MEMORIAL AND MUSEUM

AUSCHWITZ-BIRKENAU

FORMER GERMAN NAZI
CONCENTRATION AND EXTERMINATION CAMP

Act of Foundation

Sixty years have gone by since the cessation 
of the criminal machinery of the Holocaust and the torment 
of the concentration camps.

The years are passing.
There are fewer and fewer of us
who survived the concentration camp,
who profoundly understand its message and significance. 

The years are passing.
Today – again – hatred and contempt are being propagated.
Again nations are dying.
Again the hydra of anti-Semitism and xenophobia is being born.

Upbringing and education on the subject of Auschwitz
and the Holocaust should save man today, Europe and the
world of today.
This education and this upbringing are born in our memories
and in our commemoration of the victims. There are fewer and
fewer of us.

Soon our burden shall be completely taken over by historians,
scholars, teachers and educators.
We turn to them and ask them to:

  • convey the memory of the victims of Auschwitz and the Holocaust,
  • deepen an understanding of the mechanisms of hatred and contempt,
  • perceive new threats,
  • prevent them by developing dialogue and cooperation.

Tombs arouse pensiveness. There are no tombs here.
At the site of this atrocity, pensiveness must give way to
responsibility. For the soil shall not conceal the blood 
of the victims, and their cries shall not cease.
Today, education about Auschwitz and the Holocaust
shall convey this cry to all generations.

May this task, which the new generations are acquiring to their
Consciences, become a source of hope to you and your children.

January 27, 2005
Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum in Oświęcim.Sixty years have gone by since the cessation