Due to the recent devastating attacks on Israel, a country that I called home for several years during my childhood, I can’t stay silent.
Over 1,400 people have died, 3,400 others have been injured, with nearly 200 hostages taken – including children and elderly Holocaust survivors. As these numbers are shocking and unimaginable, the depth of violence and brutality cannot be fully communicated by videos, or images.
As the Executive Director of The Blue Card, an organization that supports Holocaust survivors, I must speak out.
In the days following the massacre, I set out on a pre-planned visit to Germany where The Blue Card has its roots. There I visited Dachau Concentration Camp, one of the very first erected by the Nazis in 1933. It was extremely emotional for me, and sadly timely. As I stood at the gates of this horrific place, where Jews were forcibly worked, tortured, and murdered, simply for being who they were, I realized the startling comparison between Nazi Germany, and the world today. It was because of one ideal started by a group, that the unjust hatred of Jewish people led thousands of non-Jews to desire the death of an entire population, enough to execute a plan of action to make that a reality.
Jewish people have been persecuted for centuries and continue to question how this was allowed to happen and why bystanders stayed silent and complicit. Social media did not exist back then, and news sources played a large role in censoring what was being done to Jewish people under the Nazi regime.
We pledged “Never Again” more than 78 years since the end of the Holocaust. Today, while we have social media to spread information, there are still far too many people staying silent. Too many who refuse to condemn Hamas and other terrorist groups for crimes against humanity; not enough people pleading for a safe and immediate return of hostages, and unjustly criticizing Israel for defending its right to exist. Even worse, some justifying the savage murder, rape, and kidnapping of innocent civilians as Israel bringing these atrocities upon itself.
How are Jews living in the diaspora supposed to feel when protestors are celebrating terrorism in the streets? How can students feel seen and heard when their professors and peers at school are doing the same? There has been a startling rise in antisemitic violent incidents on city streets and school campuses linked to the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict which cannot be ignored.
We must not allow the horrors of the Holocaust to be repeated. Antisemitism is rearing its ugly head once more all over the world. Do not give in to antisemitic propaganda.
Never again is now!