April 28, 2022 is a Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Day
In 2022, the theme guiding the United Nations Holocaust remembrance and education is “Memory, Dignity and Justice”. Holocaust commemoration and education is a global imperative in the third decade of the 21st century. The writing of history and the act of remembering brings dignity and justice to those whom the perpetrators of the Holocaust intended to obliterate. Safeguarding the historical record, remembering the victims, challenging the distortion of history often expressed in contemporary antisemitism, are critical aspects of claiming justice after atrocity crimes. The theme encompasses these concerns.
Author: Erik Elman
In 1939, before WWII, there were 16.6 million Jews worldwide. Today, in 2022, there are still only 15.2 million Jews living on this planet - like in 1922. Sergio Della Pergola calculated, that, if not for Holocaust, the Jewish population of the world would be close to 40 million today.
So, here's your real number - it's not just 6 million. It's their unborn children, and their children's children, mighty and fruitful branches cut off from the trunk before they had a chance to grow, the echo of the slaughter, coming down to us, generation after generation, empty spaces in our collective conscience, erased genes that will never enrich our collective potential, friends we will never have, loves we will never celebrate, voices that will never be heard, ideas that will never be born.
People say, "yes, but Israel". Yes, but nothing. Israel is not "an answer" to Holocaust, American Jewish prosperity is not an answer either. We are still a remnant, all that is left. We have our triumphs, yes. We survive and thrive. But if you stop for a moment and comprehend what was lost, you understand how diminished we are. How wounded. How - beneath all this swagger and confidence - traumatized and broken.
This is what genocide does - it doesn't just destroy those it can reach. It stays with the survivors. It reminds them that they are the unworthy ones who got lucky, stoking their grief and guilt. And once it happens, the terrible marker goes down in history, a finger pointing out to the Jews, saying "IT CAN BE DONE", and what could be done once, can be done again. And everybody around us knows it. And we know that they know.