Recently the State Department revised its definition of ant-Semitism to include “drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis” – an apparent response to the rise of the anti-Israel BDS (Boycott, Divest and Sanctions) movement, whose supporters routinely make such comparisons.
That is a good thing. Just a few days ago, I sat in the former SS headquarters of the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland with Piotr Cywinski, director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.
Speaking beside a window overlooking the gas chamber and crematorium where countless souls perished at the hands of the Nazis occupying Poland during World War II, he explained that there is no difference between hatred of Israel and hatred for Jews.
‘“It’s the same old story with some different words,” he said. “If you are speaking with somebody who is defending some anti-Israeli ideologies, maybe not in the first minute, maybe not in the second minute, but in the third minute you will find that the same old story accusing Jews of every bad thing in the world. For me, that’s very, very clear. I never saw any anti-Israeli theory that was not anti-Semitic.”