Nazi Abuse

19 Aug 2009 by CST

The video below is currently doing the rounds on Youtube and numerous blogs. It was filmed at a health care debate in Las Vegas and shows a woman shouting "Heil Hitler" at an Israeli man who is praising Israel's health care system.

This may not be the straight forward case of antisemitic abuse that it initially suggests: Nazi themed abuse is becoming increasingly common in America's furious debate over President Obama's health programme, and the woman in the video is actually wearing an Israeli Defence Forces T-shirt. 

If anything, this is yet another reminder to us all of how crass, stupid and immoral it is to use Nazi themed abuse as a part of political debate. It is, of course, a phenomenon, that impacts against Jews and Jewish related issues with depressing regularity: as shown in these recent reports by CST (see p.42-49), and the European Institute for the Study of Contemporary Antisemitism.

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“Since 2003, CST has been a stalwart supporter of ODIHR in its efforts to effectively monitor antisemitic hate crime in the OSCE Region. With its rigorous methodology and innovative partnerships with the British police, it is viewed by many as representing the gold standard for NGO responses to all forms of hate crime. I wish CST all success in its exciting new phase of work.”

Michael Georg Link
OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights