Friday, April 15, 2005

Lipstadt Speaks in Philadelphia (April 17/05)

Philadelphia's The Weekly Press has a Feature Story on Prof. Lipstadt's forthcoming appearance as the keynote speaker at Greater Philadelphia's annual memorial tribute to victims of the Holocaust:
Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia announces memorial ceremony for the six million Jewish martyrs
Featured By Harry B. Cook

The Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia is announcing the 2005 "Memorial ceremony for the six million Jewish martyrs" in Philadelphia. The community program, which is sponsored by Federation's Memorial Committee for the Six Million Jewish Martyrs of the Jewish Community Relations Council, will be held Sunday, April 17, at 1 p.m., at the Monument to the Six Million Jewish Martyrs, located at 16th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

The memorial ceremony is Greater Philadelphia's yearly tribute to the victims of the Nazi Holocaust. The theme of this year's ceremony is "60 Years Since Liberation: Remembering the Holocaust."

Dr. Deborah E. Lipstadt, Dorot Professor of Modern Jewish and Holocaust Studies at Emory University and the author of "History on Trial," the story of her successful libel trial against Holocaust denier David Irving, will be this year's keynote speaker. The commemoration will include a tribute to local liberators of the concentration camps, a memorial candle-lighting ceremony, children's march and wreath-laying procession, greetings from area leaders, and musical selections by violinist Philip Kates of The Philadelphia Orchestra and the Temple Sinai Junior Choir under the direction of Cantor Stephen Freedman. Cantor Isaac Horowitz of Congregation Sons of Israel will chant the Memorial Prayer.

"History on Trial," published in 2005, is the story of Dr. Lipstadt's successful libel trial in London against David Irving, who sued her for calling him a Holocaust denier and right wing extremist. Her legal battle with Irving lasted five years. The judge ruled that Irving was a Holocaust denier, falsifier of history, racist, an anti-Semite and a liar. In July 2001, Irving's appeal of the judgment against him was resoundingly rejected.

Dr. Lipstadt has served as a historical consultant to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and on its Memorial Council. From 1996-1999 she was a member of the U.S. State Department Advisory Committee on Religious Freedom Abroad, serving as an advisor on matters of religious persecution. She has also written "Denying the Holocaust, The Growing Assault on Truth and Memory" (1993), the first full length study of those who attempt to deny the Holocaust, and "Beyond Belief: The American Press and the Coming of the Holocaust" (1986), which addressed the issue of what the American public knew about the Holocaust and when they knew it. The recipient of numerous teaching awards and honors, Dr. Lipstadt is frequently called upon by the media as a commentator and consultant. She is a regular contributor to many newspapers in the United States and London.

In the event of rain, the ceremony will be held at Temple Beth Zion-Beth Israel, 300 South 18th Street. For further information, call JCRC at 215-832-0650.

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