The Holocaust

British split over push for greater democracy at Claims Conference

By Simon Rocker, August 22, 2008

British representatives to the Claims Conference, the international Holocaust restitution body, are split over whether it should introduce greater democracy.

Paul Edlin, a vice-president of the Board of Deputies and one of its two delegates on the conference board, is among those pressing for change at the New York-based organisation, which distributes hundreds of millions of dollars annually to Holocaust survivors.

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Auschwitz site ‘needs £50m refit’

By Marcus Dysch, August 22, 2008

Almost £50 million is needed to preserve buildings at Auschwitz, according to officials maintaining the site.

Museum director Piotr Cywinski has appealed to EU governments to help fund repair work and create new exhibition centres.

The Polish government contributes around 10 million zloty (£2.5m) each year, with foreign contributors donating around 600,000 zloty (£150,000).

Some former barracks buildings require urgent reinforcement, with funds also needed to convert other structures into educational rooms for visitors.

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Non-Jews moved by Auschwitz

By Jessica Ware, August 8, 2008

Over 40 police officers, ambulance and hospital personnel were taken to Auschwitz and Krakow last week on the second educational visit organised by Hatzolah, the volunteer emergency medical service assisting the Stamford Hill community.

Their itinerary took in the death camp site, the Jewish quarter in Krakow and the Galicia Jewish Museum.

"As always, people who go there have an interest in the topic but ultimately, seeing is believing," said Hatzolah's Chuni Kahan. "Everybody was visibly moved."

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Guided tour of Syon House for Holocaust survivors

August 1, 2008

A day at Syon House was organised as a thank-you to 30 Holocaust survivors and volunteer drivers who work regularly with the London Jewish Cultural Centre's Holocaust and anti-racism education department, visiting schools throughout Britain. They enjoyed a guided tour, lunch in the refectory and the opportunity to explore the grounds. One of the survivors, Steven Frank, said that "giving our talks has been well worthwhile. The responses from students are so moving that I feel there is real hope for the future."

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Viewers enraged by comic’s Shoah sketch

By Dana Gloger, August 1, 2008

Media watchdog Ofcom is investigating Channel 4's The Kevin Bishop Show after receiving dozens of complaints about a Holocaust-themed sketch.

The two-minute skit, aired last Friday evening, was a spoof musical version of the scene in the film Sophie's Choice in which the heroine is forced to choose which of her two children to keep with her at Auschwitz.

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Salonika rejects plan to honour lost 55,000

By Solette Eliezer, August 1, 2008

The municipality of the Greek city of Salonika has rejected a proposal to honour victims of the Nazi occupation.

It has rejected a bill tabled on July 17 which would have included Salonika among more than 50 Greek towns known as "martyred cities" whose citizens suffered in the war.

They argued that the 55,000 Salonika Jews who perished during the Holocaust were exterminated in Polish death camps and not on Greek soil.

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Holocaust humour can be funny

By Josh Howie, August 1, 2008

Should we worry about a spate of Shoah jokes on television? Depends on their context

 

Humour and the Holocaust. That's a dissertation title right there. During the last couple of weeks, we have seen on our screens a few more examples of the merging of the two, a combination which many people would argue should not even exist. I'm not one of them but we'll get to that in a sec.

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Priest sorry for Shoah reference

July 25, 2008
A Catholic priest has apologised to the Jewish community over the interpretation of an article he wrote about the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill.

Writing in a parish magazine in Norfolk, Chet News, Father Mark Hackeson said that since abortion had been legalised in the UK, more than six million lives had been destroyed - "on a par with the Jewish Holocaust".

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Survivors blast Germany for ‘worthless’ compensation

By Craig Silver, July 18, 2008

Berlin gives two former slave labourers just £1,600 after more than 60 years

Two Holocaust survivors have attacked the German government for “worthless” offers of £1,600 in compensation payments.

Helena Aronson and Krulik Wilder survived two Polish ghettos where they worked as slave labourers in filthy factories for up to 12 hours a day.

Mr Wilder, who now lives in Radlett, Herts, was deported to the Buchenwald concentration camp in December 1944. He was liberated by the Russians from Theresienstadt in May 1945.

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German citizen test omits Shoah

By Toby Axelrod, July 18, 2008

Jewish groups have criticised Germany’s proposed citizenship exam for failing to include a single question about the Holocaust.

The general secretary of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Stephan Kramer, said he was shocked to find that the Interior Ministry’s new test includes some 320 questions related to history and society, but that the word Holocaust is not mentioned once. The test is to go into effect in September.

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