More than 1/3 of Britons ages 18-24 believe Jews have “an unhealthy control over the world’s banking system,” according a new study published by the HOPE not hate anti-fascism and anti-racism advocacy organization, the UK’s Jewish News reported.
The decennial study — focused on the broader issue of identity politics in Great Britain — found that 34% of respondents in that specific age bracket thought that the statement about Jews and banking was “probably” or “definitely” true.
Around 28 % of those surveyed in the 25-34 age bracket felt the same, while the figure decreased to 12% among those over 75 years old.
“Support for conspiracy theories and the far right tends to rise in volatile and uncertain times, and is not in itself always a point for concern,” the study noted. “They can act as a form of challenging prevailing wisdom and functioning as a form of political dissent, or can personify concerns about hardship and danger in people’s day-to-day experience into an identifiable enemy.”
“But the combination of conspiracy theories and populism are particularly potent as both employ a binary worldview, dividing societies between ‘good versus evil, right versus wrong, victims versus conspirators,’” it added. “And seemingly innocuous conspiracy theories can be a gateway into conspiratorial racism, islamophobia and antisemitism.”
Nick Lowles, CEO of Hope not Hate, wrote in the study’s conclusion, “Whereas once the far right had a quite distinctive narrative on the issue or race and antisemitism, which helped created a cordon sanitaire between the far right and the more mainstream right, this separation no longer exists. Ideas and narratives are shared and amplified, with the far right given credibility when more mainstream voices say the same things and mainstream voices are weaponised by far right activists.”
The study — which can be read in full here — was based on responses from a representative sample of 4,010 British adults.
Source: Combat Antisemitism