The Holocaust

Indian Jews protest Bollywood Hitler film

By Jennifer Lipman, June 23, 2010

Members of the Indian Jewish community have slammed plans to make a Bollywood film about Hitler’s final days.

Filming is set to start in two months time but Anupam Kher, the actor due to play the Nazi leader, has now dropped out after facing criticism.

At the beginning of June Indian producers announced they were making a film about the end of the Third Reich.


Concern over new Anne Frank book

By Jessica Elgot, June 21, 2010

The executive director of the Anne Frank Trust has slammed a new teen novel which suggests Anne and a teenager hidden with her in wartime Amsterdam, Peter van Pels, had a sexual relationship.

Gillian Walnes said that the book "Annexed", which is a fictionalised diary by Peter, was “cashing in” on the diarist.

The book, published by Andersen Press, is a new novel from British author Sharon Dogar, who has written two other "coming-of-age" books for teenagers.


Castro Nazi comments outrageous, says Israel

By Jennifer Lipman, June 15, 2010

Israel has responded furiously to a Nazi jibe made by Fidel Castro.

The former Cuban president said that the “Fuhrer's swastika is today Israel's banner” and likened the relationship between Israel and the Palestinians with the genocide of Jews in the Holocaust.

He said: "The hatred felt by the state of Israel against the Palestinians is such that they would not hesitate to send the one and a half million men, women and children of that country to the crematoria where millions of Jews of all ages were exterminated by the Nazis.”


Survivors retrace first Auschwitz journey

By Jennifer Lipman, June 14, 2010

A trio of Holocaust survivors has set off on a journey to retrace the first rail convoy to Auschwitz exactly 70 years after it happened.

A memorial train will retrace the 140 kilometre route from Tarnow, in southern Poland, to Oswiecim, where the Nazis built the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in 1940.

On June 14 1940 the first train left for Auschwitz carrying 728 Jews and other victims of Nazi persecution to the gas chambers.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.