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The reality of the Holocaust


Nineteen ACS Egham International School students recently embarked on a five-day tour, travelling to Berlin and Krakow to learn more about the rise to power of the Nazis, and the lead up to the unimaginable reality of the Holocaust.

The students, aged 16-17, began the fully guided visit in Berlin, first seeing major historical landmarks including the Reichstag (the seat of the German Parliament), Brandenburg Gate, the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, the Topography of Terror Museum, Treptow Park, Berlin Wall’s East Side Gallery section, the former Soviet and Stasi prison, the Jewish Historical Museum, and the villa at Wannsee.

The students then departed for a two day trip to Auschwitz I and Auschwitz-Birkenau in Oświęcim. A guided tour of the camps gave the students a real insight to the Holocaust, including the camp’s history, the living conditions in the camp and evidence of the crimes committed.

The students also explored the Galicia Museum, viewing an exhibition of photographs documenting Jewish life, and meeting a Holocaust survivor. They visited the Synagogue, in Krakow’s Jewish quarter, and learnt about the story of Oscar Schindler in Schindler’s Factory. The tour concluded with a trip to Krakow’s concentration camp at Plaszow, discovering the background to the camp and its history, as well as visiting the memorials on site.

Richard Naylor, ACS Egham High School Principal, commented of the trip:

“Tracing the process right back to how the Holocaust was planned, to how it became reality, enabled the students to acknowledge its impact and scale; and meeting a Holocaust survivor and hearing his/her story and experiences was very poignant, moving, and memorable for everyone.”

Published: March 3 2017

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