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“Americans & the Holocaust” at USHMM

Dear Editor:

The January 15 article, “Historians Unveil New Research on US Response to the Holocaust,” grossly misrepresents the presentation by Dr. Erbelding and Dr. Greene at the American Historical Association on the bombing of Auschwitz. That important topic is addressed in the US Holocaust Memorial Museum’s exhibition, “Americans and the Holocaust.” The exhibition shows that Americans had knowledge about the persecution and murder of the Jews throughout the Holocaust but rescuing them was never a priority for the public or the government and that the War Department viewed the bombing of Auschwitz in military rather than moral terms. I encourage people to visit the exhibition in person or online at ushmm.org/americans.

Sincerely

Andrew Hollinger
Director, Communications
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Bond Btwn Blacks & Jews Must Continue

Dear Editor:

As a civil rights lawyer who presently represents civil rights leaders, such as Rev. Kevin McCall, leader of the Crisis Action Center, Hawk Newsome, Chairman of Black Lives Matter Greater New York, as well as representing the Rev. Al Sharpton, President of the National Action Network for over 15 years, and as a proud Jew who grew up in the Monsey community of Forshay Heights in the town of Ramapo, in which one of the most horrific examples of anti-Semitism has recently occurred as well as representing that community in the Rockland County legislature for over 20 years, I believe it is important on the anniversary of the birth of Martin Luther King Jr. to reflect on his words regarding the importance of the strong relationship Jews have had historically in this country with the African-American community.

Dr. King, during his life, spoke to numerous Jewish audiences, often linking Jewish history to the struggle of African Americans with regard to racism. He said in a speech in 1958 at the National Convention of the American Jewish Congress, “My people were brought to America in chains. Your people were driven here to escape the chains fashioned for them in Europe. Our unity is born of our common struggle for centuries, not only to rid ourselves of bondage, but to make oppression of any people by others an impossibility”. “Some have bombed the homes and churches of Negroes; and in recent acts of inhuman barbarity, some have bombed your synagogues”.

As Stuart Appelbaum, President of the Jewish Labor Committee said in an article entitled, “A Special Bond: Martin Luther King, Jr., Israel and American Jewry,” “This year, U.S. Jews, like other Americans, will mark Martin Luther King Jr. Day by remembering him as a powerful voice against racism and for civil rights. But, for Jews, Dr. King was also something else: a uniquely important ally in the fight against anti-Semitism and for a secure Israel”.

As Martin Luther King, Jr. said in 1965, “How could there be anti-Semitism among Negroes when our Jewish friends have demonstrated their commitment to the principle of tolerance and brotherhood not only in the form of sizable contributions, but in many other tangible ways, and often at great personal sacrifice,” “Who can ever forget the sacrifice of two Jewish lives, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner, in the swamps of Mississippi? It would be impossible to record the contribution that the Jewish people have made toward the Negro’s struggle for freedom – it has been so great”.

As one who remains committed to fight for social justice for all, we must continue to denounce hate in any way, shape, or form and continue to work together, Jews and Blacks, like Goodman and Schwerner worked with Dr. King, in the future. As we come together on King Day, we must recommit ourselves to practice the nonviolent activism that King preached, with unity and love.

Sincerely,

Sanford Rubinstein, Esq.

Africa is Important

Dear Editor:

Recent news items indicate the Trump administration is considering plans to reduce the U.S. military footprint in Africa. Judging from his previous statements regarding his reluctance to have America’s soldiers on foreign lands, President Trump’s presumed rationale is:

  • That Islamic terrorists in Africa pose no threat to Americans on U.S. soil
  • That it is far more important to reposition our armed forces to defend us in a conflict with the two biggest military powers, China and Russia

If this is indeed President Trump’s rationale, it misses ten key issues:

(1) Northern Africa is a gateway for terrorists and illicit drugs into Europe, Latin America and the U.S.

(2) African countries need help protecting themselves from highly motivated radical Islamist terrorists.

(3) The southern half of Africa is predominantly Christian, which needs help protecting itself themselves from armed jihadists.

(4) Chaos in Africa leads to refugees floods and illegal economic migration to Europe, and the U.S. This causes brain-drain that robs Africa of future economic growth.

(5) Africa is on the front lines of America’s containment strategy of Islamic terrorists.

(6) Instability in Africa hurts our key allies like Nigeria, Egypt, and Morocco, among others.

(7) Russia, and China and Iran, will fill any voids that we the U.S. leave open.

(8) Any unilateral disarmament sends a signal to key enemies like Iran, competitors like China and Russia, and “frenemies” like Turkey that we can be pressured to stop protecting our allies.

(9) It is unethical for the U.S. to not help protect our numerous Christian and Muslim national allies, who generally share our values.

(10) Destabilizing Africa will eventually hurt Americans, on our homeland, 1-3 years later, through increased terror and illicit drugs.

Further reducing four already-small contingents of 7,000 soldiers in Africa is a repudiation of the Trump administration’s “America First“ strategy to firmly protect the U.S. It’s also hardly good politics, just before the November elections.

Sincerely

Ken Abramowitz, President & Founder, SaveTheWest
Research & editing by Jon Sutz

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