Nine barracks at the Auschwitz memorial site were vandalized with anti-Semitic in English and German.
Trigger Warning: Mentions of Anti-Semitic Attacks, The Holocaust
Staff at the Auschwitz museum confirmed on Tuesday that anti-Semitic graffiti was discovered at the memorial site. In a statement, the museum denounced the incident as "an outrageous attack." The vandalism, some of which was anti-Semitic, was sprayed in both English as well as German across nine wooden barracks at the Auschwitz-Birkenau site. It was found on Tuesday and has since been reported to police authorities. Meanwhile, CCTV footage of the area is being analyzed in order to track down the culprits, the museum announced in a Twitter post. Eyewitnesses have also been requested to come forward, CNN reports.
The vandalism, some of which was anti-Semitic, was sprayed in English and German on nine wooden barracks at the Auschwitz-Birkenau site. https://t.co/4VGCv6ZgPr— CBS 58 News (@CBS58) October 6, 2021
The vandalism contained references to the Old Testament, which the museum explained was often used by anti-Semites. Denial slogans, which drew the museum's special attention, were also spotted. Memorial site officials reaffirmed, "Such incident—an offense against the Memorial Site—is, above all, an outrageous attack on the symbol of one of the greatest tragedies in human history and an extremely painful blow to the memory of all the victims of the German Nazi Auschwitz-Birkenau camp... We hope that the person or persons who committed this outrageous act will be found and punished." The museum will now wait for the police to collect necessary evidence before beginning to remove traces of vandalism from the historical buildings.
Police in Poland are investigating antisemitic vandalism at the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum. https://t.co/L2GNdsuKUW— Ticia Verveer (@ticiaverveer) October 5, 2021
To protect the memorial site from similar incidents, the museum is taking extra security measures, it reassured. "The security system of the Auschwitz Memorial—that includes the 170-hectare site of the Auschwitz II-Birkenau camp—is constantly being expanded," the museum's statement reads. "It is financed from the Museum budget, which unfortunately suffered greatly during the COVID-19 pandemic. Securing the Birkenau site by fully enclosing it will not be possible until after the... land between the newly-built ring road and the historic camp fence [is transferred to the Museum]. [This] was to be done as part of the last stage of the Oświęcim Strategic Government Program."
'An outrageous attack': #AntiSemitic graffiti found at #Auschwitz-#Birkenau II death camp. The vandalism included statements in both English and German as well as two references to often-used Old Testament sayings frequently used by anti-Semites. https://t.co/grm1bCLIin— KSS (@kss_ltd) October 6, 2021
Auschwitz-Birkenau was established in Nazi-occupied Poland. It was the largest concentration camp run by Hitler's regime. There, over 1.1 million men, women, and children were systematically annihilated, many of them in the camp's torturous gas chambers. A total of 6 million Jews were killed during the Holocaust. Sadly, despite Germany's commitment to preserving its history in respectful ways, anti-Semitic attacks have been rising steadily over the years across the country. At least 2,275 anti-Semitic crimes were committed in the 12 months to the end of January 2021, of which 55 were violent, the local news outlet Deutsche Welle reported.
On this day 75 years ago, Allied forces liberated the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp, the scene of the most horrific mass atrocity and genocide in history.— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) January 27, 2020
Today we must remember the lessons of those dark days and acknowledge the danger of letting hate and anti-Semitism fester.
However, Germany is not the only country seeing a jump in anti-Semitism. Across Europe, anti-Semitic attacks have been on the rise for years. From France to Poland, Jewish cemeteries are regularly defaced, and nine out of 10 European Jews believe that anti-Semitism is on the rise, according to a survey by the European Commission. In this context, visitors to the Auschwitz museum have been asked to come forward. Those with photographs that were taken on October 5 before noon in the vicinity of the Gate of Death and the section of the men's quarantine Blla, where the wooden barracks are located, have been requested to forward them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Others with information are also requested to get in touch.
76 years after the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, anti-semitism, extremism and political violence are present in ways we thought unimaginable a few years ago.— Guy Verhofstadt (@guyverhofstadt) January 27, 2021
Always remember where they lead to.
Always learn from the past.
Never again.#HolocaustRemembranceDay pic.twitter.com/ybjx1Yk0TF