Holocaust Memorial Day

Voices designed to speak to the next generation

By Jennifer Lipman, January 27, 2012

The first stage towards the creation of an archive of stories of Scotland's Holocaust survivors has been completed after more than 18 months' work.

Gathering the Voices - a website that will ultimately feature interviews with, and recordings of, 100 people who came to Scotland during or after the war - went live this week.


Iranians' northern exposure

By Jonathan Kalmus, January 27, 2012

A refugee family facing a return to Iran, where they are accused of leaking nuclear secrets, featured in the Holocaust Memorial Day event at Manchester's Jewish Museum.

The Vahidis fled to the UK in 2006 after a close friend - a member of an Iranian opposition party - was found dead. Mohammed Vahidi worked in a nuclear-related industry and has been linked to information given to the friend.


Schooling them well in Kingston

By Jay Grenby, January 27, 2012

A Holocaust Memorial Day initiative launched five years ago by Kingston's United and Liberal congregations for local schools has been so successful that it has expanded to a five-day event.

The format sees five locally based survivors tell their stories to pupils, who then divide into study groups to discuss both what they have heard and what they can do to work against intolerance.


More calls to open the Auschwitz files

By Jessica Elgot, January 26, 2012

Conservative MP Robert Halfon has called on Defence Secretary Philip Hammond to release the files on the P o W camp in Auschwitz.

Mr Halfon has written to Mr Hammond requesting he release the service record of Israeli President Shimon Peres’s father Yitzhak Persky and other British servicemen held in the camp.


Survivor: 'It was racism carried to the extreme'

January 26, 2012

A survivor who was imprisoned and sent to Auschwitz for her efforts to resist the Nazis has warned against comparing the Holocaust with other atrocities.

Anita Lasker-Wallfisch, 84, was the main speaker at Tuesday's Holocaust Memorial Day ceremony at City Hall, hosted by London Mayor Boris Johnson.


Reflective students address Parliament

January 26, 2012

Two student ambassadors from the Holocaust Educational Trust's Lessons from Auschwitz programme addressed the Scottish Parliament on the importance of remembering the Shoah.

Law students Dominic Bradley and Katie McKenna were invited to deliver Holyrood's "Time for Reflection" message, having visited the death camp site in 2010 when pupils of St Ninian's High School in east Dunbartonshire.


York marks HMD with cash back

By Jennifer Lipman, January 26, 2012

York's Labour leader has highlighted the broad programme of events organised to mark HMD locally after his party overturned plans for a massive cut in funding.

Last February, York's then Liberal Democrat leadership voted to slash the amount allocated to the HMD programme by 80 per cent, leaving just £1,000.


'If you couldn't walk, they shot you'

By Jennifer Lipman, January 26, 2012

As a child growing up in a Romanian village, Leslie Kleinman heard stories about the Nazis from Polish escapees.

"One man said they were pulling children's legs apart and killing them," recalled Mr Kleinman, who was 14 when the Nazis arrived in his village in the spring of 1944. "I thought it was just a story. When I got to Auschwitz, I realised it was true."


'I was so scared when the Gestapo held us at gunpoint'

By Jonathan Kalmus, January 26, 2012

Helen Stein was 13 when the Gestapo interrogated her at gunpoint.

"One pointed his revolver towards me. I will never forget. I was asked my name, my address and who organised the journey. And after each question: 'Are you Jewish?' I told them my real name. I told them, 'I'm frightened.'"


Truth hurts in Ireland

January 26, 2012

Opening the Shoah in Europe exhibition in Dublin, Irish Justice Minister Alan Shatter highlighted "an inconvenient truth that those who chose to do and say nothing during this unprecedented period in European history include this state".

Mr Shatter said that, "when viewing this exhibition, no one should assume that what happened in the past cannot be repeated in the future".

He praised the w