TODAY, IS EUROPE LOSING BATTLE AGAINST ANTISEMITISM? BACK THEN, JEWS FLEEING NAZIS WERE TURNED AWAY FROM CANADA & U.S.

Has Europe Even Tried to Fight Anti-Semitism?: Yves Mamou, Gatestone Institute, Apr. 25, 2018— On April 18, 2018, two young men, both wearing Jewish skullcaps, were insulted by a group of Muslims and whipped with a belt in a clearly anti-Semitic attack in Prenzlauer Berg, one Berlin’s most fashionable neighborhoods.

Given All its Other Apologies, When Will Ottawa Finally Apologize to the Jews?: Bernie M. Farber, National Post, Apr. 30, 2018 — Ethical nations must confront their history with moral rectitude.

U.S. Holocaust Museum Excuses FDR’s Silence: Jews are Inconvenient: Dr. Rafael Medoff, Arutz Sheva, May 3, 2018— The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, in Washington, D.C, recently opened a controversial new exhibit which claims that President Franklin D. Roosevelt did his best to help Jews during the Holocaust.

Under Swiss Protection: Hannah Klein, AISH, May 2018— Having read extensively about the Holocaust, I was surprised that I had never come across the rescuer named Carl Lutz.

On Topic Links

The Speech of the Century that Everyone is Listening To: Avi Abelow, Israel Unwired, Apr. 29, 2018

Anti-Semitism ‘Becoming Mainstream’ in Canada: Jewish Advocacy Group: Josh K. Elliott, CTV News, Apr. 11, 2018

McGill Anti-Semitism Report ‘Pathetic’: Prof: Joel Goldenberg, The Suburban, Apr. 11, 2018

Open Letter to Natalie Portman From an Israeli Progressive: Hen Mazzig, Jerusalem Post, Apr. 22, 2018

 

HAS EUROPE EVEN TRIED TO FIGHT ANTI-SEMITISM?

Yves Mamou

Gatestone Institute, Apr. 25, 2018

On April 18, 2018, two young men, both wearing Jewish skullcaps, were insulted by a group of Muslims and whipped with a belt in a clearly anti-Semitic attack in Prenzlauer Berg, one Berlin’s most fashionable neighborhoods. The violent assault, partly filmed by one of the victims, sparked national indignation in Germany. One of the attackers can be heard on the video clearly shouting “Yahudi” (Arabic for “Jew”).

“It is intolerable for young men to be attacked here just because they are wearing a kippah,” said Heiko Maas, the German Foreign Minister. “Jews must never again feel threatened here. It is our responsibility to protect Jewish life.”

The incident echoes another case of anti-Semitism last December in Berlin. Then also, someone filmed a man, apparently born in Germany, insulting a Jewish restaurant owner, Yorai Feinberg, in the street. The aggressor made clear his understanding of the Holocaust and his compassion for the Palestinian cause. Although there was no violence, the case ignited public indignation.

On April 12, 2018, Kollegah and Farid Bang, two of Germany’s most successful rappers, were given the award for best hip-hop/urban album at the ECHO Deutscher Muskikpreis — Germany’s biggest music awards ceremony. The two Muslim rappers, however, were under fire because of their song lyrics comparing their muscular physiques to the bodies of Auschwitz prisoners. Charlotte Knobloch, former head of Germany’s Central Council of Jews, said that giving them an award for their album was a “devastating sign” amid growing signs of “anti-Semitism in our society, especially in schools.” “The two rappers,” she added, reach millions of mostly young people with their inhuman message.”

These incidents reflect the complexity of the German situation in which imported Muslim anti-Semitism seems to be fueling a traditional German one. In 2017, Germany saw an average of four anti-Semitic crimes per day, according to preliminary government data cited by Tagesspiegel. The final tally is expected to be higher. The Jewish German community is estimated at 150,000 people.

According to Tagesspiegel, police registered a total of 1,453 crimes that targeted Jews in 2017. This number consisted of 32 acts of violence, 160 cases of property damage and 898 cases of incitement. Among those crimes, 33 were attributed to foreign-born perpetrators, not including Islamists. In addition, 25 of the crimes were “religiously motivated,” with some involving either foreign-born or German Muslims with extremist beliefs. Police were unable to determine a political motive in 17 of the cases, while one case of incitement was found to have a “left-wing” motive. For Die Welt, this showed that “Germany is losing the battle against anti-Semitism, as [before that] France or Sweden”.

In France, the battle against anti-Semitism was lost long ago. Between 2006 and 2017, fifteen French Jews were murdered by anti-Semitic Muslims. The stabbing and the burning of Mireille Knoll in March 2017 added one more victim to a list that goes through the murder of Sébastien Sellam in Paris (2003), the kidnapping and murder of Ilan Halimi (2006), the massacre at a Jewish school in Toulouse (2012), the assault of a young Jewish couple in Créteil (2014), the attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris (2015), the machete attack on a Jewish teacher in Marseille (2016), the murder of Sarah Halimi in Paris (April 2017), the hostage-taking of a Jewish family in Livry-Gargan (September 2017).

“The Jewish community represents less than 1% of the French population (approximately half a million people) but were victims of 40% of all racist crimes” says Fredéric Potier, France’s interministerial delegate against racism and antisemitism. According to the 2017 report of the Ministry of Interior, anti-Semitic threats decreased by 7.2% in 2017 compared to 2016. However, stabbings, assaults and other violent acts targeting Jews increased by 26%. In other words, attackers and murderers of Jews do not necessarily speak first; they just stab. According to Nonna Mayer, Director of Research at the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS): “These figures reflect trends; they are not exhaustive. They largely underestimate ordinary anti-Semitism (spitting, insults, hostile looks) on a daily basis. Many victims do not file complaints. When they do, their complaint is not always recorded.”

Great Britain: In 2017, hate incidents against Jews reached a record level, “with the Jewish community targeted at a rate of nearly four times a day,” reports The Guardian. In 2017, the Community Security Trust (CST), an NGO that monitors anti-Semitism in the UK, recorded 1,382 anti-Semitic incidents nationwide. “This was the highest tally that the trust has registered for a calendar year since it began gathering such data in 1984. The figure rose by 3%, compared to a total, in 2016, of 1,346 incidents — a tally that itself was a record annual total”, according to The Guardian.

The CST report — perhaps because the organization has developed educational programs with Muslim organizations — avoids targeting any Muslim anti-Semitism, except for terrorist attacks. The uniqueness of Britain is that anti-Semitism has also spread widely among the political class. Accusations from the national chair of the Jewish Labour Movement (JLM) against Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and other members of his party have provoked a huge controversy…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

 

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GIVEN ALL ITS OTHER APOLOGIES,

WHEN WILL OTTAWA FINALLY APOLOGIZE TO THE JEWS?

Bernie M. Farber

National Post, Apr. 30, 2018

Ethical nations must confront their history with moral rectitude. It is time for Canada to offer an official apology to Jewish Holocaust survivors, their families and the families of those who were murdered. Because our hands are not clean.

May 13th will mark 79 years since the ill-fated MS St. Louis set sail from Hamburg, Germany, on a journey to Havana, Cuba. Aboard the ship were 937 passengers, mostly desperate Jewish refugees fleeing Germany, a country consumed by vicious anti-Semitism, controlled by a raving, genocidal dictator who vowed to rid the world of its “Jewish problem.” Each passenger possessed a valid travel visa to enter Cuba. They had every reason to believe they’d escaped.

As the St. Louis made its way across the Atlantic Ocean, unbeknownst to the passengers, the Cuban government, facing a huge anti-Semitic backlash and beset by a corruption scandal relating to visas, cancelled the entry permits for the refugees. When they finally arrived, after a week at anchor offshore, the vast majority of the passengers were told they would not be permitted to disembark.

Their choices were limited. The MS St. Louis was barely a 90-minute sail from the shores of Miami. Surely, thought the ship’s German captain — Gustav Schroeder, a decent man who understood the plight of his distraught travellers — the United States, a country which held the hope of sanctuary for so many, would extend a hand of freedom and safety to his passengers. Instead, the American government rejected any request for asylum. To ensure that this message would not be misunderstood, a Coast Guard vessel was ordered to very visibly follow the ocean liner. Like today, the media became the moral watchdog of a willfully blind nation. The New York Times wrote in a heartfelt editorial, “We can only hope that some hearts will soften somewhere and some refuge be found. The cruise of the St. Louis cries to heaven of man’s inhumanity to men.”

Prominent Canadians began calling for the refugees be admitted here. But the prime minister, William Lyon McKenzie King, accepted the position of his director of immigration: “No country could open its doors wide enough to take in the hundreds of thousands of Jewish people who want to leave Europe: the line must be drawn somewhere.” The St. Louis, although only two days from Halifax on its way back across the Atlantic, sailed on, forced by necessity to return to Europe. Some passengers allowed into the United Kingdom found safety. The others landed in Holland, Belgium and France,. Those countries were later overrun by the Nazis. They rounded up the Jews and send them to concentration camps. More than 250 of those passengers that Canada, and others, refused to help, were murdered.

Professors Irving Abella and Harold Troper have studied this grim part of our history, and noted our anti-Semitic immigration policies during the Holocaust in their seminal study None is too Many. “It was a Canada,” as Abella wrote elsewhere, “with immigration policies that were racist and exclusionary, a country blanketed by an oppressive anti-Semitism in which Jews were the pariahs of Canadian society, demeaned, despised and discriminated against.”

Today we have a different Canada, one that values diversity and pluralism. Canada today is offering official apologies for policies that were bigoted, racist and homophobic. It has been a steep learning curve for Canadians. Yet with historic apologies to Indigenous peoples for a cultural genocide committed against them through the residential school system, and with  similar national apologies to the Sikh, Japanese and LGBTQ communities for historical wrongs, Canada has become a leader in teaching the world of the power of a simple phrase: “We’re sorry.”

A recent poll by The Conference on Jewish Material Claims against Germany, a respected Jewish organization, shows that fully “one-fifth of millennials either haven’t heard of or are not sure if they have heard of the Holocaust.” And recently released hate crimes statistics collected by Canadian police have once again placed the Jewish community on top of the haters lists. An official national public apology for Canada’s actions against Jewish refugees during the Holocaust would be a powerful lesson for all, especially the young Canadians who are most at risk of forgetting the painful historical lessons we were supposed to have learned. Owning up to the errors of our past will help ensure that such evil, discriminatory policies never again see the light of day.

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U.S. HOLOCAUST MUSEUM EXCUSES FDR’S SILENCE:

JEWS ARE INCONVENIENT

Dr. Rafael Medoff

Arutz Sheva, May 3, 2018

Controversy continues to grow over the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s new exhibit, which claims that President Franklin D. Roosevelt did the best he could to help Jews during the Holocaust.  Mainstream historians say that the exhibit’s claims fly in the face of decades of historical research. Below is part 2 of … the essay “Walls of Paper,” by Dr. Rafael Medoff…

When the world-famous German Jewish chemist Fritz Haber approached US Ambassador to Germany William Dodd in July 1933 to ask about “the possibilities in America for emigrants with distinguished records here in science,” Dodd told him (according to Dodd’s diary) “that the law allowed none now, the quota being filled.” In fact, the German quota was 95% unfilled that year.

Ten year-old Herbert Friedman was denied permission to accompany his mother and brother to the United States in 1936 after an examining physician at the Stuttgart consulate claimed he had tuberculosis. Tests all proved negative, and an array of German and American specialists who reviewed his X-rays likewise concluded that he did not have the disease. Yet the consulate would not budge. The family eventually managed to enlist the help of Albert Einstein, who, in a letter to the surgeon general about the case, reported:

“I have spoken to a reliable young man who recently emigrated from Germany; when I told him about the Stuttgart Consulate’s refusal to issue the visa for the child, without giving the young man the reason for the refusal [that is, Einstein did not tell him about the claim of tuberculosis—RM], he immediately said, ‘That is an old story. Tuberculosis!’ This shows clearly that this case is not an isolated case but that it is becoming a dangerous practice. “

Some applicants in Germany ran into trouble when they presented a ketubah, the traditional Jewish religious wedding certificate, as evidence of their marital status. Some of these Jews had been married in a religious ceremony only, and not according to civil law, while others simply found it impossible to obtain evidence of their marital status from a Nazi government office, or else had been married in Russia before the Soviet takeover and could not enter the USSR to retrieve documentation.

US consular officials refused to recognize a ketubah as proof of marriage and therefore deemed the applicants’ children “illegitimate” and rejected the family on the grounds of low moral character. In these cases and many others, consular officials used their discretionary abilities to achieve what one consul characterized as “the Department’s desire to keep immigration to a minimum.” In late 1936, there was a modest increase in the number of German Jews admitted to the United States. By the end of 1937, a total of 11,127 immigrants from Germany had arrived, representing 42.1% of the available spaces.

Consuls in Germany had complained that they were short-staffed, so Foreign Service Inspector Jerome Klahr Huddle was sent to Germany to assess the situation. In his report, Huddle recommended that more-distant relatives could be relied upon to provide support, because they undoubtedly felt genuine sympathy for their persecuted family members. Eliot Coulter of the Visa Division agreed, in an internal memorandum, that “the Jewish people often have a high sense of responsibility toward their relatives, including distant relatives whom they may not have seen.”

Yet the majority of the German quota remained unfilled. John Farr Simmons, chief of the State Department’s Visa Division in the 1930s, was proud to note, in 1937, “the drastic reduction in immigration” that “was merely an obvious and predictable result of administrative practices.” Germany’s annexation of Austria in 1938 (the Anschluss) marked a significant intensification of the Jewish refugee crisis. Now a second major European Jewish community was in need of a haven. The well-publicized scenes of anti-Jewish brutality accompanying the German army’s entrance into Austria, including Jews being forced to scrub the streets with toothbrushes, showed that the problem was reaching crisis proportions.

Although polls showed most Americans still opposed relaxing immigration restrictions, a handful of members of Congress and journalists began urging US intervention. Senior State Department officials decided to—in the words of the department’s internal year-end review—“get out in front and attempt to guide” the pressure before it got out of hand. They conceived the idea of an international conference on the refugee problem, to create an impression of US concern while coaxing other countries to assume responsibility for the bulk of the refugees.

On March 24, 1938, President Roosevelt announced he was inviting 32 countries to send representatives to a conference in the French resort town of Évian-les-Bains. FDR emphasized in his announcement that “no nation would be expected or asked to receive a greater number of emigrants than is permitted by its existing legislation.” He did permit the German and Austrian quotas, now combined, to be filled that year, the only year that happened.

With one exception, the delegates at Évian proclaimed their countries’ unwillingness to accept more Jews. Typical was the Australian delegate, who bluntly asserted that “as we have no real racial problem, we are not desirous of importing one.” The only exception was the tiny Dominican Republic, which declared it would accept as many as 100,000 Jewish refugees…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

 

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UNDER SWISS PROTECTION

Hannah Klein

AISH, May 2018

Having read extensively about the Holocaust, I was surprised that I had never come across the rescuer named Carl Lutz. Neither had anyone else with whom I spoke. Jews honor heroes like Oskar Schindler and Raoul Wallenberg, yet, inexplicably, Carl Lutz, someone who saved over 60,000 Jews, is virtually unknown. Charlotte Schallié, a University of Victoria German professor, and Agnes Hirschi, Lutz’s stepdaughter, aim to rectify Lutz’s obscurity with their recent book, “Under Swiss Protection: Jewish Eyewitness Accounts from Wartime Budapest”. Schallié explains that Lutz’s name remains unrecognized largely because of his unassuming nature and low profile. Lutz epitomized the Talmudic teaching from Ethics of the Fathers: “Emor me’at ve’aseh harbeh, Say little and do much.”

Schallié and Hirschi undertook the massive research project of interviewing 36 survivors around the world who were rescued by Carl Lutz. (Of these, almost half live in Israel and one fourth are in the United States.) The editors were probably unaware of a remarkable coincidence: 36 equals “double chai” in Hebrew, with 18 – chai – representing life. The son of a Swiss tradesman, Lutz displayed early interest in a diplomatic career. With remarkable initiative, he immigrated to the U.S. alone, at age 18, to earn money for college. He worked for the Swiss Legation in Washington, D.C. and graduated from George Washington University in 1924.

Carl Lutz (1895-1975) served as Swiss Vice-Consul in Budapest from 1942 until late 1944. There, he displayed the same initiative as in his teenage years. Lutz had been Vice-Consul in Palestine in 1935, before being reassigned to Budapest. In Hungary, neutral Switzerland represented the interests of Britain, a member of the Allied forces fighting against Nazism. Thus, Lutz was in a unique position to facilitate Jewish immigration to British-occupied Palestine. Lutz also placed the Jewish Agency under Swiss protection. These unique advantages enabled him to provide approximately 62,000 Jews – half the Jewish population of Budapest – with visas to escape from Nazi Europe. This figure – the largest and most successful rescue operation of Jews during the Second World War – is roughly equal to the entire population of Gaithersburg or Bethesda.

Oskar Schindler, by contrast, rescued 1200 Jews. So, while Lutz is sometimes called “The Swiss Schindler”, Schindler might more appropriately be titled “the German Lutz”. In the book, survivors describe how Lutz devised “Schutzpaesse” (safe conduct passes) and safe houses to implement his rescue operations. Lutz’s rescue strategy was later adopted by the embassies of other neutral countries. Among those who consulted Lutz and followed his lead was the Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg. The Glass House, headquarters of Lutz’s 76 Swiss safe houses in Budapest was the converted showroom of a glass factory. It became an annex of the Swiss Embassy and a center for producing forged documents. It housed 25,000 Jews at one time. It is today a museum dedicated to that history…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

 

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

 

 

Contents

On Topic Links

The Speech of the Century that Everyone is Listening To: Avi Abelow, Israel Unwired, Apr. 29, 2018—Miriam Peretz is a powerful woman, an inspiration to one and all. She lost two sons to Arab terror while serving as IDF soldiers. She also lost her husband to a broken heart after the loss of their first son. Overcoming the tremendous natural sadness from her huge loss, she now spreads love, joy and appreciation to all who hear her.

Anti-Semitism ‘Becoming Mainstream’ in Canada: Jewish Advocacy Group: Josh K. Elliott, CTV News, Apr. 11, 2018—Incidents of anti-Semitism were on the rise for a fifth straight year in Canada, despite an overall decline in the number of incidents worldwide, according to a Jewish advocacy group.

McGill Anti-Semitism Report ‘Pathetic’: Prof: Joel Goldenberg, The Suburban, Apr. 11, 2018—Dr. Charles Ascher Small, founding Director and President of the Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy in New York City, laced into McGill University’s response to recent alleged anti-Semitism during a panel discussion Sunday night.

Open Letter to Natalie Portman From an Israeli Progressive: Hen Mazzig, Jerusalem Post, Apr. 22, 2018—Dear Natalie, How did we get to this? I was always a fan, even of your politics. I could relate to your frustration about much of Israel’s politics. As an LGBT Israeli liberal from an Iraqi-North African (Berber) background, I know full well how much work is needed to improve our country. I’m definitely not a fan of right-wing politics in Israel and do not support the current leadership. However, your actions this week were disturbing.