JEWS & GYPSIES, MYTHS & REALITY by Ruth Barnett Part One

Authors' Evening at Swiss Cottage Library 6.30 to 7.30 pm on April 10th 2014

Most people know that six million Jews were murdered by the Nazis in the Holocaust but few people know that well over half a million Sinti and Roma Gypsies were murdered in the same ghettos, killing fields and concentration camps alongside the Jews. It is time to embrace a much wider definition of the Holocaust and expand commemoration and teaching about the Holocaust to include the story of the Gypsies who are still perniciously persecuted today all over Europe.

As a Jew, rescued from almost certain death at the hands of the Nazis, by coming to England on the Kindertransport, Ruth devotes time and energy to supporting others who are unjustly persecuted.

We now have a law that makes Hate Crime a criminal act. Most people now accept that verbal and/or physical attacks on Muslims, Jews, Gays and Disabled people are wrong and illegal. The law against Hate Crime applies equally to Gypsies but is not protecting them in practice. The last bastion of culturally accepted racism is against Gypsies. Roma and Travellers do not report the ubiquitous attacks on them as they cannot trust the same police that are called in to evict them, often from land they have bought and own legally but have been refused planning permission.

“Jews & Gypsies, Myths & Reality” is in easy-reading English and aims to raise awareness of Porrajmos, the forgotten Nazi genocide against Gypsies and the the myths and stereotypes from the Nazi time that are still current about Jews and Gypsies today. It includes a number of books, DVDs and websites in the appendix for further information.

The test of the humanity of a community is how the poorest and most vulnerable of that community are valued and treated.
Swiss Cottage LIbrary, 88 Avenue Road, London NW3 3HA

and article by Liz Fekete from the Institute of Race Relations regarding the plight of the Roma and Sinti communities today

Well worth taking a look at 'One Romany Dance' Across Europe
Choreographer Petia Iourtchenko, a Roma originally from Ukraine, performs Romany dances around the world and teaches the moves to professionals and beginners alike. During a visit to the Khamoro World Roma Festival in Prague, Iourtchenko said that dance bridges cultural divides -- and helps to unite Romany culture across Europe. (Video by Margot Buff and Dragan Milojevic, RFE/RL)

See as well Rajamani perform an original composition of his own, blending Indian and flamenco musical styles the Rajamani way. One can see the origins of the Roma and their history as well as the roots of flamenco dance coming from India. Rajamani and the Indian vocalist Nagavalli Medicharla sing a deeply spiritual poem of Meera (a Princess of Rajasthan India).

13 June 2014
EGAM holds the first European commemoration
on the site of the Lety Roma concentration camp

50 top European antiracist and Roma leaders from 18 countries held yesterday this commemoration to honor the memory of the victims.

This memory is spoiled by the existence of a pig farm on the place where hundreds of Roma perished because they were Roma.

"We are here to restore the dignity of the victims and the descendants of the survivors. The assault on the memory of the extermination of the Roma, which is represented by the presence of a pig factory on the site of the former concentration camp at Lety, reminds us of the discrimination and racist persecution of the Roma people in Europe that still persists to this day. This commemoration is a first step towards a wider mobilization. Let's get mobilized again on August 2nd to commemorate the Roma holocaust." said Benjamin Abtan, President of the European Grassroots Antiracist Movement - EGAM

"This is a key support for us. This location is a dark mark on the face of Europe. It is our duty to honor the victims of the genocide with dignity to ensure the enjoyment of equal rights for Roma citizens for today" said Miroslav Broz, President of Konexe.

Today, the delegation is welcomed by the Roma community in the Usti ghetto.

On October 5th, EGAM will launch and coordinate the 4th edition of the Roma Pride, simultaneously in more than 15 countries.

Click on link below to see video

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