A poll by CNN has revealed that a large percentage of those living in major European countries know little or nothing about the Holocaust. Anti-Semitic beliefs are still widely spread among the residents of over seven European countries that took part in the survey.
One-third of the respondents said that they knew very little about the Holocaust. 4% said that they had never heard about it at all.
The Holocaust is the state-sponsored and systematic murder and persecution of about 6 million Jews by Adolf Hitler controlled the Nazi regime in Germany and other parts of Europe. The Holocaust took place from 1933 to 1945. Apart from Jews, millions of non-Jewish people also died. These include gays, Jehovah’s Witnesses, disabled people, priests, and others. There were survivors, and thousands of them still live until today.
The CNN survey was conducted online through ComRes, the pollster. Over 7000 people living in Great Britain, Sweden, Germany, Poland, France, Hungary, and Austria were interviewed.
The results of the survey show that anti-Semitic views are more common in Europe and 10% felt unfavorably towards Jews. Over 33% felt negatively towards Muslims. About 20% felt that Jews had too much influence in politics and the media. Over 25% believed that Jews were also influential in the fields of finance and business.
In America, there is even limited knowledge of the Holocaust. Results of a survey show that 11% of Americans had never heard about the Holocaust and some weren’t sure that they had heard about it. Over 40% had never heard of Auschwitz. Auschwitz was the most infamous in the Nazi concentration camps. Many had never heard about Treblinka which was a Holocaust memorial. Treblinka is second to Auschwitz regarding the number of Jews killed.
In the United States, anti-Semitism has been on the increase. In 2017, the number of anti-Semitic events increased by 60%. In October 2018, there was a mass shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh that saw 11 people dead. This event is the deadliest attack on Jews in the United States.
In France, the number of anti-Semitic acts in France increased by over 69% within the first months of 2018. The French Prime Minister said that anti-Semitism is still occurring and there is a long way to go before it can be all over. In France, about 20% of those aged 18 to 34 years old had never heard about the Holocaust.
About 62% of Europeans that took part in the poll said that commemorating the Holocaust will help to ensure that atrocities against the Jews will never happen again. Half of those that took part in the survey said remembering the Holocaust will help to combat anti-Semitism.
About 44% of respondents admitted that anti-Semitism is a growing problem in their country. 18% of respondents blamed the Jews for the increasing anti-Semitism and said that most of the anti-Semitism that occurs is a response to how the Jews behave.