Press Release ● Human and Civil Rights
For Immediate Release: 
November 9, 2018
Contact Info: 
Annaliese Davis 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement marking November 9-10 as the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht, also known as “the Night of Broken Glass:"

“Eighty years ago, the pogrom known as Kristallnacht, or ‘Night of Broken Glass,’ terrorized the Jewish communities of Germany, Austria, and occupied parts of the modern-day Czech Republic.  After years of increasing persecution under the Nazi regime’s racial laws, Jewish schools, businesses, and houses of worship were damaged and destroyed in a furious assault by far-right mobs.  Meanwhile, state and local authorities stood by and watched as the fire burned and as dozens of innocent people were murdered.  Kristallnacht, a significant waypoint on the path from the Nazis’ rise to power to their perpetration of the Shoah, stands today as a symbol of how racism and far-right hatreds can erode the rule of law and the exercise of justice. 

“In our day, as we hear echoes of fascism and Nazism in global and domestic politics, we must look to Kristallnacht as a warning from history.  Just last month, a gunman murdered eleven Jewish worshippers at a synagogue in Pittsburgh.  This comes amid a rising spate of anti-Semitic attacks around the country and overseas.  Americans must come together to reject racism and anti-Semitism and work together to eradicate hatred from our society.  We must ensure that our leaders are working to condemn hate, that those in positions of authority and influence do not equivocate or condone violence or intolerance.  Every American – including every elected official in our country – has a responsibility to play a constructive role in ensuring that an event like Kristallnacht and the genocide it initiated never again occur.”