StaticMoshe Nachumovitch

To be Jewish. That is all one had to be in order to be prosecuted during that dark time.

To be pushed forcefully out of your home and into a truck, for your apartment to be emptied of all its contents and given to someone else. To be placed in a ghetto with horrible conditions, in apartments accommodating four or five families, when they are meant to accommodate only two souls. To be forced to bear a yellow badge.

For your very humanity to be stripped of you. To be pushed in to cattle car like a peasant and locked in it, in the dark, with no food or water or even a place to relieve one's self during a journey lasting many days and nights. To be separated from your parents, siblings and everyone you know at the camps. To be coerced to work hard labor with no pay and despicable conditions.

For you to have to sleep in a bunk on a wooden shelf now being used as a bed, with barely enough air for all its occupants to breathe. For a number to be engraved on your arm. For your holy books to be burned. To be beaten, abused, physically and mentally, on a daily basis. To be put through hell on earth, for your life to be taken from you in the most cruel manner in human history.

And what did you have to do in order to be on the receiving end of these harsh punishments? You had to be Jewish.

So now, years after these horrors - be proud to be Jewish. Be proud to be of the descent of those who went through what they did. Of those who did not allow death to overcome them. Of those who managed to form a state, get married, create a family, go to work, run as normal a life as possible even after they lived through and suffered extreme pain. Be proud of them. Be proud to be of them.

We must learn about this day. Learn the extent of the tragedy. Know to tell the stories we used to hear as children firsthand. They are slowly leaving us. Study, memorize and remember the stories, so that no one will ever again be afraid to be Jewish.