On Yom Hashoah, we must remember the history of hate

The JC Leader, 22 April 2022


Holocaust memory day. Arbed wire and burning candle on black background.

April 25, 2022 10:06

Yom Hashoah, which begins on Wednesday night, serves as an annual day for Jewish remembrance of the Holocaust.

This is of course important in and of itself. But it is no less important that when we consider the Holocaust we look at it in the broader context of antisemitism throughout history.

The events of the Shoah may have begun and ended in Nazi Germany, but it did not arise out of thin air. It is impossible for anyone to understand the Holocaust and to learn lessons from it without considering that longer context of millennia of antisemitism. 

That history continues. This week we report how the chant, “Khaybar, Khaybar Ya Yahud, Jaish Mohammed Sauf Ya’ud” (Watch Out Jews, Remember Khaybar, the Army of Mohammed is returning) has been repeatedly uttered on the streets of Britain without a single person having ever been charged over what is a clear incitement to racial hatred.

The police — pathetically — are said to be “reluctant” to make arrests in the middle of demos. The message sent by this inaction is unambiguous: the authorities have decided it is acceptable to call in public for the murder of Jews. You can do so without penalty, whatever the law says.

It is good that Holocaust remembrance is so widespread among non-Jews as well as Jews.

But that remembrance is almost entirely meaningless while antisemitism is at the same time given the space to grow and develop.

April 25, 2022 10:06

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive