VIDEO: Holocaust Survivors Don’t Accept Apology From Rabbi Yosef Mizrachi Over Comments Made About 6 Million Kedosim HY’D



YWN spoke with many Holocaust survivors about the recent controversy caused after a video of Rabbi Yosef Mizrachi went viral where he stated that the number of Jews murdered in the Holocaust was closer to 1 million.

YWN published an op-ed last Thursday calling on the Rabbi to apologize for his outrageous remarks.

On Sunday, Rabbi Mizrachi issued an apology to YWN via email.

One well-known survivor, Dr. Moshe Katz, agreed to go on camera and deliver a message to Rabbi Mizrachi.

Dr. Moshe Katz is a noted author and lecturer about the holocaust. He is the author of the well-received holocaust book, “Nine Out of Ten.” He has lectured at hundreds of Yeshivos, shuls and schools about the holocaust.

Dr. Katz was also one of the founding members of several Yeshivos and schools including Yeshiva of Southshore, Yeshivas Sh’or Yoshiv, Yeshiva Darchei Torah, and Torah Academy for Girls. He is both a pillar of the Torah community as well as a pillar of the survivors of the holocaust. Below is his reaction to the unfortunate misinformation regarding the holocaust that was promoted by Rabbi Mizrachi.

(Dov Gefen – YWN)


  1. Any speaker, presenter, teacher, Rav loses his COMPLETE TRUST when he is totally OFF in accuracy regarding the most simplest facts of history.

    I have heard a speaker state that the 6 DAY WAR never happened and approximately 1/2 the audience stood up and left in the middle of his speech. I guess all you can do when the speaker is on video is SHUT THE VIDEO, call the station, approach the speaker and COMPLAIN.

    Mizrachi, it will take a long time for you to recoup your status, if ever!!!

  2. The only thing that is ‘unfortunate’ about this whole fiasco is that the Jewish news outlets found it necessary to publicize a lecture that was given in a private setting and blow it out of proportion. The man apologized, what more can he do, why drag this out further????????
    Why prevent the ultimate redemption by promoting mre & more sinat chinam…

  3. I think this whole thing has gone way too far. Why is everyone ranting and raving about what someone said, a personal opinion, a miscalculated number. Do you also rant and rave at you neighbor or friend that says this and this hechsher is no good?! Do you what he just did?! He said all the people eating these hechsheirim is eating treif! Do you rant at every random opinion. Its time to grow up! Why is everyone taking it so personal all he said is that there where many yidden counted for that were not halachacly yidden and threw some numbers. OK the numbers where off but that does not change the fact of whatever the real numbers are, and it does not take away from all the yidden that where killed hy”d, it was just a wrong number on the actual amount, is this a reason to cause this ruckus. He doesn”t need anyone’s forgiveness, if anything everyone that said not nice thing about him needs his forgiveness.

  4. Why cause machlokes and ill-feelings? This is not what we vist YWN for. If we want strive, there are unfortunately plenty of blogs to go to. Please keep YWN real yeshivish.

  5. Thank you to YWN for having on Dr. Katz.

    As someone who took Dr. Katz’s holocaust course in Yeshiva of Far Rockaway High School is was amazing to see that he still carries the same passion today to continue to teach the future generations of klal yisroel the history of the holocaust, the amazing stories of hasgacha and nissim, as well as how he was able to rebuild communities upon arriving in America.

  6. I don’t know why, but I get the feeling that all those standing up for this rabbi are Sephardic and haven’t had to much connection to the Holocaust. Therefore they don’t seem to relate to the level of accusations. I believe that this lashback is evidence to the deep nerve that this rabbi has touched and people should understand that before just responding. This is a very emotional topic for those brought up by post holocaust generation and should be treated very delicately. I will not get involves in the details, just please, let’s move on. We’re not getting anywhere and I don’t think anyone accepted the apology and there are those that think that he’s to holy to apologize. Just enough of this topic.

  7. Ok here is the breakdown,
    Did he make a mistake? Yes
    Did he apologize? Yes
    Did he says Kefira? No
    Did he said some kind of off colored joke? No
    Does he spend every waking hour of his day bringing yidden closer to Hashem? Absolutely
    He is a true Eved Hashem and I cant seen to understand what you have against him? You seem to have some kind of agenda. I’m surprised and extremely disappointing with YWN who always held themselves above all the loshon Hora and Motzei Shem Ra that goes on the Internet.
    YWN you fell and your human so please now its your turn to Issue a public apology to Rabbi Mizrachi.

  8. on another site he claims the video was edited by his enemies. unfortunately he is his worst enemy and now he exposed himself. 7. he is far from a chacham.

  9. This whole thing is being blown way out of proportion. Rav Mizrachi is an honest well-meaning person and apologized for his comments. He also said that his comments were taken out of context and the shiur in fact was edited and he said maybe 5 million, maybe 3 maybe one million. So everyone’s gotta relax, take it easy and if you listen to some of the Rov’s shiurim on you will see that he is doing great things for klal yisroel.

  10. We really are too obsessed with the holocaust. It has taken on a religion of its own. Yes, mourn what we lost, take the lessons and move on. Hashem did this to us because we deserved it. Why did we deserve it? We didn’t follow what he wanted. Simple. Let’s start behaving so we don’t deserve another one.

  11. “YWN spoke with many Holocaust survivors about the recent controversy caused after a video went viral…”
    Who asked you to go around?
    I agree, YWN just stepped over the line and proved that they have an agenda.

  12. I think the problem here is that it is not just someone saying something in the heat of the moment and then regretting it.
    Here we have a lecturer stepping on one of the most sensitive issues we have. I am late fifties and have been brought up since as far as I can remember with the knowledge of 6 million . Any change in that represents a major change in our collective psyche . Even worse is the fact that the chief form of antisemitism today is holocaust denial. Any breach in our position on this gives opening to our enemies ch”
    v . This is a serious error and YWN is right to fight it so that it doesn’t happen again .

  13. Shaya Junior

    Public speaking is a major ‘achrayus’ particularly nowadays when it is recorded, replayed and shared through the internet. Words are daggers, if this didn’t matter or upset you,, Kol Hakavod,, accuracy is honesty as in HONEST REPORTING.

    This is not ranting or a random opinion of a holocaust denier or anti-Semite, rather a request for a correction of a major statement..

    Yes there are holocaust survivors & descendants living who deserve the upmost sensitivity and respect. Not even sure the expression “Spiritual Holocaust” is appropriate – it can be renamed “Spiritual Crisis/War/Disaster” – figure out what to say while being respectful and sensitive.

  14. Thank you YWN for giving voice to our Daas Zkanim! We daven for them 3x daily “ועל זקני עמך בית ישראל״”
    We should hear the words of our survivors and remember them well! The trials and tribulations they experienced are beyond description, just like the amount of Yidden massacred by German efficiency is beyond comprehension. It is so dangerous for any Jew to even remotely hint to any miscalculation of the churban they went through. To those who claim it is ok to exaggerate for any reason please provide some proof of that. Especially considering the mass chilul Hashem here caused by his exaggerated comments.

  15. Mr. Holocaust survivor, I cannot comprehend what you went through. However, we are living a spiritual holocaust in America. Secondly, is Iran threating to destroy Israel and America, not a potential holocaust?

  16. I’m very touched and pained how all this got so ugly. We are all humans and all make mistakes. Rabbi Mizrachi apologized, what more do you want? Imagine if Hashem closes the doors on us and won’t accept our apologies, then chas v’shalom we won’t be able to survive. Hashem who is the greatest, accepts our apologies, then why shouldn’t we be forgiving. This world is run on Mida kineged mida. Those who don’t accept apology and don’t forgive, chas vshalom will be treated the same way by Hashem. We have enough tragedies plaguing our nation, let’s not add more sins by refusing to accept the apology from a tzadik

  17. I finally took the time to read watch the clip with Rabbi Mizrachi. Another point that I noticed he mentioned which has no base in truth is that assimilation started or grew because of Herzl’s “Alt-Neuland” and his theory about abolishing anti-Semitism through assimilation. That is TOTAL nonesense!!! I do not know where he learns his history. But assimilation in Europe was influenced through the haskala, through the emancipation of the Jews etc. wayyyy before Herzl existed.
    so there…

  18. 1. The Torah community’s sites such as YW and Matzav are performing a valuable public service which is appreciated by all web users of our community.
    However at the same time the owners of these sites need to be very cognizant of the fact that they carry a tremendous responsibility. They have the valuable ability to create a Kiddush Hashem. However, great amounts of discretion and a g’fil for the kovod of Hashem must be ever present. Otherwise the opposite can occur chas vesholom. Items that will cause a lack of kovod shomayim should not be posted. Shev VeAl Taseh Odif!
    2. As a son of holocaust survivors. I understand very well that people are upset, and hurt. A raw nerve was touched. Rabbi Mizrachi inadvertently made an egregious factual error. However, it was a statement made in the heat of the moment in an attempt to drive home a vital point. He feels very strongly about assimilation and we all should.Yes he made a boo boo. I am sure he feels TERRIBLE about it. He has said that he is sorry and corrected his error. I am sure he has had lots of sleepless nights and angst about this, yisurim mimarkim. Hashem forgives all. We need to emulate Hashem and forgive his indiscretion. He is the first to admit the gravity of his error. Let’s move on. One must also consider that someone of Sefardic background who has no relatives who went through the slaughter can not possibly be as sensitive and as informed as those who are children of those who lived through the horrors. Ano domeh shemiya le’reya!
    Rabbi Mizrachi is mekarev tons of Yiddden its time to recognize his many accomplishments. In a time of extreme Sinas Yosroel, it is imperative that we love all Yidden unconditionally and show our less committed brethren the beauty of Hashem and his Torah and hope for the day that all will recognize the King Of Kings. Positive results will ensue from kind and patient words.
    Thank You

  19. With so much hatred and animosity between Jews, how can we possibly expect Mashiach to come.

    This is such a shame, disgrace and Chillul Hashem on all of you how have such heavy hearts on another Jew and want to see his downfall. This is not Torah, this does not bring the Shechina, This brings kitrug on kali yisrael!

    I am further surprised that a site like YW can post and spread Loshon Hora so easily and transgress the Torah prohibition “Do not place a stumbling block before your fellow man”.

    All I can say I’d Hashem Yerachem Alien!

  20. The man is a charlatan. he spouts opinions on things no one should even approach. On another occasion,he besmirches tens of thousands-maybe hundreds of thousands-of ehrliche jeiwhs women who went to their death stripped of their clothing because of….lack of tzniyus??? Does this man even know the people , “jereim ushliemim in their hundreds of thousand” who were murdered in their millions? Does he even realize what a terrible chilul hashem he is making by his intemperate comments?? His apology was not even an apology, just a proforma email! He should get down on his knees and go ask “mechilah” from every living Holocaust survivor and he should go to every “kever” of these kedoshim that he can find and prostrate himself and ask mechilah. Feh!

  21. Rabbi Misrachi probably did not have any family members that perished in the Holocaust therefore is not pained by it. Didn’t he think for a minute that there will be an outrage the Yidishe community? After all these years, so much has been written and spoken about, he should have added more to the numbers. We children of Holocaust survivors suffered as well…

  22. Its not a matter of forgiveness…If you want to forgive go ahead.
    Its a matter of sitting idly by while someone who holds themselves out as an authority on a Torah and Kiruv is “educating” the uninitiated with blatantly false information. Information which is inflammatory and is fodder for anti semites. If your Doctor is negligent and makes mistakes you may forgive him but would you allow yourself to let it go on??..This is not the first ridiculous comment he has made. We can forgive but its not a license to continue holding yourself out as an educator and being the first taste of orthodoxy that many people encounter. This is not a matter of hate or speaking bad its a matter of protecting newly interested souls from having a warped ideology as their first taste of Jewish Orthodoxy.


  24. To bklynmom

    You missed my point. what exactly is insensitive about his comment? What real difference does it make what number of people … it does not diminish the severity of the suffering in any way, he did not point his finger at someone and say you are not halachakly jewish, how did he hurt someone? (This is like kindergarten argument about how many toy cars I have.) people are busy with numbers to make ourselves into bigger nebachs to make it a bigger tragedy. I”m not coming to diminish it just saying that fighting or more ugly fighting over numbers is childish. grow up! why should someone that went through it care exactly what the numbers where, does it effect what he went through? it doesn”t say that he suffered any more or less than he did.
    To Yitzchok2

    All my grandparents are survivors and one even wrote a book.

    Just wondering how many of you ranters drop even one tear for the kedoshim (tisha b’av …)? or is this just an opportunity to bash people. Do you really care?

  25. PLEASE LET US STOP THIS ATTACK. I am from survivors. I appreciate the sensitivity to a comment on youtube that maybe less than a million Jews (real Jews) were killed. The enemies of the Jews, who themselves want to make a holocaust, say the Jews exaggerate the numbers. Now there may be another youtube video to add to their fodder. And of course many many Ashkenazim are VERY SENSTIVE, as many lost many or all their family members in this Horrific Tortuous Vast Massacre in Europe. And while there was assimilation, in some it was more and in other lands it was much less. In those days it was European Jews that looked at American Jews as in danger of assimilation. At the same time it was – especially in these times – a sign of strength that Rabbi Mizrahi Immediately Aplogized. I appreciate the survivors senstitivity of the trivialization of the Holocaust as fewer survivors are left. We need to remember. We also need to remember the great heroism of the survivors who after losing so much Rebuilt Jewish Families and Life and Judaism. They are our Heroes and Role Models.
    Lets not be like when people were saying He’s Ost Yid or He’s a Poylisher or he’s a Galicianer. Let us all Ashkenazim and Desfardim Love Each Other United. As the saying goes lets just say …Ich Bin a Poshiter YID

  26. #24 Hertzl idea was assimilation. didn’t say there was no assimilation before

    Most people are up and about, not because of numbers, its the message they don’t like. ‘tzorve d’rabbonon d’lo Sanai anshay moose mishim d’lo mochechay b’mile d’shmatay’ Kesubos last pereg

  27. Shaya junior: You are probably about eighteen.and have no clue what your grandparents’ generation went through. And, let me assure you, that generation and my generation shed many a tear for the kedoshim and not only on tishe be’av. That man does not deserve to be heard or followed after his insensitive comments about the Holocaust victims, including the women he accused of not being ‘tzonua”. As I said ,he should get down on his knees and ask mechila from all of them.

  28. Shayajunior, if your grandparent is a survivor what you wrote is truly an embarrassment to them. You have no clue the mesiras nefesh and hardships they went through. when someone besmirches our kedoshim we should be offended – comparing our kedoshim to someone who ate a hashgacha you don’t like is chutzpadik. You should be ashamed of yourself and you should ask your grandparents for mechilla.

  29. An apology was definitely in order and I commend the Rabbi for doing so. That being said, working in Kiruv does not in anyway give you Daas Torah. Reb Amnon Yitzchaki who was mikarev many many people, went totaaly down the drain when he started giving his own Day’os. Reb Uri Zohar never tried to give his own Day’os. Rabbi Mizrachi needs to understand, that just because he has a lot of yedios and certain kochos, does not make him an authority on haskafa and mesorah. Its a very fine line. – See more at:

  30. Where is the vitriol for people who deny the holocaust daily? where are all the people who suddenly came out of the woodwork to bash rabbi mizrachi, why are you not outside the iraninan embassy or offices of similar groups who completely deny the holocaust? I understand and hear your outrage, but why is it limited to rabbi mizrachi?

  31. As usual, historical or factual truth is unimportant to most of the folks who grace this page with their comments.
    To have made such a ridiculous error means Rabbi Mizrachi must have thought about it and developed it beforehand. This was not an off-the-cuff remark or a slip of the tongue, and those with a concern for truth should not go back to him.
    If indeed, he is such a tzaddik, he is held to a higher standard of responsibility and correctness.
    Chosamo shel HKB”H, especially for someone who takes upon himself the mantle of leadership and public influence.

  32. BenK:
    Unfortunately he absolutely did NOT apologize immediately as you state. He waited until the din became a roaring tempest. And his apology is far from wholehearted and sincere, on the contrary it comes off as patronizing and sanctimonious.
    He blames unnamed enemies who wish to stop his Kiruv efforts!

  33. If you look carefully through these posts the majority either for Rav Mizrachi or against are writing respectfully even when criticisng. The only people who are actually causing the “machlokes” etc are those who are critcising others or YWN. They are not really adding to the reasonable debate which is quite acceptable. When a lecturer or even a Rov gets up and says something which is clearly controversial, he can and does expect to be criticised. If that is done in a respectful way EVEN strongly that is not a problem…. me thinks!

  34. From what I understand about Hilchos Lashon Hara and Rechilus, we are not supposed to believe something negative about a Jew (even if we know it to be true) and Rechilus is basically tattling on someone and spreading around what they did.
    A mistake was made (and publicized for all to see) and an apology was made. So why am I going to a ‘frum news site’ and seeing this becoming even further stoked?
    YWN, I can’t imagine that this is kosher and if you erred and subsequently apologized, I can’t imagine you’d want to read the ongoing saga.
    I thought it was assur to remind someone of a past wrongdoing and to cause strife.
    I don’t believe that their are ‘journalistic exemptions’ to this rule and I think you are making this situation much much worse.

  35. To rabioflublin and yitzchok2

    I said apples and you’re saying oranges. You are speeking out of anger without logic. Not I nor Rabbi mizrachi diminished the suferring and torture of the holocaust, no one said less people died or suffered, its the same suffering and mesiras nefesh whether it was x amount or x amount, he just spoke about their halachik status … And he made mistake and apologized. Why are people taking it so personal, is he saying that they suffered any less?! No one bashmitz the kedoshim, does his comment take away from the kedoshim that perished?! So there where more kedoshim.
    And only a tyrant/dictator would say someone should bow on his knees….
    I hope my grandparents understand this is childish, you don’t need to blow up at the young punk that rolls down his window and yells stupid Jew, rabbi mizrachi didn’t say anything personal insulting to you just disregard it, he even apologized. Let historians fight over it. There is no justification for all the disgusting comments at him

  36. To the one that said only Sephardim are backing him, that is 100% false!
    Myself and many other Sephardim don’t listen to him and don’t allow our spouses children and friends to listen either. This isn’t just about this issue. He has said many things that r questionable. It may be his way of doing Kiruv- by scaring u, with punishments and stuff, but it is so wrong!

  37. #48 What bothers most of these kanoim against Rav Mizrachi is his message about assimilation, not the #’s. Berliner rav , charliehall and the likes are on the borderline (like charliehall is with ‘open’ (sic) orthodox..)so no wonder , oifen ganev brent de hitel’

  38. shimen: Now you are being “motzi shem ra”, a much worse aveirah than loshon horah. For you, to intimidate that any Jew who commented on this fiasco is lax on assimilation is preposterous and slanderous. “efsher brent oif dein kop dos hittel”.
    Shaya junior: I don’t know yosef mizrachi from the next garbage collector, but he has said too many outrageous things for me to respect him in any way. His remarks about the women going to their death because of tznyus is particularly odious, knowing who these women were,mostly “noshim tsidkonyos”. He never apologized for that, because he wasn’t criticized openly. His apology on the Holocaust comments is just window dressing.

  39. It’s so disturbing to see how an innocent tzadik is being attacked. He already apologized, leave him alone. All those who attack him, why don’t you use your energy against the real enemies of Jews? Yeshiva world news please stop this lashon hara. Whoever is behind this, will pay a high price. It looks like there’s some agenda. There’s no toelet from your publication. Yeshiva world news and all those who are behind it, I’m BEGGING you to stop with this ongoing torah prohibition called lashon hara.

  40. There’s no joke a plague of stupidity with this new fad of “write the guy off as evil and terrible forever ” because of something they say that you find offensive. This is dumber than the finals sterling case. Everyone relax why is he now a disgusting person for making a mistake of numbed of people in the holocaust. Even if it was offensive, ok so you never made a mistake in your life? This is beyond ridiculous and should not even be up for discussion.

  41. No Rabbi would talk like this. He needs to be fired and sent back to Israel. His so-called apology was not an apology. Six million Jews were murdered by the Germans and their friends. The overwhelming majority were observed Shabbos, family purity laws and kept strictly kosher. The exception were perhaps 50,000 German Jews who intermarried – the majority left before the war and the Hungarian community. By the way, most of the black-hatter yeshiva community today are grandchildren of mostly assimilated Hungarian Jews who came to Brooklyn, Montreal and Chicago after the war. This Rabbi is a jerk and has in his stupidity, aided Holocaust deniers.

  42. I don’t accept his apology because there’s nothing to apologize for. The point is that what he said the halacha regarding Jews hes hundred percent right. So he wasn’t right on the #’s. But even the 6,000,000 were killed because that demon b’tzuros is named H considered them all Jews. So it doesn’t change anything

  43. #55 Your assertion that most black hatters are children of Hungarian assimilated Jews is thousand fold and more off the wall than Rabbi Mizrachi’s statement. Tell us, which drugs do you take? Which cave do you live in?

  44. #55 ‘Overwhelming….?! Shomrei torah umitzvos were always minority thru out the ages. There was always bet 60- 80% that were neulogen (reform)before the churbin. That’s what plenty zekainim z’l told me , those who were there

  45. Rabbi Mizrachi in his apology, wrote regarding the numbers of precious Jews who were murdered during the Holocaust that his words were taken out of context and that in another place in the same video, he said: “Maybe 5 maybe 3 maybe 1 million. We will never know.” How is this statement any better than the original one he was attacked for? Rather than saying definitively that there were 1,000,000 Jews murdered, he now says it is a possibility that 1,000,000 were murdered! He still cannot admit that 6 million were killed! That is an apology? Read the fine print of his “apology”. His apology falls flat when he tries to “farentfer.” Any apology with a “but” or excuse is not an apology. Furthermore, his so-called “apology” is misdirected. Only the Kedoshim can forgive him, but unfortunately for R’ Mizrachi, they are no more among the living. The least he can do, according to the halacha, is get a total of 10 men for a minyan,at Auschwitz and ask mechilah from the heilige neshomos, Hashem yinkom damam, and hope they accept it. They, and Holocaust survivors, are the only ones to whom he must ask mechilah. Based on some responses from Holocaust survivors, it will be a daunting task.

  46. When correcting, we are taught you must take emotion out of the equation otherwise you are speaking Lashon Harah. So…I went to look for proof behind the number 6 million. To my surprise I did not find solid numbers. I wanted original documents to prove accuracy without manipulation. This should have been easy with IBM punch cards and german accuracy. After reading transcripts and various data sights, I still couldn’t get anything solid. In the end, I was directed to Yad Vashem. They claim they have over 4.5M deaths identified via files and family. BINGO!…I thought.. But as a statistician I began querying the data to cross reference numbers and see the authenticity of what they have captured. To my surprise I could not get straight queries. Search for all last names that begin with “a”, and you also get last names that do not begin with “a”. Search for all last names that begin with the letter “l” and you get 0 results. I couldn’t capture a picture of what data they have. I can’t even tell you how many records are in the database. Once you have that number, then you test to see that the number isn’t made up of spacers or duplicates. But I couldn’t determine any of this. The data could not be mined. If we as a people are willing to persecute a RABBI in public based on a number, you better be darn sure that your number is accurate…and so far, I can’t find anyone or any source that can back up the stated number. All those fighting against Rabbi Mizrachi are actually causing more Jews to look for answers and when they don’t find them…you weaken the trust of the system. Please, someone, direct me to original documents or sources that list the people, how they died, where, (this was all available on punch card) to arrive at the number we hold so strongly – that we are willing to ruin a mans career over and discourage the thousands of followers that just now starting to think Judaism is the religion of righteousness . We have original documents for the Americans who died in WWII (…we have names for Vietnam. To defeat the Naysayer, you must provide evidence that is stronger than theirs. In the end, I could not defeat their argument to discredit the 6 million number with data 🙁 If you can research intellectually, without emotion, and want to, and can hear what arguments disprove the accuracy of the number, this is a worthy read: If you can find me data that holds water…please reply.