Anti-Semitism has been present in Great Britain for almost a thousand years of recorded history. English literature and culture are drenched in anti-Semitic stereotypes. In the new century, the UK holds a pioneering position in promoting academic boycotts of Israel. The same is true for trade-union efforts at economic boycotts. There is also no other Western society where jihadi radicalism has proved as violent and dangerous as in the UK, and where the anti-Zionist narrative has greater legitimacy. Successive British governments neither share nor have encouraged such attitudes – least of all Prime Ministers Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.
Prof. Robert Solomon Wistrich has held the Neuberger Chair for Modern European and Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem for almost twenty years. Since 2002 he has been director of the Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Antisemitism at the Hebrew University and is editor of its journal Antisemitism International.