Με αφορμή την Ευρωπαϊκή Ημέρα Μνήμης των Δικαίων, η οποία τιμά αυτούς που βοήθησαν τους Εβραίους κατά τη διάρκεια του Ολοκαυτώματος, ο Ίαν Κάτζεφ, Εβραίος από τη Νότιο Αφρική, μας έστειλε ένα συγκινητικό μήνυμα:
“The Holocaust was the most tragic chapter of wanton destruction of human life in recent history, wherein so many millions of innocent people, men, women and children, were brutally exterminated en masse in an industrial manner, simply for greed and ideological falsehoods.
The Holocaust stands out as prominently as it does, due to the fact that a determined effort was made, by a “cultured nation” to erase with industrious precision, the existence of the Jewish Nation, and what is more frightening is that the rotten regime of evildoers almost succeeded, as they had managed to wipe out almost half of their intended targets in just a few years during which they controlled territories which they had stolen from other nations.
Those who were exterminated so callously, for no reason, were among the most educated and cultured people in the world, who had already made uncountable contributions to science, humanities, the arts and commerce in so many ways; who knows what other contributions those people may have made to humankind had their precious lives not have been so viciously squandered. It is against this milieu of chaos, in which the fate of human memory if good and evil was played out. There were rays of hope which were, although infrequently, seen through the lead grey skyline. This came in the form of righteous rescuers; those who were prepared to do what was right, even in the face of their own extermination as punishment, if found out.
They rescued whoever they could, when the opportunity presented itself, at great risk to themselves and their families. Some were unfortunately uncovered and punished by the criminal Nazi regime, and suffered a fate equivalent to the very people whom they attempted to save, whereas others were blessed to have successfully managed to maintain their cover and remain undetected in their efforts to maintain their human kindness and morality, together with the precious lives which they hid and protected from evil. In doing so, they preserved the dignity of their nations and societies, and the family trees of so many survivors of this atrocious and catastrophic war. These people were truly “Righteous among Nations”.
They were people of exceptional human qualities and serve as an example to humanity, that no matter what, human life has tremendous value, even in the most trying of circumstances. The Holocaust was a heinous crime against humanity, and its odious record in our human history serves as both a stain and a stark warning to mankind. The underlying message which this horrendous episode and tragic loss of life and human potential screams is “Never Again”.»