Dr. Danny Lamm, President of the Zionist Federation of Australia, expressed his deepest condolences on the passing of Holocaust survivor, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and author Elie Wiesel, aged 87.
“Elie Wiesel was one of the strongest and most eloquent voices to emerge from the dark night of the Shoah”, Lamm said. “Now we will have to adjust to a new dawn in a world without one of the Jewish people’s truest giants.”
In his autobiography Night he wrote, “Never shall I forget that night, the first night in camp, which has turned my life into one long night, seven times cursed and seven times sealed. Never shall I forget that smoke. Never shall I forget the little faces of the children, whose bodies I saw turned into wreaths of smoke beneath a silent blue sky. Never shall I forget those flames which consumed my faith forever. Never shall I forget the nocturnal silence which deprived me, for all eternity, of the desire to live. Never shall I forget those moments which murdered my God and my soul and turned my dreams to dust. Never shall I forget these things, even if I am condemned to live as long as God himself. Never.”
Lamm said, “through his powerful writing, Wiesel ensured that generations to come would also remember the horrors of the Shoah. He also encouraged people never to stay silent on any of the world’s injustices and this is what made him such a worthy winner of the Nobel Prize and all of the other accolades he received over the years”.
Wiesel was also a strong supporter of the Jewish State and on a number of occasions was offered to be the President of Israel. In his acceptance speech for the Nobel Prize he said, “I trust Israel, for I have faith in the Jewish people. Let Israel be given a chance, let hatred and danger be removed from her horizons, and there will be peace in and around the Holy Land.”
Lamm concluded, “May the words and memory of the great Elie Wiesel be a blessing to his family, his friends and colleagues, and to every single person touched in some way by the poetic wisdom of his writing and activism”.