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.”