Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission Condemns ISIS in Letter to Obama
In an effort to halt the persecution of religious and ethnic minorities by the Islamic State group, the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission (THGC) gathered signatures on a letter sent to President Obama. At the THGC October 2015 quarterly meeting, Chairman Peter Berkowitz of Houston shared his recent experience meeting with concerned Yazidi community leaders, and charged his fellow commissioners to support development of a letter requesting President Obama to take action.
“Many Yazidis, Christians, and Muslims have been forced to flee their homes. Some have found refuge here in Texas, and in recent weeks, our agency’s leadership has met with and learned their plight from several of them,” the letter states. “We stand united to raise awareness of the ongoing persecution of these people, lest the free world fail to halt it. We have watched this terrible mistake too often in our lifetimes, and cannot in good conscience choose to stand by.”
The letter calls attention to the Islamic State group’s record of torture and mass murder in its treatment of Yazidis, Christians, and Muslims in the Middle East, and asks President Obama to take steps to protect these groups. In addition to the 15 Commissioners, more than 40 prominent Texans have added their signatures, representing educational, civic, and religious institutions.
Established in 2009, the THCG seeks to educate and engage the public in matters pertaining to the Holocaust and other genocides. It stands behind the principle that Texans have a moral responsibility to stand up for groups that continue to be targeted for atrocities.