The Jerusalem Post, May 19, 2012, By Gafi Djanogly
We the living were making a commitment to the dead. For soon there will be no more living survivors.
My name is Gadi. I am 18 years old. Last week I stood at the Kotel (the Western Wall) with about 400 other young Jews and was sworn in as a member of the Paratroopers’ Orev tank-hunting unit.
My officers invoked the memories of the Holocaust, of the wars we have had to fight here in Israel. I stood there last night, at the symbol of the Jewish people’s exile, the focal point of generation upon generations of prayers. I received my gun and my Bible and I swore an oath. “Ani Nishba” – I swear. I swore an oath of loyalty to the IDF, to the Jewish people to the Jewish state. For me and my family this oath was the culmination of a long journey. This oath had its roots deep in my family’s past. This oath is my oath, my promise, but it is also a microcosm of Jewish experience. (more…)
The Canadian Jewish News, April 8, 2010, By Eli Rubenstein
A well-known story from the Holocaust is told by Primo Levi in Survival in Auschwitz.
Shortly after Levi first arrived in Auschwitz, he saw an icicle hanging from one of the barracks. Attempting to relieve his parched throat, Levi reached for the icicle only to have it snatched away by a Nazi guard.
“Why?” the naïve Levi asked the guard, yet unfamiliar with the alien rules of “Planet Auschwitz.”
The guard responded bluntly: “There is no why here.”
There is no “why” in Auschwitz. (more…)
Alyse Dan and Holocaust survivor Amek Adler
The Canadian Jewish News, December 24, 2009, By Alyse Dan
Last spring, I took part in a trip organized by March of the Living, in which I travelled to Poland and then to Israel. March of the Living is a Jewish organization that takes 16- and 17-year-olds for two week visits to Poland and Israel, both places of historical importance for Jews.
During the trip, we were to visit concentration camps and reflect on the Holocaust. The job of the participants
was clear: to ensure that the world will never forget what our people, as well as so many others, went through. We all attended seminars and workshops to prepare for the journey, but no matter how long or how much I tried to prepare myself, nothing could have readied me for what I saw. (more…)