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At the start of 2024, the Combat Antisemitism Movement’s Antisemitism Research Center (ARC) instituted a new categorization system for antisemitic incidents we track worldwide.
Fundamentally, we will now assess incidents based on the observable manifestation rather than attempting to identify the specific ideology motivating the perpetrator. We posit that the introduction of the CHII classification system, detailed below, will offer a better analytical framework for academics, activists, and policymakers. “CHII” stands for Classical, Holocaust-related, Israel-related, and Islamist-related forms of antisemitism. Anchored in the 11 examples of the widely-accepted International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) Working Definition of Antisemitism, the CHII classification system offers more precise insights into the current global landscape of antisemitism.
A closer look at the CHII classification system:
1) Classical Antisemitism: Rooted in IHRA Examples 1-3 and 6, classical antisemitism has its roots in centuries-old religious doctrine that presented Jews as nefarious, disproportionally influential, mischievous, unloyal, and privileged by nature. From eugenics-based arguments to “Jews killed Jesus: allegations, classical antisemitism as a category aims to include any and all efforts to dehumanize, demonize, or stereotype Jews.
2) Holocaust Distortion and Minimization: Rooted in IHRA Examples 4-5, Holocaust distortion and minimization represent a category of antisemitism characterized by deliberate efforts to misrepresent or downplay the historical reality of the Holocaust, the systematic genocide of Jews perpetrated by the Nazis during World War II. This form of antisemitism involves the spread of false information, denial of the scale and horror of the Holocaust, or attempts to diminish its significance.
3) Israel-related antisemitism: Rooted in IHRA Examples 7-11, This specific category of antisemitism focuses on contemporary incidents that target the State of Israel or the broader Zionist movement, emphasizing actions that demonize, delegitimize, or apply double standards to Israel, as laid out in Natan Sharansky’s 3Ds framework. Additionally, this category includes incidents of antisemitism that go beyond rhetoric, encompassing acts that justify, support, or endorse violence specifically directed at Jews due to their Zionist identities. This approach reflects a comprehensive understanding of contemporary antisemitic manifestations rooted in anti-Zionist sentiments.
4) Islamist antisemitism: Although this category is not specifically outlined in the 11 examples of the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism, it is nonetheless necessary as elements of radical Islam continue to fuel religious-based antisemitism and incorporate the types of antisemitism outlined in the IHRA examples. Islamist antisemitism refers to expressions of hatred, prejudice, discrimination, or hostility against Jewish individuals or the Jewish people as a whole within the context of Islamist ideologies. This form of antisemitism often arises in the intersection of political Islam and anti-Jewish sentiments.
5) Unattributable: Reserved for incidents that fail to provide sufficient information or context for categorization.
Even before October 7th, our analysts carefully monitored dozens of incidents around the world on a daily basis and recognized the growing overlap between different ideological motivations for antisemitism. Whether it was far-right members of the Goyim Defense League claiming that “Zionists” were “occupying” the U.S. government or anti-Israel activists engaging in Holocaust denial or distortion in efforts to delegitimize Israel’s right to self-defense, our researchers recognized the increasing difficulty in attributing specific incidents to any one particular ideological motivation.