On Holocaust Memorial Day Israel should think not only of how European Jews died, but of how they lived, Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau said in a special interview with Kol B’Rama. Rabbi Lau, the Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv, survived the Holocaust as a child.
Speaking of educating Israelis regarding the Holocaust, Rabbi Lau said, “It was very important that they knew not only how Jews died in consecration of G-d’s name. It was even more important that they know how those Jews lived to honor the divine name, until they arose to heaven.”
“To learn about the lives of those communities, about their leaders… How Jews’ lives looked before the Holocaust, their faith, their faith in the rabbis, their good and honesty, Torah and good deeds. There is so much to learn from them,” he continued.
“Another message is to know and to appreciate the fact that we have a home of our own,” he said. “With all the difficulties and disagreements and internal wars, this is our home, and we have to hang on to it because we have no other home.”
Finally, he said, “There in Buchenwald were Jews from Poland and Hungary, from Russia and from Lithuania, from Germany and from Thessaloniki and Bulgaria. We always knew how to die together. The time has come for us to know how to live together, too.”