A hard-hitting essay combined with factual reportage on the new anti-semitism throughout Europe.
This book argues that what the 21st century now faces is an ideological assault based on hatred of Jews which is as serious as any major threat to universal values as the world has faced. Anti-semitism is the visible language and action of a deeper threat to world peace, to the achievements of the human spirit we call the Enlightenment, and undermines vital work to address problems like poverty and the challenges of the environment.
Denis MacShane's survey of 21st century anti-semitism is based on the All-Party Commission of Enquiry which was chaired by the author in the UK. His book considers examples in Europe and how anti-semitism is now a linking mechanism between different extremisms, usually but not exclusively of the Right. It lists in detail the anti-semitism in national party politics, including the European Parliament, and it examines how Holocaust denial is not a question of liberal free-expression issues but an organised ideological position. The new anti-semitism arises from three main sources: state-sanctioned anti-semitism; that of terrorist movements like Al Qaeda; and that of political movements like the Muslim Brotherhood and its off-shoots and spokesmen.
The book is both a cri de coeur for a new tolerance and a resolution to throw light on 21st century anti-semitism, which has left Europe to become a new form of mobilising politics across many continents.
Denis MacShane has been a Labour MP since 1994. He was deputy foreign secretary and Minister for Europe under Tony Blair. After graduating from Oxford he worked for the BBC and was the youngest ever president of the National Union of Journalists. He completed a PhD at London University and in the 1980s worked as an international trade union official which led to being arrested in Poland and South Africa as he worked with independent trade unions against communism and apartheid. He has written biographies of Francois Mitterrand and Edward Heath as well as a number of books and pamphlets on European and global politics. He writes regularly for British, American and continental European newspapers. He is currently a UK delegate to the Council of Europe and represents the Labour Party at the Party of European Socialists. In 2005-2006 he set up and chaired the All-Party Commission of Inquiry into Antisemitism.