Elie Wiesel 1928-2016


The world has lost a giant with Holocaust survivor, author and Nobel Peace Prize winner Eli Wiesel passing away.

Eli Wiesel, who survived the Holocaust and went on to become an influential author and Nobel Peace Prize winner, has died, Israel’s Holocaust memorial Yad Vashem said on Saturday.

Born in 1928, Wiesel wrote extensively of his imprisonment in Nazi camps and in 1986 won the Nobel Prize for peace.

Arguably one his most notable literary achievement was his book Night, based on his experience as a prisoner in Auschwitz, Buna, and Buchenwald concentration camps.

In 1986, Wiesel won the Nobel Peace Prize for what the Norwegian Nobel Committee called his “practical work in the cause of peace…atonement and human dignity” to humanity.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu mourned the passing of Wiesel and released a statement, saying that he “gave expression to the victory of the human spirit over cruelty and evil, through his extraordinary personality and his fascinating books.”

Netanyahu said that “in the darkness of the Holocaust, in which our sisters and brothers were killed – six million – Elie Wiesel served as a ray of light and example of humanity who believed in the goodness in people.”

The prime minister gave thanks that he had been blessed to have know Wiesel, and learned from him, personally.

Former president Shimon Peres called Wiesel’s death “a great loss to the Jewish people and to the whole world.”

Peres, who awarded Wiesel with a presidential medal of honor in 2013, said that the author had “made his mark on all of humanity with his unique contribution to the remembrance of the Holocaust and by passing his message of peace and respect between people to the whole world.”

The former president said that Wiesel had “survived humanity’s greatest horrors and chosen to dedicate his life to spreading the message – never again.”

Meanwhile, World Jewish Congress President Ronald S. Lauder called the author “a beacon of light” and said the Jewish world “owes him an enormous debt of gratitude.”

“Elie Wiesel was more than a revered writer,” Lauder added. “He was also a teacher for many of us. He taught us about the horrors of Auschwitz. He taught us about Judaism, about Israel, and about not being silent in the face of injustice.”

Baruch Dayan HaEmet. May Eli Wiesel’s memory be a blessing.

Update: This was published just last week.

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