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Wednesday, December 07, 2022

Nebraska becomes first state to inaugurate Jewish American Heritage Month

Photo Credit: Countering the Anti-Semitic Movement

L R Elan Carr Milton Kleinberg Governor Pete Ricketts Ellie Cohanim And Adam Beren Credit Combat Antisemitism Movement
Alan Carr, Milton Kleinberg, Governor Pete Ricketts, Ellie Kohnim and Adam Byrne

Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts made a historic decision on Israel’s Independence Day during a celebratory ceremony at the Nebraska Capitol Building for its May inauguration. Jewish American Heritage Month in the State of Nebraska, The governor led the country in becoming the first US state to do so.

They also announced the official adoption by the state of Nebraska of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism, increasing the number of US states that adopted or supported the IHRA definition to a total of 27, plus the District of Columbia . ,

Most US states now officially recognize the definition.

“We have seen a worrying increase in anti-Semitic sentiment across the country,” Governor Ricketts said. “Here in Nebraska, we are not immune to it. Here in a synagogue in Lincoln someone painted a swastika. We see this increase in anti-Semitic sentiment and we must be aggressive in combating it. We must tell people that we Will stand against hatred.

“When we see anti-Semitism, we must immediately take very strong steps to combat it. That’s why we want to make this announcement to recognize the contribution of the Jewish community to Nebraska and the nation.”

Israel’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Oded Forer sent a letter of appreciation to Governor Ricketts for his adoption of the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism and the deepening ties between Israel and Nebraska.

The letter read in the event, in which he commended the “important gesture to recognize the deep and substantial contributions Jewish Americans have made to Nebraska and the United States in particular.”

The program was sponsored by the Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM), a leading proponent of the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism, which has adopted and supported it in the US and around the world.

Other partners include the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, the American Jewish Committee (AJC), the Hadassah Women’s Zionist Organization of America, the Weitzman National Museum of American Jewish History, and the Louis D. Brandeis Center included.

Representatives from each of the eight synagogues of Nebraska, and the Jewish Federation of Omaha were also in attendance.

“With the support of the State of Nebraska, most US states have now adopted the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism, which is now a turning point for its success, meaning that only a few states have yet to do so,” said Elan. Carr said. , a board member of CAM, and former US Special Envoy for Monitoring and Combating Anti-Semitic Sentiment.

“While resistance to the IHRA definition remains, it is a minority voice and is increasingly being drowned out in the US and around the world by decision-makers and opinion-makers who are putting their authority behind it and leaving little room for adversary. Their hatred and intolerance.”

Nebraska Holocaust survivor and philanthropist Milton “Milt” Kleinberg said, “I’m Jewish and I’ve always loved the free state of Nebraska. I could move my business to Texas, but Nebraska is home, and our governor is a friend.” .

Other speakers included Israel’s Consul General in the Midwest Yinnam Cohen and Nebraska Secretary of State Robert Evans.

Nearly 900 organizations worldwide have adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism since 2016, which includes 37 nations, such as the United States, Canada, Germany, the United Kingdom, Australia and France, according to a report. Accordingly it was issued. year by CAM.

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