Today is International Holocaust Remembrance Day, designated to coincide with the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp in Oswiecim, Poland by the Soviet Red Army.

Instead of waxing philosophical about this dark stain upon the annals of humanity, I thought I would share this quote by Rabbi Marvin Hier from a June 29, 2010 opinion piece in the Los Angeles Times:

The enormity of the crimes of the Holocaust was such that if you were to try to call out 2,000 of the names every day of the 6 million who perished, it would take more than eight years to complete the task. That’s what a holocaust is.

Photo by Erica Sherman

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  • bruce b

    I do wish another day was picked to honor this. The Soviets were no angels in liberating Europe, for so many reasons. They delayed their armies on the Vistula river, not helping in the Warsaw uprising by the Jews and Poles in 1944, allowing the Nazis to butcher many. The Soviets did their own butchering job through Eastern Europe, considering any POW’s, especially Jews, as traitors, to be murdered, or sent off to their own death camps. And this is not to mention the Katyn massacre of Polish officers in 1941, a fact hidden until the early 1990s (the Soviets blamed the Germans, but everyone knew otherwise long before). I could go on with this, but not necessary.
    Soviet help in winning World War 2 should certainly be acknowledged, they suffered greatly. But I’m queasy about linking Holocaust remembrance with the Soviets. Not exactly Jew-lovers.

    • bruce b

      I’ll add that I like the opinion piece by the rabbi. I cringe every time this hyperbole-false-outrage-driven society brings up the words “holocaust” and ”Adolf Hitler” for every issue. So far we’ve had Giuliani, Obama, and Bush as Hitler. Wow, I didn’t know there were so many Hitlers around!
      As an aside, I had a friend whose father was a Holocaust survivor. Wonderful, wonderful man. Suffered so much in life, even besides the holocaust, but still walked around with a smile. Funny thing was, he resembled Hitler physically, and even kept that type of mustache! I never understood that one. Maybe nobody had the heart to tell him. RIP Mr. N.