blume on its list of the worst antisemites of all time, and there’s a good chance he’ll be on that list again this year. As a state official, Blume has not only failed to condemn the Iranian mullah regime’s eliminatory hatred of Jews, he even describes his critics as right-wing extremists!”

The Hamburg court ruling said Blume can be termed antisemitic because he labeled German Jews as “right-wing extremists” and denigrated a founder of the IDF, Orde Wingate, as a “war criminal.”

Since 2019, experts in the field of antisemitism have urged that Blume resign or be fired from his position as Baden-Württemberg’s state commissioner for combating antisemitism.

In 2019, Dr. Efraim Zuroff, the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s chief Nazi-hunter, told this writer that Blume should resign and apologize to Malca Goldstein-Wolf, a German Jewish activist who campaigns against BDS. Blume, writing on an anti-Israel website, compared Goldstein-Wolf with Adolf Eichmann, one of the principal organizers of the Holocaust.

Antisemitic crimes have mushroomed in Baden-Württemberg during Blume’s time as commissioner. The Südwest Presse news outlet reported last year that antisemitic crimes nearly doubled in 2021.

Rudolph and other critics accuse the Baden-Württemberg government and Blume of allowing a Turkish suspect, Serkan P., to flee after the state after he sought to torch a synagogue in the city of Ulm.

According to the Stuttgarter Nachrichten newspaper, the state government failed to notify the German federal government that Serkan P. fled to his native Turkey. The authorities in Baden-Württemberg refuse to say whether they filed an arrest request for Serkan P. with Interpol or asked Ankara to extradite Serkan P.

Rudolph wrote in his letter: “To this day the Turkish terrorist who carried out an arson attack on the synagogue in Ulm, which is my hometown by the way, has not yet been extradited from Turkey to Germany to be held accountable in a German court.”

Rudolph stressed that “We Jews in Bamberg, and not only in Bamberg, find this situation simply unbearable! Islamist hatred of Jews is more or less downplayed by predominantly left-wing actors of all stripes, while right-wing extremism is played up as almost the only present evil in such spheres, to the point where one might think that the whole of Germany belongs to the brown [fascist] dumba***s who want to make life miserable for Jews. Yes, there are dumba***s, but not to the extent that the governments and much of the media in this country like to say.”

When the Jewish Press asked Katharina von Schnurbein, the European Commission coordinator on combating antisemitism and fostering Jewish life, about Rudolph’s letter, her spokesman Christian Wigand said, “We do not comment on comments (which includes letters or articles).”

Von Schnurbein has faced criticism from the Wiesenthal Center for her failure to urge the European Union to outlaw the entirety of the genocidally antisemitic Hezbollah movement.

Jewish Press inquiries to Schwarz and Matthias Gauger, a spokesman for the Green Party governor of Baden-Württemberg, went unanswered.

Blume has refused numerous press queries about the allegations that he is antisemitic and systematically incompetent.

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Benjamin Weinthal is a Writing Fellow for the Middle East Forum.