The Jewish Question
In a building where Zyklon B gas for the gas chambers was stored by the Nazis, Carmelite nuns built a convent in 1984. The international Jewish community protested in 1985, and in 1987 an agreement was reached between representatives of Western European Jewish organizations and the church in Geneva. The Catholic delegation, including the cardinal of Kraków, Franciszek Macharski, agreed to move the convent to a new interfaith center near but not on the grounds of the concentration camp. The church agreed to build the center in two years, then asked for a six-month extension; but by the summer of 1989, not only had construction not begun, the church had not even acquired land to build on. In protest against this situation, an American rabbi, Avi Weiss, led a small group in protest. They scaled the walls surrounding the convent and staged a sit-in. A group of Polish workers, shouting anti-Semitic slogans, beat the protestors and ejected them from the convent grounds.