At a time when European nations are turning their backs on Israel, Italy has held steadfast in support of both the Jewish state and its own Jewish citizens. Polls consistently show Italians with the lowest percentage of anti-Semitic views compared to other Europeans, even as anti-Semitism is making a resurgence throughout the continent.
Last week, on Holocaust Remembrance Day, as the world paid formal tribute to one of the darkest periods in modern history, Italy took it a step further when a local newspaper distributed skullcaps to all of its subscribers in a show of solidarity with Jews.
The daily paper, Foglio, emphasized the move was in response to a French Jewish leader who recently advised Jews to hide their religious identities in public after a French Jew was assaulted with a machete for donning a yarmulke.
In an article that accompanied the free token, the paper asserted that “the West should not obscure its roots and its religious symbols,” and that in response to the surge in anti-Semitism across Europe, “this year we must do more.”