Deutsch wants to open Community to Non-Jews

Source: Der Standard, February 23, 2012

Vienna  - “We want to open the doors”: Oskar Deutsch, who was elected to succeed Ariel Muzicant as president of the Jewish Community (IKG) this past Tuesday, wants to open the community for others. “We want to present ourselves as part of Austrian society” he said Wednesday. An open house day, planned for May 13, 2012, as well as a Facebook presence and the use of new media are to demonstrate a “vibrant Jewish life” in Vienna. In order to keep things this way, Deutsch also wants to tackle the problem of emigration of Austrian Jews. “We can only counter this through a big enough community where everyone can find a partner”.

One thing the new president assures is a continuation of Muzicant policies towards the Austrian Freedom Party (FPO) and point out statements like FPO chairman Strache’s “new Jews” comment. Standing up against right-wing extremism, anti-Semitism, and hatred of foreigners will also be necessary in the future, he suspects. “And I would be happy if such appearances would not exist, that would be a perfect world”, says the president. But: “we don’t live in a perfect world, we are realists.” (APA, Der Standard, Printausgabe, 23.2. 2012).