Islamic Society of North America 'Recommends' Gaza Youth Visit Holocaust Museum

Top U.S. Rabbi Mark Schneier slams Hamas for attempting to ban trip to U.S. Holocaust memorial planned for UN delegation of Palestinian youth.

Shlomo Shamir
Shlomo Shamir
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Shlomo Shamir
Shlomo Shamir

The Islamic Society of North America slammed Tuesday the Hamas for attempting to block a group of Gazan youth from visiting the Washington Holocaust Museum, saying they "strongly recommend" the visit.

"We strongly recommend that a visit to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum be part of the delegation of Palestinian students," the Islamic group said in a letter to Rabbi Marc Schneier, President of The Foundation for Ethnic Understanding.

A visitor to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum walks past a mural of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in WashingtonCredit: AP

Schneier has been leading an effort to build support within the Muslim community for a planned United Nations visit by Gazan students to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and has been received by both criticism and applause from Muslim communities.

"We want to ensure that the [United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East] UNRWA delegation of students visits the nations capital and its various museums and institutions, including the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum," the statement said. We believe that this museum, in particular, has tremendous educational value and helps visitors appreciate the historical result of unbridled hate and human manipulation."

The statement added that the Holocaust was a critical part of human history, "and it is essential to understand the magnitude of this event in order to fully grasp its impact on Jewish community heritage and our current historical context."

Schneier also criticized the Hamas, and said in a statement that it was another example of extremists attempting to manipulate others.

"The insistence of some Muslim radicals on blocking a UN trip to the Holocaust Museum is just another example of extremists trying to impose a distorted view of history upon its followers," Schneier said in a statement.

"Fortunately, the voices of those who are seeking peace and tolerance between Jews and Muslims are louder than those seeking to further divide us," he added.

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