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Last Updated: Tuesday, 20 September 2005, 12:27 GMT 13:27 UK
In his own words: Simon Wiesenthal
Simon Wiesenthal, the celebrated Nazi hunter, has died at the age of 96. His life and work were punctuated by many memorable statements.


Wiesenthal on his work:

I am someone who seeks justice, not revenge.

The most important thing I have done is to fight against forgetting, and to keep remembrance alive. It is very important to let people know that our enemies are not forgotten.

On his motivation:

When history looks back, I want people to know the Nazis weren't able to kill millions of people and get away with it.

This is a warning for the murderers of tomorrow... that they will never rest. When we cannot through some action warn the murderers of tomorrow, then millions of people die for nothing.

When we come to the other world and meet the millions of Jews who died in the camps and they ask us: "What have you done?" there will be many answers... I will say: "I didn't forget you."

On forgiveness:

You can forgive crimes committed against you personally, but in my opinion you are not authorised to forgive for others.

On the use of the word 'Holocaust' in the 1990s:

We are living in a time of the trivialisation of the word "Holocaust". What happened to the Jews cannot be compared with all the other crimes. Every Jew had a death sentence without a date.

On being a victim of the Holocaust:

I know this war deformed me. I am not the same as I was before the war.

On his personal safety:

My whole day, there are so many dirty letters and telephone calls and so on... when I look on my grandchildren, immediately I remember how many such children were killed, and then I think how I can prevent them from going through such times... and then I say to my wife: "You see, look on these children, it's not our obligation to do everything, but history must repeat...", and then my wife says: "Why only you, why not others?"

On the arrest of an Austrian policeman who arrested Anne Frank:

My most hard work, and I am very proud of this case, was to find the man who arrested Anne Frank... the family Frank was like 10,000 other families, but Anne Frank became a symbol of the million murdered children, and I tell it to the father of Anne Frank, the diary of his daughter had a bigger impact than the Nuremberg trial. Why? Because people identified with this child. This was the impact of the Holocaust, this was a family like my family, like your family and so you could understand this.

On the Simon Wiesenthal Center:

I have received many honours in my lifetime. When I die, these honours will die with me. But the Simon Wiesenthal Center will live on as my legacy.




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