Israel Brief April 18, 2012: Thousands of events and ceremonies will take place in Israel to Honor the Victims Mark Holocaust Memorial Day

ISRAEL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

Events to Honor the Victims Mark Holocaust Memorial Day

Thousands of events and ceremonies will take place in Israel on Thursday, Holocaust Memorial Day.
Israeli youth at Auschwitz

Israeli youth at Auschwitz
Flash 90

Thousands of events and ceremonies will take place in Israel on Thursday, Holocaust Memorial Day. After a siren sounds at 10 AM – at which time Israelis stand at attention, reflecting on the tragedy of the destruction of European Jewry in the Holocaust – events will be held in schools, synagogues, IDF bases, at Yad Vashem, and many other venues.

The main ceremony at Yad Vashem will take place at 1 PM, while Knesset members will take turns reading out the names of the victims. Youth groups will gather at Yad Vashem for a special ceremony later in the afternoon, and the day will be capped by memorial ceremonies at Yad Mordechai, named for the Warsaw Ghetto hero, and Kibbutz Lochamei Hageta’ot [kibbutz named for Ghetto fighters, ed.],Thursday evening.

In Europe, meanwhile, some 18,000 Jewish youths and adults will participate in the March of the Living, a trek which brings participants from the death camps of Poland and Germany, to Israel, where they will arrive in time for Independence Day next week. Leading the March, among others, are Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau, Tel Aviv’s Chief Rabbi, and Israel Police Commander Yochanan Danino. Among a delegation of police attending the March are a number of officers whose parents are survivors.

Among the student groups attending is one from Turkey. The delegation consists of two members 17 and 18 years old respectively. They asked that their names not be published, given the tense situation in their homeland, but they said that visiting the concentration camps was a very moving experience for them, despite the fact that their families, living in Turkey, did not experience the Holocaust firsthand as did the families of most participants in the March.

Jewish News Brief April 16, 2012: Marking 25 years, March of the Living uniting survivors with liberators in Poland

ISRAEL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

Marking 25 years, March of the Living uniting survivors with liberators in Poland

Source: JTA, 4-16-12

Young Jews entering the gates of Auschwitz-Birkenau Extermination Camp in Poland during the 2010 March of Living. (March of the Living)
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Young Jews entering the gates of Auschwitz-Birkenau Extermination Camp in Poland during the 2010 March of Living. (March of the Living)

YOM HASHOAH

Holocaust survivors have been an integral part of the trip’s program from its inception, but this is the first year that liberators are taking center stage. A ceremony on Wednesday will honor the soldiers, and they will speak to smaller groups of students during the week in Poland.

“The liberators are great people to testify to the world as to what happened,” David Machlis, vice chairman of the march, told JTA. “They provide an incontrovertible and lasting testament to the truth.”

In all, some 10,000 participants from 35 countries, more than 100 Holocaust survivors and the liberators will take part in the march this year. In its 25th year, the March of the Living began as a way to expose young people to the story of the Holocaust as a way to counter Holocaust deniers, according to Machlis.

Participants, mostly high-school students, march from the Auschwitz concentration camp to the Birkenau camp on Holocaust Remembrance Day, which falls this year on April 18. After a few more days visiting concentration camps and memorial sites, the trip moves to Israel, where participants celebrate Israel’s Memorial Day and Independence Day, this year on April 25 and 26….READ MORE

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