Author’s harrowing camp visit
A WEST Hampstead author visited Auschwitz last week to encourage support and raise awareness for Holocaust Remembrance Day
A WEST Hampstead author visited Auschwitz last week to encourage support and raise awareness for Holocaust Remembrance Day.
Peter Moss, who is both a writer and performs as a stand-up comedian, visited the former concentration camp to mark the remembrance event on May 2.
Mr Moss, who is Jewish, was struck by his experiences and wants to encourage Holocaust education as a result.
The Lyncroft Gardens resident said: "Most Wednesdays I divide my time between my desk, the gym and a cafe in West Hampstead. This last Wednesday, Holocaust Remembrance Day approaching, I spent in Auschwitz.
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"My parents, as first generation English Jews, were not actually in the camps. Nor, to my knowledge, were any of my family. My parents never spoke of the Holocaust, nor did I learn about it during any of my 12 years in formal Jewish education.
"In a few short hours I learned how, despite all the attendant distractions - the video cameras, the nervous chatter, the closing of business deals on mobile phones - it was still possible, despite not having been born when the atrocities were perpetrated, to summon up horrific images of the desolation, disease and destruction that infested the camps."
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Mr Moss, whose book Across the Borderline: Eight Great Journeys is currently on sale, will be reading in a synagogue on the day of remembrance.
He continued: "Standing atop that pile of rubble, through which barely 60 years ago the ashes of Jews would rise and fill the air, I reflected on the desperate need for continued, enhanced Holocaust education - for everyone, not just Jews.
"Genocide is not the province of Jews alone. Cambodia, Bosnia, Iraq, Rwanda - no-one is immune from the madman and his followers."
Holocaust Remembrance Day is on Friday May 2 and is usually marked with traditional prayer and candle lighting.