Night – Review

NightThe Second World War is not just battles between Allied and Axis armies. It is also the story of the Holocaust. It is not subject that we enjoy learning about and yet this knowledge is essential.

There are two ways to learn about the Holocaust. One is through books about the Holocaust by scholars who work through the big picture. The other is by reading accounts of Holocaust survivors. One important of these accounts is Night by Elie Wiesel.

One of the question people ask about the Holocaust is about how much people in Europe and elsewhere knew about what was happening. I was shocked to learn that a Jewish community in Transylvania, as later as 1944, had no idea that the Nazis were killing the Jews. Even when a survivor from their community who escaped from an execution was not believed.

But reality was eventually faced. First it was the ghettos. Then Wiesel and his family were packed into the cattle cars and sent off to the camps.

It was a heart-wrenching book. While everyone should read Night, it is not an enjoyable experience.

Wiesel was an extremely talented writer and thoughtful thinker. His observations of why certain people survived and others did not are insightful.

As a person of faith, I was especially interested in how the Jewish people struggled with how God could allow it. Wiesel is very honest about his own struggles.

This short book is an important account one of the worst events in human history. Unfortunately, the Holocaust was not the last attempted genocide. We need to visit and re-visit the depths of human evil.

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