News Releases 2019

Blog by Dr. Shimon Samuels published in The Times of Israel
11 August 2019

– Where can I buy varenikes? – At the shop around the corner.
– Ah,are they Jews? – No, they are Italian.

This dialogue, at the end of the second decade of the XXIst century, could take place at any major Metropolis in the world, but it is not from New York, Paris, or Buenos Aires. It occurred in a town in the northern Province of Santa Fe, Argentina, which, according to the 2010 census, houses 2425 inhabitants.

This village is Moises Ville.

Paris, 8 August 2019

The Wiesenthal Centre joined five European Jewish organizations in a protest to Belgian newspaper De Morgen (The Morning) regarding its columnist, Dimitri Verhulst, description of Jews as 'creatures with ugly noses'.

We have demanded the editor to fire Hulst and express an apology to the Jewish people in Israel and Diaspora.

See De_Morgen_letter.pdf

“The JugendErholungsWerk Hamburg e.V. organizes holiday camps for children.”

“If ‘JEW HH’ is your logo, it could send the wrong message to ‘refugee’ children and families among whom antisemitism is already a known factor.”

Paris, 4 August 2019

In a letter to JugendErholungsWerk Hamburg e.V. (JEW) - a youth recreation centre - General Managers, Ms. Ulrike Kutsch and Mr. Carsten Wode, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, stated that “a German member has brought to our attention what he considered a disturbing feature relating to your affiliated youth camps. Apparently, ping pong paddles bear the letters 'JEW HH'... This seemed to him antisemitic and even actionable under German law.”

The letter continued, “when a camp official was challenged by our member, he was told that this was an abbreviation of the camp’s sponsor "JugendErholungsWerk Hansestadt Hamburg" = ‘JEW HH’.”

Samuels noted that, “reading your organization website <//">> and the 'Summary’ on the Hamburg Youth Services website, <//">>, one is struck at first glance by the the wording, respectively, ‘Every year, with the JEW over 1,200 chidren from all over Hamburg go on holiday’ and ‘The JEW organizes holiday camps for children’...” ( translated from the German)

Samuels added, “we commend your programme for children, including child refugee rights.”...“Nevertheless, we are unable to find on your website the combination ‘JEW’ with ‘HH’, which suggests ‘Heil Hitler’...We therefore request confirmation that this formula on the ping-pong paddles is, indeed, yours or could it be an abuse of your work by elements of the extreme right.”

“Even if ‘JEW HH’ is your logo, it could send the wrong message to ‘refugee’ children and their families among whom antisemitism is already a known factor... We thus suggest that the problematic logo be replaced as soon as possible,” concluded Samuels.


Paris, 1 August 2019

The European Coalition of Cities Against Racism (ECCAR) President, Benedetto Zacchiroli, took immediate action based on the protest of Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, and the latter’s call for the expulsion of a notorious antisemitic member of the Montpellier Town Council.

Zacchiroli wrote to Mayor Saurel of Montpellier, one of the 158 member cities of ECCAR, offering support for measures against councillor Djamel Boumaaz for his widely reported neo-Nazi behaviour and hatemongering.

“As Boumaaz is part of the minority elected,” [originally a member of the far-right Front National Party] ... “the Mayor cannot take any measures against him as [Samuels] proposed,” stressed Zacchiroli, while considering taking other steps “on 3 October in Nancy at the First Meeting of Inclusive French Cities.”

"As your official partner, we propose that the European Coalition of Cities Against Racism (ECCAR) compile and maintain a watch list of notorious racist bigots who hold municipal standing or platforms."

Paris, 25 July 2019

In a letter to Benedetto Zacchiroli, President of the 158-member municipalities of the European Coalition of Cities Against Racism (ECCAR) the Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations,Dr. Shimon Samuels, drew attention to the behaviour of Djamel Boumaaz, elected to the town council of Montpellier (Herault), reportedly on the National Rally (formerly far right National Front) ticket.