Jews told to hide identifying symbols in Denmark, Jordan

Friday, December 14, 2012 |  Israel Today Staff

"Never Again," they say, and yet even in 2012 Jews must be warned not to openly identify themselves as Jews in certain places for fear of a violent response to their ethnicity.

Such was the case in Denmark this week, where Israeli Ambassador Arthur Avnon warned visiting Israelis not to wear their skullcaps (kippot) in public, to hide any Star of David jewelry and to refrain from conversing loudly in Hebrew.

Avnon said this warning applies "irrespective of whether the areas [Israelis] are visiting are seen as being safe."

Israel Radio noted that Denmark's capital, Copenhagen, had experienced no fewer than 39 reported anti-Semitic attacks this year.

Local Jewish leaders confirmed that it has become increasingly dangerous to be seen as a Jew, and hinted that the problem stems from growing Muslim influence in the city.

A little less surprising was a report that Jordan's Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities had sent out a letter to all local tour guides instructing them to advice Israeli visitors against wearing Jewish symbols or publicly worshipping in a Jewish way.

Present-day Jordan makes up part of the biblical Land of Israel, so many Israeli visitors consider points of interest in Jordan to be holy sites, and consequently like to pray there.

But the Jordanian government said it has received numerous complaints over these outward displays of "Jewishness" and felt compelled to bring the situation under control, both for the safety of visiting Israelis and to appease the sensibilities of local Jordanians.

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