in June 2022, he was awarded a special award by the foundation running the Jewish Museum in Oświęcim for his commitment to preventing hatred. – I am a witness to the destruction caused by Nazism. I have seen with my own eyes how hatred has gotten out of control, and that is why I am sharing these painful memories with the world in the hope that such tragedies can be prevented in the future. I support the Jewish Center in Oświęcim and their mission so that the Holocaust will never happen again – said the actor in June during the award ceremony. This took place in New York on board the American aircraft carrier Intrepid.
Schwarzenegger in Auschwitz
In which, among others he walked through the historic gate with the inscription “Arbeit Macht Frei” and visited the Fourth and Fifth Blocks, where he was shown a model of a gas chamber and crematorium as well as personal items belonging to the victims of the Holocaust.
He lit candles in front of the Death Wall in the courtyard of Block 11. The Nazis shot about 5.5 thousand people there, mainly Poles, prisoners in camp arrest and the so-called police prisoners sentenced to death by the summary court of the Gestapo. He was then shown the first gas chamber and crematorium. It was then that he entered the Museum’s Memorial Book.
Arnold Schwarzennegger wrote “I’ll be back” on the card and signed it. What looks like a famous quote from the 1984 movie “Terminator”, in which the actor played the role of a murderous cyborg sent from the future with the task of killing Sarah Connor. The Auschwitz Museum shared a photo of an entry from the book on Twitter. In the comments, many people point out that the words chosen by the actor are at least inappropriate.
“I’m not sure if these are the right words”, “Honestly, when you are a descendant of a Nazi, you have to be especially careful and sensitive in the Holocaust museum”, “I am very glad that he visited the Museum and entered the book, but I had to think twice to make sure I understand the message. I’m sure he wrote it with the best of intentions and it’s hard to find the right words, but those are definitely not good, “we read in the comments under the photo.
The guest was defended by the Auschwitz Museum itself, which replied: “It really was a very short visit. He wrote it as a promise to return and stay longer”.
After visiting the former Auschwitz camp, Arnold Schwarzenegger and his companions went to the former Auschwitz II-Birkenau camp, where he could see, among others, a railway ramp where the Germans selected Jews deported to the camp. At the end of this part of the visit, candles were also placed – this time at the monument next to the ruins of gas chambers and crematoria II and III.
Then the actor went to the only surviving synagogue in Oświęcim, Chevra Lomdej Misznajot. There he met a former prisoner, Lidia Maksymowicz, who had survived Auschwitz. They were accompanied by Simon Bergson, the chairman of the foundation running the Jewish Museum in Oświęcim, the son of Auschwitz survivors, and its director Tomasz Kuncewicz. Associates also joined them.
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“The former governor of California has promised to visit Auschwitz to deepen his knowledge and continue fighting prejudice. Schwarzenegger has been publicly speaking out against hatred on social media for many years, where he regularly posts films and statements for millions of his fans,” the Oshpitzin Historical Museum also announces .