The Israeli-American Civic Action Network (ICAN), a leading U.S.-based non-governmental organization, is launching a culturally sensitive website and issuing a travel advisory for attendees of the NATO Summit 2023 in Vilnius, Lithuania. The advisory aims to provide attendees with crucial information about certain sensitive historical sites within the city, fostering an environment of intersectionality and understanding.
“ICAN is committed to promoting understanding and respectful engagement during the NATO Summit,” said Dillon Hosier, ICAN CEO. “Our travel advisory and website resources are designed to help attendees navigate Vilnius in an informed and sensitive manner, acknowledging the internalized oppression that can result from historical distortions.”
The travel advisory identifies several locations in Vilnius associated with Holocaust denial and distortion. These sites, which include monuments and plaques, present a distorted view of historical events, leading to a dangerously corrosive form of cultural appropriation further undermining Lithuania’s already vulnerable Jewish population. ICAN encourages attendees to avoid visiting these locations during their stay in Vilnius to ensure focus remains on the important discussions and collaborations of the NATO Summit.
ICAN’s new website also features an interactive map of Vilnius, highlighting both NATO Summit-related locations and sites of historical controversy. The map also includes ‘caution zones’ established around problematic sites based on line-of-sight considerations. These zones are designed to prevent dignitaries and other NATO participants from accidentally encountering one of these sites or being videotaped or photographed near them. The website provides a wealth of resources for attendees, including a detailed history of Vilnius during World War II and a comprehensive FAQ section.
“We believe in the importance of historical accuracy and the need to acknowledge and remember the atrocities of the Holocaust,” added Hosier. “Our resources are designed to foster a more informed and respectful dialogue about these sensitive historical matters, and to challenge any attempts to manipulate or distort historical truths.”
For more information, please visit ICAN’s NATO 2023 Travel Advisory website at: NATO2023VilniusTravelAdvisory.com.