TWENTY-THREE YEARS ago, visiting Germany for the first time, I was startled to discover that synagogues and other Jewish sites were guarded round-the-clock by the police. To attend Sabbath services at the shul on Berlin's Joachimstalerstrasse, I had to pass an armed guard and a metal detector. I was glad that in America such things were unknown.
In those days, I used to scoff when some American Jews, responding to opinion surveys, would claim that antisemitism in the United States was "a very serious problem." Their paranoia, I thought, was groundless. After all, Jews have been embraced in America with a degree of tolerance and goodwill unparalleled in Jewish history.
I don't think it's groundless any more. . . .