Yom HaShoah 5784/2024

Yom HaShoah, the day of the tempest, is the day established in 1959 as the day for Jews to mark the devastation of the Nazi Holocaust, inflicted on the Jewish people between 1933-1945. Rather than subsuming it within the existing Tisha BeAv commemoration it was deemed worthy of a discrete day of its own. 

Many decades distant from the Shoah, with very few survivors still alive, we might have assumed that it could now be allowed to fade into history. Recent events have shown, sadly, that it remains incumbent on all right thinking people to be fully versed in the truths of the Nazi’s brutal attempt to eradicate the Jewish people during and before the Second World War, not just to respond in an informed way to their distortion  for malevolent purposes but simply because it is ethically and practically essential to be anchored in historical fact. 

A huge number of books about the Shoah have been published, and more appear every year, clearly delineating it as one of the most significant and influential events of the 20th century. It is one of the most emotionally challenging subjects to study, and one of the most important. Arguably, none of us can comprehend the present without being informed about, and understanding, the past. 

Rabbi Dr Charles Middleburgh