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SIXTY YEARS AFTER the Holocaust, anti-Semitism remains "widespread and politically tolerated" in Europe, said the chairman of the U.S. Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, a federal agency that preserves Jewish historical sites.
In his remarks to the International Law Organization, Warren L. Miller said this antipathy is underscored in a recent poll conducted by the European Union in which 60 percent of the respondents said Israel posed the greatest danger to world peace. He added that physical attacks in France had become so common that Jews have been advised to not wear yarmulkes in public.
Yet, Miller said there are signs of hope despite the disturbing trend. He praised the Bush administration for unprecedented support in helping the Commission to broker 15 new agreements that commit foreign governments to identify and protect cultural sites of minority groups, particularly those persecuted during the Holocaust.
Miller commended the German and Polish governments for their continued efforts to address past injustices. These efforts include increased support for educational programs, the erection and maintenance of Holocaust museums, and protection of Holocaust sites. He pointed to Germany’s rapidly expanding Jewish community – the fastest growing in the world – as a sign of a European future without hate.
Most important, Miller recognized the significance of nations admitting complicity in the Holocaust, noting that Polish President Kwasniewski led his countrymen to acknowledge Poland’s war crimes against Jews. Warren L. Miller, chairman of the U.S. Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, speaks to students about the rising tide of anti-Semitism in Europe.
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