‘Cynical actors’ using pandemic to promote Holocaust conspiracies

‘Cynical actors’ using pandemic to promote Holocaust conspiracies H.E. Mr. Ophir Kariv, Ambassador of Israel. Photo: DFA

The memory of the Holocaust has been used by “cynical actors” to campaign and spread conspiracies during the pandemic, according to Israel’s ambassador to Ireland.

Speaking at a webinar on Holocaust remembrance, Ambassador Ophir Kariv said it is easy to spot Holocaust denial but far more difficult to recognise Holocaust distortion, which has increased during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Ambassador Kariv said: “Unfortunately, the past year has provided many opportunities for cynical actors to use the memory of the Holocaust as a tool for campaigning and spreading conspiracy theories.

“We see symbols of the Holocaust used on placards and on social media to spread misinformation. We see offensive comparisons made and the vocabulary of the Holocaust weaponised to hurl insults. This is not only desecrating the memories of the victims of Nazism but degrading to Holocaust survivors.”

He said that it “is incumbent on us all to work to challenge this distortion of the Holocaust”.

Ambassador Kariv added that the IHRA (International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance) provides a comprehensive definition of anti-Semitism which includes all types of contemporary anti-Semitism, describing it as “an important tool to this end and we hope to see more and more countries adopt it”.