Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

A Message to Hungary: Resist the Dissemination of Hatred

November 5, 2013 5:08 pm 2 comments

A memorial to Hungarian victims of the Holocaust on the shore of Danube in Budapest. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

The below speech was delivered on behalf of Rabbi Arthur Schneier at the Conference on Jewish Life and Anti-Semitism in Contemporary Europe in Budapest, Hungary on October 1-2, 2013.

Your Eminences, Your Excellencies, distinguished delegates,

We are honored that our Trustee, His Eminence Cardinal Erdö, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest and President of the Council of Bishops’ Conferences of Europe is representing the Appeal of Conscience Foundation.  We are pleased to join the Lantos Foundation and the Hungarian Government in support of Conference on Jewish Life and Anti-Semitism in Contemporary Europe.

Sadly, years after the Holocaust it is still a timely topic.  May I call to your attention that we meet on the eve of the 70th anniversary of the deportations of most of Hungarian Jewry to Auschwitz and other concentration camps.  I know because I was in Budapest experiencing man’s inhumanity to man during this tragic chapter in Hungarian history – I was here during the Nazi occupation.  It should be noted that the legal approval for the persecution of Hungarian citizens of the Jewish faith was done in this Parliament where we are meeting today and was enacted by Hungarian legislators.

We cannot change what was. We must learn from the past and be vigilant and alert to the reappearance of the scourge of anti-Semitism.  This is why our interfaith Appeal of Conscience Foundation has been in the forefront of helping advance religious freedom, human rights, peace and tolerance.

May we resolve to return to our homes determined to resist dissemination of hatred and to educate our children to respect the “the other” for the well-being and unity of our respective nations.  Let us strengthen the forces that unite and not divide us. Let us safeguard the democratic values that have earned Hungary and honorable place in the European Union and guarantee peace and prosperity on the European continent that experienced too many conflicts in the past.

Appeal of Conscience Foundation encourages all states, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and the media to promote through education a culture of mutual respect and tolerance for the diversity of religions, the collective heritage of mankind.

God bless you.

2 Comments

  • Christopher Szabo

    I am saddened and touched by this sad message.
    However, the gentleman is mistaken in claiming legislation was agreed in the Hungarian Parliament. Because the country was occupied in March 1944, there was no parliamentary activity at this time.
    Under Hungarian law, the Nazi deportation was illegal.

    • peterthehungarian

      Christopher let me quote the relevant sentence:
      …the legal approval for the persecution of Hungarian citizens of the Jewish faith was done in this Parliament… (my highlight)
      The so called “First Jewish Law” (Elso Zsido torveny – XV. torvenycikk 1938) was legislated in the Hungarian Parliament six years before the German occupation.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition. Comments written in all caps will be deleted.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture First English-Language Trailer Debuts for Natalie Portman’s Hebrew Film ‘A Tale of Love and Darkness,’ Based on Amos Oz’s Memoir (VIDEO)

    First English-Language Trailer Debuts for Natalie Portman’s Hebrew Film ‘A Tale of Love and Darkness,’ Based on Amos Oz’s Memoir (VIDEO)

    The first English-language trailer for Natalie Portman’s directorial debut — A Tale of Love and Darkness — based on Israeli author Amos Oz’s memoir, was released on Thursday. The movie, originally filmed in Hebrew, tells the story of Oz’s childhood in Jerusalem at the end of the British Mandate and the early years of Israel’s independence. Portman, who was born in Israel and speaks fluent Hebrew, plays the lead role of Fania, the author’s mother. She struggles to raise her son as she deals with inner demons, a […]

    Read more →
  • Features As Berlin Prices Rise, Israelis Turn East for German Real-Estate Bargains

    As Berlin Prices Rise, Israelis Turn East for German Real-Estate Bargains

    JNS.org – Sonnenallee, a street in Berlin’s Neukölln district, looks like it comes straight out of an Arab city — so much so that it goes by the nickname “Gaza Strip.” Kebab and bakery shops are advertised in Arabic; men sit in men-only coffee shops; and bridal shop windows showcase glittery, not-so-stylish gowns. But take a random turn, and you’ll find a swath of bars, burger joints, and Indian restaurants where hip Berliners announce that they have arrived to urban coolness. […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Slays in ‘Wonder Woman’ Trailer (VIDEO)

    Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Slays in ‘Wonder Woman’ Trailer (VIDEO)

    Israeli actress Gal Gadot engages in fierce action sequences in the new Wonder Woman trailer, which Warner Bros. premiered during the San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday. The nearly 3-minute trailer, the first to debut for the superhero film, shows scenes of Diana, princess of the Amazons, fighting alongside men in the battle against the world’s toughest enemies. The first shot of the video shows Wonder Woman discovering a man, Steve Trevor (played by actor Chris Pine), washed ashore. The clip then takes viewers to the all-female island where Wonder Woman was born. […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture A Theatrical Look at Diplomacy and the Oslo Accords (REVIEW)

    A Theatrical Look at Diplomacy and the Oslo Accords (REVIEW)

    Is diplomacy worthwhile, even if the end result isn’t what we hoped for? That is the question, among many others, posed by the new play Oslo, by J.T. Rogers. Making its New York debut at Lincoln Center, the play examines the secret diplomatic process that led to the historic 1993 peace accords. The character of Shimon Peres makes an appearance onstage — and he, along with Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat, tower over the proceedings. But they mainly do so in absentia. Instead, […]

    Read more →
  • Spirituality/Tradition Sports Israeli Trailblazer Dean Kremer Brings Jewish Values to Nascent Pro Baseball Career

    Israeli Trailblazer Dean Kremer Brings Jewish Values to Nascent Pro Baseball Career

    JNS.org – Other than being part of the Los Angeles Dodgers organization, Sandy Koufax and Dean Kremer have something else in common: a respect for Jewish tradition. Koufax — who was recently ranked by ESPN as the best left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball (MLB) history — decided not to pitch Game 1 of the 1965 World Series because the game fell on Yom Kippur. “I would do the same,” Kremer said in an interview. Last month, the 20-year-old Kremer became […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Lead Guitarist of British Rock Band Queen Asks Adam Lambert to Sing in Hebrew During Upcoming Israel Concert

    Lead Guitarist of British Rock Band Queen Asks Adam Lambert to Sing in Hebrew During Upcoming Israel Concert

    The famed lead guitarist of British rock band Queen, Brian May, encouraged Jewish singer-songwriter Adam Lambert to perform in Hebrew during their upcoming joint concert in Israel, an entertainment industry advocacy organization reported on Tuesday. During a recent interview with Israeli television personality Assi Azar, May was played a 2005 video of Lambert singing the popular song Shir L’Shalom, (Song for Peace). May was so impressed by Lambert’s singing of the Hebrew track that he told the American singer, “We have to do that. Let’s […]

    Read more →
  • Sports Kenyan Marathoner to Compete for Israel in Rio Olympics

    Kenyan Marathoner to Compete for Israel in Rio Olympics

    JNS.org – Kenyan-born marathoner Lonah Chemtai is expected to compete for Israel at the Olympics Games in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil next month after gaining a last minute approval. “I am very proud [to represent Israel] and I hope to achieve a new personal best time,” Chemtai told Reuters. Chemtai, who grew up a rural village in western Kenya, first came to Israel in 2009 to care of the children of her country’s ambassador to Israel. The 27-year-old runner recently gained […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Jewish Identity Will Laughs Lead to Love on Show About Orthodox Dating?

    Will Laughs Lead to Love on Show About Orthodox Dating?

    To date or not to date? That is not the question for most Modern Orthodox singles in New York. The question is when will they find their future spouses, and when will their families stop nagging them about having babies? Inspired by the success of the Israeli show “Srugim,” Leah Gottfried, 25, decided she would create and star in her own show, “Soon By You.” “Dating is so serious already,” Gottfried said. “We wanted to take a lighter approach and laugh at the […]

    Read more →