Auschwitz - British role discussed in library talk

PUBLISHED: 17:01 16 January 2009 | UPDATED: 12:16 17 June 2010

A TIMELY talk about Auschwitz and the infrequently-discussed British knowledge of the death camp is taking place later this month. Local author Jonathan Walker will be making his visit to Sidmouth Library ahead of Holocaust Memorial Day, which takes place

A TIMELY talk about Auschwitz and the infrequently-discussed British knowledge of the death camp is taking place later this month.

Local author Jonathan Walker will be making his visit to Sidmouth Library ahead of Holocaust Memorial Day, which takes place every year on January 27.

A member of the British Commission for Military History, Jonathan Walker lives in Sidmouth. His latest book, Poland Alone, was published last October.

Jonathan's illustrated talk, based on the book, will focus on the bloody Warsaw Uprising of 1944, when the Polish Resistance attempted to gain control of their city from the German Army. They expected help from the Allies but received none, and they were left helpless as the Russians moved in. The War ended with over five million Poles dead, three million of whom died in the concentration camps.

The book examines whether Britain could have done more to save the Polish people in their crisis year of 1944, dealing with many different aspects such as the actions of the RAF and SOE, the role of Polish Couriers, the failure of British Intelligence and the culpability of the British press.

Jonathan Walker is also the author of Aden Insurgency: The Savage War in South Arabia and The Blood Tub 1917: General Gough and the Battle of Bullecourt.

Students from Sidmouth College and Colyton Grammar School have been invited to the event to help them with their studies on this topic.

Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) is the international day of remembrance for the victims of the Holocaust and of other genocides. It is always marked on 27 January, the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.

HMD sets out to motivate people to make sure that the horrendous crimes committed during the Holocaust and in more recent genocides, are neither forgotten nor repeated, whether in Europe or elsewhere in the world.

Executive Member for Culture, Councillor Sheila Hobden, said: "This is a powerful subject which quite rightly still horrifies and motivates people. We are lucky to have an author of Jonathan Walker's calibre living in Devon and visiting one of our libraries."

Jonathan Walker's talk, Auschwitz....what the British knew, will take place on Thursday 22 January 2009 at Sidmouth Library at 6pm. Tickets are free.

For further information on Holocaust Memorial Day go to www.hmd.org.uk


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