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tv   Hearing on Combating Hate Crimes  CSPAN  February 20, 2020 9:10pm-12:41am EST

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network,ay the c-span the secretaries of the army, navy, and air force on the state of the department defense strategy, and key initiatives. trump holdsresident a campaign rally ahead of the nevada caucus. , joined the political did pray discussion on the humanitarian crisis. >> next, a hearing marking the holocaust and rendering the anniversary of auschwitz. he heard from the house ways and means committee on ways to combat violence.
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>> good morning. key committee will come to order, and without objection, the chair is authorized to .eclare a recess at any time worldys ago, the entire came together to mark holocaust remembrance day. in january of 1945, the auschwitz birkenau concentration camp was liberated from the nazis. it was one of the most infamous sites of the nazi genocide. the purpose of today's hearing is to commemorate these grave
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anniversaries, term member those we have lost, and to honor those who are with us. but it is not enough to simply recognize these dates but we must contemplate what led the atrocities we must combat bigotry, hate, and violence of all kinds day. i am so pleased to have our distinguished panel that have asked them to come together on help's solemn occasion to unify red, hope and inclusion. that. we can all do
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the best way to help remember is to hear from those who lived through it and we will do that today. ae block from here is gripping institution dedicated to remembering the holocaust fight hate today. i'm also pleased to announce that on monday, the house is evidence past bipartisan votes -- 393ith
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votes to pass a resolution i authored to give teachers additional resources to teach about the holocaust i hope the senate will pass the bill and send it to the president as soon as possible, because the lessons of the past must inform our attempts to fight hate today. this morning, we will hear testimony about the shooting at the tree of life synagogue in pittsburgh, the most deadly assault against the jewish community in american history. after that a group of holocaust survivors wrote to the pittsburgh jewish community insult 30, explaining why they dedicated their lives to sharing the horrors they experienced. quote we seek termite people, especially young people that .ate can never be ignored
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complacency is dangerous standing up and pushing back is the only way we can make a better future. unfortunately, there has been a sinister increase in hate crimes recently. not only against jewish communities, but african americans, muslims, and others. showingreleased data the highest number of reported hate crimes in the united states and 16 years the number of hate groups exploded two of thousand high and a a record 30% increase over the last three years. we watch the gruesome video footage of the attack in charlottesville, we see in excruciating detail the people that still poisons our society to this day.
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i want our members to know that our committee is dedicated to start -- fighting bigotry and this hearinginds is one in a series we are holding on these issues the 116th congress. kevin raskin has held for hearings in the subcommittee to confront white supremacy, religious persecution, and our government response. the subcommittee has worked with the chairman to investigate the national security implications of these threats. going forward, we are planning additional hearings, including one on voter suppression and minority communities, anti-muslim discrimination, anti-immigrant actions, and
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issues facing the lgbtq community. i have been in touch with many of you and i hope you'll come to me with any additional thoughts, ideas, or proposals. we mark this day of remembrance after a recent spate of anti-semitic attacks in new york city. i hope we can work together with the same spirit of solidarity today. i want to recognize ranking member jordan, but before i do, i would like to thank him personally for his support of the holocaust education act. thank you for calling this hearing today eared thank you for our witnesses for being with us today and your testimony
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today. i want to apologize on the front-end, i have to cross to the other side of the capital in a few minutes. on monday we recognize holocaust remembrance day. we pause to remember innocent lives taken by this evil. as vice president pence said, we have the obligation to never let the memory of those who died never be forgotten. we must always condemn anti-semitism in all its forms. --ould like to take moment take a moment to recognize a holocaust survivor, it is an incredible honor to have you with us today. one of the most important ways we continue to support the jewish people through our
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unwavering support of israel. since 1948, the united states has had a special bond with the israeli people. since president trump took office, he has made it his mission to strengthen this bond. he has worked to ensure the whole world knows the united states stands firmly with israel. in just three years, here is what has happened. he has recognize the golan heights as part of israel, withdrawn from the failed takenn nuclear deal, and effective action to eliminate soleimani. he has imposed a sanctions movement championed by those who want to diminish israel. yesterday, president trump released a groundbreaking peace plan. but maybe most importantly, he
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fulfilled a decades-old promise to the people of israel and recognized jerusalem as the capital of the state. routinelydents have failed to deliver on this promise. the u.s. embassy should be moved to tel aviv, according to carter. president clinton said israel is still the capital and bush said that as soon as i take office, i will begin the process of moving the ambassador to israel. -- two jerusalem. barack obama said jerusalem will be the capital of israel. president trump fulfilled that .romise we have shown people that they have the support of the united states of america. should be proud of this
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friendship and the work the president has done to solidify the relationship. we would be wise to listen to and learn from testimony today. thank you, madam chairwoman. >> i would like to recognize two of my colleagues. founding members of the congressional caucus on a-jewish relations. on african-american-jewish relations. >> thank you for holding this hearing and bringing attention to the alarming rise of hate crimes. i'm glad to see our committee will be using our oversight authority to find innovative ways for our government to combat the rise in white supremacy. formed thei congressional caucus on black-jewish relations to
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discuss the relations between african-american and the jewish community, also to highlight our shared history of combating racism and how the two groups can work together to combat hate crimes going forward. a shared history of slavery and the holocaust has given us a hatredned sensitivity to and racism. the two cochairs of the caucus includes myan and colleagues on this committee. unfortunately, anti-semitic acts have become far too prevalent in our society. already there have
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been incidents reported in my home state and more than 25 across the united states. last two years have seen a disturbing spike in anti-semitic attacks of more than 1800 reported in 2018 alone. according to the defamation -- anti-defamation league , a 57% increase. communities experience a substantial rise in hate crimes, the federal government must assist state and local government and law enforcement entities to develop ways to combat a rise in identity-based hate crimes. this pattern of hate illustrates a disturbing trend in our country that must be reversed.
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actsfilled anti-semitic will not be tolerated and i will predatorsby idly as of these anti-semitic attacks continue across our country. all americans have the right to freedom and religion and we will not allow that right hindered by a small fraction who use their awful agenda to spread hate and crime. i look forward to working with committeeship of this , members of the caucus on black and jewish relations, and all members of this congress. in the words of martin luther king, a threat to justice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. >> thank you, madam chair.
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the firstroudly as jewish woman to represent florida in the united states congress and i have just with ad from israel bipartisan coalition led by nancy pelosi. over one million women and children lost their lives in auschwitz alone. visiting this historic monument only reaffirmed to me that we cannot reaffirm the resurgence in hate we see now. deliver this moral imperative of never again, we must have hearings like this and sharon -- shine a light on bigotry and racist ideology. oris important to understand -- underscore that this is more about support for israel. we must be clear that the systematic mass extinction did not happen overnight it began
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with hate speech, harassment, and attacks on vulnerable communities. as these symptoms reemerge, we must speak out and act, and today, we will do that. we must also educate the american people by highlighting the amazing compliments of persecuted communities during upcoming events like black history month or jewish heritage month in may. educating one another and so many across the country are unfamiliar with minority achievements and traditions. it,ach of us thinks about there are many of us who have populations of communities in our own districts that are either tiny or minuscule and the first time members of congress
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interact with the community is when they join the united states congress. that is why it is important to hold hearings like this one and i appreciate our ability to make sure we can rid our nation of every denial of one another's humanity. the panelistsk for being here and in the fight every day to make sure that we continue to shine a spotlight on bigotry and hate. i particularly want to thank my colleague and dear friend brenda lawrence for her leadership and vision to establish this caucus. i'm proud to join her as a cochair and i look forward to our work. >> i would like to welcome our witnesses. i recognize representative raskin to introduce our first distinguished witness. chair forou, madam giving me the opportunity to
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introduce a remarkable constituent. romania little boy in when a policeman arrived to arrest him, his sisters, and his parents to take them to a ghetto for the crime of being jewish. astonishingly, they survived the holocaust but he lost 32 other family members to the genocidal war waged upon the jewish community of europe. since the holocaust ended, the civilized world has come together with one refrain, never again, and yet we live in a time of resurgent propaganda, conspiracies, psychological relation, human rights fanaticism, and violence. the civil rights committee held a hearing on limiting global
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persecution taking place under the blasphemy laws and --ological against the rohingya in burma. , vladimir putin is injecting poison into social media and helping to activate the most dangerous and unstable elements of our society, crating a wave of white supremacist care against black churches, hispanics shopping at walmart, and anybody deemed to be an outsider. get a hold on rising white supremacist violence and gun violence. we must continue to pressure the federal government, as we have been doing, and create a plan to
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battle white supremacy and domestic terrorism. safirwe can focus on mr. west dear, that 82 years old, he became the only holocaust survivor known ever to skilled mount kilimanjaro. the feet he accomplished by keeping the words in mind of his father that he spoke to him, never give up. but you back to you. honored you and we are to have you. congratulations on your recent achievement. we look forward to your testimony. we are also fortunate to have , he is former director of community security for the jewish federation and writer pittsburgh. resident --ank
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representative doyle and we look forward to his testimony. he may be able to join us later. edna.o welcome dr. jonathan green plant is the chief executive officer for the anti-defamation league and hilary shelton is the director and senior vice president for advocacy and policy for the national association for the advancement of colored people. we also welcome ambassador formergold and the israeli ambassador to the united nations andy former director general of the israel ministry of foreign affairs, so if you would all rise and raise your right hand, i will begin by swearing u.n..
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in.wearing you do you swear the testimony you are about to give is the whole truth celtic got? -- so hope you got -- god? thank you and be seated. the microphones are very sensitive, so please speak directly into them. with that, you are now recognized for five minutes for your opening statement. >> thank you. . >> i am honored to share with you a little bit about the personal experience. >> pull the microphone a little closer to you. thank you. honored to be here and share a little bit of my personal experience.
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father established a farm and for 18 years, he and my mother worked the farm. my two sisters and myself were born there. i went to kindergarten and i started first grade. everything was ok. one of our neighbors was a priest. we used to come by once a week to ask my father for donation to the church and for dairy products. one day, the same priest showed up and however, this time showed up with a armed police officer and two armed guard soldiers come also armed. we did not know why that happened this time, so we went
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down to find out what was going on. as we get close to the priest, he is looking at the police , sayingpointing to us this is the jews, so we were turned into authorities by a priest. the police officer said we had four hours to vacate because he was going to relocate us to a different part of the city. at this point, my mother and father tried to convince him that he could forget the border to relocate us. it did not help. 1941, it was established to your earlier. we came into the house, packed what other -- whatever bibles we had in police told us it was time for us to leave and we were escorted to the ghetto. once we arrived, we were turned
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over to the ghetto police where we received our orientation of what we can and cannot do. longerpeople could no her to dissipate in public prayers and we were given ration given five yellow starts -- stars with the word jew that we had to wear on our lapel. was to be going to work on a daily basis. my father's job was to sweep the streets in the summertime and shoveled the snow in the wintertime. hospital.was in the at this point, we did not know what we could do to survive because there was a certain mode of survival that we try to constantly focus on. in 1943, a big sign
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was posted in the ghetto area that said any individual mail between the ages of 18 and 50 yard of thee at the main ghetto square and bring extra clothing if you had it. wasnight before, my father -- we cried at night and the next morning, we also cried, but did not know when. left,st minute before he i asked my father if it is ok for me to walk with him. he agreed. we walked hand-in-hand because i got to the area that he was supposed to be and at that point we did not say anything to each other, we just held on tight.
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my father said it is time for you to go back and he turned to and saidoth his hands five words to me. they will remain with me for the rest of my life. he said matt, take care of the girls. at this point, i am seven years old. you cannot imagine the pressure. i told him i would try and do my -- i didn't. i said i would take care of the girls. i cannot give up because i promised my father i would take care of the girls. same day, my father was shipped away at a forced labor camp and we did not hear from him for many months.
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while he was away, i tried to do my best to get our family to survive, so one of the things you would see was the ration cards. they allowed us to receive a quarter loaf of bread and five leaders of kerosene. we had to walk out of the ghetto and since my sister was two years older, my father would send out my sister to get these rations and so one day he found out some of the hooligans were picking on jewish girls and he started sending me out to get these rations. home,imes, i would come beat up the bloody face, but that never hurt so much as it did when they took away my
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bread. happened realized what and she realized this would happen again. from that point on, she started rationing and try to save a little bit. while.nt on for a all of our family left back in these -- theot nazis invaded hungary in 1944 april, 440,000 jews were taken to auschwitz. young ones were put to death in the gas chambers and those able to work were sent to different camps.
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my grandfather died of starvation a month before he was liberated. two of my uncles survived. one was 21 years old and one was 22 years old. someone, thiso individual looked like a skeleton or skin and bones, that is pretty much what they look like. when the red cross came in, they immediately put them on ships to recuperate. one of the two brothers did not make it to sweden. he died and was buried at sea. one did die and was in the hospital for four years to gain his weight. we were liberated by the
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russians in 1945. we still never heard from a father. we do not know if he was alive or dead. the anti-semitism was very 1947, finally, my father was able to come back and in 1947, he realized there was no longer a future between jewish people and romania. the only country that would accept refugees was palestine. for a visa and every denied.applied, we were eventually, my mother was able to bribe one of the officials that was in charge of giving out the visas and we received a visa to leave for israel.
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meantime, i lived in israel for 10 years, i served in the army, i married, i have five children, 12 grandchildren. all are named by people murdered by the nazis. i thank you for listening. appreciate it. >> thank you for sharing your story. distinguished members of the committee, thank you for giving me the opportunity to address you on this very important issue. -- four years in the united states or in court and 28 years as a special agent in the fbi. i joined the jewish federation in pittsburgh and develop a security program.
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the first synagogue i ever visited, i asked if they had received hate mail. the answer was yes. i asked them what you do with it? they said they don't away. it would not be the first time i heard that. our goal is to conduct an awareness campaign stressing the importance of reporting every sign of hate and provide the tools necessary for building a culture of security. we followed the see something, say something model and requested the community to commit action. over the next 18 months, the pittsburgh community continued to experience anti-feminism on a routine basis, however this time our community started to report incidents. we would -- we encourage our community not only in pittsburgh , but all over the country to report every incident. based onped a program
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three prongs. the first was assessment of the organizations and buildings that lead to target hardening and number two, constant training and three, threat mitigation and a way to facilitate action from law enforcement. whatlly understand happened on october 27, you need to understand the security program leading up to the shooting. statement toake a help people survive and get out and help others, protect themselves and get to safety. unfortunately, we still lost 11 lives that day. our security program trained over 6000 people to include active shooter training. survivalw taken
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testimony to train over the country and demonstrate the importance of training, simply stating that trend helped minimize loss of life and it did that day. it is unfortunate that we have through our community various training protocols. two other training initiatives that took place, the first is the holocaust police initiative were every police officer spends four hours in a holocaust center prior to graduating the police academy. issued a rescue task force and it was the first time the task force was deployed in we had a trauma surgeon rendering aid in the building while the shooting was going on. when it comes to tracking
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anti-semitism, we partnered with the fbi. we forge an important relationship between the community and law enforcement. as soon as we receive any threat, we reported through our virtual command center which is linked directly to the fbi. they see everything we do in real time to track, assess and mitigate the threat. 27, we witness the deadliest anti-semitic attack in our country's history. efforts prior to the shooting were focused on preparedness through awareness and education. that everybody in the community thought it was necessary to prepare. some left that up to law enforcement. after the shooting, that all changed, notably in pittsburgh,
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but in jewish communities across the country. i will never forget walking through the horrific crime scene on october 27 and witnessing the destruction that one man caused. i'm certain those in the building that day, as well as first responders will never forget those images as well. people were murdered simply because they were jews gathered to pray. for countless number of people, that image will never be erased. we need to build a strong, resilient jewish community. i have spent 35 years protecting the jewish community and my country. i continue to spend the rest of my career working to protect jewish and other faith-based communities. attention andyour i look forward to answering any
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questions. >> thank you. you and all thank the distinguished members of the committee. >> good morning. thank you for the opportunity to testify and share our perspective. it is a privilege to be here on this december's panel. i'm feeling particularly moved because i've just returned to the world holocaust form were committedrs themselves. i also want to give a special thank you to chairman maloney for leading the passage of the never again movement. on -- working to build
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boy, i could ask my grandfather who was a refugee from not to germany what it was like. i could speak to people in my community who survived, but that is no longer the case. as time passes, memories fade. a few studies indicate that millennials no less than prior generations. only anetermined that estimated 54% of the entire world population had even heard about the holocaust and others think it is not important. a survey released this morning reported that 19% of american adults say jews still talk too much about the holocaust. this, at a time when hate crimes are up, violence is up against
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jews and other marginalized communities. from a college football coach in trooper anda state activists in chicago getting tot -- getting booted out visibly identifiable jews arrest in a subway and assaulted and brought daylight in brooklyn. instances of anti-summoned as a anti-semitism is up. it is the third highest total we have ever tracked in 40 years and it is getting more violent not just against jews, but all minority groups from charlottesville to pittsburgh. extremists feel emboldened in this environment to act out their hate.
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it might surprise you that the increase is happening as a backdrop of steady low-level attitudes among the general population. so why is that? >first, we have leading voices who are normalizing anti-feminism, making hate routine. ofy are accusing jews disloyalty, attacking the jewish state with the same things they -- all of retire -- this renders intolerance routine. second, the social media and online game environment are spreading hate. members,ly 2 billion
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facebook is the largest of these. youtube has made some progress, but not nearly enough. just as these market leaders have used ingenuity and invasion to help build billion-dollar brands, they need to apply those same abilities to remove hate from their platforms and bro -- build stronger societies. leaders must speak up against hate at every opportunity. number two, social media platforms must act more responsibly and band holocaust and i will -- deniability for what is. congress should pass a no hate have hate crime prevention.
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all at risk protect profits and faith-based institutions and implore congress to protect -- pass the domestic terrorism act to ensure the government is appropriately allocating resources to the threat of white supremacy. thank you for the opportunity to be here and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you for coming. >> good morning, state members of the committee. foruld like to thank you asking me to discuss a topic crucial to the double acp and all the communities we serve and represent as well as the nation and a whole -- as a whole. you are to be recommended as leaders in the community as reflected in the nearly unanimous passage of the 116th
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congress. the resolution rejecting white nationalism and white supremacy ourmerica and a preamble to associates constitution, the ncaa continues to fight for justice without regard to race, gender, creed and in short, we were founded as an antithesis of white supremacy and members have continued to uphold this idea of equal opportunity and equal protection under law. it is not an easy path and we continue to face challenges. as we all know, white supremacy can lead to genocide of native americans, slavery, which and's,
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segregation and a whole host of other horse. we have successfully fought back against some of these. yet, we can and should do more. we must be ever vigilant. the into double acp strongly supports the heather heyer national opposition and equality act. it addresses the problems that are underreported to the fbi and allows courts to require the defendant to participate in educational programs or community services as a condition of supervised release. we must also address the problems associated with online hate, yet a line between hate speech and personnel right is extending narrow. the into double acp strongly supports and endorses the
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domestic terrorism act. it would enhance efforts by requiring agencies to regularly assess the threat by other violent domestic terrorist and take other steps. we also support the emmett till legislation which would make federal hate crime eligible for additional tools used to investigate and prosecute these crimes. legislation was just introduced and it will make it .asier to prosecute hate crimes finally, i cannot emphasize this strongly enough, we need to educate our youth on the horror of the genocide of native americans, lynchings, slavery and other acts of terror that
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white supremacy has brought upon us as a nation and a world stop to fail to do so would be a crime and insult to rs -- and sisters who have died to address these concerns. we need to remember from the past so that it is never repeated. recommend -- we commend you, yet we still have political anders who have thoughtful ask how the language became offensive. or statements such as you have people who were very fine people on both sides. resultedttesville, it in a group of neo-nazis against .ocial justice advocates
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this was a confrontation which led to the death of heather heyer. there is an obvious need for more research and education, so we thank you again and for your therest of the views in into double acp and i look forward to that. -- in c -- naacp and a look forward to that. >> thank you. -- i look forward to that. >> thank you. >> ranking member jordan, thank you for your invitation. i'm an israeli diplomat and i happen to have been in washington yesterday because of were the united states issued a new peace plan for the middle east, but i was very glad to join you here and
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express some of my conclusions on this issue. this issue was conceived to deal with three issues, first commemorating the 75th anniversary of the liberation of auschwitz at the end of world war ii. second, we are using this moment to consider the rise of anti-feminism -- anti-semitism in recent years which is why it is so particularly disturbing. these are states at the center of our current civilization, so when it is rising in france, germany, and in the united states, you have to pay attention in ways that we wouldn't otherwise. we consider what the
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legacy of auschwitz requires us today. as director general of the ministry of foreign affairs. wherever i was posted, the holocaust was a national disaster that we, the representatives of the reborn jewish state could never forget. during my tenure as director general coming for a dialogue of the german government, we took and the villa,it where senior ss officers convened a meeting in january 1942 to plan the final [indiscernible]
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of jews in europe. it was here where a plan was conceived for the jews occupied in europe including the building about schmitz. sites,any historical they had a guestbook, which i was asked to sign. bookdo you write in such a ?hat such a location have a nice day? history onrden of our shoulders, i wrote a virtuous comment. i won't -- i wrote we will never allow anyone to do this to us again. course of that in the world war ii, 6 million jews were exterminated by the germans and auschwitz alone, nine hits -- over 900,000 were killed.
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it was vulnerable first and foremost to the red army along the eastern front, the german's determination to complete their mission of extermination, despite the advances of the russians, cause the germans to transfer the inmates from auschwitz to other concentration camps further away than within the borders of the german state. that is what led jews from auschwitz to bergen-belsen on forced marches during the frigid winters of northern europe and -- anne frank and her sister moved in this way where they both died. on a personal note, my mother-in-law and her sister were relocated from auschwitz
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with thousands of others. armydays after the british liberated bergen-belsen, a camp andentered the recorded the jewish prisoners rising up with their frail andes on a friday night breaking into a hebrew song which means the hope. they were reminding the world that their hope was 2000 years old and dated back to when the jews lived back as a free people in their own land. it was time for them to go home. that is what they were saying. it became the national anthem of the state of israel. modern israel is committed to defending jews worldwide, only
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today, anti-semitism is not only just remote areas of the eminent, it is being revised in the heart of western civilization in france, the united kingdom, germany as well as in the u.s. and canada. this new wave can be fought with education. and anti-semitic incitement can have . legal consequences we ask our allies to stand firm phenomenonh this strength gains further . i want to close with an observation from a former -- as a former diplomat. we have a very important tool to fight this. in 1948, the international
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community signed the genocide convention and the genocide convention contains a specific incitingtlined genocide. when the iranian leadership spoke about wiping israel off group ofwe convened a international legal scholars to look into whether they had crossed the line of genocide. and metas in rwanda with the minister of foreign affairs, anyone who reads about the rwanda genocide will find that incitement to genocide was a key component. it was a warning signal that something is about to happen, so if we sharpen these tools and
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not leavese them and them in textbooks, we can take narrow, toures to speechin the use of hate and we can also come back directly -- combat directly the phenomenon of other forms of hatred today. >> thank you. dr. edna freberg. >> good morning. your consistent leadership and for having me here today. when i became a holocaust historian, i thought it was only dealing with the past. so naive.
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over the course of my career, i have seen the veracity of the holocaust questioned in the very language of the nazis and new racist attacks. anti-semiticencing violence and speech and races of all types feel emboldened. you don't need to be jewish to be seriously alarmed and as a historian, i can testify that whenever anti-semitism is expressed public to and without shame, an entire society is at risk. the holocaust is not start with gas chambers. it started with racist words in children's books that shot -- taught children to be afraid of their neighbors.
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hiller was assessed with race long before becoming chancellor of germany. wendy knox's came to power, these beliefs became government ideology and were spread in posters, radio, movies, classrooms and newspapers. they also served as a basis for a campaign to reorder german society, first through the inclusion of jews to public life and the systematic murder of germans with mental and physical disabilities. in order to make jewish persecution powerbook, they branded jews as a biological threat and they announce jews as aliens, parasites and said they
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the responsible for cultural, political degeneration. they create an environment where persecution and violence were not just acceptable, but imperative. not to propaganda existed on seared huts to link juice to the spread of disease like term -- berman. -- they implemented rasul hygiene polities best policies to protect non-jews. not reinforce its policy of confining jews to prison zones known as ghettos by portraying jews as a health threat requiring quarantine. by depriving the hundreds of thousands of human beings in prison there in these ghettos of food, water, sanitation and medical care, the nazis created
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a disease population. german propaganda films characterized the jews as a life.r of life -- -- lice. notches and vote links between jews and communism to allege that jews were warmongers. similar accusations are currently leveled prominently against jews around the world and in our own country during the nazi era, celebrated americans like henry ford and charles limburg spread anti-jewish propaganda and characterized american jews as an enemy element that threatened the united states interest. in august 2017, white
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nationalists caret torches to invoke the legacy of nazi germany. in a charged context, it signaled violence and disruption. buildings andng it eventually burnt the bodies of millions of human beings, the very word holocaust derives from the word meaning sacrifice by fire. merchant torches in the american south has an additional resonance, nights of firebombs. , it preventsermany dominating our laws. [no audio]
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closing, hate speech and violence against jews are canaries of coal mine for the help of democracy and civil society. a government does not confront them does so at their own perl. my teenage nephew once asked me what can't jews ever stop talking about the holocaust and speaking as the daughter of a survivor, i had to take a deep breath before i answered him. the holocaust? because it is the best documented crime in human history. let's heed its warning crimes -- warning signs. >> i would to thank all for their moving testimony and i want to thank all of you for appearing here today. i like to begin my questions with mr. severe.
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we are very honored to have you here today and i was deeply moved by your testimony. you and your family suffered an incredible loss and showed incredible courage and i know that testifying today must be difficult for you, so i want to ask you, given how difficult it ,s for you to relive this pain why did you agree to come here and tell your story? why is it important that other people hear this story? we need to share this historical tragedy. it is impossible for people to remember and some of the public will forget what happened, how many millions of people, how many innocent people were killed because of jews or others. if i don't speak out or share my
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information, i only have myself to blame. that is one of the reasons i share the information as best as i can. >> is there a single message you would hope to convey to the american public, many of whom are watching? many of whom are members of the younger generation. what with the key message be that you would like to convey? i can summarize that into words, speak up. it is very important that you not be silent. monday, we passed bipartisan legislation to provide additional funding to give students the provide -- to provide the opportunity to hear from survivors in this bill would also expand on the holocaust museum and i
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understand that you work at the holocaust museum, correct? i give tourists to law enforcement agencies to make sure things like this never happened again. >> could you tell us why these programs are so important to help educate future generations? >> in the 1940's, we had one common enemy. unfortunately, all of us are getting older, many of us are dying out. we don't tell the story, do something about that, obviously we need to educate young people and want him gone, i need the young generation to be our voices. >> why do you think it is so important that our nation
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remember the lessons of the holocaust? that we don't forget about it, that it is not manufactured or annoyed or altered? >> if you don't remember the past, our future, it will be very bright. unfortunately, therefore letters .hich means it is a horror the war has two meanings, one remember, and one don't forget. all these who perished, so you need to remember all these things passed on to our children so they would not forget. >> i want to thank you for your testimony as you know better than many of us when hate is .llow to flourish
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we are fortunate to have your perspective and their grateful for your time and testimony. i will now recognize jodey for his questions. >> thank you to each of our witnesses for being here today. ambassador, let me begin with you. during the democratic debate, bernie sanders stated that the u.s. should leverage military aid to israel in order to manufacture changes to israel and domestic policy, specifically as it relates to gaza. he was saying we need to hold funds for that. do you believe that would be helpful? [inaudible]
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>> turn on your mike please. >> it is not my interest to jump into american politics, but at the same time, one has to understand what is in gaza. what is in gaza today are people that are miserable, people that have been taken over by one of the most hateful organizations on earth and it has allies like jihad and other groups. on israel isage mixing fire with the fire and will not produce a more stable outcome. i want to say that i am very optimistic as a whole and there are arab states that ci die with israel about the need to extinguish hatred, the need to
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work together to build a bigger region and we are seeing evidence of the first time of senior diplomats who will go to polls and visit auschwitz. that is something that did not happen before. let's encourage that and not schemes to put pressure on israel by denying military assistance because of the situation that it did not create. wouldgree and i think you not be helpful to withhold military aid to israel. medicare would ask everquest that an article about those comments be submitted. believe it is a quid pro quo. weevil provide this money provided israel will make changes.
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interesting of who that came from, really what my colleagues have been -- have been claiming is an impeachable offense. a member of the committee that israel is kidnapped and killed a palestinian boy. a viciousnted this as liable also called it and the incident was proven false. i suppose aemselves not anti-semitic, but indirectly they certainly are. unsubstantiated, reckless and proven false. do you believe these comments are help full? -- helpful?
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>> thank you for the question. accusation that jews are responsible for the murder of children, non-jewish children, as followor murder jews for century, has been used to demonize them, use as the basis for persecution, for slaughter, literally going back almost 1000 years to england in the medieval times. an organization that has been fighting anti-semitism, i will wheneveraccusations and wherever they happen. i think it is important to note that the use of the anti-semitic slayers, we should not use them as political partisan weapons. it,ll call out whoever says
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whenever it happens on the basis of the facts that hate is iteptable and at a time when is on the rise, when i spend a fair amount of energy paying respects to the victims of hate crimes in san diego in new jersey, and new york, anyone from either side. i would ask to be added to the record of unanimous consent. i yield. member of our delegation without objection, the gentleman from new jersey will be added to the panel. thank you. >> i recognize the gentlewoman from the district of columbia for questions. >> i want to thank you,
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especially for holding this hearing today on the anniversary of the liberation of auschwitz whoi think the witnesses agreed to appear today. i want to say that i think it was perfectly appropriate to have a representative of the naacp on this panel, first to indicate that hate appears to be all a piece. i would prophesies that if you that hates jews, you would also find that he hates african-americans and if we keep that together, we can perhaps understand the latest fbi statistics, the most frequently offensesgroup for hate
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and 47% aremericans motivated by race, ethnicity or ancestry. that may be because they are looking at people they can identify with those characteristics. wasaps the most recent churchoof, invasion of a no less at a storied african-american church in south carolina during bible study. i don't know if he chose the time, but the symbolism cannot be lost on many of us. thed concerned with increase -- i am concerned with the anti-semitism anywhere in
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the world this is coming from. do you see a relationship and an attacks in anti-semitic and the increase i just spoke of, the increase in hate offenses? >> absolutely. the ideology shared as we look at those who committed these crimes are very similar. as we listen to those who made presentations of the jewish community, they are checking off boxes of the same strategies used -- utilize against african-americans and somehow deciding there will be violent rapists as well and the language is very similar, so we see an
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increase in the organizations that hate african-americans and anyone that is not white anglo-saxon. the similarities are very clear as he looked to the hate crime data by the justice department making sure we have categories and the increases are consistent regardless of who you're talking those of thetainly jewish community. >> there has been a long relationship between american jews and african-americans. the only whites who have consistently been vocal and active in the civil rights toement and with respect matters having nothing to do
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with themselves, but race alone have been american jews. long.elationship is could i ask you in light of your what has the anti-defamation league found and violence against african-americans i spoke of and the relationship and what you think can be done about the rise of anti-semitism in racist attacks going on at the same time? >> i think i would reinforce what you said, the relationship between jewish americans and african americans is long and deep. there is a shared history of
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suffering, a shared history of diaspora if you will and the holocaust was a pivotal moment in the modern jewish experiment as it was for african-americans and i think understanding shared suffering has been critical and i'm proud of the fact that the head of the adl in the 1950's and 1960's started in march with -- king in some a -- somma selma. i'm proud that we work on many of the issues today. make no mistake that there is a through line. white supremacy is a violent threat against all marginalized groups and as my colleague hillary said, people who hate
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jews also hate african-americans because they are different than their view. there's a lot more work to be done. commend wasserman schultz for [inaudible] after awe were founded jewish man was lynched in 1913. he was lynched after having been falsely accused of a crime, essentially a blood libel, murdering a christian girl. when that man was lynched, leo frank, the founders of adl wrote a charter for this new organization, and in it are the words we still use as our mission statement. they wrote that this organization would "stop the defamation of the jewish people
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and secure justice and fair treatment to all." can't defend you american jews unless you defend all americans, and we are deeply committed to that mission 100 years later today. recognize maloney: i the gentlewoman from north carolina, virginia foxx, for her additionalas she has time as additional time was taken on our side. thank you, madam chairman. and i want to thank our witnesses. i don't think it is possible to overstate the tragedy of the holocaust. it is not possible we can do that. and any kind of hate is unacceptable. any kind of discrimination is unacceptable. i believe that is how the people on my side of the aisle feel, and we feel it every day and express it every day. hearings and reminding
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people of what has happened is appropriate for us to do. on december 11, 2019, president trump assigned an executive order to combat anti-semitism on college campuses. does the adl support this order? >> thank you for the question. the executive order was based on a bipartisan piece of anti-semitismhe anti-semitism awareness act, that we indeed did support. the anti-semitism awareness act was based on rulings out of the education department under presidents bush and obama, and the executive order affirms the definition of the holocaust and the definition of anti-semitism specifically, developed by academics from a number of countries. we do support it. foxx: i need a simple yes or no.
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>> yes, we supported. : ambassadorve foxx gold, the simon weisenthal center produced a top-10 list of the worst incidents of anti-semitism and anti-israel incidents. seeing anti-semitism is alive and well, in december we all mentioned numerous attacks against jews during the hanukkah season. do you believe and know that the number of anti-semitic attacks is on the rise? and you believe social media platforms have provided greater access for people to spread ?nti-semitism i am completely aware that the number of anti-semitic incidents around the world is on the rise. as much asware that, social media platforms can be
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great vehicles for education and mutual awareness, they are also being used by some of the most vile organizations in the world to spread hatred. and the tension between free killingnd incitement to is a real tension that lawyers and scholars have to work out. israel is a democratic society. the united states is a democratic society. and we cherish our democracy and free speech, but we cannot provide a vehicle that allows the spread of hatred. now runnter that i since i left government, we have been examining how the internet by radical islamic
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organizations, particularly in canada. and they are spreading anti-semitism. representative in canada has found a way of presenting this information to the canadian authorities. so you have to use your legal and youo combat this, have to shine your flashlight on where this is coming from. foxx: our white neo-nazis the only ones perpetrating anti-semitic attacks? anti-semitism, you mentioned canada, and is it fair to say anti-semitism is prevalent across all races and genders? : it is evident among
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all races and all genders, and has to be fought and combated, regardless of its point of origin. representative foxx: do you see hotbeds? you mentioned canada. are there other hotbeds of anti-semitism your group has recognized, and that we should be aware of? : we have done a lot of work on the united kingdom, on britain, and there are real serious problems of anti-semitism, and we have seen it enter into parliamentary life in the u.k., much to the horror of all of us who have always looked to britain as a beacon of democracy. so there is a lot of work to be done worldwide. : i come frome foxx wherea of north carolina
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we have great reverence for the people of israel, and all jews. jews arestians feel god's chosen people, and that it is our place to support israel. do you have ideas to follow-up on what you just said, on why anti-semitism knows no racial, ethnic, gender, geographic boundaries, when we have historically, those of us who are very strong christians, felt so positively toward israel and toward the jewish people? mr. gold: well, that is not the kind of question i can answer on one leg, but it does indicate that we have got work to do. we have got work to research. we've got find where it is coming from and then we have to make recommendations of how it can be dealt with. just sit back and let it happen.
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it is getting much worse. it is not good for the jewish people world -- worldwide, and it is also terrible for the countries where it is occurring. i was heavily involved in israel's efforts in 2016 to restore diplomatic ties and political activity across the and ient of africa, remember sitting with the foreign minister of rwanda and you have gotdore, one hard not to crack. i thought she was going to talk about libya. she was talking about south africa, which is led by a political party which has been fathering the whole bvs movement, which is now spread worldwide.
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i persisted in trying to reach out to south africa, and will continue to do so. : thank you,ve foxx madam chairman. you have been very tolerant and i yield back. chairwoman maloney: i want to recognize raja. representative: i want to thank all of our witnesses, especially mr. safir, for your moving story. i would like to start with mr. r about whatini happened at the tree of life synagogue. a man armed with an assault rifle and a -- and the tree of life younger geisha and, shouting anti-semitic slurs as he slaughtered 11 worshipers. it was the deadliest assault
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against the jewish community in american history. youhe time of the attack, were director of community security for the jewish federation of pittsburgh. could you spend a minute talking about the impact of this tragedy on the community and the congregation, since the attack. >> the attack not only affected the squirrel hills section of pittsburgh, or jews in pittsburgh, but the entire city. and agewe live in a day now where we have to think about protection in a house of worship , when you go there is the most vulnerable as you can be, and you get gunned down. since that shooting, the three congregations that prayed in that synagogue are still affected. the entire jewish community has been affected.
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the effects of that shooting are long lasting and they are not going to go away soon. in pittsburgh to make our folks feel safe so they can get back into worship, no matter what denomination it is. representative: children witnessed that attack, right? my knowledge, there were no children in there. there were enough people in there to witness that horrific attack. representative: what has been on the impact -- what has been the impact on children generally, since that attack? important iny pittsburgh after that attack for us to work toward a very quick resolution. what i mean is, it was very important for us to get our kids back in school, get our jewish facilities, our day schools, our preschools, and work with our community to get them back.
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it is a long-lasting effect. i went from school to school, preschool to preschool, to talk to parents about how terrified howr children were, terrified children, students and honestly adults were, just to walk to synagogue. and we had to work hard to make them resilient and strong, and we continue to do that. community,ish unfortunately, is a targeted community. folksentative: one thing probably everywhere understand is that, regardless of whether you were in pittsburgh, folks who worship at synagogues feared going to their synagogues for a long time after this incident. anduld like to switch gears hear your views about what you think the role of holocaust plays in hate crime
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prevention? >> it is paramount. pittsburgh is one of the few cities and may be one of the only cities in the country right now, that requires its police department and all cadets training to go to the holocaust center and spend time there prior to going out on the street. it is a model based after the national holocaust museum. the only group i know is that fbi agents go through there. important for holocaust education to continue, and it needs to start in middle school up. representative: how can the federal government best support either this type of educational awareness or hate-crime prevention generally come at the local level? at the local level there is several things. honestly, it takes money, human capital and time. is importantcation
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to be mandated in public schools and education platforms. teach --o never forget never forget, teach our community what happened, and what rises out of hate. and i think for the jewish community it is ever so important. rights anded civil the fbi for many years. i was the civil rights coordinator. i have worked hate crimes for numerous years. hate is generational. we need to be on the ground floor of children, educating them on hate, what happened in the holocaust, what hate does. representative: i am out of time but i want to underscore the end hate,, that to because it is generational, you have to start with the kids. and you have to teach them that anti-semitism, islamophobia, hatred of all kinds is not
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right. and we at the federal level have to support that. thank you. chairwoman maloney: thank you. i will recognize the gentleman from kentucky, mr. james comber, for questioning. representative comber: mr. schafer, and the witnesses, i appreciate your testimony. every time we have a tour group from kentucky, we recommend the holocaust museum. of all the museums in washington, that is the most moving,museum, the most most educational museum that makes such a difference. and we have not had anyone say anything about how much they were touched by that museum. i would like to focus my questions on israeli policy. can you explain how dangerous iran is to israel and why the golan heights are so necessary
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to israel's defense? : iran is a country which is under a theocratic stated itsch has determination to destroy the state of israel. in my institute, but the government has done this as well, we have collected statements made by iranian leadership, military, civilian leadership, which calls for wiping israel off the map. the question is, is this rhetoric to show off, or is there something behind? i will give you a specific example. in the iranian armed forces, there is a missile called the three, which can strike
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israel from iranian territory. up until recently it was an 800-mile -- it is an 800-mile range missile -- up until the iranians have only put conventional warheads in this missile. but now they are aiming to replace the conventional warheads, according to documents israel has, with a future nuclear warhead. paraded onces are a year in tehran, and on the missile, as well as sometimes writessile carrier, they israel must be wiped off the map. they juxtapose their intentions with the military capability that they are building. and it is not just going to stop with israel.
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they will go much further. our concern about iran is first and foremost its nuclear weapons program, which we don't see having been altered by the jcpoa it hast is a program probably gotten much worse. comer:ntative president trump's actions such as withdrawing from the nuclear dreary and eliminating international terrorist soleim ani, did that make israel safer in your opinion? mr. gold, the elimination of qassem soleimani, the commander of the quds force? one of the most gratifying international acts i undertook
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before working for the government of israel, i set up a general,with a saudi and we had this dialogue going on between his think tank in jeddah and my think tank in jerusalem. and he said to me, how would you like to go to the u.s. congress with me and lobby against the jcpoa? i agree with your intentions, i think it is a bad hillto lobby on capitol out of the interests of saudi arabia and the interests of israel? but we are think tanks, and there is nothing that prohibits us from going to a think tank in the united states and voicing our views. that is what we did. we were invited by the council on foreign relations in inhington, he appeared spoken arabic, i spoke in
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english, and the place was filled with american press. i am telling you that because the threat to israel is a threat to many of our neighbors in the region, who are slowly but surely becoming our friends. and a new security architecture for the middle east is growing as a result of that perception of a shared security threat. butave to build on that, that has also given me optimism about many of my neighbors. we can become not just friends, but allies. and hopefully that is something which we can work on with the trump administration and with the american national security bureaucracy. chairwoman maloney: i now recognize the gentleman from
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maryland, mr. raskin. raskin: greenblatt, you have spoken out against sweets or retweets by democratic members of congress intentionally or not, anti-semitic tropes. stronglyave spoken against a tv commercial run by donald trump in the 2016 presidential election that attacked janet yellen and george soros and lloyd blankfein as globalists and enemies of the american people. you have spoken out also against the outrageous moral equivalent manifested by president trump, stating there were very fine people on both sides in the events in charlottesville. what is the importance of speaking out against againstiment is him --
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anti-semitism wherever you see it, and not permit to be a partisan weapon? mr. greenblatt: you are correct. out clearly and consistently in response to anti-semitism from both sides of the political aisle. we live in a moment when extremists feel emboldened because the talking points of white supremacists and other radicals or jumping off the pages of their propaganda and into the talking points of elected officials. there is absolutely no excuse for it. out whenever and wherever it happens, because we want to make sure elected officials and candidates understand they shouldn't use anti-semitism or any form of hate for partisan gain. i wrote a letter to congress last year asking this body to prevent the tendency from using these kinds of tropes to gain or score political points.
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anti-semitism is not just a jewish problem. it is everyone's problem, because it is historically a sign of the decay of democracy. use to tool populists press their own authoritarian agendas. so we have got to have the moral courage and intellectual honesty to call it out whenever it happens, no matter who says it. raskin: thank you for that. in our country, anti-semitism and racism are both the gateway to the destruction of democracy and equal rights. i want to thank the members of the panel for understanding the importance of historical memory as to all the events that have taken place assaulting the rights of minorities, going back
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to the dispossession and violence against native americans in our country, and as wellrience slavery as the horrific events that took place in the last century with respect to anti-semitism. i have been reading a book by christopher riley called "cambridge analytic a and the abouto break america" vladimir putin's religious, ethnic and political poison into our body politic in the 2016 election and beyond. but ia very scary book, find it to be an uplifting book because we are not a racist country, the country that elected barack obama president. we are not an anti-semitic country, but there was a very deliberate effort to
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propagandize and promote the most unstable and extremist elements of the country. and even if that is only 1% of the american people, that is still a few million people. and it bore fruit for vladimir putin in a lot of ways, but certainly what took place in charlottesville, where you had americans marching out in the open as nazis, clansmen, fascists and our country -- in our country. i want to ask about online hatred and efforts to go out and find people using what cambridge analytic called the dark triad of narcissism, machiavelli and is him and psychopathy. predisposed to go out and demonstrate hate in a violent way. what are we going to do about that? even if the vast majority
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doesn't stand for that, what is the proper response? shelton, also, if you have worked on it. as we look at these challenges, it is important we point out how similar they are, how the strategies, the ideologies used to lace these together are so clear. if you separate them, you see that as we think about attacks on african-americans, as we look at the slavery experience, we know it was a tool to marginalize african-americans, to take advantage and seek whatever the spoils they want and to perceived as acceptable. when we think about attacks on our jewish friends because of their beliefs, the same thing applies. we don't talk enough about native americans, about the
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genocide that took place in the land that was taken and the natural resources being sought itthose cases, and to make acceptable to show them as less than human beings. one thing throughout all of this is the marginalization that goes with the characterization of each of these groups as being less than human beings, making it acceptable for the horrific things done to them, and nothing should be done about it. so it is important when we look at all these issues to think about them in that context and , and those whom promote the ideologies of the third reich, the white supremacists, and what those who fund them seek to gain as they continue. so it needs to be worked together. it is a very important question. onm an individual that is
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the ground, looking at the anti-semitism and trying to keep the community safe. it is very important for our community to report everything. timever, i spent a life raising my right hand to protect the constitution. first amendment right to speech is important. however, what we see on the ground is hate speech. not a crime, but it leads to a hate crime. we have to have a mechanism for law enforcement officials when they see a swastika, and it gets reported, not to say it is protected speech and there is nothing we can do. we need to work with law enforcement partners to come up with a way to assess what the truth is -- what the true threat is from these groups, because it is out there. them large majority of the community doesn't know who hate are, theyntity europa
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are across the country. however, most of the things out there are protected first amendment speech. in our community, the african-american community, the muslim community, affected communities, those signs of hate are important to recognize and report and it is understand -- and it is important for us to work with the government to come up with a method where we don't just dismiss it as protected first amendment speech. we truly need to mitigate threats out there. chairwoman maloney: thank you for that important point. i recognize the gentleman from ohio, mr. gibbs. gibbs: thank you all for coming, and thank you for your work to make sure these horrific events in the holocaust never happen again. thank you for giving us your and hopefully no
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human being will ever do that to another human being again. was stunned by dr. freeburg's testimony, when she mentioned henry ford. i had no idea. i googled it and in the early 20th century, things occurred that were stunning to me. i had no idea. i guess i learn something every day. surprising to me that was going on. recently prime, minister netanyahu called president trump the best friend israel has ever had in the white house. he has done numerous things to ensure israel is safe and secure and i want to list those quickly. he relocated the u.s. embassy to jerusalem. he recognized the goal on heights as part of israel.
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an executive order condemning anti-semitism at u.s. college campuses. he withdrew from the failed iran nuclear deal. he is a strong appointed of the andhistoric peace plan these are unprecedented accomplishments. wouldn't you agree? get drawni do not to into your american domestic ping-pong. however, when somebody does something for you which is ,xceptional, which stands out it is rude not to say thank you. and i am particularly grateful for what president trump has done. these are ideas that have been out there in the american discussion for a long time.
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jerusalemou had the embassy act supported by tom daschle and bob dole. spiritas a bipartisan supporting these kinds of moves but it got stuck and no one did anything in the first one who did it was president trump. actually moved the embassy. many of the actions the president has taken our actions that have been suggested, thought about, legislated about but no one did anything. he did it. that is appreciated by the people of israel. >> i appreciate that curt laster, -- i appreciate that. laster, the house wanted to , themn the -- last year house wanted to condemn the bds movement. what signal does that send to
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israel? way.will put it this bds is evil. do you know why it is so painful? for us to build a new future in the middle east with our arab neighbors, we cannot have boycotts. we cannot have divestment. we cannot have sanctions on each other. partss happening now, in of the west bank, for example, we are building new malls, new factories in which jews and palestinians are shopping together, working together, living together. want to be inspired? want to make peace? hospital. jewish doctors, palestinian
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doctors, jewish patients, palestinian patient all working together to build a health system for the city of jerusalem. we don't need people to come with ideologies from south africa or from other places telling us we should be boycotting each other. that is not going to make peace. that is going to make the hatred worse. >> i totally agree. the more we interact and have commerce and trade, we build those relationships and we have more respect for each other. 100%, i totally agree with you. i hope the peace plan that the president put out this week moves forward and we get it done. i yield back. >> i recognize the gentleman from california. andhank you, chairwoman, thank you for convening this important hearing.
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i'm anxious to bring it back to the bipartisan purposes we are all here for. thank you for your testimonies as well. i know we talked about how we have seen with recent surveys that many of our teenagers don't fully understand what occurred in world war ii, what occurred in the holocaust and the rise of hitler's. in my district, we have seen firsthand the consequences of this ignorance. in my district, a young college student was murdered by a high school acquaintance who joined a neo-nazi group. --ns played a drinking group upsrinking game around c shaped like a swastika. synagogues have
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been sessa crated while neo-nazi appear againlyers and again on campuses out of high schools and colleges curt watermelons have been thrown on front steps of african-american students. in my district, it is not uncommon to see white supremacy flags flying behind cars and tracks as they travel across the roads and highways. aftermath of many of these incidents, what we have seen is encouraging. the southern california jewish community did something incredible. they embraced the teens that have been involved in these incidents and educated them. , inviteddown with kids them into their synagogues and help them understand what had transpired, showing very clearly how important education and elimination of ignorance is. i want to turn to dr. freeburg.
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can you tell us why this education is so important? not just for teenagers here in the united states but for all of us in the united states and across the globe. thank you, congressman, and i wish you did not have such a long list to give. it is about more than just holocaust education. as an historian, i am disturbed by the general decline around the history -- the teaching of history in this nation. our partners -- when our partners come -- when our partners for broad come, they -- when ourd partners from abroad come to visit, they are surprised. one of our goals at the museum holocaust levels of quality education across the
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country by training teachers. they could be in a literature class, and what we used to call civics, they could be a faith-based class to enable them to work with the direct evidence of the holocaust and teach and facilitate in a responsible and meticulous way. one of the points i would most like to make, even people who think they know about the holocaust talk about it in such a simplistic way where it is like a morality tale. the vast majority of people who lived in europe during the time were a mixture. they were onlookers or complicit in some ways and helpful in others. a few a special exhibit years ago on this topic. it describes the way that everyday people had ordinary
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people had choices about whether to get involved, whether to stand by whether to facilitate. it is about more than just numbers and statistics and dates. it is about social cohesion and psychology. >> thank you for your leadership. only 12 states across the country require holocaust education and on monday, i am proud that chairwoman maloney introduced legislation to ensure that teachers across the country have access to the resources they need to teach about the holocaust. tocan legislate all we want fight hate, fight anti-semitism but the reality is, it has to start in our hearts and our head. it requires leaders across our country, leaders in the white house, the administration, in this body, academia, and elsewhere to make sure we are all fighting hand in hand, shoulder to shoulder to fight this. mr. greenblatt, i would like to
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turn to you. can you talk about some of your education initiatives? we reach over 1.5 million students, including many in orange county in southern california. we think education is the best antidote to intolerance. teaching about the holocaust, we have seen the studies when students understand what happened, it leads to a greater awareness and a greater tolerance for people in minority groups. let's hope the senate passes the education act. >> i recognize the gentleman from texas. >> i think each of you for taking time to visit with us today. say thank you for being here. andk you for your testimony
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i don't mean your testimony here but your testimony of faith triumphant and what you represent. rest assured, there are many of us committed to ensuring the history of the horrors of the holocaust are known and that what i believe is the hope for humanity that now emerges and a hope we see in jewish people is something we will be able to carry forward together. fortunate toe visit israel twice. i always get great joy going there. my wife and i were struck by two things -- we went there on a bipartisan basis. and we joined together for a shabbat dinner
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and broke bread, drink wine and were talking about most things nonpolitical. and we were struck by the happiness of the jewish people. we were struck by the fact that happiness,poll in the topnd to poll happiness. despite being under constant siege. a nation that is the fraction of the size of new jersey. it struck us how happy the jewish people are and as a result, my wife and i came back and we joined with some friend of ours in austin, texas, and we have shut down on sundays and we put our telephones and or ipads down and we join sunday suppers
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and trying to restore the community. we have been doing that religiously, so to speak, ever since last august on our return from israel. to our greatonse affection for our experience and our time in israel. the second thing that struck us not had the chance to go there on my previous trip and i was struck by the feeling of hope that you get as you walk through the horrors of the history of the holocaust but you see sort of light at the end of the journey. the design of the museum is extraordinary. you look through the old letters and the hope of the jewish people and it struck us in an extraordinary way. mr. gold, i have a couple of
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questions. yes or no, can there be any room for error for israel defending herself from her enemies? is there much room for error? some of that comes down to a space and time. how long does it take to fly across the united states? in a jet plane? to fly from the jordan river to the mediterranean, three minutes. the margin for error is pretty much reduced. >> are there currently attacks coming in from gaza despite unilateral withdrawal from israel? >> absolutely. i can tell you that we withdrew in theza in 2005 and period right after the withdrawal, the amount of rocket up by 500%.el went
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>> are there 120,000 rockets pointing at jerusalem and tel aviv? israel be safe without iron dome? require israel to live on a hairtrigger. >> iran is an ongoing threat to israel. how important is a strong and sovereign israel to the hope of the jewish people? >> excellent question. this, the historical connection between the jewish people in jerusalem is something which can be documented, which
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can be shown, demonstrated in terms of archaeological finds countriesve and when get behind resolutions that try to deny that connection, it delays peace. it makes our adversaries think, maybe we are right. lie.t is a vile you know how you know that? open the koran. of the arabicn for the temple. the arabs knew it. the muslims know it. where connected with jerusalem and the land -- we are connected with jerusalem and the land. >> i have two articles i want to get into the record. articles, just yesterday,
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announcedeneral barr a zero-tolerance against perpetrators of anti-semitic crimes. he says the justice department get more involved in fighting anti-semitic attacks. >> ordered. -- so ordered. i recognize debbie wasserman schultz. >> i just want to stipulate at the outset my questions that it would be hard to feel more strongly about the absolute necessity that israel remain a jewish and democratic state and also that this hearing has nothing to do with our support for and belief that israel should remain so. to return to the focus of this hearing, which is the ongoing battle against hate, with a
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backdrop of international holocaust remembrance day in the 75th anniversary of the liberation of auschwitz, i returned from poland and israel to mark that anniversary and when you walk down the platform, the the train platform, and i have been to auschwitz before. enormityndy of -- the of that evil and the human capacity for evil that exists today very clearly really overwhelms the. -- overwhelms you. the importance of this hearing and shining the spotlight continuously, never forgetting the human capacity for hatred has not diminished is absolutely critical.
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statistics have been documented. 180018, they tracked anti-net -- 1800 anti-semitic incidents. -- when i landed at the airport in my district, at the end of the strip last week, i landed to a text from one of my mayors with a flyer that was being distributive throughout the city that says, a red flyer with the nazi ss henchmen on it that says our patients has its limits. one day we will shut their dirty line jewish mouse. -- dirty lying jewish mouths. boundaries and
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it has existed for thousands of years. mr. greenblatt, i appreciate the efforts of adl. given that we appear to be living in an age where we have had a resurgence of conspiracy theories and are festering and growing and being promoted by the highest levels of power in our country and condoned by the highest level of power in our country, do you see a connection between the growth of conspiratorial thinking and the rise of anti-semitism and bigotry? >> we should talk off-line about that flyers -- about that flyer. there is no doubt the pension for -- penchant for conspiracy theories are contributing to the spike in anti-semitism. as -- is asm
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conspiracy theory that the jews somehow have too much power. that we are responsible for all the world's ills. with people in power who promote prejudice, it endangers all of us. the jews are typically the first to be harmed. anti-semitism never ends with the jews. whether you are the president of the united states or the president of the university or school board, we need everyone to speak up firmly and forcibly against anti-semitism. >> thank you. i did not speak out and there was no one left to speak for me. thank you so much for the work of the naacp in combating bigotry in all its forms and being relentless and always being in the forefront of our nation's leadership on combating
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hatred. the jewish and african-american communities have walked in lockstep for generations and that is the purpose of our forming a bipartisan coalition of black jewish caucus in the congress. with that we are dealing the 21st century version of age-old big -- bigotry and anti-semitism and hatred in all its forms, can you talk about what we can do through both of our communities to work together to fight, to renew our fight against hatred directed at both of our communities? >> thank you so much for the comments. it is important that we focus on the challenges and recognize a convergence in interest. if you think about what our amazingies want, it is when you speak to different groups separately, they will say
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the same thing. we want our families to be safe and secure and have an opportunity for our future, top-notch education and good health care. understanding each of our pathways that brings us to this conversation is important as well. we may be come from different places but we are in the same boat now. understanding those experiences makes a difference. when i talk to my jewish friends about the experience, it is amazing how challenges and negative impacts are described in such similar ways. a different experience, a different time, but the outcomes are similar. the attacks are so eerily similar and the challenges are similar, too. coming together to celebrate who we are, the passions for life and experiences is a very important part of it but also understanding what our vision for the future is. when i sit down with my friends
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from adl or other organizations, we talk about this issue. i would say that applies to some of the other communities as well. it is a wonderful thing that we see. we have gone through a lot of pain for different reasons in different ways, but when we understand that working together we can achieve these goals, that is where we find ourselves locking arms a little more tightly. >> our communities are inextricably linked. the moral imperative for us to come together and unite against hate and continue to shine a light on the evil that is permeating societies across the globe. >> thank you. we now recognize the gentle men from wisconsin. -- the gentleman from wisconsin.
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i know the congressman from -- i have never heard anybody uttering the least bit anti-semitic, maybe one guy told a racist joke, but in my district, it is not like california. it is much more accepting in my district. i do not to make it appear that all of america is like what -- is that way. there seems to be more mainstream politicians tracking -- trafficking and hate -- trafficking in hate to raise their profile. even before i was involved in politics, reading about the crown heights affair in new york , a person posing as a christian
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hatred windingng up encouraging someone to die. so --ot believe we had somebody like that in new york. i am glad he was not in milwaukee. what concerns me is rather than being swept into history's background, we recently have had this person come somebody who a lot of politicians like to stand with. look for him forgetting more votes. mainstream politicians, successful politicians. sharpton,si, reverend thank you for saving america and crediting him with getting the majority back in the house. this is something that mainstream politicians are embracing this individual. one after another, people
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looking to become president have met with this guy in new york. amy klobuchar, the mayor of south bend. you would comment how minister, why beloved or so apparently respected by so many? respond -- i just would say that what we have talked about like what is happened in new york or pittsburgh, no state is immune from hate. incidents inhate the state of wisconsin in 2019. a suburb of milwaukee, we had high school students doing the
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salute last year in the photo for their student prompt. i just want to point out the fact that prejudice can happen in any geography. it can be a problem in the majority communities and minority communities and christian communities and non-christian communities. >> what is this about this embrace of reverend sharpton? sharpton hasverend a long track record. i am not agreed with all of his statements. after the situation and the murder in jersey city, i got a text from him on my phone. what can we do about this? he has addressed these issues on his television programs. i appreciate some of the responses he has had of late.
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>> there is a group that sometimes sends me stuff called -- they sometimes talk about anti-semitism on college campuses. i wonder if any of you could comment on what is going on on college campuses and this is where the minds of the future are molded and why it seems to -- why anti-semitism, why it campuseswhy american seem to be a place where it seems to foment a little bit more. think one of the challenges that the way the jewish state is often demonized on college --puses, saying that it is using the same tropes that have often been used to demonize the
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jewish people. foreign, illegitimate, should go back to their countries. now they say that about the jewish state. we need university presidents to recognize -- i certainly believe in free speech deeply, even speech we don't like but there is a price for free speech. university presidents need to not dismiss when an ice images and is used -- when anti-semitism is used demonize the state of israel. prejudice should not be tolerated. >> i now >> i now recognize the gentleman from maryland for questions. >> i thank everyone on the panel for staying with us so long and for your incredibly compelling and important testimony on the topic in today's hearing. you talked about
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conversions of interest. i think that is an important point to emphasize. americanalling the hellenic progressive association, the most active organization in the country that represents interests of the greek-american community. it was formed in the south in response to klan activity directed at greek americans in the 1920's and 1930's. that convergence of interests is very directly bearing on that. all of these communities we are speaking about today have that convergence of interest. there are two important responses we need to have when these incidents of hate speech,
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anti-religious, racial incidents, acts of violence occur. one is to show an immediate sense of solidarity and responding to it -- in responding to it, the other is to take practical steps to respond to these attacks. the could go back to solidarity element, often our concept of solidarity is reactive. occursr words, something and then we assemble a kind of unified coalition response to that to condemn it. that is an important thing to do. ist that seeks to overcome human nature. when an incident occurs, the
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reflexive human response is to think, am i part of the group that was attacked or not? partu want -- you weren't of the specific group that experienced the attack, your reflex is, in a sense, relief. you momentarily set yourself apart. that is a difficult thing to overcome. we need to get to a place where this convergence concept is so any and abiding that if particular subgroup within our society feels pain or attacked, we feel it regardless of whether we are part of that group. what i want anyone to comment on
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is what opportunities do you see, or activities underway that are knitting together the sense of solidarity at the ground level, on the front end, if you will, so that when the attack occurs, the broader community feels it in that instant rather than there being that delayed response, which is important, but delayed. maybe you can speak to where different communities are allying with each other, creating coalitions so they feel equally these attacks regardless of which group it is directed at. >> that is an important point. what happened prior to the attack in pittsburgh -- we had a community relations council.
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our council director in pittsburgh spends time with all faith-based groups. that is his group. he convenes an interfaith committee. when the attack happened in pittsburgh, it was instantaneous. we had every faith-based group,, surrounding that happened by the interfaith immunity working together. we felt that through the community in pittsburgh right away. we had a muslim group working with us. they were one of the first groups that donated to the victims of terror fund. that. heartening to see that work was done prior to that shooting. recognize the gentlelady from illinois. pardon me.
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i did not see him come in. recognized.n is >> thank you, madam chair. i would like to thank the witnesses on this panel. when discussing the issue of education, president george w. bush said continuing failed policies means leaving children stuck with a soft bigotry of low expectations. when we are discussing anti-semitism, we can say we are facing hard bigotry. boycott,ds come in divestment, sanctions of israel. they come from deafening silence of people in this country when terrorists or bigots kill people of the judiciary merely because of -- the jewish faith merely because of their religion. anti-semitism is unfortunately
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still alive, now 75 years after the liberation of auschwitz. the simon wiesenthal center produced a list of the worst incidences of anti-semitism. can you speakd, to the trend we have seen with these anti-semitic attacks and what we can do toward eliminating the boycott, divestment, and section and other forms of anti-semitism? -- and sanction and other forms of anti-semitism? >> i am a big believer in knowing your adversary. if you are the military, there is an intelligence branch. it tries to give a picture of how your adversary is laying out
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his forces. that is what you have to do in this business, find out who they are and what they are doing. many times it is left to op-ed writers to conjecture where this is coming from. but you can find out. it is important if you are going to find out where the images and -- where the anti-semitism is coming from to have multilingual capacity. when i wrote a book back in 2003 kingdom" abouts the hatred that entered into, that was part of the attack on 9/11, where did it come from? couldd a team which actually read off the web some
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of the most sensitive arabic information. it was not classified. that is what you have to do. whether it is in arabic or farsi or urdu, you have to see where it is coming from. once you do that, you should have a criminal justice system that should operate. i want to stress to everyone when i bring up subjects that sounds like the problems of radical islam, it is not against all muslims. it should not be misinterpreted. radical islam is as much a threat to muslims as it is jews or christians. people that are silent may want to consider some of those may be adversarial too. >> i wanted to get to another
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point for the ambassador. president trump has been taking action such as relocating the u.s. embassy to jerusalem, recognizing israel's sovereignty of the golan heights, combating anti-semitism on college campuses, just yesterday releasing his blueprint for peace with the palestinians. for the ambassador, how have these actions impacted the u.s. relationship with israel? what will it look like moving forward? i think the actions taken by president trump are dear to the israeli body politic. we have already built up over the years a strong bond between the american people and of israel. certainly these actions strengthen that bond and allow us to move forward to build a safer region.
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>> thank you. i yield back. >> i now recognize the gentlelady from illinois. say, since al sharpton's name was raised, and i i don't believe in anything -- i don't believe in everything he said either, but i believe we have one of the most divisive people in this 21st century that we have seen in a long time, and he has a base and elected officials that follow him. just to pick on al sharpton is very interesting to me. thank you all for your testimony as we remember the horrors of the holocaust. dhank you for your courage an wanting to educate the next
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generation. you are a treasure. >> will the gentlelady yield for a second on al sharpton? we have had a terrible increase of incidents of anti-semitism in new york. the community has come together. he has been one of the leaders in bringing the community together. his national organization has had numerous meetings reaching out to the community, preaching that we have to unify and fight this. i thank the gentlelady for the point you made. >> sadly we have seen a rise in neo-nazi rhetoric field by this -- fueled by disinformation campaigns on social media. it is important not only to study the holocaust as a historical event, but use its as the fragility of
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democracy and promoting human rights. we have seen an increase in hate, period. people frequently dismiss comparisons to hitler and nazi germany because the regime and holocaust were so significant. can you tell us what germany was like prior to the rise of the nazi party? was it considered advanced economically and culturally? was there a representative government? democracy,many was a although a very young democracy. it had been in existence for over 10 years at the time the nazis rose to power. they rose as part of a democratic process. nonetheless, that did not inoculate that society from the dangers of nazi-ism. the holocaust was not a tsunami.
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say somethingo surprising. i find a great deal of inspiration in history of the holocaust, not in the horrors of it, but where things went in a different direction. the holocaust was not implemented uniformly. studying it in the specifics of each context with precision, we are able to identify the ofiables, context, and roles different people in society that made it better for jews in some places and worse for others. we are pleased to have a long-standing partnership with the adl. our law enforcement program trains members of the police, trains every new fbi agent and analyst every year. we look back to this history not just to make people sad, but to say, who are those people that sit in roles that can protect
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our society so that the extremists do not come forward? we have trained close to 60,000 members of state judiciaries, members of the military. we work with every military academy. it is not about whether society is advanced. how do we make them aware of their roles and responsibilities? andow does a diverse culturally rich nation devolve to genocide? >> my grandfather was from germany and lived through nazi germany and watched the democratic country to send into madness -- descend into madness. what he injured was unspeakable -- endured was unspeakable. we haven't even talked about it this morning, how nazi germany
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used the instruments of democracy to dehumanize and lead to a path of genocide. in particular, social media. we haven't talked about the role of silicon valley. it has to be talked about if we want to stop hate from spreading further. >> i am a diversity trainer. >> bravo. >> i yield back. >> i now recognize the gentlewoman from michigan for her questions. >> thank you. i want to be on the record. this is a serious issue. i am a descendent of slaves. we just marked the 400th year where this country that i love enslaved, killed, and oppressed people, a democracy. ofs is the 75th year
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recognizing the holocaust that happened in a country where others saw a group of people identified and persecuted. this is not a platform to promote and use this discussion to have political endorsements. we are talking about the united states of america. what are we doing here? how do we as a country not repeat what we know happened in this world and in the united states? shame on anyone that wants to use this to promote a candidate. i will continue with my statement now. raised by and i was this woman whose tears were falling from her eyes during the civil rights movement. i watched her cry as the hoses
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and dogs were sicced on people in the south.she told me you will have to educate people, because we know racism is ignorance. it is the stereotypes. we spokeerational, as of. just hatred that is passed along. she said you have to forgive them, because if you don't, you consume their hatred and anger. why did i want to bring together is groups in this body that supposed to pass policies to stand together, to fight against hatred in america? onestatement i used was martin luther king used. if we see it happen to one, it
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will happen to others. throughout history, so many people sit on the sideline. to sit in america today and say oh, i don't see it happening, they need to be slapped in the face with history and reality. we have so much work to do. --re me the experience and the ignorance and lack of compassion. america,k woman in having a double winning being -- ismmy being a woman that oppressed. i served as a mayor of a city i had to go to to protect the jewish community. i will not sit here and be silent, as so many people did when these incidents happen.
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theuestion, has anti-defamation league witnessed a similar uptick in violent hate crimes? to what do you attribute this increase? we have not talked about what is happening. it is more violent. now we are seeing violence. is of you, please, what happening that we as policymakers need to step up? mr. greenblatt: i applaud your leadership. so important. hope we can find ways to work together. naacpike the adl and worked together for generations. we talk about the pyramid of hate. bigotry can lead to acts of hate like harassment which can lead
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to violence, ultimately to genocide. we believe prevention is better than response. the bullys by using pulpit. leaders need to lead. they need to not allow intolerance to happen on their watch. that means using inclusive language and creating environments comfortable for everyone no matter how you pray or who you love. we need more of that in this country. >> the new technology is extremely important thinking about these hate manifests. if you think about the utilization of social media tools for everything from television to radio to music to further indoctrinate ideologies of hate in everyday society.
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keep doing what you are doing. keep hearing from groups like ours and develop new strategies, tools, and resources to stop it along the way. >> we must address social media that has become the new weapon of hatred and racism. i want you all to know we have so much work to do. thank you for being here. >> i now recognize the gentlelady from west virginia. >> thank you all for being here today. this is such an important and somber topic. we must continue to draw
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attention to make sure things like the holocaust never happen again. monday was the 75th anniversary of the liberation of auschwitz. it is the unspeakable horrors that occurred at the hands of the nazis. at one point, when million people. the world watched in horror. i don't know if it was naivete or the lack of instant news like we have today that they did not comprehend that such things would happen. i grew up within the city of columbus in a jewish community. i grew up going to bar mitzvahs. i went to my nephew's bar mitzvahs. now they are all adults. i think back to high school. one girl's mother had numbers tattooed on her arm. i was born in 1950.
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i didn't understand until one thentil i was an adult, horror. it is so important we pass this along, because history will repeat if we don't let people know what happened in our past. i am thankful for the efforts our president has taken to strengthen our relationship with israel. it is so important. we moved the mark by doing what we have done and having the embassy in jerusalem. i just can't comprehend the anti-semitism that we are witnessing today. andfight against hate education about the holocaust is
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so important to keep in mind as we create our policy in the future. how has the holocaust's dark legacy impacted the people of israel? >> my son served in the armor court of the -- armored corps of the israeli army. at one point he officer shows him the disaster that the jewish during theronted holocaust. him aficers try and imbue nd other soldiers with that message. the holocaust is very much in the conscience of israel's
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citizenry. us less prone to compromise or to understand our neighbors. by no means. but it adds to the inner convictions of the importance of our self-defense, especially when we have certain neighbors that still use language that looks like it came out of germany in the 1930's. >> i have seen some of that language. i was fortunate to go to the museum in israel. when the guide took us in, he said you have 45 minutes to view something that would take eight or nine hours. it is so overwhelming. i can't say enough about how we
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need to educate children to understand. policy it impacted the coming out of israel? the policymakers. the policy. amb. gold: i think people have to separate as much as possible what happened in the holocaust from everyday policymaking in the state of israel. you may have a vicious threat emerging in the east. you have to cope with it. for an example, if somebody's going to say your country has to be wiped off the face of the earth and hangs a poster saying that on his latest generation weaponry, you can't ignore it. you just can't turn the other way. , therefore, the
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israeli leadership from the highest levels down to the private of the army understands what is at stake. it is very serious. i think we approach it with a tremendous responsibility. ourink we also have to use diplomatic arm. frankly, not long after 9/11, that we would take up the genocide convention, which has been signed by the united states, by his real, by -- israel, by many countries in the world, and start using it using genocidal language. i should say something that
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represents my personal view, not the state of israel. i feel, having been an israeli diplomat, that one of the toponsibilities we have is use our talents and skills and our technical abilities to identify genocide when it is occurring anywhere in the world, and acting diplomatically to nip it in the bud. i have studied what happened in africa during the 1990's. i stumbled the battle -- studied the battle in bosnia. state toant the jewish be part of the international effort to prevent those from reoccurring. the holocaust is a unique event. i don't like to mix the
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holocaust with other developments around the world, but the holocaust teaches us how organic man -- how barbaric man can become. as victims, we have the responsibility to update people. you something? >> you can say one more thing, because i want to hear it too. amb. gold: the state of israel has many countries that turn to us. you would be surprised to know who they are. they indicate a desire to, under the table, have relations with us. i remember sitting with a senior european diplomat and asking them, we are in a dilemma. we want to expand diplomatic relations around the world, but
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sometimes these are rather horrible countries. what would you do? from the most important countries in western europe, i heard statements like, look, we believe in realpolitik. we would try and expand our diplomatic relations and basically turn away from the crimes that these countries are engaging in. that is horrible. as the state of israel, we should stand against that. we should advance policies that fight genocide, which is the most evil development, most evil policy, which we, part of the core of civilized countries, have to face. the now recognize
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gentlewoman from michigan for questions. >> thank you so much for coming here and your incredible courage. i will make sure my sons hear yo ur testimony. it is important for my children to consistently hear exactly what the holocaust means so we don't repeat it. you are right, humankind, what it can lead to if we do nothing. thank you for holding this important hearing today. it is comparative we -- imperative we learn from the lessons of holocaust and fight against anti-semitism. in michigan i would tell young people you have to take on hate with action. i am honored to be a cosponsor of the never again education act
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as we make sure every generation understands what it means when we talk about the holocaust. when i visited the holocaust memorial center with my young son, i remember you spent the day reading everything -- he spent the day reading everything he could. they said he might be too young for the visuals. i said no, if he can see them in video games, he can see the reality. he was reading a whole wall of news clippings. even the clippings documenting unspeakable atrocities of the holocaust. i never forget when he looked at me and said mamma, why did it take so long for people to do something about this? even at that young age, he noticed the years before we
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finally set jews free. at such a young age, he recognized how slow the international community was taking action. he could not comprehend how the world stepped back -- we are going to find out much too late about what is happening. what can you tell me about the environment that enabled hitler and the nazis to rise to power? aboutan history teaches such atrocities? >> thank you for sharing your personal perspective. i brought my son with me today.
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when you study the holocaust beyond nazi germany, you see hat e is only part of the story. it would be a mistake to think if we could just inoculate ourselves against racism, that people will not do bad things to other people. much of what enabled the nazi rise to power has to do with motivations that are much more relatable, things like career aspirations, greed, fear, opportunism. regimesee that the nazi offered great opportunities for women to be in roles they had not been in before. many were complicit in killings as a result. the eastern front represented an environment in which social norms were broken down. i want us to be careful to think
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there was not a the nuremberg laws -- most of what happened to -- what happened to adam noticed that. he saw the slow but sure taking away of people's properties. >> smart kid. in the nuremberg laws, jewish doctors were not able to treat arion patient -- aryans patients. when your jewish dr. -- doctor is gone, you will be quiet and think of it as an opportunity. any one of us could have been part of that process, whether or not we were an anti-semite in
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our hearts. >> one of the reasons i took my son to the holocaust museum is when he was nine years old, he heard me talk to his father about awful cartoon that depicted muslims that would invoke violence toward muslims. he comes into the bedroom and was like, don't worry, if anybody asks i am muslim, i will lie and say i am not. that struck me. honey, no. we cannotyou are doing incredib. i love to see the naacp here. a pastor in detroit said it beautifully, we are not a country divided, we are disconnected. we need to understand each other
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as human beings that never need to be targeted based on faith or anything else. thank you for your leadership. thank you for taking your son to witness something like that. would take parents their children to places like that. thank you very much. >> i now recognize the gentlelady from california for questions. >> thank you. my colleague and i have the same age of sons. in sod to interest him many things. the only place he wanted to visit was the holocaust museum. the ongoing battle against hate is personal for my community in orange county. according to the san diego
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county sheriff's department, the shooter posted an anti-semitic message on 8chan before he went on his rampage. ane man accused of killing 18-year-old in lake forest was reportedly a number of a neo-nazi -- member of a neo-nazi group. he openly described himself as a nazi. i want to focus on the role of social media and their potential use as a platform for white supremacists to spread hate. did social media play a role in the execution of the attack at the tree of life synagogue? >> i can't answer that. unfortunately the case is still under prosecution. >> i appreciate your professionalism. on a more general level, could
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you comment about what research tells us about how white supremacists are using social media today? >> social media today has become a breeding ground of bigotry. ran teams ofducts, engineers. facebook is the front line in fighting hate. it used to be if you are a white supremacist, you had to go to a compound in idaho to find a rally. now you can find them a click -- with a click. your kids can literally, with a couple clicks on their phone, can engage in content that could never be printed on television or in film, it is now available to our children. there are things companies can
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do to start the process. we believe in the first amendment at the adl. we started a center on technology and society. i had phd's in artificial intelligence and machine learning. thingsshare some of the silicon valley could do today to tackle this problem. number one, they have terms of service that prevent hate spee ch. all they need to do is recognize places, not private they are public companies. just like you can't sit in panera and yell at mexicans, haters should be pushed out like that. you can find salacious content on cable in the middle of the night. have editorial guidelines.
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number three, slow it down. the shooter in christchurch who murdered 15 muslims, the shooter who tried to burst into a synagogue, the shooter in el paso used go pro cameras and livestreamed their snuff films. there is no law that says when i click publish, it should be available f billions -- for billions to see. they should use ai to stop it. youtube shouldn't allow neo-nazis to make money on its content. twitter should not allow extremists to literally profiteer off prejudice. companies should to regular third-party
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audits. facebook, youtube, twitter, these businesses have taken steps, but they have not done enough. if they would apply transparency and submit to the same practices all other businesses submit to, he would be able to independently verify whether they are doing enough to take the venom out of their systems. >> thank you for your concrete suggestions. i'm excited about bringing the u.s. holocaust memorial newseum's traveling -- museum's traveling exhibition to irvine. i hope you can share with this committee what you hope the exhibit will be able to accomplish. >> i encourage those in d.c. to see it and i will speak in
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irvine. >> i have seen it twice. >> i now recognize the gentlelady from new mexico. >> thank you for being here today. thank you for your strength, courage, and sacrifice. i would like to honor the man fight ked tirelessly to hate and move the u.n. genocide convention move forward. he also coined the word genocide. he would be proud of everyone of you for carrying on his legacy. , the fbi18 report found victims of anti-hispanic hate crimes increased 21% over the previous year. in my home state of new mexico, hate crimes have increased over 400%. that includes recently the shooting death and beating death
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of homeless native americans in turkey. -- in albuquerque. in elust, 2019, a gunman paso, texas shot and killed 22 people. minutes before the rampage, the shooter posted an anti-immigrant manifesto and vowed to shoot "as many mexicans as possible." among those was a woman murdered that day. that -- she was 84 years old, the oldest of 10 siblings. she had 21 children and great-grandchildren. parents have lost their children, and yet we can't figure out how to stop reliving this night when -- nightmare. no one should have to live it, especially our immigrant
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communities. hate has been weaponize to against so many -- weaponized against so any different communities. beyour view, what might driving the increase of anti-latino sentiment? >> i am grateful you asked this question. vastlyimes are underreported. sometimes this comes from the fact that people in the communities don't know to report their experience as hate crimes. am deeply concerned about the immigrant and latino communities afraid to report these incidents. i know this because i have heard from them. adl partnered with the government of mexico. we provided hate crimes training
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to officials across the united states. over 2000. mexican nationals living in the u.s. are literally going to their consulates to say my child is being bullied at school. they are worried about rumors of i.c.e. enforcement. why is this happening? the anti-immigrant movement in the u.s. has been empowered in ways we have never seen before. you have the kind of hateful rhetoric coming from people in positions of authority, starting with the white house, demonizing immigrants, dehumanizing latinos and people seeking refuge in ways that are unconscionable. adl has done reporting on this. we need people in positions of authority to use it wisely and recognize this country needs to
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be welcoming of everyone, particularly vulnerable people seeking refuge on our shores. we need to live up to those values today. holocaust, many countries erected barriers to make it impossible for jewish people to emigrate. is that correct? >> not exactly. they did not need to erect barriers during the holocaust because the barriers were already in place. immigration laws passed in this body in 1924 severely restricted immigration based on country of oregon. -- of origin. the united states did not have any refugee policy. there was no refugee policy and the united states during the holocaust. we simply did not treat peoplewh -- who were fleeing
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from violence differently than an economic immigrant. it was not a priority of the united states government at the time. >> i have one more. i think i am out of time. i yield. >> i now recognize the gentleman from misi for questions. >> thanks for convening this hearing today on this important subject. i want to thank the panel for your testimony. in my district in st. louis, i have a large and historic jewish community, which i have enjoyed a great friendship with over many decades. three years ago, a few blocks from my home, a historic jewish
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cemetery in missouri was vandalized, causing shock and pain to families. i had the opportunity to work with them to make the cemetery whole again. i considered it not only my duty, but an obligation of faith. earlier the st. louis generation announced an extension of this remarkable holocaust -- expansion of this remarkable holocaust museum. it is essential not just to honor the memory of the victims, but because future generations can beginevil deeds with hateful words. and people running silent. -- remain silent. many of us remember the quote from the united the right rally in charlottesville.
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we watched in horror as white supremacists and neo-nazis boldly marched with their torches, changing "jews will not replace us" and "into the ovens." one self-described neo-nazi rammed his car into a group of protesters, killing heather heyer and injuring others. is athe ovens, i believe, holocaust reference, would you agree? >> yes. >> do you believe the public at large understood the words?cance of those >> some do, some don't. in the aftermath of charlottesville, we created an educational website so people could understand the dog whistles and symbols being invoked.
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>> after everything you experienced, how does it make you feel to see seems like charlottesville -- scenes like charlottesville? what does that do for you? >> memories like that keep coming back. when i was seven and eight, i saw violence against jewish children. it wakes me up more. i am trying to do as much as i can while i am alive. once we are going, it is hard -- what it is hard to know happened. >> thank you for sharing your story. thank you. how does the anti-defamation league define neo-nazi? weathe adl, -- at the adl,
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defined asmists neo-nazi, its iconography. >> how would you characterize the threat of neo-nazism in the u.s. today? do you believe the charlottesville march reflects increasing anti-semitism? >> the issue today is less nazi sm and more extremism. i worry about the violent right-wing extremism which has been responsible for 73% of the extremist related murders in this country in the last decade. i worry about the right-wing extremism responsible for murders in 2018. i worry about the right wing extremism that promotes a toxic ideology in which african
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americans, jews, muslims, lgbtq people, immigrants, anyone different is demonized and ultimately they think should be murdered. we have seen that play out in pittsburgh, in el paso, in too many places in the past few years. >> how would you characterize the actions of a top white house official stephen miller and how he fed into this frenzy? >> we are on the record as calling for the resignation of stephen miller because of his utilization of white supremacist ideas and ideology. we have seen the documents released showing he was trying to promote this in the media. ultimately we judge people based hishat they do and policies don't reflect our values in this country. refugee --dson of a
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it is a disgrace we don't embrace refugees here. >> i now recognize the very patient gentleman from new jersey. fighttakes patience to anti-semitism. [laughter] thank you. mr. greenblatt, you said adl's research shows the increase of anti-semitic attacks in the united states is not caused by a change of attitude among americans, but rather the millions of americans feeling these views are emboldened to act on hate. obviously there is a lot of explicit anti-semitic rhetoric in the public sphere today, charges of dual loyalty, for
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example. a number of questions focus on less explicit examples. ms. debbie wasserman schultz asked you about conspiracy theories. i wanted to be more explicit about that. when people in the public's fear -- public sphere rail against whenlists, the deep state, public jews are attacked for controlling the state department or mass media, does that make for a safer climate for jewish americans? >> obviously those tropes create an environment that is dangerous for jews and all people. when you talk about it being the public sphere, let me give you an example. i invite you to open up youtube and look at the comments on this hearing, which i just learned
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are rpe -- are ripe with the anti-semitic conspiracy he is asking me about. this is a clear and present danger unfolding as we speak. >> you were also asked about anti-immigrant rhetoric. rhetorical attacks on immigrants threatening our country, statements in the same category about the impact of safety on jewish americans. >> yes. these are invocations of classic anti-semitic tropes and long-standing stereotypes. they were used to justify restrictive immigration laws in the 21st century and used to dehumanize people today. >> shooter in pittsburgh cited his paranoid fears about immigrants invading america and blaming jews for funding refugees in the united states, is that not correct? >>
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>> that is accurate. >> demonization of israel, such as movements like dbds, contributes to a less safe environment for jewish americans. is it enough to be pro-israel? >> i am unabashedly zionist. my organization is proud to be pro-israel. i will tell you the architects of the bds campaign absolutely contributes to anti-semitism. there is no doubt delegitimizing that you wis -- the jewish state delegitimize is the jewish people. can be we need to say we pro-israel but also be anti-bigotry.
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those things are not necessarily the same. you mentioned the embassy opening in jerusalem. i was in favor of recognizing jerusalem as the capital of israel. an evangelical pastor was invited by the administration to say the opening prayer at that ceremony. he claims to be pro-israel. he also said "you cannot be saved being a jew." he said judaism, like other non-christian religions, not only leads people away from the true god, they lead to an eternity of separation from god and hell. that is from someone who claims to be pro-israel and gave the invocation at that ceremony. do you see how it is possible to
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be superficially pro-israel whlie contributing -- while intervening to the claimant that makes -- climate makes it less safe for jews in america? >> the expression is due diligence. hopefully when you organize ceremonies of such importance, for the united states government or any power in the world, you have to check who is coming. a sense here. i really don't want to jump into the american domestic scene. but it seems like everything is coming from the right. and my understanding of the rebirth of anti-semitism is it's both left-wing and right-wing. it's both. you can't just lean over and say it's one and ignore the other,
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whatpefully when we decide are the source of anti-semitism that are confronting us, we are blind. we look at both sources. >> i fully agree and i think most of us would agree the extremes of left and right tend to come together. and anti-semitism is the place where they come together. thank you. i yield back. >> without objection, the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. doyle, shall be permitted to participate in today's hearing. and the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for questions. >> i think the chair. first of all, i want to say for being hereu, today. it's a very hard testimony. we must continue to hear these stories so that we never, ever forget.
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i think it's most important for young people, the young generations coming up, to make sure that they know this, too. i also want to welcome and thank you for being here today and what you did for the city of pittsburgh. for the panelists and people here in the audience, squirrel hill, a neighborhood in pittsburgh where this horrific attack took place, is a kind of neighborhood that you would never expect anything like this to be possible. this is a multiracial, communityral, vibrant where people of all faiths and ethnicities get along with one another and work on community projects together. when i saw the television that
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morning, i was in my kitchen, that there was an active shooter down and squirrel hill and the -- inf life, it almost the tree of life, it almost did not register at first. i guess we were learning that there is really no place that is 100% safe, no matter -- even though we had the sense of security in our neighborhoods that nothing bad ever happens, we see something bad can happen. couldi wonder if you explain the ways and places you would never expect to have these kinds of incidents. for signs do you look for signs of hate and violence, and how do you engage with social media for security purposes, too? do you think the attack on the tree of life changed the way the pittsburgh jewish community views their security? >> sure. i think it was a watershed
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moment for the entire jewish community across the country. nobody thatburke and squirrel hill would have ever imagined that. but i think anybody that has been involved in a mass casualty attack would say the same thing, it never happens to us. that is why our work is so important. the network that we do now across the country, to make awareness, teach our communities to be resilient, to be first responders. it can happen to anyone, anywhere. a lot of things we have learned over the last five or six years during mass casualty events, active shooter events, is that we need to do a better job in educating our community on what to do in case they are attacked. in the case of social media, we are working very hard in the jewish community in national platforms through the secure community network. the organization work --
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the organization i work with now, to establish social media signs and to find these of hate. in pittsburgh, most people did not know who patriot front identity robot was. we see those signs all over pittsburg. it's important to us to educate the community. any piece this miss of hate, even if it is a piece of paper on a telephone pole. we want to identify them, assess the threat, and mitigate the next attack. social media plays a big role in this. we work hand-in-hand with the fbi. the fbi needs help. they can't openly search social media sites. they have to rely on the community. the community needs to be great partners with law enforcement so we cannot dismiss any signs of hate. >> thank you. -- i seeyour testimony
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in your testimony something really powerful, that the enemy of the holocaust and holocaust survivors like yourself is just time. what are the ways you can spread and amplify your story and the story of other survivors to get it to young people some ensure they understand? >> holocaust museum. we travel with a museum to various colleges. we speak to various groups. the important things that we do right now is educate. very important to educate. i constantly say education is so important, and i will continue to do so. somadam chair, thank you much for your gracious time. yourank you for contribution. without objection, the following documents shall be made a part of the hearing record, written testimony from organizations and theviduals including liz,
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holocaust survivor and president of the central valley holocaust educators network, julie raymond, the political outreach director, deborah lawter, executive director of new york city office for prevention of hate crimes, the director of legislative affairs and deputy director of the international center for human aghts and public policy, report from the jewish federations of north america, adl presidentrom jonathan greenblad. i want to thank all of my colleagues, especially a remarkable distinguished panel, for your wisdom, your insight, your ideas, and your time. for being with us and sharing this incredible hearing with us. i think we know that we have a lot more work to do and that we can't sit back and let these
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acts of hate go on confronted -- un-confronted. combat bigotry and hatred of all kinds. i thank you for your advocacy in your guidance. the committee will be continuing the series of hearings. i welcome all of you, all of the members of the panel here, and of congress to give me your ideas for an additional thoughts, proposals you think the committee should review. i want to thank you again and i would like to thank our witnesses for testifying today. without objection, all members will have five legislative days with which to submit additional written questions for the witnesses to the chair, which will be forwarded to the witnesses for the responses. pleasehe witness is to respond as promptly as you are able. i do want to say a very special
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thank you to the holocaust museum for working with congress , dr. friedberg, we are hopeful they were passed our bill in the senate. -- will pass our bill in the senate. that teachers can access fair lesson plans to teach acceptance. we hope it will pass with the allocation and funding so that we can take some of your exhibits to every congressional district in the country to learn more about how we can combat hate. thank you it's been a remarkable hearing. i am very inspired. thank you for being here and your wisdom and inspiring all of us. this meeting is adjourned. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2020] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit]
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