Sunday, December 29, 2013

Holocaust Memorial, Berlin City

Reading it in history books is one thing, experiencing it is another.  Recently I had the opportunity of visiting Berlin, Germany and used the opportunity to explore few places of historic importance, including Holocaust Memorial.

Holocaust is a term derived from Holos and Kaustos, together meaning "Burnt as a whole". Close to 6 million Jews were mass murdered by the Nazi Germany during the world war, 70 years ago. Almost two third of Jewish community was wiped out in this execution fuelled by hate. The whole state machinery was used to trace, capture, transport, torture and eventually kill Jews in all possible brutal manners- gas chambers, shooting, and slavery and so on.
Today's generation may not have the real sense of situation to understand how hard the life was, back then in mid 20th century for Jews. While we complain about bad roads, high petrol prices or slow internet, for them surviving another day was greatest reward. Having to see their loved one taken away or killed for no apparent reason can't be explained in words. To know more about these, do watch movies like Schindler's List (1993)
Eventually the war ended, Nazis lost the war and many senior officials who were part of this genocide were caught and punished. However, it is believed that many of them made safe escapes and are living comfortably worldwide.

Back to the memorial, it is located few blocks away from Brandenburg Gate in central Berlin. The memorial consists of 2711 concrete slabs, of various sizes and shapes. Few are very small and others are as high as a tall person. The size of blocks varies over the length and width of the memorial, which is a 4.7 acre campus. Tourists can walk in between these blocks.

There're no markings or names on these blocks. Just the open sky. Holocaust memorial is a reminder of how hard the history can be. It is not a place in-front of which you take pictures of yourself and show off. We left the memorial with silent prayers to those who perished for no fault of theirs.


Renuka said...

Interesting! Berlin has lots of history.

joshi daniel said...

interesting :)

Sankara Subramanian C said...

Looks like lot of history in this place. I will keep it in mind when i visit that part of the world.

Shrinidhi Hande said...

Thanks Renuka, Joshi and Sankara.

Happy New Year

ರಾಜೇಶ್ ನಾಯ್ಕ said...

Whenever someone writes a post about their visit Germany, France, Poland, I usually look for war related posts. Seldom does anyone visit those places forget about writing about them. Here I found one. Good post and thanks for this post.
Rajesh Naik.

Arti said...

So many tales to tell. Thank you for sharing this intriguing place with us.

Deguide said...

Nice recap of the holocast, which is a tragic memory though. Photos are great. Wishing you a very happy new year 2014.

Shrinidhi Hande said...

Thanks Rajesh. Even River Kwai bridge has lots of war memories in it...

Thanks Arti and Umesh sir