R 201622Z MAR 19
MSGID/GENADMIN/CMC WASHINGTON DC MRA MP//
SUBJ/2019 HOLOCAUST DAYS OF REMEMBRANCE//
REF/A/PUBLIC LAW 96-388/07Oct80/AN ACT TO ESTABLISH THE UNITED STATES HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL COUNCIL//
REF/B/UNITED STATES HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL MUSEUM/WWW.USHMM.ORG/”WHAT IS GENOCIDE?”//
REF/C/JEWISH VIRTUAL LIBRARY/WWW.JEWISHVIRTUALLIBRARY.ORG/”WHAT MAKES THE HOLOCAUST UNIQUE?”//
REF/D/VIDEO/WWW.USHMM.ORG/REMEMBER/DAYS-OF-REMEMBRANCE/ORGANIZING-A-REMEMBRANCE-EVENT/COMMEMORATION-THEMES/JUSTICE/TITLE: ”JUSTICE AND ACCOUNTABILITY”//
POC/T. M. VELAZQUEZ/CIV/MRA (MPE)/TEL: COM 703-784-9371/TEL: DSN 278/EMAIL: THERESA.VELAZQUEZ@USMC.MIL//
GENTEXT/REMARKS/1. Public Law 96-388 was enacted establishing the United States Holocaust Memorial Council on October 7, 1980. One of the Council’s responsibilities is to “provide for appropriate ways for the Nation to commemorate the Days of Remembrance, as an annual, national, civic commemoration of the Holocaust, and shall encourage and sponsor appropriate observances of such Days of Remembrance throughout the United States.” The Council also participates in the development and maintenance of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, DC.
2. For 2019, the Holocaust Days of Remembrance are from Sunday, April 28 to Sunday, May 5, 2019 with Holocaust Remembrance Day being observed on Thursday, May 2, 2019. The internationally recognized date for Holocaust Remembrance Day corresponds to the Hebrew calendar’s 27th Day of Nisan, which commemorates the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. In Hebrew, Holocaust Remembrance Day is called Yom Ha Shoah. The 2019 observance theme for the Marine Corps is: “Justice, yes. Vengeance, no.”
3. The genocide now known as the Holocaust occurred between 1933 and 1945 when the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (commonly known as the Nazis) and their collaborators carried out the systematic persecution and murder of 6 million European Jews. The Nazi regime also persecuted and killed millions of others whom they considered politically hostile, racially inferior, or socially unfit.
4. At the end of World War II, the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Germany painstakingly documented Nazi war crimes. The Tribunal was composed of the United States of America, the French Republic, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Investigators for the Tribunal collected and cataloged the Nazi regime’s own documents, obtained photographic evidence, and gathered the witness statements of survivors. The assembled body of evidence was initially presented at the Nuremberg Trial of 1945-1946, where twenty-two high-ranking Nazi leaders stood before the Tribunal to answer for their actions within the Nazi regime. This first trial established the precedent that individuals - regardless of their official government status - can be held responsible for their crimes against humanity and the implementation of policies violating international law. The following trials held between 1946 and 1949 prosecuted 183 other people such as doctors, judges, industrialists, guards, and civil servants who were indicted for being complicit in the atrocities committed against millions of people.
5. Fifteen years after the first Nuremburg convictions, one key perpetrator stood trial for his crimes against humanity and crimes against the Jewish people. Adolf Eichmann, a Nazi SS officer, was a major coordinator for the extermination of approximately 1.3 million of the 6 million Jews killed. His actions directly contributed to the collection and deportation of Jews to their deaths in concentration camps. After hiding in Argentina, South America under a false identity, Eichmann was captured by the Mossad to stand trial in the new State of Israel. The Eichmann trial was important because it emphasized that there is no statute of limitations for committing such heinous crimes and international borders are not shields against justice. Both the Nuremberg tribunals and the trial of Adolf Eichmann set important precedents, which are significant to the pursuit of international justice today.
6. During December 1948, the United Nations formalized the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. Subsequently, genocide became recognized as an international crime.
7. During this observance month, commanders are encouraged to observe the Days of Remembrance and to support opportunities to introduce and critically discuss the Holocaust and related topics such as the prevention of genocide, the protection of all human life, the preservation of diverse cultures, and the law of war. Commanders are encouraged to sponsor programs integrating the video entitled, “Justice and Accountability” per Reference D and to promote participation in observance events within their commands and across their local communities.
8. Release authorized by Brigadier General W. H. Swan, Division Director, Manpower Plans and Policy.//