Shoah leaflet refers to gays but not Jews

The Socialist Workers Party (SWP) has launched a campaign that condemns the Holocaust's slaughter of gays and lesbians, disabled people and trades unionists - but fails to mention the fact that there were Jewish victims.

The party circulated a petition in a "Stop the Nazi BNP" leaflet at the British National Party's annual festival last weekend and encouraged signatories to join the Unite Against Fascism (UAF) campaign.

The SWP petition stated: "The BNP deny the holocaust [sic] where thousands of LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender] people, trade unionists and disabled people were slaughtered."

Karen Pollock, chief executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust, said the efforts of groups which oppose the far-right "should be applauded", but added: "We feel it is an extremely serious oversight when referring to the victims of the Holocaust not to include the six million Jewish people who perished under the Nazi regime.

"While there were many victims of the Holocaust, it was only the Jews and the Roma people who were singled out for extermination. Neither was mentioned in this leaflet."

This week Martin Smith, general secretary of the SWP, said he regretted the omission. "We condemn the Holocaust. We had placards which said ‘never again' and showed images from the Holocaust.

"If you are trying to say we don't care about Jews, you are wrong. We have taken youth groups to Auschwitz and to synagogues."

The BNP's "Red, White and Blue" festival, held in Derbyshire, attracted hundreds of anti-fascist protesters.
More than 30 of the protesters were arrested after riot police were pelted with stones.

Among the speakers invited by the BNP was Petra Edelmannova, chair of the ultra-right wing Czech National party.

Her party is proposing to include in its 2010 general-election campaign a policy based on a study titled "The Final Solution to the Gypsy Issue".

It claims its aim is to offer Gypsies voluntary relocation to India.

    Last updated: 1:15pm, August 26 2008