Thursday, February 2, 2017

"Those who kept silent yesterday will remain silent tomorrow."

A five-hour reading of the entire work "Night" by Elie Wiesel took place last Sunday at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. The reading commemorated Holocaust Remembrance Day as well as the anniversary of the murder of Wiesel’s father, Shlomo, at Buchenwald, according to an article in Tablet: "Wiesel’s Message Reverberates in New York for a ‘Night’ of Remembrance" by Rachel Delia Benaim,

A number of well-known writers, public figures, and Counsels or Ambassadors from several countries took turns reading from the book, including Abe Foxman; Itzhak Perlman; Aaron Lansky, founder of the Yiddish Book Center, and many others.
"As the event proceeded, thousands of people gathered nearby in Battery Park to protest President Donald Trump’s controversial immigration ban—a confluence of events that Foxman said was fitting because Wiesel 'stood up to prejudice, racism, and bigotry directed at anybody.'"
Michael S. Glickman, president and CEO of the Museum of Jewish Heritage, made this statement to the "Observer" --
"I think Abe Foxman, one of our earlier speakers, put it best as he said we are doing this program as the Statue of Liberty is blindfolded and Emma Lazarus is gagged. I really do think that this is the moment where we need to speak up, and we need to be present and we need to participate in a dialogue that needs to make sure that this never happens again. In this community and elsewhere." (from "Elie Wiesel Reading Illuminates Importance of Modern Refugee Crisis" by Talia Smith)
Wiesel, who died last summer, first published "Night" in 1952 in Yiddish, in Argentina, later in French, and in 1960 in English. In it he wrote "Those who kept silent yesterday will remain silent tomorrow."

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