UPDATE: Mayor Responds to SWC Following Denouncement of Holocaust Denial and Desecration of Oradour-sur-Glane's Martyrs Memorial Site
September 21, 2020
Paris – On 23 August, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, wrote a letter of condolences and solidarity to the Mayor of Oradour-sur-Glane, Philippe Lacroix, in which the Centre denounced the Holocaust denial and desecration of his town's Martyrs Memorial site... built to commemorate 642 children, women and men massacred by the Nazi Waffen SS in 1944.
Samuels recalled: “to desecrate this hecatomb is to murder the villagers for a second time. This has been the fate of many Jewish communities throughout Europe. Thus, we share your pain..."
The Mayor of Oradour-sur-Glane sent the Centre a warm response last week, on the eve of the Jewish New Year:
We would like to sincerely thank you for your message of support that you sent us following the revisionist tags at the entrance of the Centre de la Mémoire [the Memorial Museum of Oradour-sur-Glane] on August 21.
This unspeakable act obliges us to be vigilant at all times, to respect historical truth and to pass on the duty of memory, in particular to the younger generations.
You can count on our determination.
With our renewed thanks. Best regards to you.
Mayor of Oradour-sur-Glane
From August 23 – In a letter of condolences and solidarity to Oradour-sur-Glane Mayor, Philippe Lacroix, Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, shared with today’s citizens “the pain of the revisionist denial and desecration of of the memorial village and museum."
The Memorial wall was defaced with graffiti deleting the word MARTYR VILLAGE, replaced with LIAR VILLAGE (VILLAGE MENTEUR) and adding WHEN WILL WE HAVE THE TRUTH? REYNOUARD IS RIGHT." (Vincent Reynouard is a known Holocaust denier and neo-Nazi supporter).
The letter stressed how “in June 1944, just after D-Day and a few weeks before the Liberation of Paris, German Waffen SS, in reprisal against the French Resistance, massacred and destroyed Oradour-sur-Glane: 462 women and children were burnt alive in the village church, a 7-month old baby was crucified and 180 men shot in the legs, doused in petrol and set on fire..."
The Centre argued: “to desecrate this hecatomb is to murder the villagers for a second time."
"This has been the fate of many Jewish communities throughout Europe. Thus, we share your pain and support a call for identification, arraignment of the perpetrators and appropriate incarceration,” concluded Samuels.
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The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).