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Irwim Cotlers


Irwin Cotler, posted October 12, 2011

Ottawa – Liberal Justice and Human Rights Critic, Irwin Cotler, delivered the following in light of the 70th Anniversary of Babi Yar:
“Mr. Speaker, seventy years ago, in one of the worst and horrific atrocities of the Holocaust –33,731 Jews were murdered in just two days at Babi Yar – an unspeakable horror too terrible to be believed, but not too terrible to have happened.
“For fifty years, the fact that the murdered men, women and children were Jews was not even acknowledged – their identity simply erased – effectively killing the victims yet again.
“The compelling lessons of this horrific atrocity need not only be heeded but acted upon – the danger of silence and indifference in the face of evil; the danger of averting our eyes from the unspeakable injustice of mass murder and its denial; the danger of inaction in the face of impunity.
It is with – and because of the remnant of survivors in my constituency as in the Ukraine – that we remember that each murdered person had an identity that each was a universe – and that we promise that NEVER AGAIN will we be indifferent to racism and hate. NEVER AGAIN will we be silent in the face of evil. NEVER AGAIN will we be indulgent to anti-Semitism and mass atrocity anywhere.
May Babi Yar not be just an act of remembrance – which it is – but a remembrance to act – which it must be.
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