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Without Better Holocaust Education, History Will Repeat Itself

Avi Benlolo
National Post, May 5, 2023

“In the United Church and in many other “progressive” circles, there is a disconnect between understanding the antisemitism that allowed the Holocaust to happen and the anti-Israel boycotts that have re-energized modern antisemitism.”
As an academic and educator in Holocaust studies, I have given much thought over the past couple of years to the rising tide of antisemitism, particularly with respect to the so-called progressive left. Despite the increase in violent antisemitism around the world, the left has been unable to draw a parallel between the hatred that led to the Holocaust and its own contemporary behaviour, which is motivating current forms of Jew-hate.
Take, for example, the NDP’s recent call for the federal government to initiate anti-Israel boycotts and take a harsher position against the Jewish state. In a press release, Heather McPherson, the NDP’s foreign affairs critic, demanded a boycott of goods and services produced in Judea and Samaria: “Canada should ban the import of all goods produced specifically in illegal settlements.” (The “settlements,” it should be noted, are Jewish neighbourhoods and are “disputed” not “illegal.”)

What continually astounds to me is the total and utter disconnect between the Nazi’s boycotts of Jews — one of the building blocks leading to the murder of six-million Jewish children, women and men — and the contemporary push for boycotts against Israel, the modern embodiment of the Jewish people. Throughout history, whenever Jews have been targeted, boycotts have always been among the initial salvo, meant to undermine, defame, marginalize and eventually either expel, convert or murder a particular Jewish community. … [To read the full article, click here]

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