For first time US ambassadors to lead March of the Living at Polish death camps
The White House has proclaimed April 28 to May 5 Holocaust Remembrance Week, US President Donald Trump announced last weekend.
“On Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, and during this week of solemn remembrance, we honor the six million Jewish men, women, and children who were brutally murdered by the Nazi regime,” President Trump said in a statement.
“We also remember the Roma and Sinti, persons with disabilities, Poles and Slavic ethnic groups, Soviet prisoners of war, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and persons who were targeted based on their sexual orientation, all of whom were targeted and killed by the Nazis and their collaborators.”
For the first time ever, the US administration will send an official delegation to the annual March of the Living at the Auschwitz-Birkenau Polish death camps.
US Ambassador to Poland Georgette Mosbacher, US Ambassador to Germany Richard Allen Grenell, and US Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, will head the delegation.
Over 220,000 people from 52 countries have participated in the March of the Living since it was founded in 1988 to revamp Holocaust education, creating an emotional experience that students could connect with outside of the classroom.
“The participation of ambassadors in the March of the Living is proof that we are on the right track to crack the walls of the silence of the international community when it comes to antisemitism,” Israel Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon said.
“We saw last week in Poland an effigy of a doll with Jewish characteristics beaten. In Australia, swastikas were sprayed on a public beach, and in the US, we still see some invoking the ‘Heil Hitler’ salute. We will not allow a reality in which the Jews of the world return to a life lived in fear. This battle is not just battle over the memory of the past, but also about the future of the coming generations.”
19-year-old neo-Nazi John T. Earnest burst into Chabad of Poway on the last day of Passover and opened fire as about 100 people were worshipping inside, murdering Lori Gilbert Kaye and injuring three others.
“In recent months, we have witnessed a distressing resurgence in incidents of antisemitic attacks,” Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev said shortly after the neo-Nazi attack.
“On every continent, violence against Jews, merely because they are Jews, occurs. The time has come for world leaders to speak out and condemn antisemitism in all its expressions, and immediately implement legal, moral and educational measures, both to protect the lives of their Jewish citizens, and also to fight against the outbreak of antisemitism that we have witnessed lately. In our post-Holocaust global society, there is no room for antisemitism or any other kind of racism or xenophobia,” Shalev added.