Avi Abraham Benlolo
Press Release: They Were Murdered because they were Jewish
01/08/21: The Jewish community in France and around the world are today commemorating the sixth year anniversary of the attack on the Hyper Cacher in Paris. Four Jewish people were murdered by an Islamic Jihadist on January 9th 2015.
We remember Philippe Braham, Yohan Cohen, Yoav Hattab and Francois-Michel Saada. They were murdered because they were Jewish.
The attack was one of many tragic events that have befallen the French Jewish community over the last two decades and more. It came in the wake of the shooting attack of the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine, which killed 17 people in total and injured 11 others.
In my column about the Charlie Hebdo trial on September 20, 2020 (link below) I wrote about my experience in hosting one of the hostages for Shabbat dinner shortly after the attack. She was still traumatized from the experience and like many French Jews, decided to move her family to another country.
The 'Charlie Hebdo' trial gripped the nation in the fall of 2020. In December, 14 people were convicted of various crimes in connection to the attacks, mostly in being complicit in financity and motivating the attackers.
My article cited a bad resurgence of Anti-Semitism: "The community is once again living in the most dangerous place in Europe, according to a report by a former NYPD commissioner. According to The New York Post, the two-year study concluded there is an acute threat to the 450,000 Jews in France. Threats and attacks surged 74 per cent from 2017 to 2018, with 2019 data showing intensification at 75 per cent".
Today's commemoration is a reminder that the war against Jews in France is far from over. Even while French authorities repeatedly condemn Anti-Semitism, Jews continue to suffer and be overwhelmingly concerned.