The question that frames Gary Rosenblatt’s April 9 column is “what will Yom Hashoah be like in a decade or two, when there are no more survivors to give witness?” It is one that we at the World Federation of Jewish Child Survivors of the Holocaust have been actively addressing. The World Federation is an international umbrella organization of more than 50 independent groups of survivors who lived through the Holocaust as children.
Though it is now almost thirty years ago, I still remember the first time I heard my esteemed predecessor in the Forest Hills Jewish Center, the late Rabbi Ben Zion Bokser, deliver a eulogy. In his closing comments, he said to the grieving family members that grief is the mirror image of love. That is to say, people tend to grieve according to how they have loved. The greater the love they had for the person who died, the greater the pain they feel.
It sounds obvious, doesn’t it? But the truth is that it’s anything but…
I read Gary Rosenblatt’s column on the PBS documentary “Worse than War” based on Daniel Jonah Goldhagen’s book with great interest (“Preventing Genocide Is Easier Than Stopping It,” April 16).
The documentary has not yet aired here in Israel, but we all look forward to its viewing soon. We had no shortage of Shoah media showings throughout our own commemorations in Israel, as we have each year on Yom HaShoah.
This year I attended one of the thousands of ceremonies held in our middle schools here in Modiin.
It must be nice to live in a world of Jewish absolutes. Denizens of the black and white Jewish world experience no discomfort. For them life is simple. Neither the extreme left nor the extreme right has any doubts. Their belief system permits no dichotomies, allows for no flexibility, and frowns on compromise. This is especially true of religion, and politics. More so when they are combined.