DAILY CATHOLIC MONDAY November 30, 1998 vol. 9, no. 232
NEWS & VIEWS
ISRAEL DEMANDS ACCESS TO ALL POTENTIAL HOLOCAUST RECORDS
JERUSALEM (CWNews.com) - The government of Israel this week demanded that certain Holocaust-era archives be opened up for their research and published a list of the recalcitrant archives.
In a letter from Bobby Brown, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's adviser on Diaspora affairs, to the head of Israel's delegation to an upcoming Washington conference on Holocaust assets, he named a dozen institutions in Europe that "have refused or have been uncooperative in sharing information." The archives named included the Vatican archives, the French National Archives, the files of the British Custodian of Enemy Property, the British MI5 intelligence agency, and the central state archives and Prague Jewish Museum in the Czech Republic.
"We appeal to each institution listed to open their files so that we may learn why civilized society failed in its basic commitment to ensure the safety, lives, liberty and property of our people," the letter said. Many of the institutions immediately rejected the demands, saying they have already been adequately forthcoming.
"(MI5) is reviewing its World War II archive, but to the
best of our knowledge there is nothing on MI5 files that is
relevant to the Holocaust," a Home Office spokesman in
London said, speaking on condition of anonymity. Philippe
Delaval, head of the French National Archives, said he was
"astonished" the archive was accused of restricting access,
especially since it recently welcomed a delegation from the
Holocaust Museum in Washington. Israeli officials said,
however, that the archive would not allow documents to be
copied or taken out of the country. The Vatican has
consistently said that it has made as much of the archive
available as possible without violating the sanctity of
documents relating to sacramental matters.
Articles provided through Catholic World News Service.
NEWS & VIEWS