A quiet voice of conscience

August 16, 2006

In News

Marchers rallying for peace


I am the woman letter writer Sacha Diab referred to whose placard at the Aug. 12 peace march read, “I am the child of Holocaust survivors. They taught me to never do the same to anyone, anywhere.”

I was very surprised at the response by fellow marchers to my message. At least 20 people came up to me to express their appreciation for the sign and for my presence. Several stopped me to photograph the placard. This was extremely gratifying because in such a devastating situation, one which I can do so little to ameliorate, my sign provided some people a moment of relief, if not hope.

It is with tremendous dismay that I watch how the terrible ignorance of history and of the present reality — an ignorance so clearly fuelled by the media — turns otherwise decent people into warmongers. If all those individuals, particularly my fellow Jews, would inform themselves of what really happened to create the state of Israel and of what is actually happening now, they would be unable to stomach, much less support, the American-led Israeli political and military machine.

The many, many members of my dead extended family whom I have mourned all my life died in vain, for their deaths have been used to justify equally horrible barbarism committed by the so-called victims. It is heartbreaking for all of us and, notably, for my mother, who at 82 is still condemned to witness endless slaughter, this time carried out by the descendants of the very people she suffered with in Auschwitz.

Vera Szoke, Toronto