65 years ago today

A few years ago Joe and I visited Auschwitz-Birkenau and Krakow.  It was a trip organised as part of his teacher training and although money was tight at the time we decided it was an important visit, especially for Joe given the subjects he teaches. 

It’s now 65 years since the camp was liberated, although liberation may be too strong a word considering the few thousand survivors of an estimated 1.1million that lost their lives there.

There is nothing to be said about such atrocities that others haven’t said before or better.  Information about holocaust memorial day is here. 

One thing that I hadn’t expected to upset me when I visited Krakow was visiting all the empty synagogues in the old Jewish quarter of Krakow.  They are now almost all museums and only the smallest is used as a synagogue – a huge part of Poland’s people and culture was wiped out in just a few years.  It made it seem more possible that it could happen anywhere.  People say never again, but of course it does happen again.  As individuals we can only resist the hatred and fear that leads to communities dividing and turning on each other.

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