Sunday, September 23, 2007

Holocaust groups urge EU not to fund anti-Semitic station | Jerusalem Post

from the Jerusalem Post:

The head of the Center of Organizations of Holocaust Survivors in Israel is urging the European Union not to pour tens of millions of dollars into a Polish ultra-nationalist Catholic radio station which is infamous for its anti-Semitic programming.

[The letters "SS" (standing for Schutzstaffel, the security and paramilitary organization of the Nazi Party) smeared on a gravestone at a Jewish cemetery in Czestochowa, Poland ]

The 15.5 million Euros in EU funding would be allocated towards the expansion of a journalism school for the controversial Polish radio station Radio Maryja.

"The head of the radio station and the radio station itself is known throughout Europe as a symbol of the increasing wave of global anti-Semitism," head of the umbrella organization of Holocaust survivors in Israel Noah Flug,wrote in a letter to the President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso.

"Any financial support for such sources will only strengthen anti-Semitism and the lack of tolerance," he wrote.

The prominent Polish daily Gazeta Wyborcza reported last month that the school was on a list of 350 projects that Warsaw had recommended to receive EU funding.

A European Union spokesman in Tel Aviv had no immediate comment.

Last month, a European Commission spokeswoman said that no decision had been taken on the issue to date.

The move comes just weeks after Israel and American Jewish groups urged the Polish Government to act following the most recent anti-Semitic remarks by the powerful head of the radio station, Father Tadeusz Rydzyk.

Rydzyk reportedly accused the Jews of greed in a potential government compensation deal on confiscated property, and denounced Polish President Lech Kaczynski as a "fraudster who is in the pockets of the Jewish lobby."

The conservative Polish government, which is supported by the radio station, has not acted against the radio director to date.

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