Each year, on January 27th we honor the victims of the Holocaust or Shoah, the Hebrew for "sacrifice" and "catastrophe," as well as other genocides.
January 27th marks the anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration and extermination camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau by Soviet troops in 1945. A commemoration will be held to reaffirm the rejection of all racism, anti-Semitism, and all other forms of intolerance that can lead to violence. Unfortunately, today, messages of hatred and genocide are still being spread. We are reminded of the importance of education. Using the enlightenment of historians and learning to think critically has never been so relevant as today.
The genocide of which the Jews were victims during the Second World War was later qualified as a crime against humanity. A notion defined for the first time by an international tribunal meeting in Nuremberg from October 1945 to October 1946. The tribunal judged 19 top Nazi officials for their involvement; the others had already fled or committed suicide.
Men and women in the Land of Memory were witnesses or victims of these crimes. Yet, at the risk of their lives and those of their families, some of them chose to act against barbarism.
Thus, at the Château du Faing in Jamoigne, in Belgian Luxembourg, 87 Jewish children were hidden and saved from deportation by these “Righteous Among the Nations.” Three walking paths leave from the Holocaust Memorial, or Shoah Memorial, in the center of the courtyard to discover the story of these children during the Second World War.
In Esch-sur-Alzette, the National Museum of Resistance and Human Rights has organized something special for the anniversary on Thursday, January 27th at 5 pm Luxembourg time: a videoconference on Zoom “Das Schicksal der Juden Luxemburgs 1940-1945” (The fate of the Jews of Luxembourg). Later, at 7 pm, a ceremony will be held in honor of the victims of the Holocaust.
In Liège, at the “Territories of Memory,” a center for education in resistance and citizenship set up in the Cité Miroir, a permanent trail traces the route of a deportee to the extermination camps.
In Troisvierges, guided tours are organized at the convent of Cinqfontaines, a place of memory for the Holocaust, which was transformed by the Nazi occupiers into an internment camp. The Jews waited there in precarious conditions to be deported to the death camps. These visits are part of the Zentrum fir Politische Bildung of Luxembourg program, which organizes other activities described on the site of the foundation.