An Open Letter to Angela Merkel: Kristallnacht is Still Relevant Today in Germany

November 6, 2013 10:31 am 3 comments

German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Photo: Jacques Grießmayer.

Madam Federal Chancellor,

We are about to mark the 75th anniversary of the KristallnachtReichspogrom (the Night of Broken Glass State Pogrom) which is considered the prelude to the Nazi Holocaust.

The one place in the world where the Jewish people expected a sombre, respectful commemoration was Berlin, the city where Kristallnacht began. Yet the unthinkable is about to happen.

In 1938, Hitler closed down the original Berlin Jewish Museum. Its reestablishment in 2001was feted as a vindication of Jewish survival. Yet today, Hitler would be celebrating the enormity of this institution’s policy of defaming the Jewish State.

To mark Kristallnacht, the “Jewish” Museum has organized an international conference on “Antisemitism in Europe Today: the Phenomena, the Conflicts.”

Its key-note speaker, Brian Klug, is a British Jewish anti-Israel activist who, by commission or omission, gives cover to antisemites among the extreme left and the B.D.S. (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) campaigners.As a founder of Independent Jewish Voices – established to delegitimize the Jewish State – its members are arguably antisemitic according to the European Union 2004 Fundamental Rights Agency’s Working Definition of Antisemitism.

The late Simon Wiesenthal was once asked “What was a Jewish Kapo?” -“A Kapo,” he responded. Sadly, the same applies to a Jewish antisemite.

Last year, in the city where the Nazi “Kaufen nicht bei Juden” (“Do not buy from Jews”) boycott campaign was launched, the Jewish Museum hosted Judith Butler,an American Boycott of Israel campaigner and an apologist for anti-Jewish terrorists, who reportedly stated:

“Understanding Hamas/Hizbollah as social movements that are progressive, that are on the left, that are part of a global left, is extremely important.”

Madam Chancellor, the Berlin Jewish Museum has been architecturally described as “a warped Star of David” due to its zigzag structure. The Museum’s management is indeed warping the Jewish Star. One of its display halls is called the Void, which holds the Israeli artist Kadishman’s stamped metallic faces, dramatically redolent of the gas-chambers. That vacuum is becoming pervaded by the noxious fumes of a new Jew-hatred.

“Kristallnacht” must not be abused as an icon for those who wish to decouple the Jewish victims of Nazism from their heirs, the Jewish victims of today—whether in Israel or Diaspora. It is, indeed, so much easier to mourn for the Jewish dead of 75 years ago than for those of today.

Was the Berlin Jewish Museum created, at the cost of Germany’s taxpayers and international donations, to demonize Israel, serve as a fig leaf for antisemitism and to commit memoricide—the murder of the memory of those murdered?

Madam Chancellor, we are deeply aware that the Museum’s actions contravene your personal position and, over sixty years of your own and your predecessors’ efforts for German reconciliation with the Jewish people and a commitment to the security of the State of Israel.

Our Centre thus urges your Chancellery to condemn the Museum’s distortion of its role, launch an enquiry into its behaviour and suspend public funding until a new management is appointed.

We also call on the international Friends of the Berlin Jewish Museum to reconsider whether their continued support is appropriate to their expectations.

Most respectfully,

Dr. Shimon Samuels

Dr. Shimon Samuels is Director for International Relations of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre.

This article was originally published by The Times of Israel.

3 Comments

  • Stop whining shlomo – you are a prime example of why jews have been hated since the beginning. There is a good reason for “antisemitism” – you should ask yourself why sometime.

  • I could say your comment is extreme, Yoel. But I think insane is the better term.

  • GENUGH! Let’s stop this nonsense, referring to these despicable as being ‘Jews’. People like Brian Klug are not fellow Jews. They are B’nei Esau, still trying to kill the B’nei Yakov after so many centuries. We are commanded to Ahavah Yisroel, to love every Jew.
    I refuse to love these golum, Kapos, secular leftist monsters, who walk among us. They are not our fellow Jews, And like Esau hey have forfeited their birthright. They are our worst enemies, committing Fratricide by word and deed.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Sports US & Canada Israeli-American Group Congratulates Cavaliers’ Blatt on Reaching NBA Finals

    Israeli-American Group Congratulates Cavaliers’ Blatt on Reaching NBA Finals

    JNS.org – An organization whose work focuses on the estimated population of 500,000-800,000 Israeli Americans congratulated David Blatt, the Jewish head coach of the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) Cleveland Cavaliers and a longtime Israel-based coach, for clinching an appearance in the NBA Finals. The Israeli-American Council (IAC), whose stated mission is “to build an active and giving Israeli-American community throughout the United States in order to strengthen the State of Israel, our next generation, and to provide a bridge to [...]

    Read more →
  • Food US & Canada Bacon Flavor Ben & Jerry’s ‘Not Gonna Happen’ Because it Wouldn’t be Kosher

    Bacon Flavor Ben & Jerry’s ‘Not Gonna Happen’ Because it Wouldn’t be Kosher

    Famed ice cream maker Ben & Jerry’s will not be introducing a Bacon flavored product to its offerings because the company intends to keep its entire line kosher, Marketing Director Alison Gilbert told AOL’s morning show Rise recently. “It’s kind of funny, a lot of people look for bacon in our ice cream, which is probably not gonna happen because all of our ice cream is kosher,” she said, referring to Jewish dietary restrictions that proscribe the consumption of pig [...]

    Read more →
  • Israel Sports Israeli Judo Team Faces Antisemitic Harassment in Morocco: ‘We Will Murder You’

    Israeli Judo Team Faces Antisemitic Harassment in Morocco: ‘We Will Murder You’

    Israeli athletes at a world Judo championship in Morocco reportedly faced antisemitic slurs during the competition, news site WorldNetDaily reported on Monday. “We will murder you,” and “you’re not wanted here, go home,” were among the vituperative attacks directed at the Israeli Judo Association team, which was in Morocco last week for the World Masters Judo Tournament. According to Haaretz, each Israeli teammate was met with boos and jeers upon entering a fight. Additionally, no Israeli flags were present at [...]

    Read more →
  • Music US & Canada Lady Gaga Accepts ADL Award: ‘Your Philosophies Are So in Line With Ours’ (VIDEO)

    Lady Gaga Accepts ADL Award: ‘Your Philosophies Are So in Line With Ours’ (VIDEO)

    Pop superstar Lady Gaga on Thursday accepted an award from Jewish human rights group the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) on behalf of her Born This Way Foundation, which strives to combat bullying among young people. “Your philosophies are so in line with ours,” she said of the ADL upon accepting the Making a Difference Award in a videotaped message, which was shown at a ceremony in New York City. “We want to help young people know that their feelings and who they are on [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities At 80, Singer-Songwriter Leonard Cohen’s Jewish Roots ‘Very Much Intact’

    At 80, Singer-Songwriter Leonard Cohen’s Jewish Roots ‘Very Much Intact’

    JNS.org – Eighty years young, Leonard Cohen fits many descriptions—singer, songwriter, poet, novelist, monk. From his Jewish upbringing in Canada to the present day, Cohen has always explored his spiritual side. This month, the singer-songwriter released the CD (May 12) and iTunes (on May 8 of this year) formats of his latest album, Can’t Forget: A Souvenir of the Grand Tour, which features live recordings from his world tours in 2012 and 2013. Last year, Cohen’s Popular Problems was voted by Rolling Stone [...]

    Read more →
  • Europe Sports FIFA Head Says Israel Should Not be Booted From World Soccer Association

    FIFA Head Says Israel Should Not be Booted From World Soccer Association

    JNS.org – Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) head Sepp Blatter said during a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that contrary to Palestinian complaints, Israel has not violated any FIFA statutes and should not be suspended from international soccer’s governing body. “We should not come to one federation saying we will exclude them,” said Blatter, the Jerusalem Post reported. “If the national association is fulfilling its obligations then there is no need to intervene,” he said. “I’m on a [...]

    Read more →
  • Featured Middle East Sports Jewish Rights Group Slams Palestinian Attempts to Suspend Israel From FIFA

    Jewish Rights Group Slams Palestinian Attempts to Suspend Israel From FIFA

    Jewish human rights group the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) said on Tuesday it was “appalled” by a Palestinian Football Association initiative to suspend Israel from FIFA, calling it another “front waged in the context of the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) campaign.” “We are appalled at the temerity of the Palestinan Football Association (PFA) demand that FIFA suspend Israel at your forthcoming Congress in Zurich,” wrote the group’s international relations director, Dr. Shimon Samuels, in a letter to FIFA President Joseph [...]

    Read more →
  • Theater US & Canada Star of Auschwitz Thriller Says ‘God Was Holding the Hand of Every Jew in the Gas Chamber’ (VIDEO)

    Star of Auschwitz Thriller Says ‘God Was Holding the Hand of Every Jew in the Gas Chamber’ (VIDEO)

    The lead actor in Son of Saul, an Auschwitz thriller featured at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, told the UK’s The Guardian that he believes God was “holding the hand” of each Jew who died in the Nazi gas chambers during the Holocaust. “I do not for one nanosecond like to pretend that God is off the hook. He could and should have stopped it at a much earlier stage,” Géza Röhrig, 48, said. ”But I would not be able to get [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.