Of the more than 100 countries that have formally endorsed convening the special UN General Assembly session on the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, not one is Arab. The Holocaust, although overwhelmingly a European story, was an Arab story, too. Algeria and Morocco were the site of the first slave labor camps liberated by Allied troops.
To many Arabs, discussing the Holocaust is radioactive because they fear it lends justification to Israel and its policies. But even that deep political dispute cannot obscure the fact that Arabs have a relationship with Jews that predates the establishment of Israel, a complex history that provides sources of pride as well as reasons for shame.