The attack on the synagogue in Halle in autumn 2019 is representative of the dangerous persistence of anti-Semitism in Europe and the murderous consequences of this destructive ideology.
In recent years, Jewish communities in many countries in Europe have seen a worrying increase in anti-Semitic incidents, from smearings to hate posts and hate speech to physical attacks on people and lives.
As the extensive surveys by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) from 2012 and 2018 on discrimination and hate crime against Jews in the EU show, the persistence and spread of anti-Semitism prevents people from openly leading a Jewish life to be free from fears for their safety and well-being. There was also an increase in incidents in Austria.
Anti-Semitism also lives on politically. This is shown not least by the uncovered anti-Semitic, racist and sexist songbooks of some Austrian fraternities. Representatives of such fraternities are unabashed in the Austrian National Council and in state parliaments.
We must not accept this resurgent anti-Semitism without speech or inaction! The day of remembrance on January 27th, on which the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration and extermination camp by the Red Army celebrates its 75th anniversary, should therefore be all about the fight against anti-Semitism.
We want to use the commemoration day to demand that the hatred of Jews in all its forms must be combated by politics, the media and society as a whole – without ifs and buts!
Together at Vienna’s Heldenplatz, we will set a sign for keeping memories alive and for the struggle for a Europe without anti-Semitism!
Moderation: Katharina Steinberger
Sign language interpreter: Sabine Zeller
Musical accompaniment: follows
Welcome by the moderator
Speeches: Susanne Bock (contemporary witness), Raimund Fastenbauer (IKG), Lara Gilkarov (JöH)
Time: 6:00 p.m.
Location: Heldenplatz at the castle gate
Organizers: Jetzt Zeichen Setzen and the Jewish Museum Vienna
Memorial service | 27.01.2020, 6:00 p.m. | Heldenplatz