Poland's chief rabbi says Holocaust bill too vague, but necessary

In the midst of a diplomatic storm over a Polish bill banning accusing Poland of crimes committed during the Holocaust, Poland's chief rabbi says the two sides should do more listening and less talking.
Rabbi Michael Schudrich Screenshot from YouTube

Rabbi Michael Schudrich, the chief rabbi of Poland, says the biggest problem regarding the Holocaust bill controversy is that "the two sides are not listening to each other."

"Each side is pressing on the other side's sensitive points without realizing they're doing it," Schudrich said in interview with i24news. "I don't know how the problem is solved. But I do know we have to talk to each other."

Schudrich admitted that the legislation is too vague, a fact that contributed to the current diplomatic crisis between Israel and Poland. "The law was written in an unclear fashion. We need to know exactly what it means," he said. "The basic goal of the law is education… this goal has failed because of the unclear language. People are not being educated, they are being aggravated." He also denounced certain remarks made on the Israeli side in response to the bill. "Some of the things I’ve heard said out of Israel in the last week are also horrifying," he said. "These claims against Poland which simply are not true and clearly not helpful." "The Poles passed the law because they didn’t want people saying falsehoods about their complicity," Schudrich added. "Theoretically the law does not ban the truth, it just bans lies." Addressing the current rift between Israel and Poland, Schudrich said breaking off ties altogether would be unwise for both countries. "We can’t compensate for a mistake by making a bigger mistake," he said.

Click here to JerusalemOnline homepage