Member of Knesset Eliezer Moses of the Yahadut Hatorah (United Torah Judaism) party shared his thoughts Tuesday following his trip to Poland, along with over half of his fellow MKs, to hold a historic Knesset session at the site of what was once the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp.
MK Moses had shared his trepidation before the trip, noting that 70 members of his family had been killed at Auschwitz, and that he had previously avoided visiting the site.
In a speech to Knesset, Moses said he was deeply shaken by the juxtaposition of Holocaust history with modern-day anti-Semitism.
“It’s terrifying to feel the horrors of the Holocaust and the results of anti-Semitism in such a direct way, and it is appalling to think that despite the horrific consequences of hate, today, anti-Semitism is again raising its head,” he declared.
“The moving, emotional trip to Auschwitz shook me. I was so shocked, and so moved. I stood on the ground where my belated father’s family was murdered and slaughtered,” he continued.
“Seventy people, all burned in that terrible place called Auschwitz-Birkenau,” he said. “My father was left the sole branch in the land of the living.
“It was chilling to see what the cruel Nazis did to us. Even when we landed, in Krakow… My mother lost most of her family there, arose from the dust, immigrated to Israel and succeeded in gathering girls together here in the holy land and teaching them Torah,” he said.
Moses noted a recent report indicating a major upswing in European anti-Semitism. “When I read the report on anti-Semitism, after what happened in Europe, I was appalled! Anti-Semitism is on the rise and the world has not learned its lesson.
“Every day we hear about vandalism, arson, anti-Semitic legislation, persecution of Jews,” he continued. The issue even affected MKs during their trip, he added, “While we were in Krakow, I wanted to pray at the tomb of the Rama [Rabbi Moshe Isserles – ed.] and other holy people buried in the city. The security staff didn’t let us, they said that because of the rising anti-Semitism it was too dangerous for us to leave the conference center.”
MK Moses concluded by noting that for him, the truest form of revenge on Israel’s enemies is Jewish continuity.
“I, who was born to my parents after ten years of marriage, an only child, took revenge on my Hitlerist destroyers by creating a family of sons and daughters, grandchildren and greatgrandchildren,” he declared. “Thank G-d, we are coming close, with G-d’s help, to the number of souls who were murdered.”
“That is the real revenge,” he concluded.