This Wednesday evening begins Yom HaShoah or Holocaust Remembrance Day.
The observance is Israel’s day of commemoration for the approximately 6 million Jews who died during the Holocaust. It begins Wednesday evening and ends on Thursday evening.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara met this evening with the six Holocaust survivors who will light the torches at the start of the state ceremony at Yad Vashem.
This is the first time that the Prime Minister and his wife have held such a meeting, which was initiated by Mrs Netanyahu, with the torch lighters.
Prime Minister Netanyahu:
“My wife and I are very pleased and moved to meet with you here. You are sitting in the meeting room of the Government of Israel. I think that it is very symbolic and significant that approximately 70 years after the worst disaster to befall our people and humanity as a whole, you, Holocaust survivors, sitting here in the center of the sovereignty of the Jewish People in its new state, in its ancient land. This is perhaps more symbolic than anything else.
I can tell you that I always ask myself, when I hear these stories, what I would have done. What would have happened if we and our children were in that situation, and I am always struck by this spirit and this ability to endure the horrors, to survive and, afterwards, to build. My mission is one and I always say this when I go to Yad Vashem with senators and presidents and prime ministers. I tell them that I have one mission. One Yad Vashem is enough. Once. There will never be a second time. Today our state is very, very strong. Jew hatred has not disappeared in the past 70 years; today it is directed at the state of the Jews. But the state is very, very strong. Our strength is your strength, it is the strength of your lives. It will not happen again.”
“It is a great honor for all of us to sit together, to sit with you. Also as a psychologist, I think that when we talk professionally about traumas and difficult things, it is impossible to include what you endured because not only is it inhuman, it is inconceivable and not found on any scale. Therefore, I think that not only are you true heroes of our people, you need to be the guiding lights of our people as we need to go and remember, to remember what Amalek did to us, and in this case the Germans. But we need to remember that we must not allow this to happen again, ever, and this is our greatest lesson because there is nobody in the world other than ourselves who will guard us, apart from Him above. From our hearts, we hold you in the highest regard, everything you have been through and your families.”
SOURCE The Prime Minister of Israel Facebook Page