The Holocaust a “myth” or an exaggerated story, according to a quarter of young people

The Holocaust a “myth” or an exaggerated story, according to a quarter of young people

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Memorial to the victims of the Shoah in Amsterdam on September 2, 2021.

More than half (54%) of Dutch people are unaware that the Holocaust claimed six million victims. A third of people aged 25-35 say they do not know that Anne Frank, whose diaries are a world-renowned masterpiece, died in a Nazi concentration camp.

“Shocking, 23% of millennials [nés entre 1980 et 2000] The Holocaust seems to be a myth or exaggerated.”Eddo Verdoner, national coordinator for the fight against anti-Semitism, says in an analysis of the study published on January 25 by the Claims Conference, an international organization that works to protect the interests of Holocaust survivors. A previous study from the same institution reported a similar level of skepticism.

The question of anti-Semitism is very present in the Netherlands and 65% of 2,000 people polled believe that the phenomenon persists in their country. As far as the past goes, its mere evacuation remains a painful ordeal: of the 140,000 Jews listed in the state, 102,000 perished or died in the camps. That is, proportionally the highest figure in Europe.

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As early as January 1941, Jews in the Netherlands were forced to register with the authorities. The entire civil service was placed at the service of the occupation regime embodied by Reich Commissioner Arthur Seyss-Inquart. In the following months, the German occupiers, relying on Anton Mussert’s National Socialist Movement (NSB), which had 50,000 members, and a militia of which 10,000 followers were to join the Waffen-SS, began deportations. Despite this page in history, 22% of young Dutch people believe it “acceptable” that a person currently adheres to neo-Nazi theses, 13% affirm “hesitating” on this point.

conspiracy theories

Another important lesson from the Dawa conference survey is that while public authorities are trying to counter a resurgence of anti-Semitic views and clarify the country’s role during World War II, half of those surveyed say that they support their stock. It is true that 53% of those asked believe that their country was not involved in the Holocaust.

In January 2020, Liberal Prime Minister Mark Rutte issued an official apology for the persecution of Jews. , Our government institutions have not acted as guardians of justice and security”he explained with a sigh “many Dutch officers had obeyed the orders of the occupier”, a judicial intervention “historical and symbolic” by community leaders.

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