The National Council of Young Israel (NCYI) yesterday praised FBI Director James B. Comey for remarks he recently made at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Annual Dinner in Washington, DC. The NCYI also defended Director Comey after his comments at the event drew a sharp rebuke from Polish officials and others.
In its praise of the FBI Director, the NCYI noted his visit to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, his strong words condemning the atrocities that occurred during World War II, and his mandate that every new FBI special agent and Intelligence Analyst is required to go to the Museum.
“I believe that the Holocaust is the most significant event in human history…it was the most horrific display in world history of inhumanity – one that simply defies words and challenges meaning,” Director Comey said while delivering his remarks.
“The National Council of Young Israel applauds FBI Director Comey for his compelling and powerful denunciation of the unspeakable evil that was perpetrated during the Holocaust,” said NCYI President Farley Weiss. “Director Comey’s decision to make the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum an integral part of his agents’ initiation into the Federal Bureau of Investigation so they could better comprehend the depths to which abhorrent people intent on spreading evil can sink, speaks volumes about his commitment to eradicating bigotry and eliminating hate.”
While delivering his address at the Museum, the FBI Director ignited somewhat of a controversy when he said, “In their minds, the murderers and accomplices of Germany, and Poland, and Hungary, and so many, many other places didn’t so something evil. They convinced themselves it was the right thing to do, the thing they had to do.”
Although Director Comey was merely attempting to illustrate that human beings are unfortunately capable of engaging in horrific and evil acts, his remarks generated a great deal of criticism, as some people construed his remarks to mean that he was equating people in Poland and Hungary to members of the Nazi regime in Germany.
“The principles and ideas that Director Comey conveyed during his address sent a clear message of precisely how strongly he feels about what occurred during the Holocaust,” said Weiss. “Rather than seeking to parse the verbiage that the FBI Director used while aptly noting the complicit role that some civilians in certain European countries played during the Holocaust and condemning him for his remarks, people should instead be commending Director Comey for taking such a strong and public stand against evil and tyranny.”