Antisemitic Chants Erupt at Anti-Vaccine Rally in Western Polish Town of Głogów

Far-right demonstrators are seen at an anti-vaccine rally in the western Polish town of Głogów, Sunday, July 18, 2021.

July 22, 2021

Last Sunday, an anti-vaccine protest held in the western Polish town of Głogów saw participants chant “Jews are behind the pandemic,” amid a number of other antisemitic incidents.

The demonstration, which involved over a hundred largely far-right attendees, was ostensibly centered around opposition to Covid-19 public health restrictions and vaccines, but quickly descended into an anti-Jewish hate fest.

At one point, one of the main chant leaders asked protesters through a megaphone: “We know who is behind this whole ‘plandemic’ and who rules the world, right?” Someone in the crowd shouted “Jews!” in response, with the man replying “Of course it’s the Jews.”

In unison, the crowd then chanted: “Every Pole can see today that behind the ‘plandemic’ are the Jews.”

Separately that day, the official Twitter account of the far-right Confederation party, whose leadership has long been highly active in the Polish anti-lockdown sphere, shared a video of a supporter stating she “does not want Jewry” in Poland.

While the inflammatory clip was eventually deleted by the party account following widespread backlash, one of the party’s most prominent figures, Janusz Korwin-Mikke, later reshared it on his own personal account.

The latest incidents come amid rising antisemitism in the country, with ongoing political strife between Poland and Israel regarding Holocaust-related property restitution and compensation angering Polish nationalists.

Just last week, far-right Polish activists disrupted an event commemorating the victims of a notorious 1941 pogrom, and Jewish cemeteries have also become increasingly-frequent targets of antisemitic vandalism by nationalist hooligans in recent years.

More globally, anti-lockdown and anti-vaccination rallies have also provided fertile ground for antisemitism since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

One reoccurring theme has been the wearing of mock yellow stars worn by Jews under Nazi occupation, with a Saturday protest in Paris featuring the latest examples of the highly-offensive comparison.