Current European anti-Semitism poses “the greatest threat that has faced the Jewish community at any point since World War II.”
(Washington, D.C., Feb. 7, 2019)--B'nai B'rith International CEO Daniel S. Mariaschin gave opening remarks at a conference focused on anti-Semitism in Europe, held under the auspices of the Romanian presidency of the European Union (EU) Council. We are encouraged that the Romanian presidency has chosen to prioritize combating anti-Semitism by holding this conference.
Mariaschin's speech confronted modern European anti-Semitism, including anti-Zionism, directly: "Here in Europe, the continent that experienced the Holocaust, the legacy of that historical episode figures somehow in the psychological calculus that has produced the burgeoning anti-Jewish and anti-Israel sentiment so pervasive in Europe today. Add to this combustible mix Europe's historical predilection toward anti-Semitism, and what results is the ugliness that has tarnished European society for much of the past 20 years and posed the greatest threat that has faced the Jewish community at any point since World War II....The obligation to confront anti-Semitism - and to make clear that the demonization and delegitimization of the Jewish state is often none other than a pretext for the hatred of Jews themselves - falls on all of us."
The conference, entitled "The Fight Against Antisemitism: A Common Approach to Better Protect Jewish Communities in Europe - From Policy to Action," also included speakers from the European Parliament, the Romanian government and Jewish organizations. It followed another conference on anti-Semitism held in November 2018 by the Austrian presidency of the EU Council.
In addition to Mariaschin, Serge Dahan, the president of B'nai B'rith Europe; Stephane Teicher, B'nai B'rith International Senior vice president and representative to UNESCO; Jose Jacobescu, president of B'nai B'rith Romania; Andre Ouzana, B'nai B'rith Europe treasurer (France); Valerie Achache, B'nai B'rith Europe General Secretary (France); Gunnar Bjork, B'nai B'rith Europe executive committee (Denmark); Hannah Kamelson, B'nai B'rith Europe director; and Ben Naegele, B'nai B'rith International's Director of EU Affairs participated in the conference.
For more information about the conference, click here. For Mariaschin’s full speech, click here. For video of the speech, click here. Mariaschin's speech starts at 11 hours 20 minutes.
B’nai B’rith International has advocated for global Jewry and championed the cause of human rights since 1843. B’nai B’rith is recognized as a vital voice in promoting Jewish unity and continuity, a staunch defender of the State of Israel, a tireless advocate on behalf of senior citizens and a leader in disaster relief. With a presence around the world, we are the Global Voice of the Jewish Community. Visit www.bnaibrith.org
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