THE great-grandson of a Holocaust survivor says he was “saddened, hurt and shocked” to find a swastika scrawled over a Star of David on an ATM in the Melbourne suburb of Balaclava earlier this week.
The vandalism occurred in between two Westpac machines on Carlisle Street, in the heart of Melbourne’s Jewish community, on Tuesday.
The 17-year-old schoolboy who spotted the graffiti took photographs and immediately reported the incident to the Anti-Defamation Commission (ADC).
Noting that the daubing took place on a street “which is very much part of the Jewish neighbourhood”, the teenager said, “Seventy-five years since the Holocaust, it is tragic to see that such hatred continues to exist in the world today.
“It is of great concern in 2020.”
ADC chairman Dvir Abramovich said, “We deplore these ugly actions, carried out by home-grown white-supremacists, for what they are: a repulsive assault on our democratic system and on our core values.
“It shocks the conscience that in 2020 members of the Jewish community are still victimised and harassed in such a way.”
Abramovich, who has been campaigning for state and territory governments to ban the public display of Nazi symbols, added, “We hope that vandals are identified and are brought to justice.
“We also call on all religious and political leaders to strongly denounce this outrageous incident and to declare in one voice that such reprehensible conduct will never be tolerated in our nation.”