The magazine had an article about countries with a map and said “there are 197 true countries in the world like Germany and France. But there are countries like North Korea and Israel that aren’t considered true countries.”
This comment caused an uproar on social media and Jewish organizations like the CRIF which called to boycott the magazine and take the January issue off newsstand shelves. Firstly, it says Israel is not a state and secondly, They lumped israel together with the belligerent North Korea.
Magazine Chief Editor Bertrand Fichou said he would take the January issue off the newsstand shelves and that he humbly apologizes for his mistake saying he had no intention of challenging Israel’s legitimacy. He said: “I’ll blame myself for this for the rest of my life.” He sounds contrite and he probably is. His mistake is probably unintentional because the current narrative in all of Europe as far as the Middle East is that Israel is the aggressor and owes the Palestinians everything on a silver platter. After that happens the Iranians will suddenly turn nice and Syria will become a benevolent country and take back all its refugees. Everyone will live happily ever after…
But, narrative notwithstanding, in France itself Anti-Semitism has grown exponentially in recent years. Jews were scared when Marine le-Pen was running for president after hearing statements like: “Jews won’t be able to have double citizenship. They will have to decide if they are French or Israeli.” Le Pen declared France innocent of collaboration with the Nazis in the deportation of Jews in WWII and her father called the Nazi gas chambers “a detail in history”.
On the streets of France, violence against Jews is taken for granted and Jews try not to look obviously Jewish when in public for fear of violence. Jews are targeted for violent anti-Semitic attacks and have been killed in such attacks.