Babi Yar, Site of One of the Holocaust’s Biggest Massacres, Is a Reminder of Both Nazi and Soviet Anti-Semitism

October 12, 2021 | Natan Sharansky
About the author: Natan Sharansky was a political prisoner in the Soviet Union and a minister in four Israeli governments. He is the author of Fear No Evil, The Case for Democracy, and Defending Identity.

Last week, the former Soviet dissident Natan Sharanksy gave a speech at Babi Yar in Ukraine to commemorate the Nazis’ massacre of over 33,000 Jews there 80 years ago. Babi Yar, he noted, was not just a symbol of the crimes of the Third Reich, but also of the USSR’s own crime of trying to erase the memory of the Holocaust. Reflecting on the deeds of the perpetrators, their local collaborators, and the Ukrainian Gentiles who rescued some of their Jewish compatriots, he concluded that “even when you walk through the valley of death, you are still making moral choices.” (Video, 13 minutes.)

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