‘I Love Nazis and Gas Ovens, Not You,’ Head of Belgian Group Combating Antisemitism Is Told
The public prosecutor’s office in Brussels announced on Monday that it was formally investigating a series of antisemitic insults and threats directed at Joël Rubinfeld — president of the Belgian League Against Antisemitism (LBCA).
One of the messages posted on Facebook Messenger told Rubinfeld: “I love the [gas] ovens and the Nazis, but not you.”
Another read, “Vive [Long Live] Monsieur Faurisson” — a reference to the late French Holocaust denier, Robert Faurisson, who continues to enjoy cult status in extremist circles.
The prosecutor’s decision follows a court filing last week by Christophe Goosens, the LBCA’s lawyer, alleging antisemitic harassment against Rubinfeld.
The flurry of messages was triggered by the LBCA’s ongoing campaign against the annual carnival in the Belgian city of Aalst, which prominently features crude antisemitic stereotypes.
At this year’s carnival in Aalst, one group used their float to mock Jews by wearing huge fur hats, long fake noses and ant costumes — bringing to mind the Nazi association of Jews with “vermin.”
Other revelers wore fake hooked noses while carrying signs reading, “Do not mock Jews,” and, “Do not tell the truth about Jews.”
An event rooted in medieval times, the Aalst Carnival was recognized in 2010 by UNESCO — the UN’s cultural and educational agency — as belonging to the “Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.”
That status was revoked in 2019 over what UNESCO condemned as a “recurring repetition of racist and antisemitic representations.”