Danny Cohen, Director of BBC Television, has made some startling comments at a conference in Jerusalem.
Cohen, British born and raised, said:
‘I’ve never felt so uncomfortable being a Jew in the UK as I’ve felt in the last 12 months. And it’s made me think about, you know, is it our long-term home, actually. Because you feel it. I’ve felt it in a way I’ve never felt before actually… And you’ve seen the number of attacks rise. You’ve seen murders in France. You’ve seen murders in Belgium. It’s been pretty grim actually. And having lived all my life in the UK, I’ve never felt as I do now about anti-Semitism in Europe.’
Cohen, 40, is one of the most influential figures in UK media and culture, earmarked as the BBC’s next director-general. Unlike past (and some present) BBC panjandrums who just happened to be Jewish, Cohen is rooted in his heritage and married in an Orthodox synagogue. His warning needs to be taken seriously.