Anti-Semitic protests in Netherlands last week were marked by a terrifying new symbol: the black flag of ISIS. Young descendants of Muslim immigrants, many of them Moroccan, gathered in The Hague, ostensibly to protest the war in Gaza. But the protest became much broader, with protestors flying ISIS’ flag and shouting “Death to the Jews” or “The French killed the Moroccans but they didn’t kill them all; the grandchildren of the few men left protest against the West, America and the Jews.” Here’s the Daily Beast with the story:
This scene last Thursday came in the wake of an earlier demonstration supposed to defend the Palestinians suffering in Gaza, which turned quickly into a hatefest targeting Israel, with people carrying placards that screamed “Zionism is Nazism.” But while the comingling of pro-Palestinian, anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic sentiment has become all too common in European protests in recent weeks, that the battle flag of the Islamic State waved in the streets of The Netherlands on July 24 is something new and particularly dangerous.All rallies in Dutch municipalities require permission from the local city council, the police and the public prosecutor’s office. The ISIS demo had been granted permission on the grounds that it was in support of the detained Dutch recruiter for jihad, Oussama Abu Yazeed. But the fact that the mayor’s office in The Hague either was unaware the rally was ISIS-linked or deemed it legitimate regardless has raised serious questions about the city council’s judgment.
ISIS appears to have become a kind of cause célèbre, drawing the enthusiastic support of aggrieved North African immigrants and anti-Semites of all stripes. This is a scary development—and not only for the threat these flag-wavers pose right now. If would-be jihadists in Europe embrace ISIS as the hot new thing in extremism, they may go fight for the group in Iraq and Syria and come back more dangerous than ever. Europe could wind up with an even greater number of battle-hardened, native-born terrorists on its hands.