23 July 2008
United States Senator Barack Obama visited Yad Vashem on July 23, 2008. He was accompanied by Chairman of the Yad Vashem Directorate Avner Shalev. During his tour of the Holocaust History Museum, Senator Obama was deeply moved by the photographs of the liberation of Buchenwald Concentration Camp, mentioning that his great uncle was among the American soldiers who liberated the camp. In addition to his visit in the Holocaust History Museum and the Hall of Names, Senator Obama participated in a wreath-laying ceremony in the Hall of Remembrance, and visited the Children's Memorial. Standing in Janusz Korzcak Square, Senator Obama wrote in the Visitors' Book:
I am grateful to Yad Vashem and all of those responsible for this remarkable institution. At a time of great peril and promise, war and strife, we are blessed to have such a powerful reminder of man's potential for great evil, but also our capacity to rise up from tragedy and remake our world. Let our children come here, and know this history, so that they can add their voices to proclaim 'never again'. And may we remember those who perished, not only as victims, but also as individuals who hoped and loved and dreamed like us, and who have become symbols of the human spirit.