February 23, 2017
70 Holocaust Scholars Urge Halting Aid to Countries That Host Sudan Leader

WASHINGTON - Seventy leading Holocaust and genocide scholars have signed a letter urging the Obama administration to cut aid to countries that host visits by Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, who has been indicted by the International Criminal Court for his role in the Darfur genocide.

The House Appropriations Committee recently adopted an amendment by Virginia congressman Frank Wolf to suspend non-humanitarian U.S. aid to countries that welcome Bashir. But there have been reports that the State Department is trying to block the bill before it becomes law.

The 70 scholars directed their letter of protest to Obama adviser Dr. Samantha Power, who heads the recently-established Atrocities Prevention Board. The letter was organized by the David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies, in Washington, D.C.,

"It is important for the United States to send a clear message to the international community that Bashir, the world's most notorious perpetrator of genocide, deserves to be treated as a pariah," the scholars wrote.

They pointed out that Dr. Power, in her Pulitzer Prize winning book, 'A Problem from Hell': America and the Age of Genocide, urged the U.S. government to use "economic sanctions" and pressure on its allies to combat genocide. The Wolf Amendment "does exactly that," the 65 scholars argued. They urged Power and the Board "to do everything possible to ensure that the Wolf Amendment is not diluted or undermined during the upcoming House-Senate negotiations over the final wording of the foreign aid appropriations legislation."

Dr. Rafael Medoff, director of the Wyman Institute, said: "Halting aid to those who host Bashir would be the first concrete step the U.S. has taken to isolate the Butcher of Darfur and pave the way for his arrest. If the Obama administration is serious about punishing perpetrators of genocide, it should support the Wolf Amendment."

The signatories include Rabbi Dr. Irving 'Yitz' Greenberg, former chairman of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; award-winning author Dr. Daniel Goldhagen; Prof. Rev. John Pawlikowski, who chairs the U.S. Holocaust Museum's Subcommittee on Church Relations; Prof. Deborah Dwork of Clark University, founder of the first graduate program in Holocaust and genocide studies in the United States; and Prof. David S. Wyman, author of The Abandonment of the Jews.

The text of the letter, and the complete list of signatories, follows below.

* * *

 

The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies

June 14, 2012

Dr. Samantha Power, Chair
Atrocities Prevention Board
Washington, DC

Dear Dr. Power,

As scholars who have written or taught about the Holocaust or other genocides, we applaud the adoption by the House Appropriations Committee of Rep. Frank Wolf's amendment to suspend non-humanitarian U.S. aid to countries that host visits by Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, who has been indicted by the International Criminal Court for his central role in the Darfur genocide.

It is important for the United States to send a clear message to the international community that Bashir, the world's most notorious perpetrator of genocide, deserves to be treated as a pariah.

In your Pulitzer Prize winning book, 'A Problem from Hell': America and the Age of Genocide, you wrote that in the fight against genocide, America's choice is not "doing nothing or unilaterally sending in the marines." You argued that there are many steps short of war that should be taken, such as "economic sanctions" and "encouraging U.S. allies...to step up their commitments and capacities." (pp. 513-514)

The Wolf Amendment does exactly that--it uses economic sanctions to encourage America's allies to step up their commitments to fight against perpetrators of genocide.

We urge the Atrocities Prevention Board to do everything possible to ensure that the Wolf Amendment is not diluted or undermined during the upcoming House-Senate negotiations over the final wording of the foreign aid appropriations legislation.

Cordially,

Prof. Irving Abella
Shiff Chair of Jewish History
York University

Prof. Marie L. Baird
Duquesne University

Prof. Karyn Ball
University of Alberta

Prof. Alan L. Berger
Director, Center for the Study of Values and Violence after Auschwitz
Florida Atlantic University

Prof. Daniel Burston
Chair, Psychology Department
Duquesne University

Prof. Israel W. Charny
Director, Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide
Editor in Chief, Encyclopedia of Genocide

Prof. Esther Cuerda
Universidad Rey Juan Carlos (Spain)

Prof. Christine Cusick
Director of the Honors Program
Seton Hill University

Prof. Abram De Swaan
University of Amsterdam

Dr. Gemma Del Ducca, S.C.
Co-Director, National Catholic Center for Holocaust Education
Seton Hall University

Prof. Deborah Dwork
Founding Director, Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies
Clark University

Prof. Helen Fein
Chair of the Board, Institute for the Study of Genocide
Founding President (emer.), International Association of Genocide Scholars

Louise Freilich
Director, Face to Face Holocaust Education Program
Congregation Sha'arey Tikvah, Beachwood, OH

Prof. Mark Frisch
Duquesne University

Prof. Zev Garber
Chair (emer.), Jewish Studies and Philosophy
Los Angeles Valley College

Dr. Edyta Gawron
Jagiellonian University (Krakow, Poland)

Prof. Jay Geller
Vanderbilt Divinity School

Dr. Danuel Jonah Goldhagen
Author of 'Worse Than War'

Rabbi Dr. David Golinkin
President, Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies

Prof. Gershon Greenberg
American University

Rabbi Dr. Irving 'Yitz' Greenberg
Past Chair, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council (2000-2002)

Dr. Beth Griech-Polelle
Bowling Green State University

Dr. Alex Grobman
America-Israel Friendship League

Dr. Elvira U. Groezinger
University of Potsdam & Freie Universitaet Berlin (ret.)

Prof. Herb Hirsch
Co-Editor, Genocide Studies & Prevention
Virginia Commonwealth University

Prof. Steven Leonard Jacobs
The University of Alabama

Prof. Aristotle Kallis
Lancaster University (UK)

Dr. Rebecca Kook
Ben Gurion University

Dr. Neil J. Kressel
William Patterson University

Prof. Vincent A. Lapomarda, S.J., S.T.L.
Coordinator, Hiatt Holocaust Collection
College of the Holy Cross

Prof. Fred Lazin
Ben Gurion University (emer.)

Prof. Laurel Leff
Northeastern University

Prof. Paul A. Levine
Uppsala University

Prof. Marcia Sachs Littell
Richard Stockton College of New Jersey

Prof. Kenneth L. Marcus
President, Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law

Dr. Rafael Medoff
The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies

Rabbi Dr. Henoch Millen
Columbus, OH

Prof. Rochelle L. Millen
Wittenberg University

Prof. Paul Miller
McDaniel College & University of Birmingham (UK)

Tali Nates
Director, Johannesburg Holocaust & Genocide Centre

Prof. Stephen H. Norwood
University of Oklahoma

Prof. Zsuzsanna Ozsvath
Director, Holocaust Studies Program
University of Texas-Dallas

Prof. John T. Pawlikowski, OSM
Catholic Theological Union
Chair, Subcommittee on Church Relations of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council

Prof. Susan Lee Pentlin
Central Missouri State University

Prof. Paolo Pezzino
Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei, Rome

Prof. Michael Phayer
Marquette University (emer.)

Dr. Eunice G. Pollack
University of North Texas

Seymour D. Reich
Co-chair (emer.), International Catholic-Jewish Historical Commission

Prof. Elihu D. Richter
Director, Program on Genocide Prevention
Hebrew University-Hadassah School of Medicine and Public Health

Prof. Sheri P. Rosenberg
Director, Program in Holocaust and Human Rights Studies
Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University

Prof. Thane Rosenbaum
Director, Forum on Law, Culture & Society
Fordham University School of Law

Prof. John K. Roth
Founding Director, Center for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide & Human Rights
Claremont McKenna College (emer.)

Prof. Suzanne D. Rutland, OAM
University of Sydney

Prof. Robert Moses Shapiro
Brooklyn College, CUNY

Dr. Baila Round Shargel
Manhattanville College

Prof. Shimon Shetreet
Hebrew University

Dr. Nurit Shnabel
Tel Aviv University

Prof. Robert Skloot
University of Wisconsin (emer.)

Prof. Melvin Small
Wayne State University (emer.)

Prof. Leon Stein
Roosevelt University (emer.)

Prof. Oren B. Stier
Director, Judaic Studies Program
Florida International University

Prof. Peter Tarjan
University of Miami (emer.)

Dr. Mary Louise Trivison, S.N.D.
Co-founder (ret.), Tolerance Resource Center
Notre Dame College

Prof. Kenneth A. Waltzer
Director, Jewish Studies Program
Michigan State University

Dr. Racelle R. Weiman
Senior Director, Global Education
The Dialogue Institute - Temple University

Prof. Paul J. Weindling
Oxford Brookes University

Prof. Sonja Schoepf Wentling
Concordia College

Prof. Linda M. Woolf
Webster University
President (emer.), Society for the Study of Peace, Conflict, and Violence

Prof. David S. Wyman
University of Massachusetts - Amherst (emer.)

Prof. Randall C. Zachman
University of Notre Dame

Prof. John C. Zimmerman
University of Nevada - Las Vegas

Dr. Bat-Ami Zucker
Bar Ilan University

(Institutions listed for identification purposes only.)


(June 2012 | Return to top)


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