Vandals deface Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial (ISRAEL HAYOM) Israel Hayom Staff and News Agencies 06/10/12)
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Police suspect radical ultra-Orthodox sect of vandalizing memorial
site, but are exploring other possibilities • "If Hitler didn´t
exist, the Zionists would have invented him," vandals wrote, calling
themselves the "world Zionist mafia."
"Hitler, thank you for the wonderful Holocaust" was one of the
slogans spray painted overnight Sunday on the open campus of Yad
Vashem, Israel´s main Holocaust memorial site.
The graffiti mainly targeted Zionism, with slogans like "Jews, wake
up, the evil Zionist regime is not protecting us, it is only putting
us in harm´s way," and "If Hitler didn´t exist, the Zionists would
have invented him" led police to believe that the perpetrators of the
shocking vandalism were members of a radical ultra-Orthodox sect well
known for its anti-Zionist views. Other avenues, however, are also
Seven giant slogans — including one that read: "Thank you Hitler for
your wonderful Holocaust that you arranged for us, it´s only because
of you that we got a state at the UN" — were sprayed in Warsaw Ghetto
Square near the sculpture depicting the Warsaw Ghetto uprising.
Another slogan read: "To the respectable government of Poland, stop
allowing the Zionists to conduct manipulative commemorations at
The message was signed "World Haredi Judaism."
Another said: "The war of the Zionist regime is not the war of the
Jewish people," fueling suspicion that a small fringe of ultra-
Orthodox Jews, who are virulently opposed to the state of Israel,
were to blame, AFP reported.
Many Ultra-Orthodox Jews are anti-Zionist because they think a Jewish
state should not be established before the coming of the Messiah.
Some subscribe to the conspiracy theory that Israel´s founders
colluded with Hitler to achieve their goal of establishing a state
The red, white and black graffiti was written in both formal Hebrew
characters as well as in handwritten script.
"We are shocked and confused by this callous expression of burning
hatred against the Zionists and Zionism,” said Yad Vashem Chairman
Avner Shalev. “This unprecedented act crosses a red line. I have
reported it to Education Minister Gideon Sa’ar, who also expressed
his bewilderment. I also spoke to Yad Vashem Council Chairman Rabbi
Israel Meir Lau, who joined me in expressing his concern over this
Shalev reported that the graffiti was written in very good Hebrew,
very likely by more than one person. "The texts refer to the
collusion between Zionism and Hitler and one of them is signed
by ´World Haredi Judaism´," he said.
He added that there had been no prior warnings but insisted that the
incident did not indicate a security problem.
Israeli ministers condemned the act of vandalism on Monday, with
Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstein, who
oversees the prevention of anti-Semitic offenses, saying "this is an
escalation and an unprecedented crossing of lines."
"To spray paint graffiti on a memorial for millions of victims is to
spit in the face of the State of Israel and in the face of the dead
and to defile their memory," Edelstein added. "I am convinced that
the Israel Police will apprehend the culprits quickly, and I call
upon the authorities to prosecute them to the fullest extent of the
Sa´ar also commented on the incident, saying that "those who defiled
and corrupted Yad Vashem with these deranged slogans did it with the
express intention of insulting the public."
Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonvitch instructed the police to
investigate the incident and to "rapidly apprehend these disgusting
criminals who targeted one of Israel´s most prominent symbols."
The Jerusalem municipality had cleaned the graffiti off the walls by
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