The important question that must be asked today is: Have we learned the lessons of the Holocaust in the world? And to our great regret, the answer is no. A renewed anti-Semitism is spreading.

 Cabinet communique

 

Reuters archive photo

(Communicated by the Cabinet Secretariat)

At the weekly Cabinet meeting today (Sunday, 1 May 2011):

1. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks:

"Holocaust Martyrs and Heroes Remembrance Day will begin this evening. Today, the Cabinet will approve a decision, the goal of which is to recognize a representative organization of Holocaust survivors in Israel. We are committed to action on behalf of Holocaust survivors; we have done much and we will do more. The important question that must be asked today is: Have we learned the lessons of the Holocaust in the world? And to our great regret, the answer is no. A renewed anti-Semitism is spreading. Various forces are joining together and flooding the world with anti-Semitism. The hatred of Jews and the denial of their existence have turned into hatred of the Jewish state and denial of its existence.

The agreement that was initialed recently between Hamas, which calls for the destruction of the State of Israel, and the Fatah movement, must concern not only every Israeli, but all those in the world who aspire to see peace between us and our Palestinian neighbors. Peace is possible only with those who want to live in peace alongside us and not with those who want to destroy us.  Israel extends its hand in peace to all peoples of the region, to all of our neighbors that aspire to live alongside us in peace, and will stand steadfast against whoever tries to attack us and endanger our existence. I will deliver this clear message to world capitals, and especially to European leaders, during my visits to London and Paris this week."

2. Prime Minister Netanyahu updated ministers on progress in the selection of a new Civil Service Commissioner.

Pursuant to Article 23A of the 1959 State Service Law, Prime Minister Netanyahu decided to extend the appointment of Acting Civil Service Commissioner Udi Prauer by 14 days or until a permanent Commissioner is appointed, whichever comes first.

3. Pursuant to its 4 November 2007 decision, the Cabinet authorized the Minister for Senior Citizens Affairs, with the concurrence of Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz and the approval of the Cabinet, to recognize the organization that represents the greatest number of Holocaust survivors in Israel (including a roof organization the members of which include the greatest number of Holocaust survivors in Israel) as a representative organization of Holocaust survivors in Israel.

4. A Senior Citizens Affairs Ministry representative briefed ministers on Project HEART – the Holocaust Era Asset Restitution Taskforce.

5. Education Minister Gideon Saar and Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev on plans regarding the maintenance and renovation of the Jewish pavilion at Auschwitz-Birkenau, which is due to conclude by the summer of 2012.

6. In continuation of its 6 January 2011 decision on the Carmel wildfire, the Cabinet decided to approve the Defense Ministry proposal to build a memorial to the 44 people who perished the fire. The Cabinet directed the Defense Ministry to finish construction of the memorial no later than the first anniversary of the outbreak of the fire, and noted the NIS 3 million – to be shared equally by the JNF and Keren Hayesod – cost of the memorial.

7. Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstein briefed ministers on the structure and functions of his ministry, especially regarding the prevention of anti-Semitism and Holocaust education around the world, and the strengthening of ties with Diaspora Jewish communities.