July 20, 2024
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Assemblyman Schaer Leads Holocaust Remembrance

(Courtesy of Office of Assemblyman Gary Schaer) Assemblyman Gary Schaer and a bipartisan coalition of Legislators led the General Assembly in a solemn observance of Holocaust Remembrance Day to honor the eleven million victims of Nazi Germany and its collaborators. Assemblyman Schaer was joined by Assemblyman Freiman, Assemblywoman Swain, Assemblywoman Lampitt and Assemblywoman Sawyer.

“We mourn the victims—six million Jews, Slavic, Romani, disabled, LGBTQ+, Jehovah’s Witnesses, trade unionists and leftist political prisoners,” said Assemblyman Schaer, “The Holocaust stands as an enduring warning against violent extremists and their enablers. New Jersey reaffirms the promise of ‘Never Again.’”

Assemblymembers recited emotional testimony of the 1941 Babi Yar massacre, where 33,771 Jews were executed by Einsatzgruppen death squads.

The Babi Yar massacre represents a pivotal stage in the Holocaust, accelerating the implementation of the Final Solution. Following Hitler’s ascendency in 1933, racial purification became the sole purpose of the German state, and the complete annihilation of Europe’s Jewish population the singular objective of Nazi war machine. The Holocaust developed from persecution to dispel German Jews, to extermination by internment, sterilization and forced labor, to mass executions behind German lines. When mobile death squads proved unsuccessful, concentration camps expanded into extermination camps.

According to the ADL, in 2021 the United States and New Jersey experienced the highest levels of antisemitic incidents since they began recording in 1979. During this historic rise in antisemitic violence, the Assemblymembers affirmed the importance of preserving survivors’ stories of resilience.

“It is vital that New Jerseyans understand the Holocaust as antisemitism’s inevitable consequence,” said Assemblyman Schaer, “To combat violent radicalization, we must confront the inhuman horrors of industrial extermination; the immense scale and the individual experiences of unfathomable trauma.”

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