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.
"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.