Is it safe for Americans in Italy?

Apr 3rd, 2002, 04:53 PM
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Is it safe for Americans in Italy?

More specificaly, is it safe for Jewish Americans in Italy? We are planning a trip at the end of the month, but are having second thoughts...
Apr 3rd, 2002, 05:05 PM
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Today at work, a lady whose son was supposed to go to Italy for a summer abroad cancelled it. She is Jewish and was very scared for her son to be away, given the problems in the middle east. She felt he may be targeted due to his heritage.
Other thoughts?
It seems a shame to miss a trip but if there is any truth to it, I would keep my child home too.
Apr 3rd, 2002, 10:48 PM
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Who knows where it is safe anymore in this world?
We are Jewish and are not cancelling our trip to Italy.
I was in Germany on 9/11--Who would believe the irony that I the child of Holocaust survivors would be safe in Germany while New York where I live is being "bombed" by terrorists?
The German people were wonderful to my Mom whom I was with and me and I will be forever grateful for their concern
Apr 4th, 2002, 12:25 AM
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Of course you are safe in Italy, have you ever heard of people treating jewish people badly in Italy? If you cancel your trip for this reason you are making a big mistake. On the other hand what makes people think that you are Jewish, do you go around with the Torah under you arm or what?
Apr 4th, 2002, 02:24 AM
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Muslims put fire to synagogues in France, and you suspect you are not safe in Italy? Please understand, that France has a big muslim minority (millions), and those acts are targeted against Israel, not so much French Jews. They attacked buildings with no people inside. So, if you can stay out of synagogue, you will be perfectly safe. Besides you will be in Italy, not France.
Apr 4th, 2002, 02:32 AM
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Hey Filippo ([email protected])

You're kidding, right? Or are you really that ignorant of history?
Apr 4th, 2002, 02:36 AM
George Bush
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I would say that Israel and US 'defence' policy is currently regarded throughout the rest of the world as deeply flawed, illegal and disgusting, but I would also say that you and other enlightened Americans are perfectly safe travelling anywhere in Western Europe. Have a nice trip...
Apr 4th, 2002, 02:56 AM
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What's your worry about Italy specifically.

1. Last time I checked, Italy was in, erm, Europe, not the middle east. It is also a civilised, G8 country.

2. Despite being predominantly catholic, it actually has a sizeable jewish population.

I wouldn't suggest flying El Al at the moment, or marching around the Colisseum waving an Isreali flag and chanting anti-palestine hate messages, but I'm presuming that's not your intention.

Go, enjoy Italy, your americaness or jewishness will make not a blind bit of difference.
Apr 4th, 2002, 05:23 AM
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I have to agree with Filippo.

How on earth would people know if you ARE jewish - Unless you are wearing it like a badge across your chest? That's about as ridiculous as cancelling a trip because you are Catholic, mormon or any other religion (think about it). I am jewish and quite often mistaken for Italian (if you are referring to your appearance and looking jewish).

HOw would anyone know what you are unless you make an annoucement? Just be yourself, blend in and no one will even give you a second glance.
Apr 4th, 2002, 05:30 AM
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In response to Kate's message - actually El Al would be a good airline to fly on as they have the best safety record in the world. The security on their flights is unbeatable. Right now it's the only airline I would feel safe flying however I wouldn't want to travel to the Mid East.
Apr 4th, 2002, 05:33 AM
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I have to respond to the poster who said not to fly El Al. That's actually considered the safest airline in the world, believe it or not. Even with all that's going on.

The Israelis pay top dollar for the best airline personnel. Those gate agents with El Al are actually trained in CIA-like tactics. Unlike in this country (U.S.) where they get paid minimum wage.

Additionally, there are two sky marshals on every El Al flight, and the most strongly re-inforced cockpit doors around. There was a CBS news special about all this a couple of months ago.

But on to your question about Italy--I agree that unless you announce your heritage, it wont be a problem. And even if you did announce it, most people in Italy wouldn't hold it against you. I think that most people there understand to treat people as individuals.
Apr 4th, 2002, 07:06 AM
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You are probably concerned since the warnings about Easter in Italy - but nothing happened, and there have not been any more warnings in Italy that I know of.
Apr 4th, 2002, 08:05 AM
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Whoa, people, where have you been? There are skinheads, white supremists, whatever you want to call them, in Europe too. And you do hear about Jews being attacked in Britain, France, Germany, etc. However, I shouldn't think that as tourists you would be in any particular danger as long as you use common sense just as you would in any strange environment.

Also, in case you aren't aware, there are certain surnames (Goldstein, Weiner, etc.) that are good indicators that the person is Jewish. Also, depending on if you are Hasidic, etc., you may dress differently than the general population.

To those of you who need to be enlightened on the subject, you may want to read:

I found other interesting articles on this subject by doing a search on for Attacks on Jews in Europe.
Apr 4th, 2002, 11:19 AM
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BettyK, I completely understand your viewpoint. Now that I'm "enlightened", (LOL) for individuals that do stand out in the crowd (due to dress, ringlets, hats, obvious standout appearance) - the decision is obvious:


Afterall, how could these continual worries allow anyone to have a good time abroad?
Apr 4th, 2002, 11:41 AM
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I am jewish and just returned from a trip to Italy a few weeks ago. Keep in mind that I got back the day before the warning for Americans was issued so maybe I would feel differently now. First off, I don't know how anyone would have known I was Jewish. I have a non-denominational last name (not that anyone but the hotel would even know my name), I did not wear any jewish stars and I don't walk around speaking yiddish. I did not sense any anti-american sentiment when I was there. However, like the US there are radical anti-semetic groups there and I did see a few graffeti swastichas. However, in the context of a country where you can't walk a block without seeing an anarchy graffeti symbol, I wasn't too freaked out by it. Unfortunately there are ignorant hateful people everywhere. I wouldn't cancel a trip to Italy because you are afraid of Anti-semitism. I think if the state dept gave another warning for americans, I might be concerned.
Apr 4th, 2002, 11:44 AM
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No problem. Just wear a "Kiss me I'm Irish" t-shirt.
Apr 4th, 2002, 01:51 PM
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If all races and religions would just intermarry we'd end up with an enlightened and colorblind world and all live happy ever after.

And bats will fly out of my . . . .

Apr 4th, 2002, 02:46 PM
get real
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Is it safe for Americans in USA? Not really. We have far more violent crime than any European country. Even considering the terrorist war, it is far safer there. Indeed, we lost far more here in that past 6 months due to terrorism than they have!.
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