September 12, 2005
A leading Holocaust research institute is urging British Prime Minister Tony Blair to resist pressure to replace Holocaust Memorial Day with a day that would mourn various people who have died, including victims of alleged “Israeli genocide” against Muslims.
Some advisers to Blair, supported by the Muslim Council of Britain and other British Muslim groups, are reportedly urging him to eliminate Holocaust Memorial Day because it is “offensive to Muslims.” They want him to replace it with a day “that would recognize the mass murder of Muslims in Palestine” and elsewhere. (Times of London, September 11, 2005)
In a letter to Prime Minister Blair today, Dr. Rafael Medoff, director of the David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies and Benyamin Korn, associate director of the Institute, wrote: “It is offensive and historically inaccurate to blur the suffering of the Jews in the Holocaust with the suffering of various other peoples over the years. The systematic German extermination of six million European Jews is unique the annals of human history and morality.”
The letter to Blair also stated:
“It would be tragically ironic if the British government were to eliminate the specifically Jewish nature of its Holocaust commemoration, in view of the British government policy, during the Holocaust itself, of downplaying the Jewish identity of Hitler’s victims.
“We can never forget the November 1943 Allied declaration on war crimes, initiated and authored by Winston Churchill, which mentioned that the Nazis had killed ‘French, Dutch, Belgian or Norwegian hostages … Cretan peasants, [and] the people of Poland’ –but made no mention of the millions of Jews who the Allied leaders knew had already been systematically slaughtered by the Germans.
“In urging the British government to eliminate Holocaust Day and falsely alleging Israeli genocide, the Muslim Council of Britain also demonstrates that it has not yet come to terms with the fact that Britain’s closure of Palestine to Jewish refugees during the Holocaust –dooming many of them to their deaths– resulted from pressure and violence led by the Mufti of Jerusalem, who was the leading Muslim religious authority for Palestine’s Arabs as well as a well-known Nazi collaborator .”
The Wyman Institute is named after the historian who wrote The Abandonment of the Jews, the definitive study of how America and its allies responded to the Holocaust.
Two years ago, the Wyman Institute mobilized historians to protest a decision by the British company IPC media to restrict access to a favorable article about Adolf Hitler that appeared in one of its magazines, Homes & Gardens, in 1938. In response to the protest, IPC publicly expressed remorse and made the article publicly available.