Remembrance day 4 may 2016

Below is listed the speech Maurice Elzas. It was his lecture on May 4, 2016 as part of the commemoration.

When I think of the war, a poem by Leo Vroman immediately comes up at me:

(Dutch orinial)

Kom vanavond met verhalen
Hoe de oorlog is verdwenen
En herhaal ze honderd malen
Alle malen zal ik wenen.


Come this evening with stories
How the war has disappeared
And repeat them a hundred times
All the times I will weep.

We were children.
Jewish children.
But, as for us, we could be as good Chinese, Hottentot or else different.

We thought it was some kind of game.
Only later, when we were among the whistling bullets, falling bombs and
the 12.5 million refugees were we discovered that it was serious.
Refuge was an illusion.

We fled or went into hiding were arrested and taken away.
Tried to put it in our world of play and fairy tales.
But it did not …

About 70 years ago we came, the few survivors home.
Home Why?

In our house lived another lady.
They gave us a cup of tea from Mama’s cups.
But they were not Mama.
Grandma’s silver spoons were already changed ownership.
Many did not even know who we were.

Some, from the camps, came back as a headstrong, wicked
approachable wolf children.
Others were alarmingly silent and submissive.
All fundamentally changed.
About one thing we all agreed:

Everything was different.
A new life, driven by ideals …

What we now experience tells us that man is, unfortunately, not much has changed.

But we all still hear the voice of the people who can retell it anymore. And we continue to feel guilty that we still have it and they do not.

We no longer trust that can not happen again such a disaster. And with reason.

Of the 135,000 Jews who lived here before the war, there were more than 100,000, relatively smoothly discharged. While the King of Denmark in protest with a Star of David was walking on the street. We may feel Moos not one of us?

And how is it now with our fellow countrymen?

If you come along, read the inscription on the Jewish Memorial:

“Do not cut off from the gate of his residence”

there. Eradicated or ejected comes very close to the same down. Note that there is ‘residence’ and not land, ethnicity or religion. Let us remember that when we meet each other on the street, on the train, on
Facebook or in the supermarket. We, all together, can make a difference!

Finally, we think of all those who could not be buried in their hometown. An uneasy feeling that you can show the best in poetry. Here in one verse of Jalal al-Din Rumi, a poet / philosopher of the thirteenth century.

Listen to the reed flute, how it tells
and how it complains, tormented by the pain of parting!
“Since I was cut from the cane of my country,
cries the whole world on my sounds.
Seeking a heart broken by divorce grief,
to whom I can talk about the pain of separation ..