Last week, Maccabi Tel Aviv basketball team beat Real Madrid in the Euroleague final.
In basketball-crazy Israel, a third of the country watched the game.
And thousands showed up in Rabin Square in Tel Aviv, to celebrate.
There, the team got hugs and kisses from PM Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres.
Meanwhile, back in Spain, Real Madrid fans took to Twitter, with a hashtag (translated as #F…ingJews) to express their outrage over the defeat, hoping the Israeli team takes a shower after the game…in a gas chamber, and other vicious comments. (Haaretz: Spanish basketball fans resort to anti-Semitic tweets after defeat)
Jonathan S.Tobin, writing in Commentary: Spain, Basketball, and Jew Hatred makes this observation:
…the rash of anti-Semitic statements, especially on Twitter, in reaction to the victory of the Israeli squad shouldn’t be dismissed as only the sour reaction of supporters of a losing sports team. That the outcome of a basketball game would lead so many to resort to anti-Semitic language is not an accident or people just blowing off steam. The willingness to invoke traditional stereotypes of Jew-hatred as well as echoes of the Holocaust under these circumstances illustrates not only how deeply entrenched such attitudes are in European culture but the way Israel has become a stand-in for traditional anti-Semitism….
…this latest outbreak is a reminder that for many Europeans, expressing prejudice against Israel, even in the crudest manner possible that invokes memories of the Holocaust, has become legitimized by the campaign of demonization of the Jewish state that has been conducted by intellectuals and other elites. A Europe in which Israel is falsely accused of being a rerun of Nazi Germany is one in which anti-Semitism is starting to migrate from the margins of society in the wake of 1945 to the contemporary mainstream….
Tobin also notes that Spain has recently begun an effort to bring Jews back to Spain, as all Jews had been expelled from the country during the Inquisition of 1492.
But if any Jews are tempted to take Madrid up on its offer, and apparently some may be, they should take into consideration the fact that Spain ranked third in the list of most anti-Semitic countries in Europe in the survey of international opinion published last week by the Anti-Defamation League.
Jack Engelhard: Israel National News — Op-Ed: Pain in Spain, Bullets in Brussels