The Holocaust

Man battles claims body over Berlin flat

By Simon Rocker, April 7, 2009

The son of a German-Jewish doctor who lived in the UK is fighting the Claims Conference, the Holocaust restitution agency, over a property he says belongs to his family.

Heinrich Ruhemann, 80, from Darmstadt, Germany, says the apartment block in East Berlin was bought by his father, Ernst, in 1935.

But the German government has refused to recognise his claim and he has been ordered to transfer the building, worth around £900,000, to the conference under restitution laws.

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Schindler’s list is ‘found’ in library

By Dan Goldberg, April 6, 2009

Sydney’s Jewish Museum and descendants of survivors saved by Oskar Schindler are angry that a carbon copy of the German industrialist’s famous list was sold to the State Library of New South Wales.

News of the sale emerged only recently — the document had been bought by the library 13 years ago, archived and then forgotten about until it was discovered by a researcher.

The list of more than 800 Jews was given to Australian author Thomas Keneally in 1980 by Leopold Pfefferberg, a Schindler survivor living in Los Angeles.

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Kingston’s Holocaust study days

By Jay Grenby, April 2, 2009

Over 500 pupils from five south-west London schools have taken part in Holocaust workshops postponed from their original dates in early February because of the heavy snowfalls.

The programme — related to Holocaust Memorial Day and now in its third year — is a joint venture of the Kingston United and Liberal congregations. Expanded due to demand, it is now supported by neighbourhood grants from the local authority.

Pupils aged 13-15 were addressed by Holocaust survivors who discussed their experiences and the importance of the young generation rejecting all forms of prejudice.

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Fatah slam Jenin band’s Shoah gig

By Anshel Pfeffer, April 2, 2009

A Palestinian youth orchestra was ordered to disband after performing for Holocaust survivors and its leader was arrested by the Palestinian security services and banished from the West Bank.

Fatah leaders in the Jenin refugee camp are furious that 13 members of the Strings of Freedom orchestra took part in a “Day of Good Deeds” event in Israel last week. The music group was set up six years ago by veteran educator and violinist Wafa Younis, an Israeli Arab. She lived in the camp but has now been banned.

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Court outlaws animal rights group’s Nazi ad

By Toby Axelrod and Marcus Dysch, April 2, 2009

Holocaust groups have welcomed a German supreme court ruling against a poster campaign which compared the slaughter of animals to the Shoah.

The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) “Holocaust on your Plate” adverts constituted an offence against human dignity, the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe said last week.

Paul Spiegel, late president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, filed a lawsuit in 2004 after Peta attempted to launch the campaign in Germany.

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The children Britain took to its heart

By Jessica Elgot, April 2, 2009

It is one of the most touching stories of survival in history — and, suitably for Pesach, it is the story of an exodus with an unexpectedly happy ending.

Seventy years ago, 10,000 Jewish children from Nazi-occupied central Europe survived the Holocaust because they were sent to Britain to grow up here. They were welcomed by generous British families and were allowed to come thanks to the dedication of Jewish groups fighting to bring them to safety on the Kindertransport.

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Holocaust survivors get cash boost

By Toby Axelrod, March 26, 2009

Holocaust survivors in Eastern Europe — many of them living in poverty — are to receive major increases in monthly payments from Germany, following intensive negotiations with the Claims Conference that ended last week in Berlin.

The agreement means that an estimated £55 million in extra funds will be paid over the next 10 years to approximately 13,000 Holocaust survivors in 22 countries.

There will also be major increases in Central and Eastern European Fund (CEEF) monthly payments to survivors in EU and non-EU countries.

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Auschwitz: that’s a beer, isn’t it?

By Marcus Dysch, March 12, 2009

Two per cent of secondary school children believe Auschwitz was a brand of bread or beer, a survey has revealed.

Research, conducted on behalf of the London Jewish Cultural Centre and the Miramax film company, shows many pupils aged 11 to 16 have only a “patchy” understanding of the Holocaust, despite its presence on the national curriculum.

One in four youngsters did not know Auschwitz was a Nazi death camp, with one in 10 believing it to be a country bordering Germany.

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Key survivor is remembered

By Simon Rocker, March 5, 2009

One of the UK's best known Holocaust survivors was remembered at a memorial service on Sunday, a year after his death at the age of 97.

London-born Leon Greenman endured six Nazi camps but lost his wife Esther and two-year-old son Barney at Auschwitz.

He honoured the pledge he made in the camp to tell what happened "with every breath until his last," recalled Ruth-Anne Lenga, education consultant at the Jewish Museum, who organised the commemoration at the Sternberg Centre in Finchley.

For more than 60 years, Mr Greenman addressed countless school, youth and other groups a

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BNP activist fined after racial abuse of his neighbour

By Marcus Dysch, February 26, 2009

A BNP activist has been fined after racially abusing a neighbour whose grandmother died in the Holocaust.

Roy West told German-born Bernd Kugow to “go back to krautland and kill some more Jews” during an argument outside their homes in Dukinfield, Lancashire.

Unemployed West, 44, had denied a charge of racially aggravated abuse in August last year, but changed his plea moments before appearing at Tameside Magistrates’ Court last week.

He began the tirade after trying to fix a Union Jack flag to his neighbour’s shed.

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