'The State of Israel is the answer to anti-Semitism'

Social Equality Minister attends Romanian parade in memory of Elie Wiesel, speaks of Wiesel's legacy in fighting anti-Semitism.

Hezki Baruch ,

Minister Gamliel in Elie Wiesel's home
Minister Gamliel in Elie Wiesel's home
Minister's office

Social Equality Minister Gila Gamliel (Likud) spoke with Arutz Sheva about her participation in a parade in memory of the late Elie Wiesel in his Romanian hometown on the first anniversary of his death.

"I came to Romania to take part in the torch relay in memory of the Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel to mark the first anniversary of his death [which was held] at the initiative of Limmud FSA (former Soviet Union). He left his childhood home in the village of Sighet and ended up at the train station where he was transported with other Jews to Auschwitz. It was a great privilege for me to participate in [this parade]."

What did you learn about Elie Wiesel?

"Wiesel is a man who devoted his entire life to the Holocaust and its horrors, which will never be forgotten. He was a warm and Zionist Jew who worked hard for the welfare of many Holocaust survivors in Israel and around the world - and to commemorate Holocaust victims. He actually served in that capacity for decades.

"His personality was a model for emulation and admiration, and despite everything that had happened in his youth, he managed to escape from the Nazis and decided to dedicate his life to a single goal - that everyone should remember the horrors of the Nazis and that such a thing would never happen again - nether against the Jewish people nor against humanity in general. More than anything else, his Nobel Peace Prize attests to the man and his actions and to the person who was one of the most prominent voices of the Jewish people in his lifetime."

And yet anti-Semitism not only has not gone away but continues to make waves.

"The State of Israel is the answer to every anti-Semitic statement and action. We are here, and we are here to stay. Israel is a sovereign state, and its achievements, stability and strength are unparalleled in the history of the modern era. There is an inverse relationship here. The stronger Israel's sovereignty is, the weaker anti-Semitism will be. And the more we weaken our sovereignty, the stronger anti-Semitism will be.

"We must believe in the justness of our path and act as a sovereign and independent state, and not concern ourselves with what the world will say. We need to think about what Israel's interests are and act only in accordance with that. Today, when we have a state of our own, this is not only true, but also possible. The general rule is that power is respected, and once we stand firm on the Israeli interest, the world will be able to respect this, even the anti-Semites. The State of Israel is the home of the Jewish people and has a moral responsibility for the fate of every Jewish person in the world. As such, it must fight with its full force and resources against manifestations of anti-Semitism, no matter where they occur. The secret is to stand firm."