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Last Updated: Thursday, 20 January, 2005, 10:08 GMT
Stamp honours Jewish 'moon boy'
By Rob Cameron
BBC News, Prague

Moon Landscape (Picture: courtesy of Yad Vashem Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority)
A copy of the moonscape was destroyed in the shuttle disaster (Picture: Yad Vashem)
A new postage stamp featuring a drawing by a Jewish boy who was murdered at Auschwitz is to be unveiled in Prague on Thursday.

The drawing, by Prague schoolboy Petr Ginz, depicts a view of the Earth as imagined from the Moon.

As a boy, he was obsessed with science and space travel, and drew his now famous Moon Landscape aged 14.

The black-and-white pencil drawing shows mountains on the Moon with the Earth shining far away in the distance.

The artwork was drawn in 1942-1944, when Petr was imprisoned in the Theresienstadt ghetto.

Petr was later sent to Auschwitz and killed. The drawing, now immortalised on a postage stamp, betrays the boy's dreams of escaping the ghetto walls that confined him.
Petr Ginz (Picture courtesy of Yad Vashem Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority)
Petr dreamed of going into space (Picture: Yad Vashem)

But there is an extra poignancy to this story. Two years ago, Israel's first astronaut, Ilan Ramon, took a copy of the drawing on board the ill-fated Columbia space shuttle.

Ramon, whose mother survived Auschwitz, was killed when the shuttle exploded on returning to Earth.

The postage stamp is a tribute both to a schoolboy who dreamed of travelling through space and an astronaut whose own dreams ended in tragedy.

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