This is a rather huge story.
In a 1,300-word report, The Washington Post delves deeper into whether Jews will flee France in the wake of last month's kosher market attack:
SAINT-MANDÉ, France — For all her 30 years, Jennifer Sebag has lived in a community that embodies everything modern Europe is supposed to be.
Inclusive, integrated, peaceful and prosperous, the elegant city of Saint-Mandé — hard against Paris’s eastern fringe — has been a haven for Jews like Sebag whose parents and grandparents were driven from their native North Africa decades ago by anti-Semitism.
“I’ve always told everyone that here, we are very protected. It’s like a small village,” Sebag said.
But in an instant on the afternoon of Jan. 9, Sebag’s refuge became a target. A gunman who would later say he was acting on behalf of the Islamic State walked into her neighborhood’s kosher market and opened fire, launching a siege that would leave four hostages dead — all of them Jewish.
A month later, the Jews of Saint-Mandé are planning for a possible exodus from what had once appeared to be the promised land.
This piece provides additional insight in an ongoing story.
Other recent headlines include:
As you may recall, GetReligion editor Terry Mattingly highlighted coverage of this important story last month. Tmatt warned against journalists framing the potential exodus entirely in terms of the latest news with no exploration of historic trends.
This latest Post story offers some important background.
A big chunk of it:
The attack on the kosher market was the last in a three-day series of radical Islamist assaults that traumatized the nation. By the end, 17 victims lay dead, including much of the staff at the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo.
But of all the communities affected, France’s half-million Jews have perhaps felt the consequences most acutely.
French Jews were already on edge by the time Amedy Coulibaly, a 32-year-old small-time criminal and son of Malian immigrants, took hostages at the Hyper Cacher grocery on the border of Paris and Saint-Mandé.
Anti-Semitism had been rising in France, as it had across Europe. In Britain last year, for instance, there were more than 1,100 anti-Semitic incidents recorded, double the number from 2013, according to data released Thursday by the Jewish nonprofit Community Security Trust.
But the fears of rising violence have been especially pronounced in France after a 2012 attack at a Jewish school in Toulouse that left a teacher and three students dead.
The Jewish Agency, which encourages immigration to Israel, says the number of French Jews leaving for Israel each year had been steady at about 2,000 until 2013, when it hit 3,400. Last year, it jumped to more than 7,000 — making France the leading contributor of immigrants to Israel and marking the first time that more than 1 percent of a Western nation’s Jewish population has left for Israel in a single year, according to Avi Mayer, a spokesman for the Jewish Agency.
That background is helpful in putting the potential exodus into context.
Still, I found myself wanting more insight and direct explanation of why anti-Semitism is on the rise. That said, I freely acknowledge that my own lack of understanding may be at fault here, and not any weakness of the Post's reporting.