Messages of support
The Holocaust is one of the blots, one of the most tragic chapters in modern history... Amnesia has no bearing on my perception of the Holocaust, or on that of my people. In fact, we perceive it as a wound to the collective memory, which we have inscribed in one of the most painful chapters of human history, in the Pantheon of the Universal Heritage of Mankind... If I recall the past today, it is precisely because your initiative, Aladdin, has set itself the goal of finally saying to the rest of the world what the resistance to Nazism was in a country like mine, Arabs and Muslims who said no to Nazi barbarism and wicked laws of the Vichy government.
King Mohammed VI of Morocco
Among the tragedies of history stands the Holocaust, never equalled in its scope, its cruelty and the science and technology that were used for extermination. These make the Holocaust a real affront to reason. The Holocaust symbolizes absolute evil… Here lie all the merits of the Aladdin Project, for it emphasizes culture, education and information as the means of countering Holocaust denial. To remember, to reflect, to educate and to act, it is through this battle of ideas and actions that Holocaust denial theses will be vanquished…
Abdulaye Wade, President of Senegal
The strength of the Aladdin Project is in its resolve to reach out to those who have been handicapped by prejudices, ignorance, or simply a lack of accessible information; to expose the lies and clear up the misunderstandings; to open up a new horizon for our common future. I share, unreservedly, the fundamental intuition of the Aladdin Project.
Nicolas Sarkozy, President of France
“In this day of Holocaust denial and prejudices, the Aladdin Project shines like a guiding light to a path of better understanding, intercultural dialogue and tolerance that will create a better and brighter tomorrow for all… It is truly uplifting to witness the response of prestigious members of the Muslim world to Project Aladdin, denoting the common aspiration to build bridges of cooperation and mutual respect between Muslims and Jews, in a quest to live together in peace and dignity.”
Shimon Peres, President of the State of Israel
By providing factual information on the Holocaust and free access to firsthand accounts from such moving sources as Anne Frank’s Diary—in languages spoken in the Muslim world—the Aladdin Project has the potential to play a vital role in countering denial with facts… Equally important, its focus on encouraging an intercultural dialogue based on mutual knowledge and mutual respect will help ensure that the 21st century is defined not by our differences, but by our common humanity. That is the key to a peaceful future.
Bill Clinton, former President of the United States
I join the Aladdin Project with enthusiasm, because it counts on the knowledge and capacity of both communities to come together, to understand and accept one another. Aladdin is a call for dialogue and mutual understanding. The misunderstanding between Jews and Muslims is not inscribed in their history, or religion, or culture. Tomorrow when we ask a Muslim child, “Who is a Jew?” he will no longer respond with caricatures and stereotypes. Tomorrow when we ask a Jewish child, “Who is a Muslim?” he will no longer respond with caricatures and stereotypes.
Jacques Chirac, former President of France
I believe that only the tireless transmission of the memory of what happened can help us prevent further disasters. Because what happened was a failure on a universal scale: men in an organized state apparatus planned calmly and deliberately to gas other men, women, children, babies, the elderly... That is why I give my unqualified support to the Aladdin initiative, which aims to pass on the memory of the Holocaust in a spirit of mutual respect and dialogue.
Ely Ould Mohamed Vall, former President of Mauritania
Time and again we hear voices from around the globe speaking about the ‘clash of civilizations’. We must decidedly oppose such opinions, for such talk does nothing but fuel extremism… We must continue on the path of tolerance and mutual respect for each other’s cultural and religious beliefs. I hope that the Aladdin Project can contribute to this process and wish it the best of success in the future.
Gerhard Schroeder, former Chancellor of Germany
“I would like to thank all those who helped to organize this conference and those who have come here for the launch of the Aladdin Project… I hope that through this project, we could all be reconciled…. I hope all conflicts between our peoples come to an end… I regard this project as the extension of the basic fight that we, survivors, have been engaged in ever since we re-turned from the camps, the fight against denial and trivialization of the Holocaust.”
Mrs. Simone Veil, Hon. President of FMS, member of the French Academy
UNESCO, for its part, fully supports the Aladdin initiative, hoping that it would durably enhance the instruments of peace and tolerance education... I am pleased to note that the Aladdin Project intends to pursue this educational endeavour through multilingual Internet sites, translations, conferences, summer schools, and scientific and academic cooperation.
Then-UNESCO Director General Koichiro Matsuura
The Aladdin Project is a necessary initiative. I find the work that the Aladdin Project is undertaking very valuable: translation of major books to enhance understanding of other cultures and promotion of intercultural dialogue and exchange. These are useful steps, for we know that extremisms only thrive on ignorance. I am greatly interested in the Aladdin Project and offer it my full support. Aladdin is a first-class contribution to the indispensable endeavour to push back Holocaust denial, anti-Semitism and all forms of racism.
Benita Ferrero-Waldner, then-European Union Commissioner for External Affairs