5 November, 2014

A hate shout against…

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Category: Antisemitism, European Action Day, Fascism, Holocaust
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Blog2_Hall of names - Blog RedWritten by Valentín González – President of the European Network against Hate Crimes

Hatred and intolerance have strong roots in Europe. Some of them are invisible to the majority of the population, in spite of how serious and cruel they have been for some minorities. In some way, part of the Europe history is the history of anti-Semitism. It is even impossible make an account of how many pogroms, expulsions, ghettos and hatred against Jews have been in this continent.

This is why is so important to keep alive that memory. Holocaust wasn´t a short episode of our common history. For sure was an unprecedented evidence of the radical evil of supremacy, and an unforgettable wound in our European skin and soul. But it was a long period of anti-Semitism and hatred that last more than two thousand years.

Keep that memory alive is to keep humanity alive. This is why is so important to remember that fatidic date of November 9th of 1938.

It was the first step to the extermination of our brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, mothers and fathers of Jewish Europeans. 2500 deaths are directly or indirectly attributable to the Kristallnacht pogrom. More than 8000 Jewish homes and properties were ransacked in numerous German cities. SA storm troopers and civilians destroyed buildings with sledgehammers, leaving the street covered in smashed windows. Hundreds of our Jews brothers and sisters were beaten to death, 30000 Europeans compatriots were taken to concentrations camps, 1668 synagogues were destroyed and another 267 set on fire. The Holocaust was the darkest hour of European history. It was assassination as an industry, not just the destruction of human life, but of the essence of humanity, done with a barbarity we can barely contemplate.

Recent events in the European history should make us understand and remember above all that the Holocaust did not start with a concentration camp. It started with a brick through a library, or a shop, or a home, or whatever property of our Jews compatriots. It started with the desecration of a synagogue, and the silence acceptance of a shout of hate in the street.

Nowadays, that shout of hate is made on-line, sometimes from anonimate, sometimes made by hate mongers, or fanatics. But No Hate Speech activists decided not to incur in that silence acceptance. If only European society would raise its voice, united against that, the future would be better. As French resistance member and survivor of Buchenwald Jorge Semprún said: “what it worries me the most about the future is the memory”.

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