IDF Chief of Staff Lieutenant-General Benny Gantz and members of the General Staff visited the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum Sunday, ahead of Holocaust Remembrance Day.
The museum organized a special tribute for Gantz, pulling specific records pertaining to members of the Gantz family who perished in World War II from the archives, for him to view.
"He was very moved," said Haim Gertner, director of the Yad Vashem archives. "He new the story well and we added important details to it."
Gantz was shown records pertaining to his mother, Malka, who was born in Hungary and was in Bergen Belsen before escaping to Sweden. She was able to finally arrive in Israel a few months before Israel's inception aboard the Dolores immigrant ships.
Top IDF commanders attended a special seminar held at Yad Vashem ahead of Holocaust Remembrance Day, marking "70 years, since that bloody summer of 1941, when the Nazis and those aiding them began the systematic annihilation of our people," said Gantz.
"Despite the State of Israel being a safe haven for all Jews, there are still those who wish to see us destroyed. We know that Treblinka and Auschwitz were manmade… there were not based on another planet, but on this one, constructed by evil, and they were the reality for all those millions lost.
"It is with this understanding that we view the current threats, with earnest and vigilance. We look at the strategic outline of the Middle East and we recognize the full extent of our responsibility."
The Yad Vashem museum houses over 138 million WWII and holocaust documents.
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