A class for educators of the entire world in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem

On the June 22nd , 2006, at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, within the setting of the ”Senior Educators Program” of the Melton Centre, Darío E.Bialer, member of the International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation, made a presentation dedicated to Jewish educators in the whole world, from the United States to Russia, Hungary, France, England, Australia, Argentina and Chile. During this class, Bialer tackled the relation between the Jewish identity and the Latin American culture, how immigration impacted on the formation of Argentine society and the relationship that existed between the Jewish community and the Argentine government in the 20th. century. In reference to this last item, what really stands out is the regulation created in 1938 known as Circular Nº 11 by which the Argentine authorities prohibited their ambassadors in Europe to hand out visas to Jews who wanted to escape from the Nazis on the eve of the Second World War.

This issue caused surprise and astonishment amidst the participants who, at the same time, emphasized the civic courage of those, like the Wallenberg Foundation that had dedicated all its efforts to have this circular abolished in 2005. All those present agreed responsible actions were needed, so as to be able to change unjust and unequal situations which are still repeated in Latin America.

Translation: María Pensavalle