Reading List

Reading list #3

A selection of recent articles and links on the Holocaust from around the internet.

The Guardian reports the death of Olympic swimmer and Hungarian Holocaust survivor Eva Szekely (1927-2020). Though she won gold for her country at the 1956 Helsinki Olympics, she was always made to feel an outsider. Read this story all the way to the end for a genuinely chilling conclusion.

The life of Ukrainian survivor Max Privler (1931-2020) is remembered in this report from Haaretz. Aged only 11, Max survived a Nazi mass shooting and witnessed the murder of his parents and siblings. He then joined a partisan group and later fought with the Red Army against German occupiers. The article includes a short video of Max recalling his experiences.

A report at highlights a bipartisan effort to approve a new Holocaust memorial centre in Arizona. Most of the USA’s Holocaust museums and memorials have been opened in Democrat-leaning states, but there are now efforts to encourage “red” states to join suit while survivors are still able to tell their stories.

Extracts from the unpublished memoir of a Russian Jew imprisoned by the Nazis in wartime Italy feature in this article by Alexander Modonese for The Link. He describes the life of his great-grandmother Clara Geisman, who moved to Italy in 1928 to pursue her education. Modonese hopes to find a publisher for Clara’s book, and it certainly sounds like it would be a fascinating read.

The life of constitutional historian Henry J Abraham (1921-2020), who fled Nazi Germany in 1937, is remembered in the Washington Post. Abraham settled in the United States but returned to the country of his birth in 1945, to help locate documents to be used in the trials of Nazi criminals at Nuremberg. He went on to forge a reputation as one of the foremost scholars of the history of the US Supreme Court.

The Washington Post reports on an incident involving a Nazi flag at a Bernie Sanders rally. A man in the audience waved the flag, which was particularly offensive given Sanders’s family connection to the Holocaust. While taking part in the popular US TV show Finding Your Roots, Sanders learned about the fate of Jewish relatives in Europe during WW2, which was previously unknown to him.

The Simon Wiesenthal Centre has obtained a list of Nazis in Argentina who held Credit Suisse accounts. The Times of Israel reports that efforts are now underway to determine if funds in the still-active accounts includes monies looted from the Nazis’ victims.

A number of British tabloids report the discovery of a photo album bound in human skin. Metro carries the story of the gruesome find, which was made by a collector who noticed a tattooed image on the album’s cover. It was passed to the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum for analysis, who concluded the item was “without doubt proof of a crime against humanity”.

A 7th grade student from Upstate New York writes to their local paper about the important of Holocaust education. Everett Mamousette’s school class met survivors, and Everett writes “I have been enlightened to the fact that the world needs good people to be a good place, and hard work is needed to maintain both those things.”

Chana Voola has an interesting take on what makes the Holocaust distinct from other genocides in world history. She writes, in a blog for the Times of Israel, that the examples of the Nazis truly shows that any society is capable of the most horrific acts: “Being an educated person does not mean one is automatically more kind-hearted.  We can talk ourselves into anything, if there is a research paper to prove it.”

If you have seen a relevant article that could be included in next week’s reading list, why not get in touch via the contact page, or on Twitter, @holocaustreader?

The header image of Eva Szekely comes from a newsreel featuring her 1952 Olympic victory, found on YouTube.

Inclusion of articles on this list does not necessarily indicate endorsement of opinions expressed within them.

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