Kristallnacht stickers in Germany 370.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
November 9 and 10 mark the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht, also referred to
as the Night of Broken Glass, a pogrom against Jews throughout Nazi Germany and
parts of Austria in 1938.
German authorities looked on without
intervening.The name “Kristallnacht” comes from the shards of broken glass that
littered the streets after Jewish-owned stores, buildings, and synagogues that
had their windows smashed.
At least 91 Jews were murdered in the attacks,
and 30,000 were arrested and incarcerated. Jewish homes, hospitals, and schools
were ransacked, as the attackers demolished buildings and set them on fire.Over
1,000 synagogues were burned (95 in Vienna alone) and over 7,000 Jewish
businesses destroyed or damaged.the oted historian Martin Gilbert writes that no
event in the history of German Jews between 1933 and 1945 was so widely reported
as it was happening, and the accounts from the foreign journalists working in
Germany sent shock waves around the world.
The pretext for the attacks
was the assassination of the German diplomat Ernst vom Rath by Herschel
Grynspan, a German- born Polish Jew resident in Paris.
followed by additional economic and political persecution of Jews, and is viewed
by historians as part of Nazi Germany’s broader racial policy, and the beginning
of the Final Solution and the Holocaust.
It is sad that this historic and
tragic day in the history of the Jewish people will not be commemorated at the
General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America which is taking
place in Jerusalem on this very same day.
Almost 4,000 Jewish leaders
from the USA and Canada will convene in Jerusalem this week to mark the most
important event of organized Jewry in North America.
For these Jewish
leaders and their children born after 1938, Kristallnacht is already just a
historic day in the history of the Jewish people.
There is much
discussion in Jewish Federations and in Israel on how to take care of the
welfare of the remaining elderly Jewish Holocaust survivors in the world
However, this important discussion deals with a current need but
does not deal with the historic issues of the Shoah. Without commemorating and
learning about the events that led up to the Holocaust and murder by the Nazis
and their collaborators of 6million innocent Jewish men,women and children
future generations of Jews are liable not to learn the lessons of the
In Berlin, the capital of Germany, the glass showroom windows of
some 100 businesses will be marred by a jagged pattern of broken glass to
commemorate the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht under the slogan, “Take a
stand against intolerance, racism and anti-Semitism.”
Adhesive film will
be used to cover shop windows to create the illusion of large holes and hairline
fractures to commemorate the violence unleashed during the infamous
These businesses will put the large stickers in their windows to
commemorate the attacks which took place on November 9 and 10,
Violence in the capital city was fuelled by Joseph Goebbels
Hitler’s propaganda minister and the local Nazi party leader.
window stickers will be concentrated in areas in downtown Berlin targeted by the
Nazi looters, including a major shopping street that was a center of the arts
and theater during the Weimar Republic.
Berlin’s major luxury department
store, KaDeWe, will also be participating † Jewish communities throughout Europe
and also in North America will be marking the 75th anniversary of
What a shame that at the most important event on the
calendar of North American Jewry taking place in Jerusalem the capital of the
Jewish People, the 75th Anniversary of Kristallnacht will not be commemorated
and is not even mentioned in the schedule of the Jewish Federations of North
Amerca’s General Assembly.
A people who only live in the present and
forget their past have no future.Michael Jankelowitz is spokesman
emeritus to the international media at the Jewish Agency for Israel