Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Holocaust Survivor Saved Students Lives

Professor Liviu Librescu of Virginia Tech, a survivor of the Holocaust as well as an escapee from communist Romania, was killed in the mass-murder of students at the school on Monday. He apparently blockaded the door of the classroom and allowed many students to jump from the windows and save themselves. He paid for this act of herosim with his life.

Ironically, his death came on the Israeli celebration of Holocaust Rememberance Day. He is survived by a son in Tel Aviv.

Link: Holocaust Survivor saved student lives

Sunday, April 15, 2007

One Third of Israeli Youth Fear Second Holocaust

Israel marked the 2007 anniversary of Holocaust Rememberance Day. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert spoke about the neccesity to be ever-vigilant in the face of growing anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial. Meanwhile, a poll taken on the eve of Holocaust remeberance day suggested that a third of Israeli youth feared a second Holocaust.

Olmert: Not everyone has learned Holocaust lesson

On Sunday evening Israel's leadership gathered at Yad Vashem to mark the commencement of Holocaust Memorial Day.

This year, there is a special emphasis on the few Holocaust survivors still living. Echoing this, is the traditional emphasis of the importance of the Jewish nation to fight against racism, and survive.

Olmert, a keynote speaker at the ceremony, warned of those who "had not yet learned the lesson the Holocaust. Many gather at respectable academic institutions, with hatred of Israel blinding them."

"Most of the world population is aware of the Holocaust and aware of the evil agenda of Holocaust deniers," he said, "they withhold from the Jewish people the right to a sovereign state. They are the first to find an excuse for any atrocity committed against Israeli civilians and the loudest in censuring defensive operations of the State of Israel."

Link: YNET

Friday, March 23, 2007

Getting back to work

I have not had the time to work on this blog over the past year. I have so many projects going, so many websites and writing projects, it sometimes seems I have no idea how I will ever get everything I want done. I should have much more time, though, in the coming months, to bring this website up to speed, and make some new additions to it. Hopefully, once a major project i am now working on is complete, I will be able to devote more time here.

So be on the lookout, and Never Forget.


Never Again

This is easily the best video I have ever found on You Tube. Although I realise some may not like it, I think that its message is pretty clear, inspiring, and to the point. The music is by a rap group, a genre of music I normally can't stand. However, I can't think of another musical genre that could so succinctly tell so much of the relevant information concerning the Holocaust in the space of a three minute song.

When I realised what they had sampled for the chorus, I was somewhat stunned. The accompanying video is by an Israeli girl.

Link: Never Again

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Poland Honors Holocaust Rescuer

from Yahoo News:

"WARSAW, Poland - A 97-year-old woman credited with saving 2,500 Jewish children during the Holocaust was honored by parliament Wednesday at a ceremony during which Poland's president said she deserves the Nobel Peace Prize.


Monday, July 24, 2006

The Present War in Israel

anti-Semitic crowd launches virulent anti-Israel protest in Boston.
The current situation in the Middle East has not left me much time or heart to post here recently. Just keeping up with everything that has been written about it is difficult, and I have many other projects that I work on continuously. I do wish to state , however, that I am particularly appalled at the wide-spread fervent anti-Semitism coming from the so-called "progressive" Left. They should keep in mind that Israel, a tiny country surrounded by hostile neighbors, is reacting the only way that it can in the face of a steady onslaught from Hizbollah, and other fanatical Islamic factions. The rhetoric, on the internet alone, has become particularly vile and vicious, and the so-called "anti-war" crowd is, clearly, only opposed to war if it is being waged in defense of a democratic country instead of a theocratic, Islamic dictatorship. This is hypocrisy of the first order.

All decent Americans should feel it is their duty to stand with and for Israel at this critical , crucial time. Remember, my fellow americans: Hezbollah is OUR enemy too, as well as Israel's. Hezbollah is a terrorist organization that has been responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Americans. They are no different than al-Quaida, and to think that Americans in Boston this weekend turned out to protest with signs that read "I support Hezbollah", and "Victory for Hezbollah", is truly shocking and dismaying.

I will be posting new photos of the Holocaust very shortly, as well as penning some short essays on the subject. Until then, keep Israel and her people (and all the innocent people of the war-torn Middle East region) in your prayers.



Friday, May 12, 2006

Students Holocaust History Project Makes International News

A student project that began by collecting paperclips to memorialize the millions lost during the Nazi genocide against European Jews, has garnered international attention, and inspired a documentary film.



Students confront Holocaust

By Erin Elaine Mosely
Montgomery Advertiser

WHITWELL, TENN -- One clip at a time.

That's how students at Whitwell Middle School in Whitwell, Tenn., started collecting paperclips for a project that became an international phenomenon.

Students collected paperclips to represent every Jewish life lost during the Holocaust. The school eventually collected more than 29 million of them. The project evolved into a permanent student-run memorial to Holocaust victims called the Children's Holocaust Memorial.

Filmmakers turned their project into an award-winning documentary.

On Monday, about 80 sixth-graders and adults from Wetumpka Intermediate School traveled to Tennessee to tour the memorial at Whitwell Middle. Students in some sixth-grade classes have been studying the Whitwell student project in their own classrooms.

Journalists Peter Schroeder and Dagmar Schroeder Hildebrand secured an authentic German railcar used to transport Jews to Nazi death camps. The car now houses the Holocaust Memorial and 11 million paperclips -- one for every life lost during the Holocaust.

"I think it's really interesting they have some of the (death) camp stuff," said 11-year-old Carter Young.

As the popularity of the Tennessee students' project grew, people began to send personal items in addition to paperclips. Some sent letters, others sent pictures and someone even sent a War World II military medal.

Whitwell teachers Sandra Roberts and David Smith started the project in 1998.

"This project is so powerful," Roberts said. "It has a life of its own. It draws you in every day. Every day I learn something new."

Rebecca Guthrie, 12, took pictures in the railcar as Whitwell eighth-graders Faith Vaughn and Amber Holloway, both 14, gave visitors facts about the memorial and the Holocaust.

"I think it's a great way to remember all the people who died in the Holocaust," Rebecca said. "It was just amazing. It was just a great experience. I think they should do it every year."

The memorial includes the railcar, 18 butterflies for the 18th letter of the Hebrew alphabet, chai -- which means life -- and a monument with two children playing with a butterfly atop a base with a paperclip.

"Sometimes we have survivors come in and they tell us stories of how they escaped the rail car," Faith said. "It's really, really sad. I break down and cry, even though I don't like crying in public."

Tyler Wright, 13, Tevin Hobson, 12, and Mieah Johnson, 12, touched and pored over some of the 11 million paper clips stored in the rail car.

"It was just interesting learning about Jews and Germans," Tyler said. "The train was interesting. It's a real freight car they got from Germany."

Austen Parker, 12, said he was stunned by "the memorial, how many paperclips they got in there and how many people they got in those cattle cars."

Mieah agreed.

"I thought it was neat how many they had in there and how they got a (cattle car) back from Germany and took the time to do that," she said.

Hannah Miller,12, described the memorial as honorable, and Lauren Davis, 11, said Holocaust victims would appreciate something in their honor if they lived to see it.

Aspen Coleman, and Kelsey Blazer, both 12, jotted down their thoughts after looking at pictures of Jewish life during the Holocaust.

Lynn Ritvo, former principal at Wetumpka Intermediate School, organized and planned the trip, and the Jewish Federation donated money toward the trip, said assistant principal Rashawn Causey.

"The major thing is about tolerance and diversity," said Wetumpka Intermediate teacher Jo Ann Wilson. "In Wetumpka, we have the opportunity to see diversity, but maybe not Jewish. They'll look back and go, 'Wow! I realize what they were trying to do.'"

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

March of the Living

Some 10,000 Jews from all over the world finished making their way from Auschwitz to Birkenau in this year's March of the Living. Ceremonies at Birkenau, led by Nobel laureate Shimon Peres, began at 4 p.m. Israel time (3 p.m. in Poland.)

At the end of the march, participants sang the Hatikva, Israel's national anthem.

Before the march's start, hundreds of youths carrying Israeli flags spent the morning wandering among the wooden barracks and barbed wire of the sprawling Birkenau camp, and visited the museum housed at the smaller Auschwitz camp nearby.

Among those taking part was Diana Katz, a 23-year-old history teacher from Jerusalem, whose grandmother, Lubia Tanenbaum, survived the camp after arriving as a 14-year-old from Hungary.

"I am here with my son to show the evil people in the world that we are here, that we are alive, that we want to live and we want future generations to live," Katz said as she pushed the baby carriage holding her three-month old son, Joseph. "We will not forget, and we have won."

Meanwhile, in Israel, a two-minute siren marked the start of a nationwide day of commemoration for Holocaust victims.

Names were read at Yad Vashem and during the Knesset memorial ceremony "Every Person Has a Name," in the presence of Interim Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and other dignitaries.

Holocaust Remembrance Day began Monday evening with a state ceremony at Yad Vashem, Israel's Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority.

The hour-long event, which was broadcast live on television and radio, was attended by Olmert, President Moshe Katsav, and dozens of dignitaries and ambassadors from around the world.

The theme of this year's ceremony - coming at a time when Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has called the Holocaust a myth - is "The Human Spirit in the Shadow of Death."

From: Jerusalem Post

"The World Must Not Ignore Calls for the Destruction of the State of Israel"

The world must not ignore current calls for the destruction of the state of Israel, Israeli President Moshe Katsav said Monday at the opening ceremony for the country's annual memorial day for the 6 million Jewish victims of the Nazi Holocaust.

Without mentioning Iran by name, Katsav said, "I call on the Western world not to stand silently in the face of the nations that are trying to acquire nuclear weapons and preach for the destruction of the state of Israel."

Iran's president has called for Israel to be wiped off the face of the earth, and Iran is widely believed to be trying to manufacture atomic bombs.

The ceremony, at the Yad Vashem memorial in Jerusalem, included dramatic readings and musical presentations.

In a brief address, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Israel would always carry the memory of the murder of millions of Jews.

Speaking from a podium, an honor guard of Israeli soldiers standing at parade rest next to him, Olmert said, "Israel has the ability to defend itself, but it calls on the civilized world to guard the light and the liberty, to defend the values of justice and the dignity of man."

Though six decades have passed, the Holocaust continues to be a central part of Israel's culture. About 280,000 survivors of the Holocaust live in Israel today, according to researchers.

On Tuesday, air raid sirens will sound midmorning, signaling a two-minute period of silence in memory of the victims, when cars stop on the streets and drivers stand respectfully next to them. At the Israeli parliament and other locations around the country, volunteers will read the names of the victims, a way of dealing with the concept of the overwhelming number of people who were put to death.

Restaurants, movie theaters and other places of entertainment were to be closed throughout the day.

The ceremony Monday evening began with lowering the Israeli flag to half staff in a sign of mourning.

Hundreds of people sat quietly in the outdoor plaza of Yad Vashem on a cool, windy Jerusalem night, groups of soldiers in uniform next to Holocaust survivors and their families, and a few tourists listening to translations of the Hebrew proceedings on earphone receivers.

Six Holocaust survivors briefly told their stories and lit ceremonial torches in memory of the victims.

"In another generation, no survivors will be left as witnesses to the horror of the Holocaust, only the timeless records," Katsav said, appealing for renewed efforts to ensure the memory. "We must see to it that every generation feels that it was rescued from the fires of the Holocaust," he said, paraphrasing a central concept of the just-finished Jewish holiday of Passover, which marks the exodus of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt.