International Holocaust Remembrance Day

January 27 is International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

72 years ago today the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camps in Poland, were liberated by The Soviet Red Army.Jews were taken to the camps by the Nazi regime for either hard labor or for extermination.  It's estimated that at least 1.1 million people were killed at Auschwitz.  

At the time the camps were liberated, approximately 200,000 prisoners had survived.  

About 60 former prisoners are expected to gather on the grounds of Auschwitz today to remember those lost.

Earlier this week, a new film called Not The Last Butterfly premiered a the Manhattan Jewish Community Center.  The film is about a special project using ceramic butterflies to represent each of the 1.5 million children who were murdered during World War II.

According to the film's producers:

"NOT The Last Butterfly tells the inspiring tale of The Butterfly Project, a grass roots arts and education initiative that memorializes the 1.5 million children killed in the Holocaust through global displays of ceramic butterflies… one butterfly painted for each child.  The Butterfly Project's messages of hope and healing are woven together with survivors’ courageous stories of these dark times, including a little-known story of the Terezin concentration camp in Czechoslovakia, where a young Ela Weissberger was imprisoned as a child.  Now a survivor in her eighties, Ela reveals how she and other children were given the strength to endure the Holocaust by an artist and teacher who helped them express the trauma of their experiences through art.  Both a moving account of survival and a lesson in the healing power of art working its magic again, NOT The Last Butterfly offers young and old alike a new way to find hope in one of history’s great tragedies and empowers all of us to take action to create a more peaceful world."


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