Edmonton Journal | Mar. 25, 2004 | V.G. Wood
Letter to Editor

Weary of campaign to avenge Holocaust

I personally don't believe in "An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth." However, Shoshana Szlachter, western regional director of B'nai Brith Canada, appears to. Her quote in "Alleged Nazi insists he fought against Germans," (Edmonton Journal, March 19, 2004)regarding Josef Furman, was as follows: "Men, women, children and elderly people perished in the Holocaust. They were put in the gas chambers or they were shot, irrespective of their frailty or medical conditions." The quote seems to suggest retribution.

As an impressionable 11-year-old in 1945, I was very aware of the war and the atrocities that had been committed -- the radio was always on. Children may not fully understand what they hear, but death and war were certainly a reality of childhood in those years.

My point being, I was raised to respect all creation. I grew up in a small centre whose business and professional core was predominantly Jewish. Over the years I have tried to understand this era of history. I have felt disbelief, revulsion and empathy.

The Holocaust was a terrible crime against humanity and stands, never to be forgotten, with other examples of man's inhumanity to man.

But I am weary of being battered and bruised by B'nai Brith's continuous condemnations and reminders regarding a terrible event in the past which none of us are able to change. Are revenge and punishment the only answers?

We are all our Creator's invention and what we do with our creation is up to us. However, I believe the creator would be sorely tried with our inability to practise his teaching of faith, hope, charity, forgiveness and love.

Enough already!

V.G. Wood