Mayor signs Holocaust proclamation

Published 10:25 pm Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Suffolk Mayor Linda T. Johnson joined thousands of other mayors worldwide when she signed a proclamation this week honoring the millions of victims of the Nazi Holocaust.

The week of April 19-26 is designated as Days of Remembrance, in memory of the victims of the Holocaust and in honor of the survivors, rescuers and liberators. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum has designated this year’s theme as “Never Again: What You Do Matters” to encourage people to reflect upon the power of individuals to create a more just and humane world, according to a news release from the museum.

About six million Jews and millions of other victims of Nazi persecution, including Gypsies, Poles, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Soviet prisoners of war, political dissidents and the disabled, were targeted for destruction during the state-sponsored persecution and execution by Nazi Germany and its collaborators between 1933 and 1945.

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The resolution signed by Johnson names April 19-26 as days of remembrance in Suffolk, and encourages resident to “strive to overcome intolerance and indifference through learning and remembrance.”

Official events in the nation’s capital will include a keynote address by President Barack Obama on Thursday in the Capitol Rotunda, which will be attended by Holocaust survivors and liberators. In addition, Holocaust survivor and Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel will deliver remarks.

Also on Thursday, the Museum will honor five Polish citizens who have been recognized as “Righteous Among the Nations” for rescuing Jews during the Holocaust. The same day, each rescuer will light a candle with a Holocaust survivor and member of Congress in the national Days of Remembrance ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda.

“The notion that the Holocaust was the result of the actions of one man or a handful of leaders is false,” said Museum Director Sara J. Bloomfield. “The ability to carry out the genocide depended upon the participation of tens of thousands and the acquiescence of millions. This year, as we remember the victims of Nazi Germany and its collaborators, let us reflect on our own responsibilities in a world of rising anti-Semitism and continuing genocide.”

For more information, visit the museum’s Web site at