Today we no longer hear about that cheap pudding. Instead, there is much talk about a more Jewish symbol, the kippah. For the first time the high official of a European government invited the Jewish community to “disappear” and to renounce for their own safety the symbols of their faith. Felix Klein, the German official in charge of fighting against anti-Semitism, just encouraged Jews “not to carry a kippah in public” due to the wave of hostility towards them.
“Surrender of the state”, stated Michael Friedman, former vice-president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany. Israeli President Reuven Rivlin called Klein's declaration “a surrender to anti-Semitism”. But last year it was Josef Schuster, president of the Central Council of German Jews, who addressed a similar invitation: “We do not recommend showing off in public with the kippah”.
Germany, theater of the “final solution of the Jewish question”, is now asking its remnant Jews to avoid being recognized as Jews on the street. Bild, the first German newspaper, distributed the kippah to its readers in solidarity with the Jewish community. On the Jewish side there were voices of shock at Klein's words. Berlin rabbi Yehuda Teichtal called on the Jews to carry the kippah on their heads with pride.
Only a crazy Europe could ask its Jews to renounce their millennial symbols. German Nazis humiliated the Jews on the streets, cutting their beards and tallit of prayer. Is this the future?
But the question is another one: from the Swedish city of Malmö to the Belgian capital Brussels, from the French Seine-Saint-Denis to the heart of Berlin, the Jewish symbols are rapidly disappearing due to Islamist attacks and old hate. How can Europe's Jews continue to live there and raise their children in such a hostile atmosphere?
I am now going against my own instincts, since I would like to live in a Europe where Jews are integral part of the atmosphere. But it is probably time for closing the gates of the Diaspora and returning to Eretz Yisrael, where Jews can wear kippahs, speak Hebrew on the buses and build families in a society which it will protect itself against all the enemies of the Jewish people.
One day, Jews will have to be protected again from the old European demons.