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Number of Italian Holocaust deniers rise sharply

The number of Holocaust deniers in Italy has risen to 15,6 percent from 2,7 percent in 2004, research agency Eurispes revealed in its 'Italy 2020 Report' on Thursday.

Published: January 31, 2020, 7:49 am

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    This finding coincides with a rising number of Italians who are disillusioned by immigration. Italians believe there has been a “fracture between the system and the country” the survey showed.
       
    The number of those who “downplay” the events which happened during WW2 known as the Holocaust, has risen from 11,1 percent to 16,1 percent over the same time.
       
    Also, the number of people who agree with the assertion that “Mussolini was a great leader who only committed a few mistakes” has risen to 19,8 percent.
       
    The report further noted that 25 percent of Italians have a negative relationship with migrants.
       
    The notion of giving migrants born on Italian soil citizenship [Ius Soli], is less popular than before: the number was down from 60,3 percent to 50 percent since 2010.
       
    Italians generally find the TV more reliable than social media, Eurispes said and they are concerned about climate change but inconsistent in their response to it.
       
    Eurispes also found that Italians were critical of the government’s universal basic income and sugar tax, as well as now-defunct plans to introduce a flat tax.
       
    Life Senator and Holocaust survivor Liliana Segre told the European Parliament on Wednesday that there were still many Holocaust deniers today. “Still, today, some people do not want to see and still now some people say it is not true,” said Segre, 89.
       
    Segre quoted Holocaust writer Primo Levi, noting “the amazement at the evil of others” and that “no one who was a prisoner [in the death camps] has ever been able to forget”.

    She said some were exploiting anti-Semitism for political ends. “There is always a political moment ripe to bring it out again,” she said.
       
    Anti-semitic and racist slurs in Italy were heard around Monday’s Holocaust Remembrance Day, with episodes in Turin, Mondovi’, Rome and Brescia. The words “die dirty Jew” were found scrawled Monday night outside the home of a woman in Turin.
       
    She has filed a complaint to the local police and it was reported that the DIGOS security police were investigating. The woman, Maria Bigliani, said on Tuesday that she would be leaving the “hurtful” message on the wall however. “For now I’m not going to rub out the message. I want to leave i as evidence of a racist gesture, which should not happen again.
       
    “In my life I have been subjected to stupid and racist remarks, but I’ve always answered back. My mother would have told me to report it to the police, so I did”.
       
    On Monday, Holocaust remembrance day, President Sergio Mattarella said the memory of the Holocaust should be a “constant warning” and that “fascist crimes” should not be taken lightly.
       
    Milan Mayor Beppe Sala put up a sign on his door with the words “Antifa hier” [Antifascists here] in solidarity with a case in Mondovi where Juden hier was written on a door in German.
       
    On Sunday night, intruders drew on the floor of a bar run by an Moroccan woman near Brescia. They left graffiti including an inverted swastika and the inscription “nigger whore” on the floor. The bar has been temporarily closed.

    Surprisingly, no suspects were noted in any of the above-mentioned cases.
       
    Culture can provide an answer to “hate and intolerance”, President Sergio Mattarella declared at the inauguration of the academic year at the University of Sannio on Tuesday. “In reference to the pseudo-culture of hatred and intolerance the answer is here, in this university and other universities,” he said.
       
    “At a time when the world is full of uncertainties that often renew themselves and are now alarming, the response to these distortions lies in culture and the messages that our universities are able to give”.

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