Survey finds many New Yorkers lacking basic Holocaust knowledge


In this Friday, June 17, 2011 file photo the sun lights the concrete slabs of the Holocaust Memorial in central Berlin, Germany. One of Germany’s richest families, the Reimann family, which owns Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Pret A Manger, Peet’s Coffee and other famous international brands is giving millions to support Holocaust survivors. The family has established the Alfred Landecker Foundation in Germany to oversee the efforts, named after a German Jew who was killed by the Nazis either in Sobibor or at the Belzec Nazi death camp. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, file)

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Nearly two-thirds of U.S. residents under 40 don’t know that six million Jewish people were killed in the Holocaust, a new survey found. It’s one of the most comprehensive studies of American understanding of the Holocaust ever—”U.S. Millennial Holocaust Knowledge and Awareness Survey“—and it reveals that many American young adults are ignorant about basic details of the Holocaust.

Researchers interviewed 11,000 adults nationwide—200 in each state—aged 18 to 39. New York was among the states with the lowest Holocaust knowledge.

The state-by-state analysis showed that 19% of Millennial and Gen Z New Yorkers believe that Jews caused the Holocaust, while 62% blame Adolf Hitler. Overall, 58% of the respondents in New York could not name one concentration camp, death camp, or ghetto.

About two-thirds of respondents in New York said they’ve seen Nazi symbols in-person in their communities or on social media.

In an interview with NBC News, analysts expressed the urgency of educating U.S. residents on the genocide that killed nearly two of every three European Jews by 1945. Accurate education on the subject is especially important as the number of Holocaust survivors dwindles.

“The most important lesson is that we can’t lose any more time,” said Greg Schneider, executive vice president of the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, which commissioned the study. “If we let these trends continue for another generation, the crucial lessons from this terrible part of history could be lost.”

Take a look at the statewide data breakdown.

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