This Sunday evening and Monday is Holocaust Memorial Day, an appropriate day to visit the Museum of Jewish Heritage: A Living Memorial to the Holocaust. The museum, which is located at the Edmond J. Safra Plaza, 36 Battery Place will be having special programming in honor of this day, known as “Yom Hashoah” in Hebrew.
Community leaders will join together on Sunday evening, April 7, at Congregation Temple Emanu-El on Fifth Avenue and 65th Street to commemorate Yom Hashoah at the largest and oldest Holocaust remembrance event in New York. Tickets are required and can be ordered by calling 646-437-4227.
On Monday the Museum is open and free of charge, but a donation is suggested. Visitors will learn the history of the Holocaust, the unique political climate that led up to what proved to be the worst calamity in Jewish History, and the events and experiences of individuals that marked this tragic time.
One aspect of the Holocaust visitors can explore is the relationship of the not-yet State of Israel to the events surrounding World War II and the Holocaust. In a noteworthy document which is in the possession of the Shapell Manuscript Foundation, David Ben Gurion expresses his opinion that if the State Israel had been established even as late as 1937, before the advent of World War II, much of the horror of the Holocaust could have been prevented. In the document, a letter written in early 1956 to Professor Hanoch Albeck in Jerusalem, Ben Gurion states:
I received your letter. All this would be correct if the State had been established not in 1948 but in 1937 – and if millions of Jews in Europe had not been annihilated, the situation of the State of Israel would have been entirely different. What, after all, are eleven years in the history of our people which stretches back thousands of years? But so short a time difference is of great and serious significance to our people and the future of Israel.
For more information about a visit to the Museum call 646-437-4202.