Blood Libel in Russia

New York blogger Bnei Levi has translated the anti-Semitic letter/petition written by 19 nationalist Russian parliamentarians and signed by another 450-500 public figures, which called for the investigation and possible banning of all Jewish groups. The letter, titled “Jewish Happiness, Russian Tears,” accuses Jews of being Satanists, “anti-Christian and human-hating,” of perpetrating anti-Semitic acts against themselves, and ritually murdering gentiles as human sacrifices. In a thorough examination of the story, Richard Bartholomew notes that the petition underscores the difficult place of Judaism amidst increasing Russian nationalism, and proves that any earlier attempts of the Jewish leadership to thwart anti-Semitism by aligning themselves with the state (rather than with more marginalized religious movements like the Jehovah’s Witnesses who were persecuted last year) has only served to “embolden the bigots.”