GRAND FORKS AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. --
Every spring our Nation remembers the six million deaths of innocent victims that were humiliated, starved and incinerated for being different. The void that was left by the loss of their lives marked a point in the world history books that will remain blemished for centuries to come. Among the victims were Jews, Poles, Russians, Gypsies, disabled Germans, homosexuals and anyone that did not present the ideological behavior of a German citizen. The animosity toward an "inferior" race and the burden of disabled individuals by the German National Socialist Party validated the human capability to harbor the darkest moments of our existence, with ignorance and the disregard for life.
This month, we commemorate those who fought, those who fled, those who lost their lives and those who survived the Holocaust. According to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the term Holocaust originated from the Greek language, with the meaning of "sacrifice by fire." The Nazis in that era felt threatened by the emergence of diverse cultures in Europe. Like our founding fathers of the United States, immigrants migrated throughout Europe to escape the persecution of beliefs and political views and found refuge in the developing European countries. As a result of the migration flux, the German National Socialist Party felt the obligation to destroy everyone that was not of Aryan origin out of fear of dominance.
As defenders of our nation, freedoms, and part of a diverse force, we must foster and empower our ability to respond to the violations of human rights by "choosing to act" rather than remain silent and futile. Remembrance is not meant to hold on to resentment or to immerse in grief. We must honor the past by changing the future. We would like to leave you with a quote from an Irish writer, George Bernard Shaw: "We are made wise not by the recollection of our past, but by the responsibility for our future." If we do not understand history, we will repeat it.
Schedule of Events:
April 1-10, Traveling Display at the 319th Medical Group
April 11 at 7 p.m., movie at Base Theatre: "The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas"
April 13-17, Holocaust Display at Northern Lights Club Dakota Room
April 16 at 11:30 a.m., Holocaust Remembrance Luncheon at Northern Lights Club. Obtain historical knowledge and wisdom on "Choosing to Act" from our guest speaker from the North Dakota State University, Professor John Cox. RSVP at the following link if interested: https://einvitations.afit.edu/inv/anim.cfm?i=234306&k=0062460A7B51
April 18 at 8 p.m., movie at Base Theatre: "Defiance"
April 20-24, Traveling Display at Base Exchange
April 27-30, Traveling Display at Fitness Center