January 27, 2022
Today, as we commemorate the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp 77 years ago, we remember and honor the millions of victims of the Holocaust. We speak out publicly today because of and despite the urge to recoil in horror at the sheer scale of the crime against Roma, Catholics, political dissidents, LGBTQI+ populations, and – most of all – Jews. But we cannot look away, and we cannot be silent. Instead, we must face this history, and ensure that “never again” remains a solemn pledge by humanity, not merely a slogan.
Lamentably, the anti-Semitism that fueled the Holocaust still exists around the world today.
It still exists in my country, where we continue to witness hate speech and discrimination, and even despicable acts of physical violence, such as earlier this month when we watched in horror as an attacker held hostages at a synagogue in Texas. And it still exists in Moldova, where more than 80 tombs at the Jewish cemetery in Chisinau were desecrated; the memorial in Cosauti was vandalized; and Jews and the memory of the Holocaust are insulted online.
We condemn these acts of hatred, everywhere around the world and every time they occur, and stand in unshakable solidarity with the Jewish community.
Moldova is undertaking considerable efforts to honor the memory of the Holocaust and promote a culture of tolerance. We hope that the Jewish Museum will open soon, per the government’s 2018 decision on Holocaust education, and that Moldovan schools will integrate Holocaust education into the curriculum so rising generations will understand the terrible consequences of hatred.
Thank you to this Community for its important role in these efforts, and to all of the Moldovans who have joined their voices in honoring the victims of the Holocaust. Millions of people were killed during this terrible tragedy, including here in Moldova.
As President Biden has said: “The United States will continue to champion justice for Holocaust survivors and their heirs. We are committed to helping build a world in which the lessons of the Holocaust are taught and in which all human lives are valued.”
On this day, as every day, we remember the Holocaust and recommit ourselves to the long-term fight against discrimination and hatred.