ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 149

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One in five young Americans believes the Holocaust is a myth, poll finds

Survey also shows more than a quarter in the same 18-29 age group believe that Jews have too much power in the US

A woman holds a sign reading 'Well Done Israel, Hitler Would Be Proud' as people rally in Brooklyn, New York in support of Palestinians and against Israel in the wake of the October 7 Hamas terror onslaught, October 21, 2023 (KENA BETANCUR / AFP)
A woman holds a sign reading 'Well Done Israel, Hitler Would Be Proud' as people rally in Brooklyn, New York in support of Palestinians and against Israel in the wake of the October 7 Hamas terror onslaught, October 21, 2023 (KENA BETANCUR / AFP)

One-fifth of US citizens between the ages of 18 and 29 believe that the Holocaust is a myth, according to a new poll from the Economist/YouGov.

The poll was conducted between December 2 and December 5, and among other issues, examined the beliefs held by US citizens on Israel, Jewish people and the Holocaust.

In response to the statement “The Holocaust is a myth,” 20 percent of participants between the ages of 18 and 29 said that they agreed with it, and an additional 30% said that they did not agree or disagree.

In comparison, 8% of people between the ages of 30-44 agreed with the statement, as did 2% of people aged 45-64. However, of those over the age of 65 who were surveyed, 0% agreed with the statement and just 2% said that they neither agreed nor disagreed.

Overall, 7% of Americans believe that the Holocaust is a myth.

Asked elsewhere in the survey whether they believe it is antisemitic to deny that the Holocaust took place, 17% of respondents in the 18-29 age group said that it was not antisemitic, and a further 37% said that they were not sure.

Similarly, 23% of those aged 18-29 said that they agreed with the statement: “The Holocaust has been exaggerated,” and 26% said they neither agreed nor disagreed.

In addition to highlighting trends of Holocaust denial in the US, the poll questioned participants about their views toward Jewish people in the US today.

Asked whether they agreed with the statement “Jews have too much power in America,” 16% of respondents said they agreed, 51% said they disagreed and 33% said they neither agreed nor disagreed.

An Israeli supporter holds up a placard saying ‘End Jew Hatred’ as she takes part in a protest where placards with the faces and names of people believed taken hostage and held in Gaza were held up during a protest in Trafalgar Square, London, on October 22, 2023. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein, File)

When examining the responses to the question by age group, the survey revealed that 28% of people aged 18-29 agree that Jews have too much power. In addition, 19% of people aged 30-44 agreed, as did 12% of people aged 45-64 and 6% of people over the age of 65.

When asked if it is antisemitic to believe that “American Jews are more loyal to Israel than the US,” 29% of people over the age of 65 responded that they did not believe it to be antisemitic, compared to 23% of people between the ages of 18-29.

The poll was conducted as Israel’s war with Hamas in Gaza entered its third month. The war was triggered on October 7, when thousands of Hamas-led terrorists burst into Israel from the land, air and sea, killing more than 1,200 people, most of them civilians slaughtered amid brutal atrocities, and seizing some 240 hostages.

In response, Israel vowed to eliminate Hamas from the Gaza Strip and launched an aerial campaign and subsequent ground invasion.

The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza has claimed that more than 17,700 people have been killed since October 7, although these numbers cannot be independently verified and are thought to include at least 7,000 Hamas terrorists, as well as civilians killed by misfired Palestinian rockets.

The war in Gaza has led to a spike in antisemitic incidents worldwide, including in the US.

The publication of the poll comes on the heels of a US House of Representatives hearing in which University of Pennsylvania president Liz Magill, Harvard president Claudine Gay, and MIT president Sally Kornbluth were asked directly if “calling for the genocide of Jews” is against the codes of conduct at their schools, to which all three presidents said the answer depended on the context.

Since the hearing and subsequent uproar caused by the refusal to definitively answer the question, Magill resigned from her position as the head of the University of Pennsylvania, and over 70 lawmakers have demanded that Gay and Kornbluth do the same.

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