Anti-Semitic graffiti was found sprayed on the walls of Israel’s holocaust museum, Yad Vashem, in Jerusalem Monday morning, officials said.
The museum said the 10 separate pieces of graffiti were sprayed on the entrance and mainly across the Warsaw Ghetto Square monument, as well as on the Deportees Memorial. The slogans were spray-painted in black large letters.
“This is a difficult and painful day for me and the staff of Yad Vashem,” said museum chairman Avner Shalev, in a statement. “I am shocked and stunned by this callous expression of burning hatred against Zionists and Zionism.”
Some of the graffiti said, “The Zionists wanted the Holocaust!” and “If Hitler hadn’t existed, the Zionists would have invented him.”
Vandals also wrote: “Jews, wake up! The evil cynical regime does not protect us, [it] only endangers us,” according to the Times of Israel.
Shalev said the graffiti “crosses a red line” and deemed it “an offense to the memory of the Holocaust.”
The museum head said he informed the head of Israel’s Education Ministry, while police are currently investigating the incident.
Shalev said the clear Hebrew handwriting and the constant criticisms against Zionism could mean the perpetrators are haredi Orthodox Jewish extremists. Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin blamed it on “Godless extremists,” according to the Times.
The extremist Neturei Karta sect told Ynet News that the group was not responsible, nor does it condone such acts of vandalism.
“None of our people were involved in this,” Mordechai Hirsch, a leader in the sect, said. “But I can’t comment on something I haven’t seen for myself.”
Yad Vashem was established in 1953 as a museum and research center to commemorate the Holocaust and the 6 million Jews who died.
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