OSCE Meeting in Paris on the relationship between racist, xenophobic
and anti-Semitic propaganda on the Internet and hate crimes
The Internet can be used to counter hate speech and to promote
The discussion should not aim on what is morally desirable, but
should instead focus on what can actually be done
from Paris RA]
Gall, haGalil onLine - 17 June 2004 - Session 4 - Promoting
Tolerance on and through the Internet – Best Practices to Educate
Users and Heighten Public Awareness
Mr. Ferraris, Ladies and
Gentlemen, haGalil onLine is a German-Israeli webmagazine, published
since 1995, and since then holding a central position in the fight
Many speakers already mentioned the tension
between freedom of speech and control of incitement. I think it
became clear, that we cannot perceive the internet primarily as a
threat, but much more should use the chance it offers to promote
understanding and dialogue in a pluralistic and global society.
Of course it is true, anti-Semitism holds a more
and more dominant and aggressive position on the internet, and the
World Wide Web is the most effective tool of distribution of such
propaganda. Since it reaches not only those in search for
incitement, but also those in search of neutral information, it is
the most dangerous tool to articulate and inseminate resentment,
prejudice and hate.
But it is the fact, that most people (at least in
Germany) know so very little on Jewish life and Judaism, that makes
it quiet easy for anti-Semites to spread their message of hate.
The distinguishing feature of fundamentalist and
nationalistic ideology is Anti-Semitism, and as such is linking
rather different movements, such as Pamjat in Russia, the
Ku-Klux-Klan in America, Christian Arian Alliances and Islamistic
It took nearly ten years, until the danger became
recognized by a broader audience, and we are very happy, that this
OSCE-Conference focuses especially on hate and incitement in the
Internet. I do hope, that it will not take another ten years, from
recognizing the problem to not only understanding but also
supporting effective ways of solution.
It is understandable, that demands for a worldwide
binding consensus of values and legislative efforts to strengthen
such consensus are often made. These demands might even be
praiseworthy initiatives, but they are not realistic.
They presume, that it could be established what can be said and
circulated about Jews and Israel and this not only in Germany or
Europe, but also in Malaysia, in Durban, in Riad and Teheran.
With regard to the oldest and most aggressive
stereotype of human history, combined with an international and
constantly developing decentralized and open media, strategies
mainly trusting on controllability are not only illusive, but in
regard to the seriousness of the problem we are dealing with, even
They are a threat to contemporary European
society, which depends on mutual respect for the cultural and
religious diversity of it's inhabitants. Thus the discussion should
not aim on what is morally desirable, but should instead focus on
what can actually be done.
Since 1995 we developed a rather simple model,
which can be used in various manners and in different countries.
Possibly it is this successful, for it has been created for
something and not against something. We have worked much less
against the lies, as for the truth.
Our major strategy is to create a massive counterbalance of detailed
information. If we publish 100 of our pages on let's say the Jewish
holiday of Purim, the chance that a student in search for
information on this subject will end up at our site is a hundred
times higher then coming up at a site promoting anti-Semitic
slander. The continuing improvement results in high positions in
Our second approach uses the communicative means
of an active and lively online service. Anti-Semitism is often the
stronger the less Jews are present. For many teenagers for ex. in
East-Germany, the first and only option to establish contact with
Jews is through haGalil onLine.
Out of a total of 220.000 readers a month, we receive numerous
e-mails or phone-calls with queries from journalists, pupils and
teachers everyday. Boards and chat rooms offer the possibility for
further communication and discussion. Here it has not been a
surprise, when a Nazi dropout met the chairwomen of a Jewish
community in Bavaria. They created a series of lectures at schools
and youth centres.
We do not solely trust on legislative measures,
but our third approach uses juridical means as another effective way
in the battle against hate speech. In 1997 after massive attacks on
our discussion-boards, we introduced the first form to
electronically report on hate-incidents. About 1000 charges are
being reported yearly. We do not only pass on the observations of
our readers, but conduct our own investigations. One of these
investigations led to the exposure of an anti-Semitic speech held by
Martin Hohmann, member of the German Parliament, the Bundestag in
Berlin. Since we made this finding public in November 2003, he is
not a member of his former fraction anymore.
Thank you very much for your attention.
from Paris RealAudio /
/ pdf /
June 2004 - Session 4
Ce qu'on peut faire doit enfin être
Des contre-mesures contre l'antisémitisme sur Internet
Was getan werden kann,
muss endlich unterstützt werden:
Gegenmaßnahmen zum Antisemitismus im
OSCE Meeting on Racist, Xenophobic and Anti-Semitic Propaganda
on the Internet
One of the most acute dilemmas facing us at
the outset of the Twenty-First Century:
proliferation of hate material on the internet
Mass communication is not anymore on its infancy. With the
Internet, we are dealing with a phenomenon unparalleled in all of History.
Instant communication is possible, to all points on the globe, at minimum
Technical and political considerations:
hate-speech feasible - or desirable?
At the OSCE Paris conference a number of countries / NGOs
appealed to regulate the internet in order to stop hate speech. However, and
contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as 'the internet'...
16./17. Juni - OSZE-Konferenz in Paris:
Fremdenhass und Antisemitismus im Internet
Am kommenden Mittwoch und Donnerstag findet in Paris
eine OSZE-Konferenz statt, die die Zusammenhänge zwischen rassistischer,
fremdenfeindlicher und antisemitischer Propaganda im Internet und Hassdelikten
zum Thema hat...
Antisemitische Propaganda im Internet:
Hass ist das Ende der Welt
Methoden zur Rechtsdurchsetzung und Erfahrungen mit
der strafrechtlichen Verfolgung antisemitischer u./o. rechtsextremistischer
Ein Motivvorrat, der in jeder Epoche wieder
aktualisiert werden kann:
Zum Begriff des Antisemitismus
Die Wortbildung basiert auf
sprachwissenschaftlichen und völkerkundlichen Unterscheidungen des ausgehenden
18. Jahrhunderts, in denen mit dem Begriff des Semitismus der "Geist" der
semitischen Völker im Unterschied zu dem der Indogermanen erfasst und
abgewertet werden sollte...
CONCLUSIONS BY THE
CHAIR OF THE OSCE MEETING
(English) OSCE Conference Berlin- Session 4 / David Gall]