Harvard Antisemitic Cartoon

    Harvard University Interim President Alan M. Garber:

    A few groups purporting to speak on behalf of Harvard affiliates recently circulated a flagrantly antisemitic cartoon in a post on social media channels. The cartoon, included in a longer post, depicted what appeared to be an Arab man and a Black man with nooses around their necks. The nooses are held by a hand imprinted with the Star of David, and a dollar sign appears in the middle of the star. Online condemnation of this trope-filled image was swift, and Harvard promptly issued a statement condemning the posted cartoon. While the groups associated with the posting or sharing of the cartoon have since sought to distance themselves from it in various ways, the damage remains, and our condemnation stands.

    Alan Garber, assumed the office on January 2, 2024, following the resignation of Claudine Gay.

    David Wolpe, from Sinai Temple in Los Angeles, is a visiting scholar at the Harvard Divinity School. Rabbi Wolpe shared the post in question. It’s clearly antisemitic.

    A group of pro-Palestinian faculty and staff at Harvard University later apologized. But The Times of Israel reported that the group:

    then republished the post but replaced the antisemitic image with one of radical civil rights activist Kwame Ture — formally known as Stokely Carmichael — famous for saying the “only good Zionist is a dead Zionist.”

    See also, WSJ.

    Why Antisemitism Persists - A Jewish Perspective

    Boaz Munro1 writing in Tablet:

    Why don’t we see more efforts to dismantle antisemitism? Well, for one thing, Jews make up only 0.2% of the global population. We’re outnumbered more than 110:1 by Muslims and Christians—each. So if the onus is on Jews to start the conversation—which it shouldn’t be—then we’re spread laughably thin.

    Non-Jews seem to have no interest in the subject; societies are loath to name the bigotries they’re founded on, much less challenge them. The American South was built on hideous racism, but do you think antebellum Southerners went around saying, “Hi there, fellow racist! Another wonderful day for racism”? Of course not.

    That society couldn’t begin to change on its own. It had to be confronted.

    After thousands of years of grinding persecution, culminating in the Holocaust, Zionism and Israel represent Jewish resistance—the stubborn assertion of our right to live and the legacy of those who refused to tiptoe, rationalize, or minimize any longer.

    1. Boaz Munro is a writer, web designer, and educator. He studied Hebrew, Arabic, and modern Middle East history at Brown University and The George Washington University. A grandson of Holocaust survivors from Poland with family in Israel, he’s originally from Pittsburgh. He lives in the Bay Area with his wife and daughter. ↩︎

    USC Shoah Foundation Lecture Series on Antisemitism

    With anti-Jewish rhetoric and violence on the rise around the world, the USC Shoah Foundation has launched the Daniel and Marisa Klass USC Shoah Foundation Lecture Series on Antisemitism. Leading scholars will guide audiences through the latest research and explore a diversity of approaches to understanding and combating the current upsurge.

    Upcoming Lectures

    Watch Past Lectures

    The USC Shoah Foundation houses over 56,000 audio-visual testimonies conducted in 65 countries and in 44 languages. Steven Spielberg founded it in 1994 to videotape and preserve interviews with survivors and other witnesses of the Holocaust.

    London’s Wiener Holocaust Library Celebrates 90 Years of Service

    The Wiener Holocaust Library in London is celebrating its 90th birthday. It is the oldest continuously functioning archive documenting Nazi crimes.

    The Library has its origins in the work of Dr. Alfred Wiener (1885-1964). Dr. Wiener was a German Jew from Berlin who campaigned against Nazism during the 1920s and 30s and gathered evidence about antisemitism and the persecution of Jews in Germany.

    Dr. Wiener and his family fled Germany in 1933 and settled in Amsterdam. Later that year he set up the Jewish Central Information Office (JCIO) at the request of the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Anglo-Jewish Association. This archive collected information about the Nazis, which formed the basis of campaigns to undermine their activities.

    Following Kristallnacht (the November Pogrom of 1938), Wiener prepared to bring his collection to the UK. It arrived the following summer and is believed to have opened on the day the Nazis invaded Poland. 

    During the war, staff gathered evidence to document and publicize reports of Nazi efforts to annihilate European Jewry, including an eyewitness account of Kristallnacht.

    Throughout the war, the JCIO served the British Government as it fought the Nazi regime. Increasingly the collection was referred to as ‘Dr Wiener’s Library’ and eventually this led to its renaming.

    Wiener’s recognition of the danger posed by the Nazis didn’t begin after Hitler came to power in 1933. Instead, he can justly lay claim to having been one of the first intellectuals to raise the alarm about the rise of antisemitism after World War I.

    Horrified by the surge in anti-Jewish right-wing nationalism that he encountered when he returned from the trenches to his homeland, in 1919 Wiener published a tract, “Prelude to Pogroms?”, in which he warned: “A mighty antisemitic storm has broken over us.” If left unchecked, Wiener predicted, this antisemitism would lead to “bestial murders and violence” and the “blood of citizens running on the pavements.” 

    The Times of Israel


    Daniel Lubetzky, CEO and Son of Holocaust Survivor

    Daniel Lubetzky, the CEO of KIND, is the son of a Holocaust survivor and a Mexican Jew. KIND makes popular fruit and nut bars. He was born in Mexico City and moved to the United States as a teenager. He’s also a Stanford-educated lawyer.

    Lubetzky’s father was liberated from the Dachau Concentration Camp. When Lubetzsky was just nine years old, his father started describing his experiences during the Holocaust. His father felt that if he lived through the Holocaust, his son could hear about it even at an early age.

    Lubetzky explains in his book entitled Do the KIND Thing: Think Boundlessly, Work Purposefully, Live Passionately:

    Being the son of a Holocaust survivor marks you and makes you acutely conscious of our human frailty. My burning com­mitment to build bridges stems from a survival instinct: to pre­vent what happened to my dad from happening again to other human beings. Part of the reason I exist today is that my grandfather and my father were always kind to people.

    KIND is privately owned and has nearly five hundred employees.

    Portrait Of: The Founder and CEO of KIND - Latino USA

    Abram Enzel (1916-1994)

    Abram Enzel, was born in Częstochowa, Poland on June 18, 1916 to Chaim and Faigle Enzel. Chaim worked as a Kosher butcher. They had five children; three boys and two girls. Abram was the first born. In 1939, there were 28,500 Jews living in Częstochowa, which is 124 miles (200 km) southeast of Warsaw.

    The Germans entered Częstochowa on Sunday, September 3, 1939, and persecution of its Jews began at once. More than 300 Jews were killed on the following day, which became known as “Bloody Monday.” On December 25, 1939, a second pogrom took place and the Great Synagogue was set on fire. The family survived both pogroms.

    On the morning after Yom Kippur in September 1942, Abram was separated from his family. One brother, Nathan, had previously been taken by the Germans to a concentration camp. The other living members of Abram’s family were gassed and cremated three days later in Treblinka, a nearby concentration camp.

    The Germans sent Abram to work in a munitions plant operated by HASAG (Hugo Schneider Aktiengesellschaft-Metalwarenfabrik, Leipzig), one of the privately owned German industrial companies that used concentration camp prisoners to manufacture armaments. HASAG was the third largest of such companies, after I.G. Farben and the Hermann Goring Werke. HASAG operated four camps in Częstochowa, Poland. The largest, HASAG-Apparatebau, held seven thousand Jewish prisoners. The wages of the Jewish forced laborers were paid directly to the SS, the elite guard of the Nazi state. In general, the policy of Vernichtung durch Arbeit (“extermination through work”) was applied. Selections were held and those no longer fit for work were killed. From July 1944 to early 1945, HASAG transferred most of its equipment and Jewish workers to Germany. No HASAG personnel were put on trial by the Allies in the later Nuremberg war crimes trials.

    In 1944, the Germans sent Abram from the HASAG munitions plant to the Gross-Rosen concentration camp and from there to the Flossenbürg and Dachau concentration camps. One of Abram’s most poignant memories was of his forced move from the Flossenbürg concentration camp to Dachau, along with 500 other prisoners. In a 1973 interview with the Pittsburgh Press, Abram explained that “They made us march at first. But later they herded us like cattle on some old freight cars.” Out of the 500 prisoners who left Flossenbürg, only 18 arrived in Dachau alive, Abram among them.

    On April 29, 1945, the 42nd and 45th Infantry Divisions and the 20th Armored Division of the US Army liberated Abram from Dachau, near Munich, Germany. The very next day Adolf Hitler committed suicide. At the time of Abram’s liberation, he weighed 78 pounds, compared with a healthy 130 pounds before his ordeal.

    After the war in June 1946, 2,167 Jews had returned to Częstochowa to rebuild their community. Abram did not to return. He first recovered in Germany and then operated a grocery store in Bayreuth until 1951, when he emigrated to the United States and settled in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

    After settling in Pittsburgh, Abram met Dora Weiss, who also settled in Pittsburgh after World War II. She was born in Munkács, Czechoslovakia, now known as Mukačevo, a city in Ukraine. Her parents died in the gas chambers of Auschwitz. On June 8, 1952, they married and had a son David who was born on January 21, 1955.

    Dora was later diagnosed with cancer. She passed away on July 30, 1958, at the age of 35. Abram did not remarry. In Pittsburgh, Abram worked in the H. J. Heinz plant and later moved to the Concordia Club, a private Jewish city club in the Oakland section of Pittsburgh. He started as a bus boy and eventually moved up to maitre d’. The 30 years Abram spent at the Concordia Club were the happiest of his life.

    David moved to Washington, DC in 1979 and Abram moved to Washington soon after his retirement from the Concordia Club in 1981 to be near his son. Abram passed away on May 10, 1994 in Washington, DC, the capital of the country that liberated him.

    Abram’s oral history is available online from the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. Another oral history is in the American Jewish Committee Oral History Collection, which is part of the New York Public Library (Dorot Jewish Division). This collection includes over 6,000 hours of taped interviews.

    Hommage aux victimes du 7 octobre en France

    Discours d’Emmanuel Macron aux Invalides.

    Cet hommage intervient quatre mois jour pour jour après l’attaque du groupe terroriste islamiste palestinien, qui a entraîné la mort de plus de 1 160 personnes, tuées par balles, brûlées vives ou mutilées, en majorité des civils et déclenché un conflit toujours en cours à Gaza.

    Le président de la République a bien fait. Très émouvant.

    Times of Israel

    Why Are So Many, So Comfortable Telling Israel What to Do?

    Hillary Clinton via The Times of Israel:

    Netanyahu should go. He is not a trustworthy leader. It was on his watch that the attack happened. He needs to go, and if he’s an obstacle to a ceasefire, if he’s an obstacle to exploring what’s to be done the day after, he absolutely needs to go.

    The world’s only Jewish state will need to decide for itself who will lead Israel just as the United States will need to decide who will lead it.

    We Must Not Forget the Lessons of the Holocaust

    Christopher J. Dodd served in the United States Senate from 1981 to 2011. His father, Thomas J. Dodd (1959 - 1971) also served in the United States Senate. Earlier in his career, Thomas Dodd served as a prosecutor at the Nuremberg War Crimes trials. He held the number two position on prosecutorial team which was led by Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson (1892 - 1954).1

    In a letter to the editor of The New York Times former Senator Dodd marks the 75th anniversary of The Nuremberg War Crimes trials and explains that the “lessons of Nuremberg must be continually relearned and that the work of protecting dignity and promoting justice are the responsibility of each generation.”

    He adds that at this moment, human rights, “the rule of law and even truth itself are threatened by continuing violence, resurgent authoritarianism, racism and anti-Semitism, and rampant conspiracy theories, propaganda and disinformation.”

    Dodd reminds us that we have not yet learned the lessons of the Holocaust and that we ignore these lessons at our peril.

    1. Imagine a sitting Justice of the United States Supreme Court traveling to Germany to serve as a criminal prosecutor. ↩︎

    Need for Jewish Homeland Recognized Long Before the Holocaust

    Theodor Herzl wrote in 1896, more than 40 years before the Holocaust:

    My happier co-religionists will not believe me till Jew-baiting teaches them the truth; for the longer Anti-Semitism lies in abeyance the more fiercely will it break out.

    Herzl, Theodor. Der Judenstaat. English, Location 873 . Kindle Edition.

    Herzl envisioned the founding of a future independent Jewish state during the 20th century. He argued that the best way to avoid antisemitism in Europe was to create this independent Jewish state.

    On the Power of Propaganda

    Erna Paris (1938 - 2022) writing in The Globe and Mail:

    The core learning future generations must acquire, in addition to the facts of Holocaust history, will be to recognize the impulse to genocide, how and why it starts, the propaganda tools it employs to persuade, and the known consequences of silence and indifference. I think this learning must also include the somewhat rueful acknowledgement that most humans are susceptible to propaganda in various degrees, which is why early-stage vigilance is so crucial.

    Erna Paris was born in Toronto, Canada. She was the author of seven works of literary non-fiction and the winner of twelve national and international writing awards for her books, feature writing, and radio documentaries. Her book Long Shadows: Truth, Lies, and History was chosen as one of “The Hundred Most Important Books Ever Written in Canada” by the Literary Review of Canada.

    French Jews Leaving France for Israel in Greater Numbers Out of Fear

    The Times of Israel and Le Monde report that more than 1,500 antisemitic incidents occurred in France between October 7 and mid-November, 2023. This is more than three times higher than the 436 antisemitic incidents recorded over the entire 2022 in France.

    Israel’s Ministry of Aliyah and Integration has recorded a 430 percent increase in the number of applications from France since the October 7, 2023 attack by Hamas. The Ministry assists immigrants from the initial preparation stages, before arriving in Israel, through immigration and integration into all aspects of Israeli society, and runs programs to encourage immigrant entrepreneurs and Hebrew studies:

    A number of French Jews confirmed to The Times of Israel that they no longer feel safe in France and feel compelled to hide their kippah or other outward signs of Judaism for fear of being targeted.

    Dutch Holocaust Survivors Spied on as a ‘Danger to Democracy’

    Dutch News:

    Dutch Jews who survived the death camps and returned to the Netherlands were for years monitored by the Dutch secret service because they were considered to be extremists and a danger to democracy, the Parool …

    The revelations are based on documentation in the archives of the BVD, the precursor of the current AIVD security service, which the paper had access to via the National Archives.

    Many Holocaust survivors were spied on until the 1980s, with the BVD reporting on memorial services and taking notes on who was in attendance, the paper said.

    The Nederlands Auschwitz Comité, founded in 1956 by survivors, was also considered to be an extremist organisation and monitored, the paper said. The BVD even had a mole within the organisation who reported back on everything that happened.

    The article explains that only 35,000 of the country’s Jewish population of 140,000 survived the war. In addition, 102,000 of the 107,000 Jews who were deported were killed.

    Netanyahu on Israel’s Expansion of Diplomatic Relations in 2020

    In its first seventy-two years, Israel made peace with two Arab countries, Egypt and Jordan. In the span of four months, Israel had made peace with four more.

    Netanyahu, Benjamin. Bibi: My Story (p. 634). Threshold Editions. Kindle Edition.

    Israel’s established diplomatic relations with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain on September 11, 2020 under the aegis of the Abraham Accords.

    This marked the first instance of Arab–Israeli normalization since 1994, when the Israel–Jordan peace treaty came into effect.

    In December 2020, Morocco joined the accords and normalized relations with Israel. Then, in January 2021, Sudan joined the Abraham Accords and normalized relations with Israel.

    What will happen next is an open question after the Hamas terrorist attack on Israel on October 7, 2023. The October 7 attack was the deadliest terrorist attack against Israel since the state’s establishment in 1948, and the scale of the death toll was unprecedented in Israeli history.

    Switzerland and Dachau

    Germany’s National Socialist (Nazi) government and Switzerland had substantial ties. Switzerland’s contribution to the construction of the Dachau concentration camp near Munich is not well known.

    Before WWII, Extroc, SA, a Swiss state-subsidized timber company built the Dachau concentration camp, under a contract for 13 million Swiss francs. The contract was negotiated by Colonel Henri Guisan, the son of the later Swiss Commander-in-Chief Henri Guisan (1874–1960) and a Swiss national hero. The Swiss Colonel was in turn connected to Hans Wilhelm Eggen, an SS captain who bought timber in Switzerland for the Waffen SS. This was the wood used to construct Dachau. Dachau was the first regular concentration camp established by the Nazi government.1

    According to a now declassified CIA report, Eggen often went to “Switzerland under cover of a delivery agent for wooden barracks.” Eggen was a friend of Heinrich Himmler, Reichsführer of the SS. In Nazi Germany, the SS controlled the German police forces and the concentration camp system.

    See, Roberts, Andrew, The Storm of War (p. 113). HarperCollins e-books. Kindle Edition; Goñi, Uki, The Real Odessa: How Perón Brought the Nazi War Criminals to Argentina (p. 170). Granta Books. Kindle Edition.

    1. My father was liberated from Dachau by the US Army. ↩︎

    A Wake-Up Call to American Jews

    Bernard-Henri Lévy (BHL) writing in The Forward:

    I wish to warn my Jewish American brothers and sisters of the danger I perceive from the vantage point of a French Jew all too familiar with anti-Semitism. I wish to warn them that they are under siege.

    Anti-Semitism in the U.S. is proliferating in a number of ways. The tradition of Holocaust denial is alive and well. The BDS campaign is gaining traction on campuses across the country. The left has embraced a form of identity politics that excludes Jews.

    He also states that the October 27, 2018 Pittsburgh synagogue shooting “swept to the dust” America as a shelter for Jews.

    BHL is a prominent and controversial French intellectual, media personality, and author. He is author of more than thirty books including the forthcoming “The Empire and the Five Kings,” and “The Genius of Judaism.” He is a co-founder of the antiracist group SOS Racisme.