Saturday, July 17, 2010

Dancing Holocaust Survivor at Auschwitz Sparks Debate 

Is it ever OK to boogie at a concentration camp?

That's a question that has been debated back and forth since a video surfaced of a Holocaust survivor and his family dancing to the Gloria Gaynor tune "I Will Survive" at Auschwitz, the former Nazi camp where over 950,000 Jews were killed.

The video is the work of Australian artist Jane Korman. She filmed the video last summer with her three children and her father, Adolek Kohn, an 89-year-old survivor of the camp.

Adolek is shown wearing a T-shirt saying "Survivor." He leads the family in a conga line, and is also filmed peeping out of a cattle car that was used to transport Jewish prisoners during the Holocaust.

The video recorded 500,000 hits on video site YouTube before it was yanked off the site on Thursday over copyright issues.

"I think it is wonderful, wonderful that so many people looked at this," Adolek told BBC News. "Of course not everyone understands why we dance at Auschwitz."

Some are gravely offended that the topic of genocide should be treated so lightly, even by a man who lived through it.

Michael Wolffsohn, a German Jewish historian at the Bundeswehr Munich, told The Associated Press that the video is "tasteless" and "embarrassing self-promotion" on Korman's part.


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