Connect to share and comment

Anti-Semitism: vandals deface Polish cemetery with swastikas, anti-Jewish slogans

Foundation for Jewish heritage says it is shocked that the final resting place of people 'brutally murdered' during the Holocaust has been attacked.

Polishcemetery2012319Enlarge
A monument commemorating the pogrom of Jews elsewhere in Poland in the village of Jedwabne, is found vandalized on Sept 1. Unknown offenders demolished the stone fence of the monument. (ARTUR RESZKO/AFP/Getty Images)

With anti-Semitic acts at the center of public attention in France, The Associated Press reports today that a Jewish cemetery in Poland was defaced in the night of Sunday to Monday by vandals who painted swastikas and anti-Jewish slogans on graves.

Citing the Foundation for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Poland, the news agency said the vandals had written “This is Poland, not Israel” at the cemetery in the eastern town of Wysokie Mazowiecki.

As few as 1.5 percent of Poland's 3.5 million Jews survived the Holocaust; yet vandals say the cemetery is in the wrong country.

More from GlobalPost: New York police tighten security at Jewish sites, after French attack

In a statement, the Foundation said “[w] e are shocked by the fact that the attack was directed against the resting place of the deceased citizens of Wysokie, neither not able to defend themselves, nor to be defended by their successors, brutally murdered during the World War II.”

The Foundation renovated the cemetery in 2006 and with survivors and locals were involved in its upkeep, the foundation said.

According to the AP, police have opened an investigation.

"Those of us who are the guardians of the cemetery know that the vandalism is an isolated example which is the antithesis of what Poles and Poland are today,” Michael Traison, an American lawyer who has raised funds for the upkeep of the cemetery, was quoted as saying.

More from GlobalPost: Top India CEO warns of slowdown

Physical violence against Jews is rare in Poland while anti-Semitic vandalism occasionally occurs, acording to the AP.
 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/poland/120319/anti-semitism-vandals-deface-polish-cemetery-swastikas-an