Night – Elie Wiesel
A new book for my Must Read Books list. Night is a memoir of Auschwitz survivor Elie Wiesel, and has been called one of the most important contributions to Holocaust literature. He was just a child when war broke out in Europe. His family were first relocated to a ghetto, then finally evacuated to concentration camps Auschwitz and Buchenwald. His Mother, Father and younger sister didn’t survive the war.
I don’t know why I feel compelled to read these stories. It’s heartbreaking and shocking and terrible. But I feel that it’s important that these stories are never forgotten. There is something important about this terrible history. We must never forget it so that we never allow it to be repeated.
“And then I explain to him how naïve we were, that the world did know and remained silent. And that is why I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Sometimes we must interfere. When human lives are endangered, when human dignity is in jeopardy, national borders and sensitivities become irrelevant. Wherever men and women are persecuted because of their race, religion, or political views, that place must – at that moment – become the center of the universe.”
Elie Wiesel – Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech, December 10th 1986