The November pogroms, also known as Kristallnacht, were a series of attacks against Jews throughout Germany and parts of Austria on November 9-10, 1938. During the pogrom 91 Jews were murdered, thousands of synagogues across Germany and Austria were torched, and Jewish-owned shops and businesses were plundered and destroyed. In addition, the Jews were forced to pay “compensation” for the damage that had been caused, and approximately 30,000 Jews were arrested and sent to concentration camps.

To commemorate the devastation of the November pogroms, events will be held in many IHRA member countries, both virtually and in person.

1. Rosenkranz Oration, Jewish Holocaust Centre Melbourne

The Jewish Holocaust Centre, Melbourne will host the annual Rosenkranz Oration online on 9 November. This oration was inaugurated in 2008 in memory of the late Betty Rosenkranz and to honour the legacy of Shmuel, a survivor of Kristallnacht, as the second President of the JHC.

Keynote speaker, Philippe Sands QC is a Professor of Law at University College London and a practising barrister at Matrix Chambers. He is an award-winning author of Lawless World (2005) and Torture Team (2008) and several academic books on international law, and has contributed to the New York Review of Books, Vanity Fair, the Financial Times and The Guardian. Philippe will be exploring justice after the Holocaust – what Nuremberg meant for the world and for himself as reflected in his cases and books, and what the challenges are going forward.

Register for the event here: Betty & Shmuel Rosenkranz Oration with Philippe Sands 

2. Stories from the Violins of Hope, The Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme

The United Nations Outreach Programme on the Holocaust is hosting a limited online screening from 9 – 13 November of “Stories from the Violins of Hope” and an online discussion on 11 November. H.E. Mr. Gilad Erdan, the Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations, will deliver remarks. The Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications, Melissa Fleming, will moderate.

Register for the panel discussion:

“Stories from the Violins of Hope” is an original drama created by The Braid with music from the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony. It brings together theatre and music to tell the story of a collection of stringed instruments that survived the Holocaust, and those whose lives the instruments touched. The violins, played by Jewish musicians during the Holocaust, were meticulously restored by Amnon Weinstein as he received them from all around the world.

The Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme will be offering a limited screening of “Stories from the Violins of Hope” for viewing, available 9-13 November 2021. You can watch the film free-of-charge at your own pace here:

3. Webinar “Stories of Genocide,” iWitness-Page, _erinnern.at_

On the occasion of the commemoration of the November Pogrom 1938, _erinnern.at_ together with the Lucerne University of Teacher Education and the European University of Flensburg will present the German-language IWitness-Page on 9.11.2021 and train educators in its use. The event will be in German only.

The German-language project, “LEBENSGESCHICHTEN – Zeitzeugnisse von Genoziden” was created as an Austrian-German-Swiss collaboration using the the free education platform iWitness. The website of the USC Shoah Foundation, located at the University of Southern California, provides access to the unique Visual History Archive, which contains around 55,000 videographed interviews with contemporary witnesses – mainly with survivors of genocides.

Register for the webinar:

4. Kristallnacht Commemoration, World Jewish Congress

The commemoration of the 83rd anniversary of Kristallnacht, the November pogrom of 1938, which will take place in Geneva at the Hekhal Haness Synagogue (Rte de Malagnou 54TER, 1208 Genève), on Tuesday, November 9, 2021, at 18h30.

This year’s ceremony is dedicated to the memory of all those courageous individuals who tried to sound the alarm about the growing Nazi threat in the 1930s, including Štefan Lux, a Czechoslovakian journalist who committed suicide at the Assembly Hall of the League of Nations in Geneva on July 3, 1936.

The event is under the auspices of the Permanent Mission to the UN and the General Consulate of Greece, on the occasion of the Greek Presidency of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, cosponsored by the Permanent Missions of Germany, Israel and Switzerland, as well as the General Consulate of Brazil and Casa Stefan Zweig. It is organized by the Jewish Community of Geneva, the Swiss Friends of Yad Vashem: and the World Jewish Congress.

5. Kristallnacht Event, Jewish Heritage Centre

The Jewish Heritage Centre of Western Canada will be hosting an event exploring the lost Holocaust history of Vilna. There will be a film screening, followed by a talk with Calgary-based geophysicist Paul Bauman, who was part of a team that used ground penetrating radar to explore the underground remains of the Vilna Synagogue and the mass graves at Ponar. The team also made the extraordinary discovery of a hidden escape tunnel dug by Jewish prisoners.

Register for the webinar here:

6. 'A Tribute to Eddie Jaku', NSW Jewish Board of Deputies

The NSW Jewish Board of Deputies will be holding an online commemoration for Kristallnacht, called ‘A Tribute to Eddie Jaku,’ who was interviewed before passing away earlier this month at the age of 101. Eddie gained international renown when he published his memoirs, ‘The Happiest Man on Earth’ at the age of 100. Learn more about his life with this tribute from the BBC.

Eddie was a constant presence at the Sydney Jewish Museum, which is dedicated to Australian Jewish life and the Holocaust, and he will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

Register for the event here:

7. Educational seminar, Center for the Promotion of Tolerance and the Preservation of Holocaust remembrance

To mark the November pogrom in Croatia, the Center for the Promotion of Tolerance and the Preservation of Holocaust Remembrance is organizing a webinar on November 22nd. The seminar is called “ANTI-SEMITISM, THE HOLOCAUST, SUFFERINGS: The Past in the Present,” and participants will include teachers, editors and journalists, and students.

Join the webinar here:


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