The Holocaust

The music the Nazis couldn't destroy

By Jessica Duchen, June 10, 2010

Terezin: the name inspires both horror and wonder. This Czech garrison town, also known as Theresienstadt, was home to one of the most extraordinary cultural phenomena of the Second World War. The inmates of its Jewish ghetto included swathes of the intelligentsia of Prague and Brno who were deported there. Confined within its walls, desperately overcrowded, disease-ridden and malnourished, a generation of composers, writers, artists, musicians and actors turned to their art to keep their spirits alive.

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Former ambassador named UK Holocaust envoy

By Jennifer Lipman, June 9, 2010

The former UK Ambassador to Israel has been appointed Britain’s first envoy for post-Holocaust Issues.

Foreign Secretary William Hague has named Sir Andrew Burns to the role, which will involve resolving issues of property and art looted during the Second World War.

He will also be responsible for keeping Britain at the forefront of Holocaust education efforts and furthering the work of the International Tracing Service, a body aiming to document the fate of Nazi victims.

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Auschwitz reopens after flood threat

By Jessica Elgot, May 21, 2010

Auschwitz has reopened to visitors after extreme floods, which have claimed the lives of seven people in Poland, forced the museum to close.

Thousands were evacuated from their homes after the Vistula and Sola rivers flooded after heavy rain.

Auschwitz’s museum has been closed since Monday, as volunteers and firefighters worked to build flood barriers to protect it from the rising water. Archives and thousands of items belonging to the camp’s victims were re-stored in top floors of the museum’s buildings.

The water reached within a few metres of the grounds on Tuesday night.

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Cruel email scam targets Holocaust 'heirs'

By Robyn Rosen, May 13, 2010

An email fraudster has been targeting the community claiming that people with the same surnames as Holocaust victims can collect millions of dollars.

The email tells the recipient there is a dormant bank account belonging to a Holocaust victim with the same name, and urges them to reply within seven days to receive the funds.

The writer claims to be an executive director at the Swiss Banks Settlement, which in reality retrieved $1.25 billion from Swiss banks in 1998. The banks had retained and concealed assets of Holocaust victims.

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US chief's March of the Living

April 22, 2010

United Synagogue chief executive Jeremy Jacobs says his participation in the March of the Living in Poland has strengthened his commitment to Holocaust education.

Mr Jacobs, who was accompanied by five US youth directors, witnessed the impact the march had on the young. "As the years go by, it becomes ever more urgent for people to hear testimony directly from survivors."

Mr Jacobs has committed £30,000 to Polish trips over the coming year.

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Watford members visit Auschwitz

By Jay Grenby, April 22, 2010

Twenty-one Watford Synagogue members have returned from a day trip to Auschwitz-Birkenau determined to raise awareness of the Holocaust.

Led by Rabbi Barry Marcus of the Central Synagogue, the group toured the death camp site before reciting kaddish and lighting memorial candles. There was just time for a brief tour of Krakow and a minchah service in the sole remaining operational synagogue in the once-thriving Jewish quarter.

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More than 1000 attend Chief Rabbi's Yom HaShoah

By Jay Grenby, April 15, 2010

Close on 1,000 people took up the Chief Rabbi's open invitation to attend a Yom Hashoah ceremony at Edgware Synagogue, hailed as "a prototype of a Holocaust service for a new generation".

Lord Sacks was among the speakers and the event also incorporated readings, choral and instrumental music and audio-visual material displayed on giant screens.

Another contributor was 18-year-old Hayley Marks from Stanmore, a participant in a trip to Poland last year organised by the United Synagogue youth arm, Tribe.

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Survivor leads March of the Living in Poland

By Marcus Dysch, April 15, 2010

Auschwitz survivor Freddie Knoller led a British delegation at the annual March of the Living in Poland this week.

Vienna-born Mr Knoller joined other survivors and thousands of students from around the world on the three-kilometre route from Auschwitz to Birkenau on Monday.

He was invited by the Austrian government to participate in the march, coinciding with Yom Hashoah, the remembrance day for Holocaust victims.

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Boost for 'forgotten' Holocaust day

By Robyn Rosen, April 8, 2010

Those behind the UK commemoration of Yom Hashoah, remembering Holocaust victims, are striving to increase communal awareness.

Yom Hashoah was established by the Knesset in 1951 and is marked annually on the 27th of Nissan (this year April 11). However, Jeffrey Pinnick, co-ordinator of the Forum for Yom Hashoah, comprising 25 UK organisations, says it has languished in the shadow of Holocaust Memorial Day.

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Anne Frank exhibition 'too expensive' says council

By Marcus Dysch, March 25, 2010

The proposed hosting of an Anne Frank exhibition has sparked a war of words between relatives of Holocaust survivors and anti-Israel campaigners.

Councillors in Aberystwyth rejected the possibility of accommodating a month-long exhibition, following a request from the Anne Frank Trust.

One council member questioned the "pertinence" of hosting the project which he felt was "not appropriate".

But the council confirmed this week that it had turned down the request for cost alone. The Trust charges at least £16,000 to cover transport, setting up and insurance of the exhibits.

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