Center for Jewish-Bulgarian cooperation

Students and writers from Burgas joined the initiative “We Remember”

Under the motto “If we forget, we are accomplices” was marked the International Holocaust Remembrance Day

At the initiative of the Center for Jewish-Bulgarian Cooperation “Alef”, students from High School “Vasil Levski” and writers from Burgas joined the campaign of the World Jewish Congress “We Remember”. At the Writers’ Home in the Burgas, they took a picture of the message that they would upload to Facebook or another social media. The massive campaign is on the occasion of the International Holocaust Remembrance Day – 27 January. A month earlier, people around the world were summoned to take pictures of the message “We remember” and to upload the picture to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, because it is important to tell the next generation what happened so as not to repeat it. In the years of World War II, millions of innocent children, women and men were killed, just because they are different. Being silent about this it means being accomplice in the committed crime, and forgetfulness guarantees the possibility of repeating the horror.

The day in memory of the Holocaust victims in Burgas was marked on 25th of January. This year’s commemorative evening gathered the writers who never keep silent and with their speech they don’t leave the events in oblivion, with the young men who are called upon to convey the memory to the next generations.

 For the students of the High school “Vasil Levski” it was the first meeting with the ominous events of 72 years ago. Before commencing their preparations for the commemorative evening, they had never heard about the Holocaust, death camps, gas chambers, and the innocent victims of this genocide.

“Over six million Jews have been destroyed. But this is just a statistic that would hardly reach the hearts of young people. When a particular destiny is described – the horrors experienced by a child, then the tragedy becomes personal. That is why we have directed the young people to Eli Wiesel and his memoir “Night”. The students have done well with this lesson in history and human love. Evening like this sets the beginning of the resistance, and the fact that the young people have the courage to live and remember, makes me calm for tomorrow, “said the president of Center “Alef” Alberta Alkalay.

Under the leadership of her literature teacher Lyubov Jungourova, the 10th grade students had prepared an extensive video presentation about Eli Wiesel’s life. Winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, writer, journalist and playwright, Wiesel was one of the first who speaks about this after 20 years of silence on the Holocaust topic after the end of the Second World War. High school students read excerpts from the book “Night”, in which the author describes his personal experiences in the Auschwitz and Buchenwald death camps. They were involved in a discussion to look for answers to the questions: “If we are silent, do we help the crime?”, “Why is it important to remember the Holocaust horror?” and to look for ways to counteract the genocide that is pernicious for humankind.

The commemorative evening was held under the motto “If we forget, then we are accomplices,” a quote from Eli Wiesel. The hall was attended by heirs of Bulgarian Jews rescued from the genocide and their friends. Some of them shared poignant memories and the students became emotional.

In the recent history of Bulgaria there is a ray of hope that not everything good in humans is lost. During the Second World War, Bulgaria was the only country that, under the pressure of the whole society, managed to save its citizens of Jewish origin from deportation and certain death. In order to get acquainted with this valiant act, the students received gifts from Center “Alef”- the book by David Cohen “The Jews in Bulgaria”.

Ученичка от ППЧЕ чете откъс от книгата на Ели Визел

 

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