White attackers were responsible for anti-Semitic incidents in fewer than half of those where the colour or racial background of the perpetrator was identified. More than a third, 37 per cent, of attackers whose background was known were Asian or Arab.
Since 1984, when the recording of anti-Semitic incidents by the trust began, white attackers have been in a minority only last year and in 2004.
The report said a disprortionate number of the attacks were carried out by people from ethnic minorities. It said: "The percentage overall is clearly not contiguous with the ethnic breakdown of the general population of the UK."
Its findings were challenged by officials working for London Mayor Ken Livingstone - whose own battle against suspension from office over an alleged antisemitic remark is recorded by the report as one of the "trigger events" that was followed by a number of anti-Semitic attacks.
I'm never sure about this 'trigger event' theory, which in its Charles Kennedy variant postulated that every time Michael Howard spoke about immigration a black youth had his car set alight. I think the people who carry out attacks should be held responsible, not someone who may or may not have said something that may or may not have "contributed to a climate" which may or may not have influenced some racist attacker or other. Apparently every time a BNP councillor is elected a little fairy dies.
But it is entertaining to see Ken Livingstone hoist with this particular left petard.
In the meantime, as Natalie reports, Guardian readers and Livingstone voters will continue to march chanting "Khaibar, Khaibar, Oh Jew, the army of Mohammed will return!"
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