The Holocaust survivors as well as the children,
grandchildren and great-grandchildren of survivors and those who perished, for
participating in the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center (FSWC)'UNLESS' video.
'UNLESS', produced to commemorate Yom HaShoah has at this writing been viewed
over 27,000 times on YouTube since it was released last week.
One of the most poignant tributes to 'UNLESS' comes from the blogger at
Clarify.ca who wrote:
"The video . . . is concurrently empowering and troubling. It reminds us
that many have worked hard to forget the lessons of the Holocaust even while its
survivors are still here. What will happen as the final ones pass? Will the
Holocaust become a story from the 20th century too cliched to believe?
Meanwhile, watch this video. It may make you think."
Please view the video and help us reach six million views to commemorate the
six millions Jews who were murdered.
CLICK HERE to see 'UNLESS'
. . . To the students at St. Theresa of Lisieux
high school in York Region, Ontario for their donation of 10, 600 pennies to
FSWC's penny project.
The FSWC penny project is an effort to help students better understand the
enormity of the Holocaust by raising 11 million pennies to represent the 11
million victims of the
Shoah. A group of grade 11 students at St. Theresa, who attended a workshop on
'Lessons and Legacy of the Holocaust', ran a school wide fundraising campaign to
raise the coins.
"We are always looking for new and innovative ways to present the lessons of the
Holocaust to the thousands of students that pass through our doors," said FSWC
Managing Director of Education Melissa Mikel. "By engaging them in this
exercise, students become actively involved in spreading Holocaust education and
keeping the memory of the Holocaust alive."
DID YOU KNOW. . .
. . . Joel Reitman, Spirit of Hope Gold Sponsor along with FSWC
Director Jill Reitman, was featured in the Spring issue of 'Charitable Giving'
for his and his family's philanthropic involvement with Mt. Sinai hospital in
Kol Ha Kavod to the Reitmans for their ongoing support of FSWC and the many
other Jewish organizations and health care institutions to which they remain so
CLICK HERE to read the article on p.10 in 'Charitable Giving'
NEWS FEATURES OF THE WEEK
By Jennifer Rubin in the
The White House: Office of the Press Secretary
FSWC COMMUNITY PRESENTATION
with Sgt. Debbie Bodkin
Join us as Sgt. Debbie
Bodkin, formerly of the Waterloo Regional Police and a member of the UN
Commission of Inquiry for Darfur, talks about her experiences with NATO and the
UN in Sudan.
May 2, 2012 @7 pm
FSWC Tom & Anna Koffler Tolerance Training Center
5075 Yonge St. Ste. 902
To register contact Stephanie Eldridge at 416.864.9735 x 22 or email
FSWC RECEIVES GOVERNMENT PLEDGE TO
TAKE A NEW LOOK AT NAZI WAR CRIMINALS LIVING IN CANADA
It was a small group, but a symbolic one with a
powerful voice. On the eve of Yom HaZikaron FSWC travelled to Parliament Hill in
Ottawa with a group of four Holocaust survivors to request the government do all
it can to deport, after decades of legal wrangling, the two living Nazi war
criminals who remain in Canada.
(L-R) Vera Gara, Howard Chandler, Max Iland, Alex Eisen & Avi Benlolo on
The delegation, including Max Iland, a hidden
child from Belgium, Alex Eisen, who saw Hitler wave to cheering crowds in Vienna
and lived through the horrors of the Budapest ghetto, Howard Chandler, who
survived Auschwitz-Buchenwald and Terezin and Vera Gara, who endured
Bergen-Belsen, joined FSWC President and CEO Avi Benlolo and Communications
Manager Stacey Starkman in meetings with Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship,
Immigration and Culture, Rob Nicholson, Minister of Justice and Attorney General
and York Centre MP Mark Adler in a series of meetings about the urgency of
deporting these criminals.
With Minister Jason Kenney
"In our meetings with the Cabinet Ministers we
received a promise to review the files of Vladimir Katriuk and Helmut
Oberlander- two Nazis who are living comfortably in our country," said Avi
Benlolo, President and CEO of FSWC. "We believe the information we presented to
them will provide sufficient evidence to move forward with the deportation of
these individuals and are pleased that this government, which has done so much
to help the fight against antisemitism and to promote human rights around the
world, has agreed to give this pressing matter the attention it deserves."
"There is a duty for all of us who are alive
With Minister Nicholson
to those who did not survive," explained Max
Iland," adding, "There is no joy in seeing these men expelled from Canada, -
just the knowledge that we have done something on behalf of those who were
killed by these men and hopefully, at last, a sense of justice."
CLICK HERE to read more about this story in the National Post
FSWC ASKS: HOW WOULD YOU MAKE THE WORLD A
"I would like to remind you that we are all
citizens of the world."
So said 13 year old Jessica Copetti, winner of
FSWC's first ever Speakers Idol contest designed to challenge students to
explain how they would make the world a better place.
In an exciting and spirited event attended by
teachers and families, 15 student finalists had the opportunity to impress
celebrity judges Rick Campanelli from ET Canada and Sarah Taylor of Much Music,
as well as FSWC judges with their ideas on how to improve our world.
"Each one of us is here for a purpose to contribute
in our own unique way. Our common goal together should always be to make
the world the best place we can, for you, for me, and for future generations.
For no matter
Speakers Idol winner Jessica Copetti with celebrity judges Sarah Taylor & Rick
how different we may think we are, cultural,
religious, social, economic, black or white, we must never forget the one main
fact, that we all belong to one race, the human race," said Idol winner Jessica
as part of her speech.
According to FSWC judge Victor Arluk, Speakers Idol
was an encouraging event. "Two things come to mind," he explained. "I thought it
was awesome- I was so impressed by a group of young kids, and the event restores
my faith in today's youth. It was inspiring."
MONTREAL HONOURS ISRAEL'S FALLEN HEROES AND
CELEBRATES ISRAELI INDEPENDENCE
A memorial hosted by the Consulate of Israel in
Montreal on Erev Yom HaZikaron paid tribute to fallen soldiers of the IDF and
the victims of terror attacks; of particular note was the memorial candle lit
for Montreal native Jason Friedberg, who made Aliyah in 1991 and was kidnapped
and murdered by Hamas terrorists at the age of 25 while serving in the IDF.
On Thursday, the mood changed from somber to joyous
as thousands of Montrealers took to the streets in celebration of Yom
Ha'atzmaut. The annual Israel Day rally featured video messages from both
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu addressed directly to the Montreal crowd. Dignitaries who joined the
singing and dancing included the mayors from Montreal, Cote St. Luc and
MNA Lawrence Bergman, MP Irwin Cotler, Senator Leo Housakos and the Consul
General of Greece.
"As usual, the turnout for the rally in Montreal
shows the strength and involvement of the Jewish community of Montreal and the
province of Quebec," said Robert Steinman, FSWC Director, Quebec and Maritimes.
"Despite sporadic antisemitic incidents in Quebec, including the recent
vandalism of Hasidic summer homes in the Laurentians, this rally proves that the
Jewish community of Montreal is vibrant and remains a strong element in the
social fabric of the province."
WIESENTHAL CENTER COMMENDS PRESIDENT
OBAMA'S COMMITMENT TO ISRAEL AND "NEVER AGAIN" INITIATIVES
April 24, 2012 - The Simon
Wiesenthal Center applauded President Obama's strong commitment to Israel and
his condemnation of Iran in his speech at the United States Holocaust Memorial
Museum. The Wiesenthal Center also praised the President's new
initiiatives against mass atrocities and genocide. Mark Weitzman, the SWC's
Director of Government Relations, who participated in the day's events said,
"President Obama's commitment to making his promise of "Never Again" to the
survivors of the Shoah a reality was clearly demonstrated today.
beginning the day at the Holocaust Museum, where he reiterated that the US will
stand with Israel, and where he strongly condemned Iran's evil regime, and then
by announcing new and practical steps to combat genocide and mass atrocities on
a global scale, he has made the rhetoric of "Never Again" a reality for all
people. The President's assertion that atrocity prevention is now a "core goal"
of American foreign policy is one that we applaud, and we offer our total
cooperation to this effort."
Weitzman added, "One of the atrocities and genocides the Atrocity Prevention
Board should take immediate action on is the threats faced by Israel from
nations and groups that call for its total destruction."
READ MORE . . .
of Simon Wiesenthal Center
Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies
416.864.9735 x 32