The Consulate of Italy Commemorates International Holocaust Remembrance Day: Great Success for the Film Screening “The Last Time We Were Children”

Jan 30, 2024 890

Remembrance and Italian commitment to the fight against xenophobia and discrimination were the central themes of Consul Allegra Baistrocchi’s introduction to the event to a public of almost 300 people. Free and open to the public, there was a captivated audience consisting mainly of members from the Italian, Jewish, and Italian-American community.

The “Giorno della Memoria” in Italy was established in 2000 and Italy was a strong proponent within the UN to mark January 27 – the day Allied troops broke through the gates of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp – with a global recurrence such as International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Together in introducing the movie there was not only the Consulate of Italy, but also the Dante Alighieri Society of Michigan - our constant partner in this annual commemoration - as well as the JCRC/AJC (Jewish Community Relations Council / American Jewish Committee). Rabbi Asher Lopatin and Carol Ogusky, daughter of Holocaust survivors and Co-Chair of the Diplomatic Committee of the JCRC/AJC, also made opening remarks, in which they showed gratitude for the constant support that Italy has shown and the great empathy with which Italy advocates for human rights, the end of hate speech and fight against antisemitism.

Consul Baistrocchi underlined the importance of continuing to commemorate especially in light of the tragic events at this historic conjunction. "To remember is to possess and to protect the memory from oblivion, with the hope that this will help prevent acts of hate, acts of racism and acts of discrimination. And unfortunately, we are all becoming anesthetized to what is the normalization of violence”.

The choice of the film viewed, The Last Time We Were Children, was not by chance. “With so much violence being shown every day, the choice was for a lighter subject that could, however, teach an important lesson”. The directorial debut of comedian Claudio Bisio, in fact, recounts the story of three children who go in search of a friend who has disappeared during the Nazi raid of the Jewish ghetto in Rome. The levity of the value of friendship that is not tarnished by religion or social upbringing, was not lost on the public, who laughed and cried with the protagonists.

SOURCE: Italian Consulate in Detroit

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