U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) today issued the following statement commemorating the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz:
“Today marks the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the concentration camp where more than one million Jews and other victims were systematically murdered throughout World War II. For those who survived, this day in 1945 was the beginning of a long journey of grief, heartache and recovery. For the 1.1 million who died in Auschwitz and the millions more murdered in similar concentration camps, we honor their memory today and pledge to never forget.
“The Holocaust will always stand as a haunting reminder of the reality of evil, the dangers of totalitarian power, and the price the world pays when good nations turn a blind eye to oppression. But it also serves as an emblem of extraordinary resilience and courage; a marker of the power of faith and love in surmounting even the worst horrors imaginable.
“Today we are reminded that, while the Holocaust is over and no equal horror has occurred since, evil still abides. We see it in the chants of ‘death to Israel’ and the rise of anti-Semitism, in the oppression and imprisonment of Christians throughout the world, in the indefinite detainment of unknown numbers of innocents in North Korea’s modern day Gulag, in the ongoing suffering of the Syrian people, and in the everyday systematic violation of basic human rights in Cuba, China, Venezuela, Iran and other oppressive nations.
“America learned in the decades since the Holocaust that we cannot eradicate mankind’s capacity for cruelty, but we can stand firmly in its way when it advances in the world. We have the power to prevent a horror of the magnitude and scope of the Holocaust from ever happening again, but to do so, we cannot avert our eyes from evil.
“When the dignity of a people is violated, America must stand on the side of the oppressed. When a region is rocked by terror, America must snuff out evil with justice. When human rights are spat upon by dictators, America must face down tyrants with strength. Our country cannot face evil alone. Other nations must do their part. But no nation can lead this effort if not America.
“Seventy years ago today, the machinery of death was finally halted at Auschwitz, and the remaining survivors freed. Throughout that fateful year, allied forces systematically shut down death camps across Europe. As word spread of the horrors inflicted in those camps, the good people of the world swore to never forget. In marking this solemn day, we stand with the nation of Israel and Holocaust survivors around the world, including the many living in Florida today, and we recommit ourselves to the task of never forgetting.”