Sunday, 28 Feb 2021 - 16 of Adar, 5781

European Parliament President on Holocaust Remembrance Day: ‘If understanding is impossible, knowing is necessary’

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76 years after the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau which revealed the horror of the Nazi genocide of the Jewish people, the European Parliament’s President David Sassoli addressed a remote ceremony marking International Holocaust Remembrance Day. 

He said: “What happened in that concentration camp and in all the other death factories scattered throughout Europe, gives us a responsibility and imposes on us the obligation to watch over and keep the memory alive. As Primo Levi wrote, “if understanding is impossible, knowing is necessary”.

“Remembering is therefore a duty, so that what has happened cannot happen again because each time it places us in front of the darker side of humanity, the total loss of the most basic feeling of compassion,’’ he added.

“And now we must do it almost without the voices of those who lived it: the passage of time means we have to look at these events with the force of reason and without the precious help of those who experienced the devastation, the ferocity, and the ruinous force of the nationalist devil.’’

“Europe itself was born as a symbol of openness, cooperation, awareness of a common destiny. It was born from a great vision, from a courageous ideal that drew strength from such a huge tragedy as the one caused by the Second World War and the horrific Nazi designs,’’ Sassoli stressed.

“This is why all of us Europeans must share responsibility for that custody: the custody of democracy and Europe.’’


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