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EPILOGUE: The Aftermath
 pg. 685 
"Memorial to the Deportees" was established at Yad Vashem in remembrance of the millions of Jews who were shipped in cattle cars to Nazi extermination camps in Eastern Europe.
Photo: Ullstein Bilderdienst
Others endured the war years and the Final Solution itself, somehow making their way through impoverished ghettos, labor brigades, deportations, lethal camps, and death marches. Still others managed to survive by disguising themselves, hiding, or working in resistance groups.

As the 21st century begins, Holocaust scholar Michael Berenbaum estimates that no more than 300,000 Jews who lived under the rule or occupation of Nazi Germany and its collaborators after late June 1941 are still alive. This aging population is rapidly disappearing. By the middle of the 21st century, it will no longer exist. Berenbaum is well situated to know this demography because he headed the most ambitious campaign to gather the survivors' oral testimonies. Such work has been going on for some time, but no project has been as extensive as the one at the Los Angeles-based Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation.

Oskar Schindler at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem. After his death, his former wife denigrated his status as a Righteous Christian. The fact remains that he was instrumental in saving hundreds of Jews.
Photo: Leopold Page Photographic Collection / United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Photo Archive
Moved by his experience in producing Schindler's List (1993), the Academy Award-winning film that did so much to call attention to the Holocaust, Steven Spielberg established the Shoah Foundation in 1994. Its workers have created one of the survivors' most impressive legacies: the videotaping of more than 50,000 interviews as of May 1999. Conducted in 32 different languages, the interviews have been given by survivors from 57 countries. Their combined testimonies are preserved on more than 32,000 miles of videotape. It would take more than 13 years of continuous viewing to see and hear them all. The voices of Jewish survivors properly dominate the Shoah Foundation's interviews. Yet its outreach also includes interviews with non-Jews: persecuted groups such as Gypsies, Jehovah's Witnesses, political dissidents, and homosexuals as well as camp liberators and bystanders who were in a position to see what was going on during the Holocaust. Nobody can watch 13 years of Holocaust testimony. The Shoah Foundation's challenge, then, is to put this priceless legacy into more retrievable forms that can be used for research and education. In addition to special precautions that must be taken to preserve the tapes themselves, cataloguers will work for several years to index the testimonies, which scholars will be able to access through designated research centers and analyze carefully with the help of high-speed, digital retrieval systems.
 March 17-April 19, 1994: Paul Touvier, a former right-wing Vichy sympathizer, is tried and sentenced to life imprisonment for the 1944 murders of seven Jews.
 July 16, 1994: For the first time, France officially remembers the wartime deportations of 76,000 Jews from the nation.
 1995: Jewish twins Ida and Adam Paluch are reunited 53 years after being separated following a Gestapo attempt to abduct them from their home in Sosnowiec, Poland, in the summer of 1942. The children were spirited away by their aunt and sent to separate Catholic homes at age three.
 Summer 1995: The International Committee of the Red Cross makes a formal apology for its passivity during the Holocaust, calling it a "moral failure."
EPILOGUE: The Aftermath
 pg. 685 
The Holocaust Chronicle
© 2009 Publications International, Ltd.