Run-Up to Lithuania’s Sept. 23rd 2016 Holocaust Commemoration Day
Events in the Week of Lithuania’s Official September 23rd Holocaust Commemoration Day
Program of the government’s & official Jewish community’s events including customary 2 PM September 23rd ceremony at Ponár (Ponary, now the Paneriai Memorial). Suspense in the air: Will the Israeli ambassador in his speech gently ask for written apologies to three Israeli citizens (all Holocaust survivors who gallantly fought the Nazis) who have been defamed for posterity by local prosecutors (either for resisting the Nazis or for telling the truth about the Holocaust)? They are Yitzhak Arad, Rachel Margolis (1921-2015), and Joseph Melamed. The Jewish Community spoke up, former UK prime minister Gordon Brown spoke up, the British Parliament spoke up. In the absence of apologies, the defamation, and resulting distortion of wider history, becomes more entrenched by the year in history books and the web. Two of the three are alive. Two of the three were in the Vilna Ghetto, whose liquidation is marked by this week’s event on Sept. 23rd. The ambassador may have missed a chance to mention his own citizens during a 20 Sept. unveiling of a new plaque in the very heart of the (first) Vilna Ghetto. All eyes are on the 23rd.
All welcome at weekly sessions of the Vilna Yiddish Literary Circle, every Wednesday at 6 PM (18:00) at the Jewish Cultural Center on Mėsinių Street in the Old Town. Project celebrating its 18th year in Vilnius. Next session this Wednesday 21 Sept.
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