by Gerry Brown
The Holocaust is the term used to refer to the period from 1933 to 1945, before and during World War II, when Adolf Hitler and the Nazis systematically persecuted and murdered nearly six million Jews. More than one third of the World Jewry, as well as another five million non-Jews throughout Europe, were killed during this period. The genocide, or what the Nazis dubbed "The Final Solution," occurred mainly at six death camps located in Poland.
In 1951, the Israeli Knesset declared that the 27th day of Nisan is to be Yom HaShoah, or Holocaust Remembrance Day, a day of commemoration for the Jews who perished and for those who showed resistance and heroism during the Holocaust. The day is the anniversary of the 1943 Warsaw Ghetto uprising.
As part of a continuing effort to honor the victims of the Holocaust, Yad Vashem, Israel's Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority, was established in 1953 by the Knesset. Yad Vashem also oversees the world-wide Holocaust memorial, "Unto Every Person There Is a Name," a unique project designed to perpetuate the memory of the Jewish victims of the Holocaust by public recitation of their names on the Day of Remembrance.