Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum
Photo: Gil Yohanan

Yad Vashem entrance vandalized

Walls of Holocaust Museum's plaza defaced with multiple slogans lauding Nazis, slamming Israel. Police launch investigation; Neturei Karta, Eda Haredit extremists deny involvement

The entrance to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem was vandalized overnight.


Museum workers discovered the damage upon arriving on the premises Monday morning.


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According to available details, unknown vandals sprayed graffiti reading "Hitler, thanks for the Holocaust" and "If Hitler didn’t exist the Zionists would have had to invent him" on one of the walls.


'Hitler, thanks for the Holocaust' (Photos: Ohad Zwigenberg)


Some 10 other slogans of the same nature were daubed in several other areas as well, including "Israel is the secular Auschwitz of the Sephardic Jewry," and "Jews wake up – the Zionist regime is dangerous."


One of the slogans was reportedly signed "The global Zionist mafia" and another was signed "the global haredi Jewry."


Avner Shalev, chairman of Yad Vshem, said: "I'm appalled by this blatant act of hatred towards the state and towards Zionism. This has crossed a red line. I've informed the education minister of this incident and he too was outraged."


'Enough with manipulative Shoah services in Auschwitz' 


The Holocaust Survivors' umbrella group expressed outrage over the act: "We demand that the police commissioner appoint a special taskforce to find the people behind this act," CEO Avi Rosenthal said.


Crime scene investigators were sent to the museum to collect evidence. 


Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld confirmed that the police were investigating the case, adding that no suspects have been identified yet.


Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch spoke with Jerusalem District Police Commander Niso Shaham regarding the investigation


"We have to find these perpetrators as soon as possible. This was a heinous crime against one of the State of Israel's most prominent symbols. I'm appalled and outraged," Aharonovitch said.


'Neturei Karta not involved'

Despite the supposed radical-haredi indicators to the incident, it was denounced by the extremist Neturei Karta sect.


Mordechai Hirsch, one of the sect's leaders, told Ynet that Monday's vandalism was not the work of any of the group's activists and pointed the finger at the radical Right, suggesting the incident was in fact a "price tag" act.


"None of our people were involved in this," he stressed. "But I can't comment on something I haven’t seen for myself."


Another source, affiliated with the extremist Eda Haredit sect, said that while some may identify with the similar acts, none in the sect would endorse vandalizing a place like Yad Vashem.


"These kind of slogans are beneath even the biggest anti-Semites in the world, he added. "This was probably done by the lunatic fringe – and they don’t represent anyone. These people are truly sick."


The Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum and Research Center was established in 1953. It is dedicated to commemoration of the six million Jews murdered by the Nazis during World War II.


Kobi Nahshoni contributed to this report


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פרסום ראשון: 06.11.12, 09:04
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