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January 29, 2019 10:26 am

Survivors of Nazi Genocide Speak at Annual UN Holocaust Memorial Ceremony in New York

avatar by Benjamin Kerstein

The Majdanek death camp. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Two survivors of the Nazi genocide took part on Monday in the UN’s annual Holocaust Memorial Ceremony in New York.

In remarks at the event, 92-year-old Marian Turski said that he had felt as if he “had no name, he had nothing, but a number” when he was at Auschwitz.

The worst thing about the experience, he recalled, was “the humiliation, just because you were Jewish, you were treated not like a human being, you were treated like a louse, a bed bug, like a cockroach.”

Regarding what lessons he had learned from the ordeal, Turski said, “The most important words are: empathy and compassion.”

Inge Auerbacher was only seven when she was sent to Theresienstadt, and was one of the few children at the camp to escape death.

“My hope, wish, and prayer, is for every child to live in peace without hunger and prejudice,” she said on Monday. “The antidote to hatred is education, no more genocides, no more antisemitism.”

Director of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Sara Bloomfield also spoke at Monday’s gathering, saying, “After 2,000 years of various forms of antisemitism, it doesn’t seem to be an eradicable disease, nor does hate.”

The world today, she added, must “look back, to remember the victims’ lives and to remember that we failed them. We can’t fail them again by forgetting, by ignoring antisemitism, and by not learning from our failures.”

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