Several Holocaust survivors joined New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind, New York State Senator Simcha Felder, and New York State Senator Jesse Hamilton to oppose the Iran nuclear deal on Wednesday, as part of Hikind's ongoing campaign to lobby against the deal in Congress.
The group of survivors chose to voice their concerns in front of Congressman Jerrold Nadler’s office, who represents the largest number of Holocaust survivors in the United States, and who announced support for the Iran deal last week.
Speakers included Shirley Feinbuch, who survived Auschwitz, and Jack Ratz, who survived the Gottendorf death camp.
The survivors spoke about their experiences of going through “hell,” connecting it to Iran’s repeated threats to annihilate the United States and Israel and the regime’s rampant Holocaust denial and anti-Semitism, and how they hoped the administration would not make the same mistakes.
Their message was particularly relevant in light of remarks this week by an Iranian official who said that the Iran deal would not lead the regime to moderate its stance on Israel's existence and that “Israel should be annihilated.”
The group voiced disappointment and outrage at their representative in Congress, Nadler, for his support of the deal, but hoped Nadler would change his mind.
In addition to the speakers, Holocaust survivors at the event included Rose Friedman (Auschwitz survivor), Breiny Ginhorn (Auschwitz survivor), Ruth Solomon (Auschwitz survivor), Lenke Keller (Auschwitz survivor), and Leibish Daskal (Budapest forest).
“The proposed deal with Iran is a serious predicament for the Jewish people," Hikind stated. "Holocaust survivors in particular know all too well the tyranny of dictators."
"Given their experiences in life, they are here to speak out about how concerned they are about this horrible deal," he continued. "When someone publicly calls for destruction and death to Jews, you take them seriously. Leaders of Iran have repeatedly sworn to annihilate Israel and they even sponsor official state conferences denying the Holocaust.”
Hamilton stated, “Iran Nuclear Deal supporters focus on the early years. Well, what happens when Iran receives generous upfront sanctions relief? When tens of billions of dollars go to terrorist groups like Hamas and Hezbollah or to groups who have plotted attacks in Buenos Aires, Berlin, Jerusalem, and Washington DC? And further down the line, this deal allows restrictions to phase out over time."
"I stand with my community in demanding a better deal: prevent sponsorship of terror, stop Iran menacing us and our allies, and don’t rely on trusting words from Iran to assure our security," he added.