Nobel Prize winner Elie Wiesel says the Holocaust always must be remembered because the flames of hatred are always burning somewhere.
“We did not prevent the first murder,” he said of the extermination of 6 million Jews by the Nazis during World War II. “But we can and must prevent the second, which will occur when the first murder is forgotten.”
Wiesel, 67, Holocaust survivor, writer and human rights activist, is the keynote speaker at the “Ethics After the Holocaust” conference at the University of Oregon.
The four-day conference, which opened Sunday, was organized by Stephen Stern, a graduate student who attracted some of the top Jewish scholars from around the world to the Eugene campus.
Stern, 33, said students sometimes view the Shoah, as the Holocaust is known in Hebrew, as an abstraction and fail to connect it with today.
Two years ago in Eugene, skinheads strafed Temple Beth Israel in a drive-by shooting. No one was hurt but the community still bears the scars.