'Never Again - lessons of the Holocaust" exhibition
Venue: Oxford Town Hall, St Aldates, OX1 1BX
The exhibition will comprise of a series of displays of pictures, text, video, and talks that will take up the following themes:
● The extermination of 6 million Jews and 7 million other people deemed “undesirable” by the Nazi regime
● The victim groups and the ways they were scapegoated and marginalised including legal forms of exclusion
● Nazi methods of mass murder and death camps
● The driving forces behind the Holocaust
● Fascism today and their modern targets
● Similarities with today and the 1930's
● Resistance to fascism and racism
Never Again - lessons from the Holocaust educational exhibition meetings
Saturday 18th January, 2 PM
Wednesday 22nd January, 5PM
“The Holocaust - A Warning from History”
Unite Against Fascism workshop
Saturday 25th January, 2PM
”Stopping the Rise in Racism and the Far Right Today?”
Anneliese Dodds MP
Roger McKenzie -
Assistant General Secretary UNISON
We are witnessing a severe rise in racism and racist attacks, and the growth of far right and fascist politics on a scale not seen since the 1930’s. The Holocaust is a stark reminder of what can happen when racism and fascism come to dominate society.
The Holocaust fundamentally challenged the foundations of civilization and serves as a warning of the horror that fascism can unleash. The magnitude of the Holocaust, planned and carried out by the Nazis, must be forever seared in our collective memory. The Nazis "Final Solution" saw the extermination of 6 million Jews in an attempt to ethnically cleanse Europe of all Jews. The terrible suffering of the many millions of other victims of the Nazis has left an indelible scar across Europe as well.
Selfless sacrifices of those who defied the Nazis, and sometimes gave their own lives to protect or rescue the Holocaust's victims, must also be inscribed in our hearts.
Today the heirs of the Nazis are still seeking power. Anti-Semitism is on the rise, and today's Nazis are also inciting racist violence against other targets, notably Muslims, migrants, refugees, Roma, and left wing politicians.
The scapegoating of minority groups by mainstream politicians emboldens fascists. US President Trump’s targeting of Mexicans and Muslims was welcomed by the Alt-right movement who marched in Charlottesville, Virginia with swastikas and Nazi salutes, and chants of “Jew will not replace us”. Heather Heyer was murdered by a Nazi as she protested against the racist march. In the last two years Nazis have carried out mass murders of Jews in Pittsburgh USA, Muslims in Christchurch New Zealand, and people of Hispanic origin in El Paso, Texas, USA.
Here in the UK racist scapegoating of migrants, Muslims and refugees in the mainstream media is driving up racism and racist attacks, including Antisemitism. Racially motivated attacks have doubled since 2013, and this has been matched with a rise in homophobic hate crime too. The increase of racism in mainstream politics is making it easier for fascists to present their abhorrent views as a normal part of political debate.
Determined opposition by Stand Up To Racism has halted the rise of the fascist Tommy Robinson and the racist thugs who support him in the Football Lads Alliance. However recent history has shown how new fascist movements can erupt and we need to continue to campaign to ensure any such eruptions are met with immediate resistance.
In Europe the far right is organising anti-Muslim hatred to unify their movement, often linked to Antisemitism, where immigration is presented as a Jewish conspiracy to undermine “European values”. We now have fascist politicians elected to parliaments across Europe for the first time since WWII. Fascist groups are increasingly confident to march openly in the streets of European cities.
The rise of fascism, racism and racist attacks, must not go unchallenged. We must never forget that the logical conclusion of unchecked racism in the 1930’s was the death camps - we must unite to say "Never Again".
In the week leading up to Holocaust Memorial Day the “Never Again- Lessons of the Holocaust” educational exhibition will host guest speakers in Oxford Town Hall to remember the devastation of the Holocaust, the ongoing fight against fascism, and remind us why we need to build this resistance today.