27 January 2005

On Auschwitz

Mark Sarvas of The Elegant Variation commemorates the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz with poignant thoughts and a personal list of related fiction and non-fiction.

Meanwhile, Ron Hogan at Beatrice highlights moving words by Deborah Lipstadt (the author who exposed a major Holocaust denier in 1993):

"For a long time after the court battle was over, I felt pain when I thought of the many people who had watching Irving ravage their memories. I could not fathom what it felt like to have one's experiences not just denied, but deprecated and ridiculed. I was reminded of the fact that Jewish tradition highly values acts of loving-kindness, including visiting the sick, sheltering the needy, feeding the hungry, and welcoming the stranger. There is, however, one act of loving-kindness that supersedes all the others because it cannot be reciprocated. Taking care of the dead is called hesed shel emet, the most genuine act of loving-kindness, because it is then that we most closely emulate God's kindness to humans, which also cannot be reciprocated. For five years I had the privilege to do hesed shel emet, to stand up for those who did not survive or who could not stand up for themselves. Being able to do that was thanks enough."

No comments: