Nearly Half of Israelis Think Another Holocaust Is Possible

Study released ahead of Holocaust Remembrance Day also finds that 25% of survivors buy less medication and 30% buy less food because of financial worries.

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Auschwitz survivor Hadassa Hamburger displaying her concentration camp tattoo at a Holocaust commemoration at Tel Aviv Port on January 27, 2015
Auschwitz survivor Hadassa Hamburger displaying her concentration camp tattoo at a Holocaust commemoration at Tel Aviv Port on January 27, 2015Credit: Gil Cohen-Magen

Nearly half of all Israelis think another Holocaust is possible, a greater proportion than last year, according to a report on Holocaust survivors in Israel released ahead of Holocaust Remembrance Day on April 16.

When asked if they think the Holocaust could take place again, 46 percent of Israelis said yes, up from 41 percent last year, according to the report by the Foundation for the Benefit of Holocaust Victims in Israel. Among Holocaust survivors and their children and grandchildren, the proportion was 47 percent.

The Anti-Defamation League reported that there were 912 anti-Semitic incidents across the United States last year, a 21 percent increase over the year before. Since then, there have been several high-profile attacks that have brought anti-Jewish violence to international attention, including the January 9 attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris and the February 14 shooting at a Copenhagen synagogue.

The element of the Holocaust victims foundation report that was most prominently reported in the Israeli media was the poverty level of Holocaust survivors. The report found that 45,000 of the 189,000 survivors living in Israel live below the poverty line.

The children and grandchildren of Holocaust survivors in Israel said one-quarter of survivors cut down on the medication they purchased because they were worried about their finances, up from 17 percent last year, the report said. The second- and third-generation respondents also said 30 percent cut down on food because of financial worries, up from 19 percent last year.

In addition, two out of three Holocaust survivors in the country (67 percent) said they were worried or very worried about their financial situation in the future, 7 percentage points more than in 2014.

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