SHMULEY BOTEACH COLUMN
France may end up with no Jews in a few years

IT had to end with the Jews. Even as I read of the horrible, despicable carnage at Charlie Hebdo, and the 12 innocent victims murdered, I wondered: "Where is the Jewish dimension? This is France, after all. How could the terrorists have overlooked the Jews?"

I soon discovered they did not.

Just as the two terrorist brothers were finally cornered by police to the north of Paris, their monster-in-arms fellow terrorist took hostages at a kosher supermarket teeming with pre-Shabbat shoppers demanding that the Charlie Hebdo murderers be left alone.

By the time police stormed the kosher market, four hostages - all Jews - had been murdered.

Further reports indicate that between 15 and 30 terrified Jewish shoppers were spared by hiding in a meat locker, where a heroic Muslim store-employee named Lassana Bathily had directed them. During the summer I took my family to Israel to show solidarity with the Jewish state as it battled the Hamas death cult.

On the streets and beaches of Tel Aviv, one did not hear Hebrew but French. Israel is now filling up with French Jews running from the exploding Jew-hatred in their native France. In the last year, one per cent of the French Jewish community moved to Israel. That would be the equivalent of 60,000 American Jews moving to Israel in a single year.

Expectations are that these numbers will only increase.

For the first time in Israel's history, the leading country of origin for immigrants was France, with French citizens comprising 7,000 of the new arrivals. That's more than double 2013's number of 3,400.

With the trajectory rising, one can easily conclude that, within a few years, there may be no Jews left in France.

A community that currently numbers 500,000 and goes back at least to the early Middle Ages may choose to make itself disappear.


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