AJC CEO David Harris on International Holocaust Remembrance Day
Antisemitism can only be overcome if it is correctly identified in all its forms. Writing in The Times of Israel, AJC’s Rabbi Andrew Baker and Holly Huffnagle call on governments worldwide to adopt and implement the Working Definition of Antisemitism of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA). The definition, which recognizes anti-Zionism as a form of antisemitism and was endorsed by the EU Council in 2018, is a critical tool to train law enforcement, judges, and educators and should serve as guideline for social media platforms to effectively fight anti-Jewish hate speech online.
AJC and the National Urban League wrote a new chapter in the history of Black-Jewish relations in the United States. #BlackJewishUnity week featured groundbreaking online events viewed over 100,000 times and - as part of the campaign - AJC President Harriet P. Schleifer and National Urban League head Marc H. Morial published an op-ed in USA Today, America’s largest circulation paper: “Blacks and Jews can draw from a long history spanning many decades to tackle today’s monumental challenges. Once again, we stand shoulder to shoulder as Lewis did in 1965 with Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.”
Quoted in The Times of Israel and The Jerusalem Post, TFI Chair Lukas Mandl hailed the Austrian parliament's condemnation of the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel: “The Austrian parliament’s historic decision today to condemn any boycotts of Israeli goods shows that Austria stands on the side of Israel – not half-heartedly, but with full conviction."
Brussels, 23 February 2020 – The AJC Transatlantic Institute condemned today’s antisemitic Aalst carnival parade which was allowed to occur unhindered by Belgian authorities. AJC urged Belgian and European Union leaders to condemn the costumes and called on the EU to investigate Belgium....
Brussels, 21 February 2020 – The AJC Transatlantic Institute called on Belgian authorities to prohibit the organizers of the Aalst carnival from displaying antisemitic floats at this Sunday’s parade.
Last year, the puppets parading through the Flemish city displayed Nazi-era...
Writing in the French daily Le Figaro, AJC Paris director Anne-Sophie Sebban-Bécache and Fondapol‘s head of research Victor Delage write that the AJC-Fondapol survey shows that “extreme right-wing antisemitism has not disappeared and antisemitism on the extreme left has resurfaced over the last 20 years or so, but it is Islamist antisemitism that is asserting itself most forcefully.”
EU Commission Vice President Margaritis Schinas delivered a powerful keynote address at an International Holocaust Remembrance Day event co-organized by the AJC Transatlantic Institute. Seventy-five years after the liberation of Auschwitz, Vice President Schinas underlined Europe’s collective duty of remembering the past and fighting the current resurgence of antisemitism, including by implementing the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition.
On the eve of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, the Mecca-based Muslim World League Secretary General Dr. Mohammad bin Abdulkarim Al-Issa and AJC CEO David Harris led a groundbreaking joint visit of Muslims and Jews to Auschwitz. With 62 Muslims, including 25 prominent religious leaders from some 28 countries, the mission brought the most senior Islamic leadership delegation to ever visit a Nazi German death camp. Following a memorial prayer for the dead, Dr. Al-Issa said: “To be here, among the children of Holocaust survivors and members of the Jewish and Islamic communities, is both a sacred duty and a profound honor."
McGill University’s student government condemned a Jewish student leader for accepting an invitation to travel to Israel and the Palestinian Territories, but said nothing about his fellow student who isn’t Jewish. The victims of BDS, it seems, are the students and the state of higher education in North America, argues AJC’s Global Director of Young Leadership Seffi Kogen in The Forward. After all, when it comes to Israel, “illiteracy becomes a virtue, and students who seek to learn are ostracized and shamed.”
Who better to weigh in on antisemitism than Jews? AJC Chief Advocacy Officer Daniel Elbaum presents in The Times of Israel AJC’s just-released landmark survey of U.S. Jews: 84% believe the statement “Israel has no right to exist” is indeed antisemitic. Over 80% said the BDS (boycott, divestment, and sanctions) movement is mostly antisemitic or has antisemitic supporters.