Holocaust Remembrance Day

Yesterday was Yom HaShoah, a day of remembrance for the Holocaust of World War II. It’s a day I knew nothing about until a friend’s Twitter post and my sister-in-law’s blog entry. It’s a somber day in Israel and a siren sounds twice during the day bringing everything to a halt for two minutes of silence. People even stop their cars and get out.

Like much of family history, Holocaust stories are important to share and remember. These stories (Holocaust and otherwise) provide a vital infusion of humanity and connection into what could otherwise be distant history. These stories are not so distant history, even if they happened hundreds of years ago. We’re still connected to them and they had an impact on our DNA.

Here’s a brief excerpt of my sister-in-law’s story:

All of the able bodied Jews were used as slave labor in various capacities, while the old, sickly, and the children were left behind in the ghetto. One day my grandparents and oldest uncle returned from their day of “work” to find that those they had left behind in the ghetto had been slaughtered. Their bodies were left in the streets. My great grandparents were amongst the dead, as well as my uncle, who had been decapitated. He was three years old. My grandfather realized that he needed to escape the ghetto or die. He somehow managed to get himself, my grandmother, and my teenage uncle out of the ghetto. They spent the next few years in the woods of Poland with Partisans. The fought the Nazis by sabotaging bridges and trains.

It’s worth reading the rest of her post (though I disagree with her political conclusions).

2 thoughts on “Holocaust Remembrance Day”

  1. If you found her conclusions so abhorrent maybe you should have thought of your own post, used your own stories. Though it’s darkly amusing that you feel qualified to judge oppression better than someone who has been far closer to it than you have, or to decide what conclusions actual victims should draw from their experiences. I’d love to hear you discuss it with Nicki Fellenzer, for example – someone whose parents immigrated here from behind the iron curtain, who underwent torture in the name of “free health care” and opposes this abortion of an administration same as…same as all of us “right wing extremists” (thanks Crappy Nappy-napolitano!)

    Or, really, if you can’t stand the conclusions, get your own stories and your own posts, just my not-so-humble-opinion. Shortest version: You ain’t all that!

  2. Really Anniee451? What are you talking about?

    I didn’t say her conclusions were “abhorrent,” I just said I “disagree” with them. And note that I never said how or what I disagreed with.

    I didn’t say (or give the impression) that I’m better “qualified to judge oppression” than someone who’s been through it. Why else would I be linking to these stories unless I thought we could better learn from these firsthand accounts?

    I never said what conclusions victims should draw from their experiences. You’re welcome to draw your own conclusions from your own experiences. And I’m still welcome to disagree with them.

    We can all reflect on the same stories and still disagree on the conclusions. It doesn’t invalidate the stories or the people who shared them or even the conclusions themselves.

    It’s OK to disagree.

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