Mr. Speaker, I thank the chairman for yielding me time, and I thank the chairman and the ranking member for their comments on this legislation. The bill promotes religious freedom throughout the world.
Mr. Speaker, as has been mentioned, it has been 60 to 70 years since the Jewish community in Europe was decimated by the Holocaust. Now, more than ever, the Jewish community is under assault yet again.
In Europe, anti-Semitic individuals are back like never before. A study commissioned by the German parliament this year found that there were 644 anti-Semitic offenses in the country in 2016 alone.
In countries like Holland, Jewish schools and synagogues need to be protected by special forces because of fear of attack on those schools. And, unfortunately, our country has not been immune.
Jewish community centers across the country have been targets of bomb threats, even recently in Houston, Texas, my hometown, such bomb threats. This past Sunday, a historic synagogue in New York City was attacked and burned down by arsonists.
That is why this bill, the Combating European Anti-Semitism Act, is so important. We must continue to partner with our European friends to ensure that we stamp out the cancer of anti-Semitism.
As a representative of a country founded on religious freedom, we, as Members of Congress, must send a clear message to Jews and non-Jews, from Houston to Amsterdam, that we will not allow the horrors of the Holocaust to repeat themselves in this generation. Mr. Speaker, we must reiterate the commitment the free world made over 60 years ago: Never again. Never again.
And that is just the way it is.