Holocaust Museum Quotes

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This whole city’s a Freudian slip of the tongue, a concrete hard-on for America’s deeds and misdeeds. Slavery? Manifest Destiny? Laverne & Shirley? Standing by idly while Germany tried to kill every Jew in Europe? Why some of my best friends are the Museum of African Art, the Holocaust Museum, the Museum of the American Indian, the National Museum of Women in the Arts. And furthermore, I’ll have you know, my sister’s daughter is married to an orangutan.
Paul Beatty (The Sellout)
To permit this gross new revelation to fade, or be forgiven, would be to devalue our most essential standard of what constitutes the unpardonable. And for what? For the reputation of a man who turns out to be not even a Holocaust denier but a Holocaust affirmer. There has to be a moral limit, and either this has to be it or we must cease pretending to ourselves that we observe one.
Christopher Hitchens
All things can be done whisper museum ovens of a war that freedom won.
Leonard Cohen
Comey assured the ADL that the FBI would continue to “require every new FBI special agent and intelligence analyst in training to visit the Holocaust Museum” because “we want them to learn about abuse of power on a breathtaking scale.
E. Michael Jones (Jewish Privilege)
Thou shalt not be a victim. Thou shalt not be a perpetrator. Above all, thou shalt not be a bystander. (U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum qtd. in Halter)
Ken Wytsma (Pursuing Justice: The Call to Live and Die for Bigger Things)
(For the record, the number of actual “righteous Gentiles” officially recognized by Yad Vashem, Israel’s national Holocaust museum and research center, for their efforts in rescuing Jews from the Holocaust is under 30,000 people, out of a European population at the time of nearly 300 million—or .001 percent. Even if we were to assume that the official recognition is an undercount by a factor of ten thousand, such people remain essentially a rounding error.)
Dara Horn (People Love Dead Jews: Reports from a Haunted Present)
In Sunday school, they always make hell out to be a place for people like Hitler, not a place for his victims. But [...] if only born-again Christians go to heaven, then the piles of suitcases and bags of human hair displayed at the Holocaust Museum represent thousands upon thousands of men, women, and children suffering eternal agony at the hands of an angry God. If salvation is available only to Christians, then the gospel isn't good news at all. For most of the human race, it is terrible news.
Rachel Held Evans (Evolving in Monkey Town: How a Girl Who Knew All the Answers Learned to Ask the Questions)
chairman of the Washington Post Company, in a one-word e-mail I received the morning after the story appeared. A German filmmaker, who happened to be visiting Washington’s Holocaust Memorial Museum on the day the story was published, decided to make a documentary about Shin’s life.
Blaine Harden (Escape from Camp 14: One Man's Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to Freedom in the West)
My classmates seemed wholly unconcerned when I pointed out the fact that, based on what we'd been taught in Sunday School about salvation, the Jews killed in the gas chambers at Auschwitz went straight to hell after their murders, and the piles of left-behind eyeglasses and suitcases displayed at the Holocaust Museum represent hundreds of thousands of souls suffering unending torture at the hand of the very God to whom they had cried out for rescue. I waited for a reaction, only to be gently reminded that perhaps the dorm-wide pajama party wasn't the best time to talk about the Holocaust.
Rachel Held Evans (Searching for Sunday: Loving, Leaving, and Finding the Church)
We had seen France in flames. We had seen the sun shining on the sea. We had grown old in the upper altitudes. We had bent our glance upon a distant earth as over the cases of a museum. We had sported in the sunlight with the dust of enemy fighter planes. Thereafter we had dropped earthward again and flung ourselves into the holocaust. What we could offer up, we had sacrificed. And in that sacrifice we had learnt even more about ourselves than we should have done after ten years in a monastery. We had come forth again after ten years in a monastery.
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (Flight To Arras)
It took me another few hours to realize that I had just spent an entire day at a Jewish museum that made no mention of the Holocaust. It was as if the Jews of the shtetlach from that first display case had just vanished, disappeared into history for no apparent reason. It was as though there had been no reason for the new influx of Jews after the war. It was as though history, and Birobidzhan itself, had just happened. That view of history is the post-Soviet condition. What happened to people - to families that still carry the memory, whose physical and psychic scars are plainly visible - was so enormous and so inexplicable, and, worst of all, the victims and their executioners were so intimately entangled, so indistinguishable at times, that, following a brief and torturous period of examination, the country's population has conspired to treat it as a force of nature.
Masha Gessen (Where the Jews Aren't: The Sad and Absurd Story of Birobidzhan, Russia's Jewish Autonomous Region (Jewish Encounters Series))
I track pieces of Nazi-stolen art,” she said, after a moment. “And what I’ve noticed is just how far each object travels. Take Van Gogh’s Portrait of Dr. Gachet. It was painted in 1880 in Auvers-sur-Oise about a month before Van Gogh committed suicide. The work changed hands four times—from Van Gogh’s brother to his brother’s widow to two independent collectors—before it was acquired by the Städel in Frankfurt. When Nazis plundered the museum in 1937, it was seized by Hermann Göring, who auctioned it off to a German collector. But here’s where things get interesting: that collector sold it to Siegfried Kramarsky, a Jewish banker who fled the Holocaust for New York in 1938. It’s remarkable, isn’t it? That the painting wound up, after all that, in Jewish hands, and directly from a Göring associate?” Mira fingered her headphones. She seemed suddenly shy. “I suppose I think we need God for the same reason we need art.” “Because it’s nice to look at?” “No.” Mira smiled. “Because it shows us what’s possible.
Chloe Benjamin (The Immortalists)
On May 21, 1941, Camp de Schirmeck, Natzweiler-Struthof, located 31 miles southwest of Strasbourg in the Vosges Mountains, was opened as the only Nazi Concentration Camp established on present day French territory. Intended to be a transit labor camp it held about 52,000 detainees during the three and a half years of its existence. It is estimated that about 22,000 people died of malnutrition and exertion while at the concentration camp during those years. Natzweiler-Struthof was the location of the infamous Jewish skeleton collection used in the documentary movie “Le nom des 86” made from data provided by the notorious Hauptsturmführer August Hirt. On November 23, 1944, the camp was liberated by the French First Army under the command of the U.S. Sixth Army Group. It is presently preserved as a museum. Boris Pahor, the noted author was interned in Natzweiler-Struthof for having been a Slovene Partisan, and wrote his novel “Necropolis,” named for a large, ancient Greek cemetery. His story is based on his Holocaust experiences while incarcerated at Camp de Schirmeck.
Hank Bracker
For the dead and the living, we must bear witness. Engraved upon the wall of the U.S. Holocaust Museum Washington D.C.
Eli Wiesel
UNITED STATES HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL MUSEUM The assertions, arguments, and conclusions contained herein are those of the author or other contributors. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
Franz Leopold Neumann (Behemoth: The Structure and Practice of National Socialism, 1933-1944)
As Cummings pointed out when the museum opened in 2014, there are more Holocaust museums in the United States than in Israel, Germany, and Poland combined, but not one devoted to slavery.
Susan Neiman (Learning from the Germans: Race and the Memory of Evil)
In 2011 he published Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy. Metaxas’s version of Dietrich Bonhoeffer bore an uncanny resemblance to conservative American evangelicals, in that he battled not only Nazis but the liberal Christians purportedly behind the rise of Nazism. Once again, evangelicals emerged as heroes. Evangelicals loved the book. Meanwhile, historians panned it; the director of the U.S. Holocaust Museum’s Programs on Ethics, Religion, and the Holocaust described it as “a terrible oversimplification and at times misinterpretation of Bonhoeffer’s thought, the theological and ecclesial world of his times, and the history of Nazi Germany.” 19
Kristin Kobes Du Mez (Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation)
In the Museum of the Diaspora in Tel Aviv, written in large letters on the wall, I saw the answer: “A rabbi whose community does not disagree with him is not really a rabbi, and a rabbi who fears his community is not really a man.” The quotation is from Rabbi Israel Salanter, who died six years before Hitler was born; he flourished in Lithuania and Russia, so almost certainly some of his descendants died in the Nazis’ hell fires. I don’t know what he would say about Holocaust “revisionism” if he were alive today, but I do know that those words of his are displayed in the Museum of the Diaspora because the critical spirit they embody is the only spirit that can save the Jews, and the rest of us, from political meddling with history.
Jonathan Rauch (Kindly Inquisitors: The New Attacks on Free Thought)
One of the most poignant of architectural metaphors is to be seen in the Holocaust Museum in Berlin by Daniel Libeskind (Figure 107). Its form abounds in sharp points from the plan to the shape of openings. Its cladding in zinc copper titanium alloy adds menace to the razor-sharp edges and angles. The apparently arbitrary positioning of openings in the elevations originate in lines connecting the addresses of Jewish victims of the Nazis across Berlin. Vigorously clashing shapes put the finishing touch to a building which is a most eloquent memorial to the suffering of the Jews in the Second World War. It is the architectural equivalent of Picasso’s Guernica .
Peter F. Smith (The Dynamics of Delight)
All right. When I was hiding in a small town in Poland with my mother, of course I didn’t have many toys. In fact, I had only two—a doll and a little bear I later named Refugee. He was one of those Steiff bears, but he stayed with me after the war and into adulthood and now he’s in the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington. The copy they made of him to sell in the gift shop is one of their most popular items.
R.D. Rosen (Such Good Girls: The Journey of the Holocaust's Hidden Child Survivors)
God tells us why: “I … have heard their cry because of their taskmasters, for I know their sorrows. … So I have come down to deliver them …” (Ex. 3:7–8). The God who dwells outside of time knows our pain because He lived it. God’s knowledge of our bitter encounters with sorrow are not limited to theory or to the observation of a protected angelic form touring this holocaust museum we call earth. He came down and lived here as one of us. “Man of sorrows, what a name, for the Son of God who came.
Dick Brogden (Live Dead Joy: 365 Days of Living and Dying with Jesus)
At the zoo, I stood in front of the primate cage listening to a woman marvel at how “presidential” the four-hundred-pound gorilla looked sitting astride a shorn oaken limb, keeping a watchful eye over his caged brood. When her boyfriend, his finger tapping the informational placard, pointed out the “presidential” silverback’s name coincidentally was Baraka, the woman laughed aloud, until she saw me, the other four-hundred-pound gorilla in the room, stuffing something that might have been the last of a Big Stick Popsicle or a Chiquita banana in my mouth. Then she became disconsolate, crying and apologizing for having spoken her mind and my having been born. “Some of my best friends are monkeys,” she said accidentally. It was my turn to laugh. I understood where she was coming from. This whole city’s a Freudian slip of the tongue, a concrete hard-on for America’s deeds and misdeeds. Slavery? Manifest Destiny? Laverne & Shirley? Standing by idly while Germany tried to kill every Jew in Europe? Why some of my best friends are the Museum of African Art, the Holocaust Museum, the Museum of the American Indian, the National Museum of Women in the Arts. And furthermore, I’ll have you know, my sister’s daughter is married to an orangutan.
Paul Beatty (The Sellout)
In Sunday school, they always make hell out to be a place for people like Hitler, not a place for his victims. But if my Sunday school teachers and college professors were right, then hell will be populated not only by people like Hitler and Stalin, Hussein and Milosevic but by the people that they persecuted. If only born-again Christians go to heaven, then the piles of suitcases and bags of human hair displayed at the Holocaust Museum represent thousands upon thousands of men, women, and children suffering eternal agony at the hands of an angry God. If salvation is available only to Christians, then the gospel isn’t good news at all. For most of the human race, it is terrible news.
Rachel Held Evans (Faith Unraveled: How a Girl Who Knew All the Answers Learned to Ask Questions)
* I visited the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C., and was deeply moved by its depiction of Nazi atrocities against the Jews. What struck me most personally, however, was a section early in the exhibit that demonstrated how the early discrimination laws against the Jews—the “Jews Only” shops, park benches, rest rooms, and drinking fountains—were explicitly modeled on segregation laws in the United States.
Philip Yancey (What's So Amazing About Grace?)
Even at Yad Vashem, the country’s official Holocaust archive, museum and memorial in Jerusalem, the Auschwitz Report was filed away without the names of its authors. When historians referred to the report, they tended to speak of ‘two young escapees’ or ‘two Slovak escapees’ as if the identities of the men who had performed this remarkable deed were incidental. What might explain this relative lack of recognition? It certainly did not help Wetzler that he was out of sight of western writers and historians and, therefore, mostly out of mind. As for Rudi, while he was accessible, and a model interviewee, he was not an easy sell in Israel or in the mainstream Jewish diaspora. Those audiences would have thrilled to hear the story of his escape and his mission to tell the world of Auschwitz, but he never left it at that. He would not serve up a morally comfortable narrative in which the only villains were the Nazis. Instead he always insisted on hitting out at Kasztner and the Hungarian Jewish leadership, as well as the Jewish council in Slovakia. He faulted them for failing to pass on his report and, in the Slovak case, for compiling the lists that had put him on a deportation train in the first place.
Jonathan Freedland (The Escape Artist: The Man Who Broke Out of Auschwitz to Warn the World)
Jews have grown so obsessed with Israel that the overt and covert signals of anti-Semitism beamed from the interior of the Trump campaign appeared to be disregarded by people like Adelson and Bernie Marcus, the Home Depot co-founder and Republican mega-donor who seemed wowed by candidate Trump’s solemn promise to immediately move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and to back Likud’s expansive settlement policy on the West Bank. Never mind that both moves were purely symbolic: Netanyahu was going to do what he was going to do regardless of Washington’s feckless policies or the location of its ambassador. What mattered was Israel, pure and simple. It was something of a comeuppance when President Trump immediately backed off his promise of an embassy move, swiftly sent a letter to Prime Minister Netanyahu scolding him on settlements, and promised a new push for Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. But beyond leaked word that Adelson was really, really, really angry, no apologies or mea culpas were forthcoming from American Jewry. Trump did make Israel a stop on his first trip abroad—the earliest visit to the Jewish state by any American president. But before his arrival, his White House made no comment on the two Israeli-American journalists who were denied visas to follow the president into Saudi Arabia, where he happily danced with swords and his commerce secretary boasted that there had been no protestors. Once he had landed in Jerusalem, Trump did note that he “just got back from the Middle East,” a moment memorialized by Ron Dermer, Israel’s ambassador to the United States, covering his face with his hand in frustration or amazement. Trump scheduled all of fifteen minutes for a stop at Yad Vashem, Israel’s revered Holocaust memorial and museum, and in his brief remarks there—from 1:27 to 1:34 p.m.—he managed both to extol the Jewish people and let slip his cherished stereotypes: “Through persecution, oppression, death, and destruction, the Jewish people have persevered. They have thrived. They’ve become so successful in so many places.” Ever solicitous, Netanyahu thanked the president, who “in so few words said so much.” No one took note of the irony that the Holocaust survivor who greeted Trump, Margot Herschenbaum, had been rescued in 1939 by the Kindertransport, which had whisked her out of Germany and had saved thousands of other Jewish children. Refugees like Herschenbaum had been denied entry to the United States during World War II, just as Trump has steadfastly denied the entry of Syrian children fleeing war and death in their own country.
Jonathan Weisman ((((Semitism))): Being Jewish in America in the Age of Trump)
After the war ended, Captain Schroder was honored in the Hall of the Righteous at Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Museum,
Alexa Kang (Shanghai Story (Shanghai Story, #1))
We were taught, growing up, that man was basically good, but that evil is a force that must be resisted. Although you learn about the Holocaust in school, how is a kid supposed to come to grips with the notion that human beings could be so evil as to trap and incinerate millions of their fellow human beings? This is not a rhetorical question; the answer is far from simple. The Nazi ideology dehumanized Jews to such a point that the industry of mass murder relied on numbed obedience. Did Hitler’s volcanic hatred seep like acid into the soul of the Nazis who ran Auschwitz and other death camps? How did mass brainwashing happen? My head felt like it was exploding. The message of the museum, “Never again,” kept reverberating in my mind. We can’t let this happen again. And then the realization came that we had done something like this in America with slavery. The systemic evil of Nazism was the closest thing to the Southern society that relied on slave labor. I was torn by the connection between these two realities of history, different in time and place, but with a common root, a warped sense that some people are superior to others, a supremacy trapped in its own frozen heart.
Mitch Landrieu (In the Shadow of Statues: A White Southerner Confronts History)