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International holocaust remembrance day

Posted January. 29, 2018 08:32,   

Updated January. 29, 2018 08:53


Nazi Germany committed a crime against humanity during World War II. Nearly six million Jews were murdered and seven out of 10 Jews in Europe lost their lives. The film Schindler's List depicted a story of a German businessman who saved Jews, but there were more heroes who stood against Nazi.

Irena Sendler was a Polish nurse who rescued 2,500 Jewish children out of the Warsaw Ghetto. British secret intelligence officer Frank Foley helped Jews escape Holocaust while working undercover at a passport control office in Berlin. Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg similarly rescued Jews from Hungary by issuing passports recognizing them as Swedish citizens. British online newspaper The Independent praised them as unsung heroes. The United Nations designated January 27 as the international holocaust memorial day in November 2005 as Jewish captives were liberated from Auschwitz on the day 73 years ago.

German and Austrian leaders who led the genocide have conveyed their heartfelt apology once again this year. German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned against rising anti-Semitism, saying, “It is inconceivable and shameful that no Jewish institution can exist without police protection.” Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, even though he formed a coalition with a far-right political party, has also marked the holocaust remembrance day by saying, "Austrians were also actors and were associated with atrocious crimes of the Holocaust. We bear a clear historic responsibility that the new government clearly recognizes.” This makes a sharp contrast with Japanese leaders who have been reluctant to make sincere apologies for their past atrocity.

On the other side of Holocaust was deep-rooted hatred and indifference towards human evil. It seems that the lessons learnt from the painful memories are forgotten all too soon. Racial conflicts and extremism triggered by divisive politics are on the rise throughout Europe. Holocaust vividly showed how evil humans can become. It is worrisome that the tragedy would repeat itself in the 21st century.