Events of the International Holocaust Day at Massuah
Sixty-six years have passed in since January 27, 1945, when soldiers of the Red Army entered the gates of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in southern Poland. At the time, the camp had been abandoned by the SS staff members who began fleeing from Auschwitz following the massive Soviet attack in the region which began on January 18, 1945. The fleeing SS members took with them some 58,000 prisoners on a forced death march toward Germany. Some 7,500 prisoners, who were too weak or sick to march, remained in the camp, among them children. These were the prisoners liberated by the soldiers of the Red Army.
The Germans built the largest death camp in Auschwitz, which operated during World War II. More people were murdered in Auschwitz than any other place: 1,600,000 people were murdered, among them 1,500,000 Jews, 22,000 Gypsies and thousands of Poles, Soviet POWs and citizens of other countries. In Auschwitz the Germans operated the largest gas chambers. The Auschwitz death camp has been described by many as an effective death factory, and as such it has become the symbol of the Holocaust.
In November 2005, the UN Assembly set the date of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration and death camp as the International Memorial Day of the Holocaust. Other countries had set the date as the national memorial day earlier, among them Great Britain and Germany. Since then memorial ceremonies are held throughout the world and in Israel as well.
Every year Massuah holds a central event to mark International Holocaust Day for the senior diplomatic corps serving in Israel.
This year the event focused on the artistic work of the Second Generation: Israeli video artist Yael Bartana and writer, Nava Semel, German film director Malte Ludin and Polish journalist Slovimir Shirkovsky took part in a panel. Limor Livnat, Minister of Culture and Sports, Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon, and Chairman of Massuah, Mr. Shraga Milstein, participated. Mr. Christopher Bigot, French ambassador in Israel, spoke at the memorial site at the Massuah museum.
The Moran choir, conducted by Naomi Faran, participated in the artistic part of the event.
Moderator: Liad Mudrik
Seminar for instructors on Poland marking the Eichmann trial which took place 50 years ago, in cooperation with the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung Fund in Israel. Monday, February 28, 2011, 9 AM at the Massuah campus.
9:30 – 9:45: Opening, Aya Ben-Naftlai, Massuah chairperson
Dr. Ralf Hexel: Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung Fund, chairperson
9:45-10:15: Prof. Hana Yablonka – the Eichmann trial – historical aspects
10:15-11:00: Permanent exhibition, “Six Million Prosecutors, the State of Israel vs. Adolf Eichmann,” Aya Ben-Naftali
11:15-13:00: First session – the media coverage of the Eichmann trial in Israel and Germany; participants: Dr. Peter Krause, Dr. Annette Leo, Dr. Amit Pinchevski
13:45-14:45: Second session – Law and media in the 21st century; participants: Adv. Pinchas Rubin and Dr. Peter Krause
14:45-16:00: Third session – from the Nuremberg trials to the Eichmann trial