Newsletter No. 21, May 2011
Holocaust Remembrance Day 2011
The central ceremony marking Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Day was held at Yad Vashem on May 1, 2011 in the presence of the President of the State of Israel, the Prime Minister, government ministers, dignitaries, Holocaust survivors and their families, and the general public. A complete broadcast of the ceremony is now available for viewing and a special mini-site has been uploaded which includes the torchlighter stories and films. Special events continued throughout the following day. Immediately following a 2-minute long siren that brought the country to a standstill was the wreath-laying ceremony in Warsaw Ghetto Square. This year, for the first time, it was possible to submit names online to be read in the "Unto Every Person there is a Name" recitation in the Hall of Remembrance. Hundreds of names were submitted to be read in the moving commemorative event.
Gathering the Fragments
Yad Vashem is calling on all people in Israel who have original items in their possession from the Holocaust years to donate them to Yad Vashem. Yad Vashem, in partnership with the Prime Minister’s Office National Heritage Project, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Pensioner Affairs, has embarked on a new campaign: “Gathering the Fragments.” The campaign, which seeks to gather documents, diaries, photos, artifacts and works of art, endeavors not only to collect the items, but to discover their individual stories and preserve them for future generations. The inclusion, preservation and cataloging of these materials will enable researchers, scholars, students and the general public to learn more about the fate of Jewish individuals and communities. For additional information write: email@example.com
Spotlight on the Web
More than 5,000 Take Part in Online Event
During the week of Holocaust Remembrance, an unprecedented 5,389 participants joined Yad Vashem for a unique virtual online event - “The Yad Vashem I Remember Wall." The online event was an opportunity to personally remember one of the six million by being matched with a name from the Central Database of Shoah Victims’ Names. Yad Vashem's first such event took place in January for International Holocaust Remembrance Day. Hundreds of overwhelmingly positive comments posted on the page indicate the power of this interactive commemorative experience. Yad Vashem's Facebook members currently number more than 31,000 individuals who are using this social media forum to remember the Holocaust and commemorate its victims.
Eichmann Trial on the Web
Two new YouTube Channels have been recently launched containing the film track of the Eichmann Trial held by the Israel State Archives. The 50th anniversary of the opening of the Eichmann trial was on April 11, 2011. The channels - one with the original soundtrack, enhanced for better sound, in Hebrew, German and Yiddish, and the other with simultaneous English translation - are the result of intense cooperation between Yad Vashem and the Israel State Archives, in collaboration with Google. In addition to the films, the channels contain supplementary information about the trial, as well as explanations of the sessions in Hebrew and in English. Over 400 hours of video, available in high resolution – about one terabyte of data – have been uploaded to the English and Hebrew channels.
A special mini-site with academic articles, photos, video lectures and other resources related to the Eichmann trial is now online. Included is a unique film, A Living Record, which brings the voices of three participants in the trial: Gabriel Bach, a member of the prosecution team, Mickey Gilad (Michael Goldman) an investigative officer in Bureau 06, and Israel Gutman, a witness at the trial. Documentary footage from the trial provides the historical background to their unique and moving experiences and perspectives.
New Exhibition and Research Symposia Mark 50 Years Since the Eichmann Trial
Marking 50 years since the Eichmann trial, an exhibition on the trial, opened in the Yad Vashem auditorium foyer on April 11, 2011.The exhibition, "With Me Here Are Six Million Accusers," focuses on visual aspects of the event: documents, photographs, newspaper clippings, artifacts and works of art. On display is original footage from the filming of the trial, and various additional media productions, to allow visitors to get a sense of the trial as it occurred in the historic Beit Ha’am. The exhibition's chapters present Eichmann as the Nazi officer turned hangman, Eichmann the fugitive criminal hiding in Argentina, and then - the core of the exhibition - Eichmann the accused in the glass booth in Jerusalem. The design element of the exhibition stresses the "court case nature" of its chapters: the case files of Eichmann’s responsibility, of the Mossad’s tracking of Eichmann, of Police Unit 06, of the court case and of the trial coverage. The last chapter of the exhibition sheds light on the impact and insights of the trial, as a result of which Israeli society and the international community were transformed with regard to their attitude towards the survivors and the Shoah.
Research Symposium Attracts Hundreds
The Symposium, “The Imprint of the Eichmann Trial: A Reassessment 50 Years Later” was held by Yad Vashem’s International Institute for Holocaust Research, together with Yad Ben Zvi, featuring renowned historians and academics, authors and researchers, judges, journalists, Holocaust survivors and prosecutors from the trial, and Adv. Tami Raveh the daughter of prosecutor Gideon Hausner took place on April 11, 2011. The Symposium included four sessions devoted to different topics: historical aspects of the trial; the effect of the trial on legal thought; Holocaust survivors and their place in Israeli society; and the influence of the trial on Israeli culture.
Yad Vashem Magazine
The Spring edition of Yad Vashem's quarterly magazine, Jerusalem, is now available online. In addition to expanded information about Holocaust Remembrance Day events, read the biographies of this year's torchlighters and learn about a special partnership between Yad Vashem and Google. Other interesting articles provide information about the restoration of the film Memories of the Eichmann Trial, and several creative educational endeavors of the International School.
Portugal, Salazar, and the Jews
The racial persecution and condemnation of Jews in Europe during the 1930s occurred in an anti-liberal atmosphere, disillusioned with democracy and yearning for strong leadership. Portugal, which witnessed everything from the privileged position of a neutral country, was not immune to the moral and ethical challenge raised by the events in Europe, and its relationship with the persecuted Jews was ambivalent. Based on a wide range documentation, this pioneering historical research rigorously examines the main protagonists in this drama: Salazar, the dictator of Portugal; his police (PVDE); the Portuguese political and social elite; the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; the leaders of the Jewish community of Lisbon; the refugees; and more. Now only $38 (130 NIS) including airmail.
To order contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
A Journey of Survival
Born in 1930, Asher Bar-Nir and his parents were moved into the ghetto of Nyiregyháza, Hungary when the Nazis occupied their small town in the spring of 1944. The young teenager soon found himself alone in Auschwitz and then in the Jaworznow forced labor camp. Throughout his ordeals, he remained naive and trusting of human nature. Liberated in March 1945, after having survived a death march, Asher made the long, arduous return to Hungary, where he joined the Zionist youth movement Hashomer Hatzair with the goal of reaching Eretz Yisrael. Finally, in May 1948, after being part of the Exodus, Asher reached “home.” Now only $16 (55 NIS) including airmail. To order contact: email@example.com
Some of the articles in the international press that brought worldwide coverage to Yad Vashem activities and events are highlighted here:
Israeli Cousins United by Holocaust Database, in The Boston Globe
Survivors Give up Precious Relics on Ynet.com
Gathering the Fragments, in The Jerusalem Post
Yad Vashem puts Eichmann Trial on YouTube, in The Montreal Gazette
Ukraine Gives Yad Vashem Access to Holocaust-Era Archives, in the Forward
With Your Support
Pass on the Torch of Remembrance, Donate to educate.
During the Holocaust, one-third of the Jewish people were murdered by the Nazis and their collaborators just because they were Jews. Even today, when the survivors are still with us, we bear witness to the disturbing phenomena of Holocaust denial and antisemitism. Yad Vashem is entrusted with the mission of giving voice to the victims and disseminating their legacies to the younger generations, so that they may learn the facts, causes and consequences of the Shoah. Only through your support and partnership is Yad Vashem able to continue the cutting edge work needed to meet the challenges for Holocaust commemoration and education in the 21st Century. Your donation to Yad Vashem today helps ensure that the torch of Holocaust remembrance is passed on to future generations.
Yad Vashem’s activities and programs would not be possible without the support of our many donors and friends. We welcomes the ongoing partnership and visits from our friends and supporters around the world.
Upcoming Event: Kaddish
Music and Liberetto by Lawrence Siegel
A unique concert, featuring the stirring words of Holocaust survivors, performed by the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, soloists and choirs and conducted by Gil Shohat. The concert will take place on 8 September 2011, at Warsaw Ghetto Square, Yad Vashem, Mount of Remembrance, Jerusalem. Entrance is by invitation only.
We wish to thank the generous supporters of the concert.