By Joel Lion
On Monday, April 12, the State of Israel stood for two minutes in silence remembering the victims of the Holocaust, paying tribute to the 6 million Jews, 1.5 million of them young children, killed by Nazi Germany on a systematic and industrial way just because they were a part of the Jewish people. No difference was made between Orthodox and secular Jew, between liberal and conservative, between poor and rich, between celebrities and blue collars, all were killed.
But the Germans were not alone in their diabolic work, collaborators from other European nations were an active part of the killings.
In 1941, my mother’s grandparents were arrested by the Hungarian police. At that time, Hungary was a free country. However, my great-grandparents were killed in Kamianets-Podilsky by German SS assisted by Ukrainian and Hungarian Platoons. My other great-grandfather was arrested by the French Police , in the free French State of Vichy. He was then transferred to the French camp of Drancy and was then sent on the French railway on Convoy 51 to the death camp of Sobibór, where he was killed.
In both cases, my family was killed because the ideology and the power of the Nazis that gave a carte blanche to all European anti-Semites.
I ask myself if the world has learned lessons from the Holocaust.
What if Iran reaches its goal and gets nuclear weapons? The civilized world as we know it would be in danger. As in the first half of this century in Europe, the power and the ideology of the actual Iranian regime will give carte blanche to all the extremists of this world.
The warnings of Israel or the Jews shouldn’t resonate alone this time, every lover of freedom and democracy should shout loud against the Iranian regime and its nuclear ambitions.
That should be a lesson learned from the Holocaust.
Joel Lion is the Spokesperson and Consul for Media Affairs at the Consulate General of Israel in New York