News story

Deputy Prime Minister's message for Holocaust Memorial Day

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The Deputy Prime Minister has recorded a message to mark Holocaust Memorial Day.

Holocaust Memorial Day

The full transcript is below:

A few months ago I had the opportunity to visit Auschwitz-Birkenau with 200 students.

The site of unimaginable suffering, on an unimaginable scale.

A place where each day, thousands of human beings were sorted and processed on their way to death, in ways that were not only cruel, but chillingly precise.

The things I saw, the stories I heard - they will stay with me forever.

And I realised that we cannot remember and re-remember these horrors enough.

In fact, the more time that passes, the more we need to remember.

Today, Holocaust Memorial Day becomes more important with each passing year.

Forgetfulness is hate’s greatest friend.

Forgetting allows prejudice and division to rise again.

But the lessons of history are the best antidote to anti-Semitism and extremism of all kinds. 

So today we remember.

Today we pay tribute to the victims of the Holocaust.

We think of the victims of other genocides: Cambodia, Bosnia, Rwanda, Darfur.

We unite, in solidarity, with all those suffering war and violence around the world today.

And we pass those lessons on to our children too.

We can never undo what happened all those years ago.

But we can keep those memories burning brightly, and we can use them to light our way.