Holocaust Day USA

The souls of the Nazi's victims are being reborn in Israel with each new birth. The holocaust of today is different. The bodies live but the souls are lost without a future.

Tzvi Fishman

OpEds "הפגנת התמיכה בישראל הגדולה בעולם". הצעדה למען ישראל בניו-יורק, השבוע
"הפגנת התמיכה בישראל הגדולה בעולם". הצעדה למען ישראל בניו-יורק, השבוע

Monday is Holocaust Remembrance Day in Israel. In our home, we don’t have to make a special effort to remember, since both my wife’s parents are survivors. Her father lost his parents and ten brothers in Auschwitz. Only he and his sister lived through the ordeal, which, of course, haunts him until today. My wife’s mother was orphaned as a child and was passed from family to family, work camp to work, before finally reaching refuge in Israel.

Each year, on Holocaust Day, we accompany her mother to some solemn remembrance gathering, or to a school where she tells her life story to the children. My wife’s father remains at home with the numerical tattoo on his arm - enough of a reminder for him. He doesn’t like to speak about the horrors he witnessed. 

While my wife and her parents are engulfed in the Holocaust of yesterday, I am engulfed in the holocaust of today, pained by the holocaust in America, England, and France, where Jews are happily assimilating – sixty, seventy, eighty percent and rising all the time. The Holocaust which the Germans inflicted on the Jewish People wiped out our bodies. The souls of the victims are being reborn in Israel with each new birth. The holocaust of today is different. The bodies live but the souls are lost without a future.

Lost. Running, with smiles on their faces, to their spiritual deaths. The heart screams but the scream is not heard. It is a silent scream, like a portrait of a man screaming in anguish, the tormented figure in the painting of Edvard Munch. The Shekinah, the Mother of Israel, screams in the darkness, but her scream isn’t heard.

After all, it is not polite to scream. It is not good manners to draw attention to an open wound that people chose not to see. In America, everything is groovy, even though seventy percent are marrying out of the faith. Yes, tens of millions of dollars are spent every year on programs to strengthen Jewish identity, but these well-meaning band aids never address the root of the problem – the simple truth that Jews don’t belong in America, England, or France.

Every year, Diaspora leaders, Jewish organizations, Federations, and Rabbinic associations, announce new innovative programs designed to attract Jewish youth, but the holocaust continues all the same. As long as their goal is to strengthen Jewish identity in the Diaspora, their Jewish Proms and synagogue little leagues are doomed to failure.

There is no future for Jews in the Diaspora. The exile was never meant to last forever. With the establishment of the State of Israel, the need for the Diaspora came to an end. But in the comfortable Western countries of the world, the Jews choose assimilation rather than Aliyah. Jewish community centers get bigger, with swimming pools and tennis courts; kosher supermarkets offer shelves and shelves of gourmet products; Hillel opens new campus centers; another Holocaust Center gets built so that people will remember.

AIPAC and the Jews who haven’t embraced J-Street debate what can be done about the anti-Israel bias in colleges; yet for all of the money spent on programs to strengthen Jewish identity, only 1000 brave Jews in America (out of 5 million) venture each year to come on Aliyah to Israel, where, thank G-d, assimilation hardly exists.  

Gev‎alt! Gev‎alt!

When will they tell young people the truth – even if no one wants to hear it? Jewish life in the Diaspora is finished! There is no hope, no solution to the problem, no cure for the disease. But no one wants to believe it. No one wants to face the simple obvious fact. Just look at the statistics and graphs – assimilation is increasing each year! It won’t miraculously come to a halt. More and more programs won’t help turn the inexorable tide.

“Yes,” Diaspora leaders will say, “The numbers are distressing.” With big, confident smiles, they will assure you that they are increasing their annual expenditures and programs. But with the same confident smiles they continue with their lives, living out a fantasy, proud to be American, and British, and loyal French citizens, just like their gentile friends.

Live and be merry! That’s every one’s motto. So long as there are no sounds of Nazi boots marching, who cares what will be in another ten years?! Thus they continue with the charade, denying the holocaust of intermarriage and zero affiliation that is transpiring before their eyes, just like the Jews in Germany, and Poland, and Hungary who didn’t wake up to the truth until it was too late, either because they didn’t want to believe, or, in many cases, because no one told them.