Holocaust Memorial Day

By joe goldberg from Seattle, WA, USA (Half Mast) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
source: CC-BY-SA-2.0 via Wikimedia Commons
Also known as Yom HaShoah in Hebrew, this day is observed in Israel and in local communities throughout the Jewish Diaspora.  It is a secular holiday, separate from the holy days of mourning in the religious calendar of Judaism.

More than 6 million Jews perished in the Holocaust.

For more information:

Jewish Virtual Library

Times of Israel

Vancouver HEC

 

Advertisements

International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Auschwitz Death Camp
source: Diego Delso, Wikimedia Commons, License CC-BY-SA 3.0

In 2005 the United Nations designated January 27 as International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The term “Holocaust” refers to the period in history in which the Nazi regime of Germany murdered over 6 million Jews, as well as millions of other victims, including Roma, homosexuals, people with physical and mental disabilities, and more. The Nazi persecution of the Jews began in the early 1930’s and reached its most horrific and brutal peak during the period of 1941-1945, as the Nazis adopted as official policy the “Final Solution,” the attempt at completely annihilating the entire Jewish population.

Children selected for extermination
source: wikimedia commons / public domain

 

The Holocaust is not the only example of genocide in human history. What makes the Holocaust stand out amongst the long and plentiful list of human atrocities and evil?  Germany was amongst the most powerful nations of the world and a leader in science, technology, medicine and engineering.  The German contributions to art, music, literature and philosophy put German culture at the heart of what we would call Western Civilization. And yet this supposedly civilized people turned their great achievements and progress towards planning and carrying out ruthless genocidal murder with scientific and economic efficiency.

For more on the Holocaust:

Yad Veshem

US Holocaust Memorial Museum

Jewish Virtual Library

Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre

Holocaust Memorial Day

By joe goldberg from Seattle, WA, USA (Half Mast) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
source: CC-BY-SA-2.0 via Wikimedia Commons
Also known as Yom HaShoah in Hebrew, this day is observed in Israel and in local communities throughout the Jewish Diaspora.  It is a secular holiday, separate from the holy days of mourning in the religious calendar of Judaism.

More than 6 million Jews perished in the Holocaust.

For more information:

Jewish Virtual Library

Times of Israel

Vancouver HEC

 

Holocaust Memorial Day

By joe goldberg from Seattle, WA, USA (Half Mast) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
source: CC-BY-SA-2.0 via Wikimedia Commons
Also known as Yom HaShoah in Hebrew, this day is observed in Israel and in local communities throughout the Jewish Diaspora.  It is a secular holiday, separate from the holy days of mourning in the religious calendar of Judaism.

More than 6 million Jews perished in the Holocaust.

For more information:

Jewish Virtual Library

Times of Israel

Vancouver HEC

 

Raoul Wallenberg Day

From the Government of Canada: “During World War II, millions of Jews perished in the Holocaust. Some, however, were saved by the efforts of courageous groups and individuals, such as Raoul Wallenberg who is credited with saving more than 100,000 Hungarian Jews.” (Read more.)  Raoul Wallenberg disappeared on January 17, 1945.  In 2001 the Canadian Government designated January 17 to be Raoul Wallenberg Day in Canada.

source: wikimedia commons / public domain

For more on Wallenberg:

Nuremberg Trials

On this day in 1945 the Nuremberg Trials began in post-war Germany. An American led “International Military Tribunal” began a series of trials for Germans accused of crimes against humanity, primarily in connection to the Nazi Holocaust of the Jews, Roma, homosexuals and other groups.  The various trials stretched out over nearly a year. While public sympathy was very much in favour of both the rationale for and the outcome of the trials, there have been major criticisms against the legal jurisdiction of the tribunal. While we are right in wanting justice for the crimes of the Nazis, how legitimate were the Nuremberg Trials? Moreover, were the Allies themselves guilty of some of the same crimes for which the Germans were tried?

source: Wikimedia Commons

For more on these questions, check out some of the following:

As an interesting side note, today student from our school are joining other students from around the province for a Symposium on the Holocaust at UBC, presented by the Holocaust Education Centre.

Kristallnacht

For all the amazing accomplishments and advances of humanity, we are still capable of terrible barbarism and unspeakable evil.  One of the most terrible and shameful chapters of our history is marked by the remembrance of Kristallnacht, the “Night of Broken Glass.” These events of November 9 and 10, 1938, in Germany, are seen to be the symbolic start of the Holocaust, the systematic persecution and genocide of the Jews (and other groups) by the Nazis.

source: WikimediaCommons / Creative Commons

From Yad Veshem :

On November 9,  1938, the Nazis unleashed a series of riots against the Jews in Germany and  Austria. In the space of a few hours, thousands of synagogues and Jewish  businesses and homes were damaged or destroyed. For the first time, tens of  thousands of Jews were sent to concentration camps simply because they were  Jewish.  This event came to be called Kristallnacht (“Night of the  Broken Glass”) for the shattered store windowpanes that carpeted German  streets. Kristallnacht was an essential turning point in Nazi Germany’s persecution of Jews, and a significant event in Holocaust history.
For more about Kristallnacht, click here. For educational resources click here.

Visit the full site of Yad Veshem for more information on the Holocaust. Other online sources include: