At the square of the former
collection point for the transport of Czech Jews going to the
concentration camps, nine trees were planted in the course of the
"Devet Bran Festival.
45,500 men, women, and
children from Prague were let to their death from this square. The
nine trees are there as a symbol for the new Jewish life in the
city. Czech state rabbi Karol Sidon mentioned the symbolic character
of life for the trees in his speech. In addition, the mayor of
Prague, Jan Kasl, newly spoke about his version of a multicultural
city, and the Israeli ambassador remembered the terror of the past
and emphasized her hope of a peaceful future.
Next, the representatives of
the three partner cities (Jan Kasl for Prague, Mayor Ehud Olmert for
Jerusalem and a representative of Eberhard Diepgens for Berlin)
began with the planting of the saplings.
A tree each by Arnost Lustig
and Tomas Haas-Fritta was planted, two survivors of the Shoah.
Haas-Fritta, son of the renowned Czech painter Bedrich Fritta, was
hidden in Theresienstadt, by a friend of the family, after the
transport of his parents to Auschwitz. The Haas family, who adopted
Tomas after the war, was able to hide drawings by Bedrich Fritta,
which were published as an impressive book by Yad Vashem.
"In Memory of over 80.000 czech
Jews, murdered in the years 1941-1945. 45.513 men, women and children
were deported from this place".