French Rap Against Jews


Jewish groups are questioning the origin of a downloadable anti-Semitic rap song that has recently made its way to e-mail in boxes throughout France, where anti-Jewish sentiments have been on the rise in recent years.Dedicated to “the sons of Jewish whores,” the hateful tune, called “Nique les Juifs,” or “[Expletive] the Jews,” praises Hitler’s determination and compares Jews to cysts that must be removed or burned. The refrain: “To all the Jews, [expletive] your mother/Burn a synagogue, I would love to do that.”Pass Pass, a Villeurbanne, France-based rap ensemble, was initially thought to have penned the song. As suspicion mounted, the group released a statement denying any involvement with the “shameful” song.

In addition, the group asked local authorities to locate the song’s authors, thereby clearing their name.Yonathan Arfi, president of the French Jewish student union, UEJF, believes the song comes from a far-right group wishing “to incite violence between Jews and Arabs” in France.As possible evidence of far-right manipulation, Arfi, who called the song “one example of what we [in France] are facing,” said the rap features Arab phrases that are pronounced with a French accent. Xavier Richaud, the district attorney of the Lyon region, where the song is believed to have originated, has been in close contact with local leaders of the French Jewish umbrella group, CRIF.

Richaud launched an investigation to determine who is behind the song, and how and where it is being broadcast. Hate speech is not protected as free speech in France. If arrested, the song’s writers and producers could face five years in prison and a fine of 45,000 Euros, or about $60,000.

Abraham Foxman, chairman and national director of the Anti-Defamation League, speaking recently to UEJF leaders in New York, said the “ugly, hideous song” was emblematic of how racist or anti-Semitic speech can be propagated with relatively little effort. He added: “With technology today, [a song] doesn’t have to be produced by a major studio” to ensure it is widely circulated.