JCRC Executive Director Paul Rockower has a new op-ed in EJewish Philanthropy on the ongoing fight against Zyklon B in Arizona:

“Seeing an exhibit chronicling the horrors of the gas chambers of Auschwitz-Birkenau, and the models of the infamous gas chambers, I stumbled upon a cylinder of Zyklon B.

Trying to master my emotions, I shared quietly but forcefully with our guide and surrounding visitors how we at the JCRC, and myself in my own personal capacity, were suing the State of Arizona to prevent the continued usage of this infamous chemical in the state’s execution process.

Now it was his turn to blanche, as he looked shocked that such things still occurred. He recovered from his shock, and he shared that the chemical was used prior to the war as a pesticide. It hadn’t been meant for any connection to humanity – but the Nazis, lacking in their humanity, employed it for the slaughter of Jews and other undesirables for its capacity to exterminate cruelly and barbarously.

I explained to the guide, our group, and other onlookers, that our lawsuit was narrow in nature, not questioning the guilt or innocence of those on death row nor the practice of capital punishment, but simply and directly that we had learned from the horrors of the Holocaust to know that such behavior had no place in a modern society.”