Posted by: Leah | May 7, 2012

Holocaust and Modern Genocides

Over the last three-four months I have had a conversation several times, which had “oh, you, Jews, so overdo Holocaust”. Whenever I hear that addressed at me or just at the general audience, my first reaction is always – what the hell are you talking about, and why are you saying this to me? Or if I put in mildly, I roll my eyes and say “you don’t get it”. The end of the conversation.

As painful as these opinions are for me, I must admit though they are not entirely incorrect. The problem is not that, we, Jews, overdo Holocaust. You can’t really overdo six million people who were murdered over a short period of time. The problem is that we Jews are ignorant about other tragedies and genocides of the modern times.

I have decided to check this and simply googled – modern genocides. The list was scarily long. I have read it quickly – well, Armenia, Rwanda. Pakistan and Bangladesh, Vietnam – that is about it. Even the ones I know about I can’t really say I understand what sides were involved, what timeline was and what happened. Sadly, there is a long list of modern genocides. We are unaware of many of them. Nothing ever came up in my Jewish education.

It is surprising though that say Jews we remain passive in many cases, and educating about Holocaust we don’t educate about Cambodia, Tibet and Somalia. After all, how can I expect other nations to mourn my losses if I have no idea about theirs?

I have always wanted to be the one who gets it. We can’t really get it without knowing. Time to take some action, I think.

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