Holocaust survivor Eve Kugler
Holocaust survivor Eve Kugler Sam Churchill

At a unique and historic event to be held on November 9th 2022, at the Crossroads of Civilizations Museum in Dubai, Holocaust Survivor Eve Kugler (91) will tell the story of her survival and experience during the Holocaust to an audience in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The event in the UAE at the Crossroads of Civilizations Museum, founded by H.E. Ahmed Obaid Al Mansoori, will stand as the inaugural event of the new March of the Living (MOL) Chapter in the Gulf, together with MOTL Ambassador in the Gulf, Eitan Neishlos.

The event will mark the 84th anniversary of Kristallnacht, or the November Pogrom, when hundreds of synagogues were burned across Germany and thousands of Jewish-owned businesses were damaged or destroyed by Nazi vandals. Approximately 100 Jews were murdered and around 30,000 more were rounded up and sent to concentration camps, marking an ominous turning point in history, and a key juncture in the evolution of the mass genocide of the Jews carried out by Nazi Germany during WWII.

Eve, who was only seven years old when the Germans broke into her home on that fateful night, will tell her story for the first time to an audience in the UAE, and will also visit a school where she will meet with Jewish and Muslim children.

Along with the keynote address by Eve Kugler, speakers at the event in Dubai will include: Paul Goldenberg, senior representative of the Miller Center for Community Protection and Resilience at Rutgers University and former member of the US Government Homeland Security Advisory Council; Commissioner Karl Heeren, Chief of External and International Relations for Antwerp Police in Belgium; and Jordana Cutler, Director of Public Policy - Israel & the Jewish Diaspora at Meta.

In addition to this special event marking 84 years since "Kristallnacht / the November Pogrom” the International March of the Living is launching its third interfaith campaign of unity to remember Kristallnacht, under the title, “Let There Be Light.” The campaign is aiming to commemorate the past but also to raise awareness about the current atmosphere of intolerance, prejudice, and racism that exists in the world today, by participating in a public educational effort that will be joined by people of all faiths and backgrounds.

Dr. Shmuel Rosenman and Phyllis Greenberg Heideman, Chairman and President of the International March of the Living, said, “The International March of the Living organization has devoted itself over the past 35 years to Holocaust education and the fight against antisemitism along with all forms of hatred. We strongly believe that the answer to extremism and antisemitism is education.”

This year, the International March of the Living together with its partners the Neishlos Foundation; Crossroads of Civilizations Museum in the UAE; the Combat Antisemitism Movement (CAM); META; the Austrian Jewish community; and the Miller Center for Community Protection and Resilience at Rutgers University, will mark the 84th anniversary of Kristallnacht with commemorative events in Jerusalem, Vienna, and Dubai - the first event of its kind in the Arab and Islamic world.

Eitan Neishlos, President of the Neishlos Foundation and March of the Living ambassador to the Gulf States, said: “As a grandson of a survivor, who was saved by a Christian family later murdered by the Nazis, I have a responsibility to hold the torch of memory, and feel a deep duty to bring the lessons and the memory of the Holocaust to all communities and all faiths. All humanity must hear the stories and learn the lessons of the Holocaust. I am grateful to the Emirati leadership for their courage and clear voice promoting tolerance. I am hopeful, thanks to the work of March of the Living, and with the inspiration of Eve’s story in particular, we will greatly contribute to promoting understanding and mutual respect for all peoples.”

H.E. Ahmed Obaid Al Mansoori, founder of the Crossroads of Civilizations Museum said, “As a student of history, I acknowledge the Holocaust as the worst crimes against the Jewish people. As a Muslim, I cannot stand by and allow the memory of the victims, and the voices of the survivors, to fade into history. I am privileged to host this historic commemoration event at the Crossroads of Civilizations Museum, where we established the first Holocaust Memorial Gallery in the Arab and Islamic world, with the goal of learning from history’s lessons for a better future. I am honored to host a Holocaust survivor, Eve Kugler, who’s an essential voice of hope, who will be educating us all about the horrors that she endured as a child during Kristallnacht.”

In Vienna, a "March of Light" from the Heldenplatz to the Judenplatz will take place, concluding with a commemoration ceremony.

In Jerusalem, a moving ceremony will take place in which Holocaust survivors who witnessed Kristallnacht will be recognized, and messages of hope from around the world will be projected onto the ancient walls of the Old City.