|Skärmdump från Times of Israel 12 juli 2020|
Ni som följer min blogg vet redan att inte en enda albansk jude skickades till Förintelsens läger och gaskammare. Inte nog med det, Albanien tog också emot judar på flykt från resten av Europa. Därför kunde Albanien efter kriget redovisa en större judisk befolkning än före kriget.
Jag har bland annat skrivit om boken Besa. Muslims who Saved Jews in World War II, som specifikt handlar om albanernas syn på landets judar. De omfattades av besa, och hellre dör man själv än förråder sådana människor (då skrev jag: "Enligt ett urgammalt talesätt – Shqiptaret vdesin dhe besen nuk e shkelin – ska man hellre offra sitt eget liv än låta den man givit sin besa skadas eller dödas.")
Boken är egentligen en fotobok och den berättar i både bild och ord, gripande om händelserna och om vänskapen som sedan kom att utvecklas med Israel. Här kan du läsa om den.
Times of Israel skriver:
The marble memorial was put at an entrance to Tirana’s Artificial Lake Park, close to Mother Teresa Square. The inscription was written in three languages — English, Hebrew and Albanian — and it said that “Albanians, Christians and Muslims endangered their lives to protect and save the Jews.”
The Nazis murdered 6 million people, but Albania was the only country where no Jews died or were handed over. Albanians protected their few hundred Jewish friends, and helped other Jews who fled from Germany and Austria by either smuggling them abroad or hiding them at home.
“We are the only country with more Hebrews after World War II, where the Hebrews came in search of protection and salvation,” Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama said.
Och idag kan man också läsa i albansk media:
Albania’s first Holocaust memorial, in remembrance of all the Jewish people who sought refuge and were given shelter in Albania during the Second World War, was inaugurated on July 8 in Tirana.
Three rectangular stone slabs with the same message engraved in Albanian, English, and Hebrew will serve as a place of remembrance and reflection.
“This memorial is to remember and honor the memory of the six million Jews of Europe that were murdered and the citizens of Albania who acted selflessly to protect the Jews when the world would not.”During the ceremony, Israeli ambassador Noah Gal Gendler expressed gratitude towards the Albanian people for sheltering, hiding, and protecting about 2000 Jewish people during the Nazi occupation of Albania. He praised “the courageous actions of the Albanian people during the Holocaust, a resplendent act by a small country, that represents the values of humanity.”In her speech, U.S. ambassador Yuri Kim expressed America’s appreciation of the Albanian people’s bravery who came to the aid of the Jewish people even at great danger to themselves.During WWII, some 2000 Jewish people sought refuge in Albania and were protected by the local population. They were sheltered in Albanians’ homes, sometimes even given local names to hide their identity and others were hidden in mountain communities, away from advancing enemy forces. There were many Jewish people in the city of Berat and there still exists a “Jewish Quarter” which has now been vacated, along with a Jewish Museum, and a Star Of David in the local Mosque, where Jewish people were allowed to worship during the war.
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