Roughly Eighty Graves in Alsace, France Vandalized with Swastikas

Quatzenheim 19
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons / Roughly 80 graves were desecrated in Alsace on Monday evening

Close to 80 graves in eastern France were vandalized at a Jewish cemetery the night before nationwide protests will take place in response to a steep rise in anti-Semitic attacks in the country.

This Tuesday morning, tombstones and the gate of the cemetery were found daubed with bright blue swastikas in the French town of Quatzenheim in the Alsace region close to the German border.

On one of the graves, the words “Elsassiches Schwarzen Wolfe” (Black Alsacian Wolves) were found seemingly taking credit for the incident. The Black Alsacian Wolves are a separatist group with links to neo-Nazis since the 70’s.

President Macron traveled to the cemetery in Alsace to inspect the damage on Tuesday before visiting the Paris Holocaust memorial.

Huge rallies are planned in Paris and other French cities on Tuesday to condemn the recent rise in antisemitic acts in France. The acts reached a new level this past weekend when prominent Jewish philosopher Alain Finkielkraut was harassed by “yellow vest” protesters on the streets of Paris who called him a “dirty Zionist” amongst other racist epitaphs.

Political leaders across the spectrum called for nationwide rallies in response to the harassment of Finkielkraut and a startling rise in antisemitism in France. In the wake of the recent “yellow vest” protests anti-Jewish vandalism and graffiti has been discovered across Paris.

In once incident, antisemitic graffiti was found on the headquarters of French daily Le Monde. In other incidents the words “Marcon Jews’ Bitch” and “Jewish pig” were found spray painted in different parts of Paris.

Yet the rise in antisemitism in France has also preceded the “yellow vest” protests. Last year, French police recorded a 74% increase in anti-Jewish incidents which has startled the largest Jewish population in Europe.