Holocaust Rememberance Day marks the 63rd anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. Commemorations in honor of the victims were held throughout the Czech Republic, and education ministers from across Europe met for a second day of talks on Holocaust education. An elderly survivor at one memorial in Prague reads the names and fates of many Czech Holocaust victims: A ghetto, a concentration camp, and the end.
On Tuesday, Jewish communities in the Czech Republic are commemorating Yom ha Shoah or Holocaust Remembrance Day which is observed around the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising in 1943. The names of Czech Holocaust victims will be read out during ceremonies in Prague and a former concentration camp in Terezin. Around 80,000 Czech Jews perished in the Holocaust, among them the whole family of Zdenka Fantlova, who was herself imprisoned in several concentration camps: Terezin, Auschwitz, Gross-Rosen and Mauthausen until she was liberated from
The massacre of Lidice, a small village just North West of Prague, on the night of the 9th of June 1942 was the darkest moment in Czech wartime history. Following the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich, the German Reichsprotektor of the Czech Lands, on the 27th of May 1942, the Nazis began a massive retaliation campaign against the civilian Czech populace. Lidice bore the brunt of this savage response, accused of harbouring one of the perpetrators of the assassination.
Millions of people have admired it at the Uffizi Art Gallery in Florence. Now, Rembrandt's painting of an old man has acquired a new significance for Czechs. According to Ernst van de Wetering, a Dutch art specialist, the anonymous old man in the painting is almost certainly one of the most prominent figures in Czech history - the teacher of nations Jan Amos Comenius.
Vladimir Simek and Kamila Broulova-Simkova are a well-known husband & wife team that has been making TV documentaries in different parts of the world - from Baikal, Russia, to South America, for years. Their films air as part of the "Ceske stopy" documentary series that follows in the footsteps of famous Czech adventurers or explorers from the past.
An international panel of academics and politicians met in the Czech Senate on Tuesday to discuss the mass killings of Armenian civilians in the Ottoman Empire between 1915 and 1917, which Armenia wants recognised as genocide. The parliaments of some twenty countries have passed resolutions to this effect - and several Czech politicians want the Czech parliament to do the same. Among them is the man who organised the conference, Senator Jaromir Stetina.
February 1948 brought great political change in Czechoslovakia. On the 25th of that month, the Communist Party took power and declared the country a "people's democracy", as the first step towards achieving Socialism and ultimately Communism. As one of the first steps of the new regime, the Czechoslovak Social Democratic Party began to purge dissidents from all social levels, according to Marxist-Leninist principles. The very first victim of these purges was Major General Karel Lukas, who was assassinated in prison after the Communist takeover.
Czech Jews who lost their property during WWII have finally received compensation from the Czech state. In the course of five years, the Foundation for Holocaust Victims distributed 100 million crowns (over 4 million dollars) put in by the Czech state among some 500 claimants from 27 countries to mitigate some property injustices caused to Holocaust victims.