Marking Kristallnacht, UN chief vows to fight anti-Semitism

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres pledged on Thursday to increase his organization’s efforts to fight anti-Semitism.

“Since nobody is born to hate, intolerance can be prevented and unlearned,” he told a gathering at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York City, marking the 81st anniversary of the Kristallnacht – the violent attack in Germany and Austria against Jews and their homes, synagogues, and businesses in 1938.

Scores of Jewish homes, businesses and synagogues were destroyed during “the Night of Broken Glass” on Nov. 9-10, 1938.

Israeli Ambassador Danny Danon and dozens of ambassadors and foreign dignitaries attended the event.

In a speech underlining his continued fight to stamp out anti-Semitism, racism and other forms of hatred, Guterres recognized the need for continued vigilance.

“Decades after the Holocaust, the world’s oldest hatred is still with us,” he remarked, before listing recent incidents across the world targeting Jews, ranging from the vandalizing of Jewish graves and Holocaust memorial, to the mass shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh last year – the worst anti-Semitic attack in United States history.