Re: Alytus celebrations... #lithuania


Chuck Weinstein <cweinstein@...>
 

Dov,
Please understand that the invitation was extended by an American Peace
Corps worker who is in Alytus and who is working with the remnants of
the Jewish community there to educate and try to remember the past.
They have already begun work on restoring one major synagogue there with
city help.

The individuals who were responsible for the Shoah in Alytus
are mostly gone, but the new Lithuanian government has apologized for
the role of Lithuanians in the Shoah and is at least making an effort.
I merely passed the invitation on. No doubt, some will see this as a
sham; some will see an effort to make amends.

I, who also lost family in that area, have come to accept the Lithuanians of today can't be held responsible for the actions of their grandparents, who, by and large, have never discussed them. An education process has begun in Lithuania, and I have received requests for more information >from several Lithuanians who are trying to get a Jewish perspective on what, during the Soviet era, was a largely ignored part of Lithuanian history. The new government of Lithuania has apologized on behalf of the Lithuanian
people. They have put wartime collaborators on trial.

I don't believe in forgive and forget, but I do believe that the current
mayor of Alytus is, at worst, ignorant of the Shoah. I can't speak for
him and won't, but all are free to accept or reject the invitation in
whatever manner is right to them.

Chuck Weinstein in San Mateo, CA
cweinstein@jewishgen.org


MODERATOR'S NOTE: The subject of Lithuania's history in the Shoah, and the country's current history with regard to its wartime actions, is a controversial and deeply felt issue. We believe that the four messages on this subject -- the original invitation forwarded by Chuck Weinstein, and the messages by Zalman Latzkovich and Prof. Dov Levin, as well as this message by Chuck Weinstein, well reflect this heartfelt exchange. For the LitvakSIG Digest, this thread is now ended. If anyone wishes to continue the discussion, please do so privately.

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