In Remembrance: Babi Yar 29 – 30 September 1941
69 years ago, the Nazis murdered over 34 thousand Jewish men, women and children at the Babi Yar Ravine in Kyiv. A memorial gathering is taking place this afternoon, organized by the Congress of National Communities of Ukraine and the Babi Yar Memorial Foundation.
Early on Wednesday morning, the President, Prime Minister and other State figures laid flowers at the Memorial to the Victims.
No new words – only enduring memory.
On 28 September 1941 a notice was posted by the Nazis all over Kyiv ordering Jews to assemble at Lukianovska, Degtiarska, Lagerna and Melnikova St. at 8 a.m. on Monday 29 September. They were forced to march to the Jewish Cemetery near the Babi Yar Ravine. “The entire surroundings of the ravine had been fenced in with barbed wire, and were cordoned off by three rows of troops: The outer circle was manned by Ukrainian police, the second with Ukrainian police and Germans, and the inner circle with Germans only. At the killing site the Jews were ordered to undress, stack their belongings, and were then led in groups of 10 to the edge of the ravine. There they were shot (by automatic guns and machine-guns) in front of their fellow sufferers, who were unable to escape”. (www.deathcamps.org)
The Nazis said that 33, 771 people were killed during those days.
Over the next 2 years, until the Nazis were forced to retreat by the Soviet Army in November 1943, as many as 100 or 200 thousand Jews, Ukrainians, Roma, prisoners of war, psychiatric patients and others were slaughtered in the Babi Yar Ravine.
As well as the accounts of horror and foul collaboration, we remember also the 431 “Righteous of Babi Yar” who, since 1990 have been so recognized for hiding Jews from death. “This title was bestowed on all family members alive at the time of the executions because all members of a family would have been shot by the Germans if their aid had been discovered”.
Вічна памˈять Eternal Memory