Amid the spat between Israel and Poland over a law being advanced by Warsaw that would prevent restitution to Jewish heirs of property seized by the Nazis during the Holocaust, 82 out of Israel’s 120 lawmakers have signed a letter to the Polish parliament asking them to vote against the legislation.
“We, members of Israel’s Knesset, are contacting you with a request to vote against the law that denies Holocaust survivors and descendants of Holocaust victims [the right] to demand the return of the property stolen from them,” the Hebrew-language letter, published by the Ynet news website, says.
“There is no doubt that Poles took part in the persecution, theft and extermination,” they add. “That is the historic truth and it cannot be changed. The attempt by Poland to distance itself from the crimes committed in its territory by Poles is mistaken and dangerous, because how is it possible to educate young people not to repeat crimes that weren’t committed?
“We implore you — as Polish citizens, as public leaders, as humans — to acknowledge the crimes and act to fix them. Not just for the sake of the victims’ memory and respect for the survivors, and not for the sake of the relations between our countries, but for Poland.
“Acknowledging history, not rewriting it, is the act that would increase the respect for the Polish nation.”
The Knesset members who signed the letter come from all parties, except the Islamist Ra’am.