Irish Facebook page: 'freaky' Jews with claws

The picture used on the offensive Facebook page

The picture used on the offensive Facebook page

A Facebook page set up in Ireland warning that Jews have really sharp claws has attracted nearly 400 supporters in less than a week.

A representative of Ireland’s Jewish community said the creation of the page, titled the invasion of Jews in Midleton, was “horrific” and “very sad”.

The page appeared on the popular social networking site after the “freaky” arrival of large numbers of strictly Orthodox Satmar Jews for a holiday in the small town of Midleton, near Cork.

The creator invited people to join “if you have escaped being captured by the jews in midleton in the last few days. :)” and warned readers to “be carful [sic] of their teeth! :O.”

In what could be seen as reference to the Nazi gas chambers, one person wrote: “Apparently they were originally meant to stay in Killarney...but they refused to go through Ovens”.

Ovens is also the name of a nearby town.

Another wrote: “one of them was planning to steal our bikes the other day so she could cycle to the beach with her 8 kids” while one fan added: “Whoever made this is an absolute legend.”

Fred Rosehill, the chairman of the trustees of Cork’s Jewish community, said he was very upset.

“The strictly Orthodox dress brings attention of course, but it doesn’t warrant this.

“There is no reason to accept any form of antisemitism.”

He added: “The reference to Ovens is quite startling

Mr Rosehill emphasised that such an incident was very unusual in Cork, adding that a visit by an Israeli group this week to the area had prompted no problems.

While he blamed “teenagers being a bit stupid” he said: “It does worry me for the community in Cork”.

The Cork Jewish community was founded in 1880 but only a few families remain, although regular services are still held.

Facebook has been hijacked by people trying to spread antisemitic messages several times before. Last month a group advertising the Auschwitz spa was closed down after complaints.

Last week the Independent columnist Christina Patterson provoked anger for a piece on life in Stamford Hill in which she wrote: “I didn't realise that goyim were about as welcome in the Hasidic Jewish shops as Martin Luther King at a Klu Klux Klan convention.”

Last updated: 12:22pm, August 4 2010