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Study and Theory/
Holocaust Remembrance Day

Zipora Vardi


Yagur, 1962

"We are not to blame" ...

The smell of citrus trees intoxicates the air ... You walk and you dream. Vegetable and aromatic scents of flowers ... The Galilee is covered with trees ... We are strolling in the vineyard of Kibbutz Lohamei Hagetaot. The nascent fruit is giving off a savory balm and the orchard is blooming. And we are rising with the spring winds and do not feel our tired legs. With the tree reviving with green leaves after fall, it seems to me that I, too, am becoming a new creature.

On the steps of the Ghetto Fighters' Museum, the children are sitting and I am giving them an introduction before they enter: "Children, enter quietly, and identify your souls with those of the small children and their great teacher, Janusz Korczak, who boarded the death train in song, as if they had gone out on a long walk from which they never returned. While we took a walk in the gardens and you had danced the dance of spring, they, the little children like you, suffered the agony of affliction and death". And then all the children burst out in a stormy protest: But we were not born then, we were not yet in the world. " And suddenly I had recalled... they are but small children and we are burdening them with the memories of a people tormented with suffering from the period of slavery of Egypt thousands of years ago until the era of Hitler in our times. They did not complain about the sad stories and the tears we immersed them in. But their voice was apologetic: "We are not to blame - We were not yet in the world."

The trees bloom each and every spring. The smell of nards and roses fill the air ...many colorful flowers fill the world. The birds build nests and the storks migrate and the field is spring. We remember the days of bondage and liberation ... the spring and also the suffering.

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