I know this a wine blog but Italy does something every January that really means a lot to me. Yes Vino 2011 means a lot to me of course but I’m not talking about wine.
Every January 27, Italy officially remembers the Holocaust. I remember it most days. I lost 80 relatives in the camps. I didn’t know them or their children but I certainly think of them often.
The Embassy of Italy observes the Holocaust Remembrance Day – “Giorno della Memoria” – with a series of events in Washington DC and throughout the United States. Instituted by the Italian Parliament in July 2000, it honors the victims of the Nazi and Fascist regimes, those who perished in the Holocaust, and the heroism of those who risked their lives to help the persecuted.
“Even in the darkest moments of European history – recalls Italian Ambassador Giulio Terzi di Sant’Agata – brave and honest men, who perhaps mightn’t have been capable of extraordinary deeds in ordinary circumstances, were able to fight, were able to use the weapons of their strengths, their integrity and their intelligence to oppose what was wrong and inhuman.”
Remembrance Day events will be held in Italian Consulates and Cultural Institutes in major US cities. In New York, the Centro Primo Levi jointly with the Consulate General of Italy, the Italian Cultural Institute, and the Italian academic institutions in New York will observe Giorno della Memoria with programs held on January 27 and 30.
Today, between 9:00 am and 4:00 pm in front of the Consulate General of Italy at 688 Park Avenue (68th Street) they read the names of the Jews deported from Italy and the former Italian territories.
I love this fact. That Italian institutions, as people and governments, symbolically remember all the victims of the Holocaust and take a stand together against prejudice, intolerance, and genocide.
For articles about the day and the events, check out I-Italy.org, a fabulous resource for anyone following Italy in the United States.