Holocaust Survivors Blast $20 Stipend

By LAURIE COPANS
Associated Press Writer

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JERUSALEM – An Israeli government offer of a new $20 monthly stipend for Holocaust survivors provoked outrage Tuesday, with survivors charging the meager allowance will do nothing to make up for years of neglect of the 240,000 Israelis who lived through Nazi horrors.

Survivors have long claimed that European countries treat them far better than Israel, where many elderly survivors live in poverty. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s announcement of the new allowance did nothing to change that impression. One survivor called the offer “absurd and insulting.”

Six million Jews were killed by the Nazis during World War II. Hundreds of thousands who survived concentration camps came to Israel after the war. Many suffered physical or psychological damage from the torture and deprivation they suffered at the hands of the Nazis.

Six decades after the war ended, the remaining survivors are elderly, and many have been unable to provide for themselves in their final years, suffering chronic shortages of money for medical and psychological treatment and in some cases even food.

Israel TV showed video of an 85-year-old survivor who said the only meat he could afford was chicken necks.

Olmert presented his program as a solution.

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