Ellin speaks about the 75th anniversary of the end of WWII at ‘Spotlight on Speakers’ Series Oct. 20 in Toronto

As the world prepares to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of WWII, Toronto author and journalist Ellin Bessner takes us back in time to the days when Canadian troops began cleaning out the remnants of Nazi Germany’s occupation forces across Europe. During the spring of 1945, the troops were met with a joyous welcome by the Dutch people, who had endured starvation and brutality under Hitler’s forces. But the Canadians also came face to face with the truth about the fate of Europe’s Jewish community, as they liberated Nazi concentration camps like Vught and Westerbork, and also, the notorious Bergen-Belsen.

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How a Canadian jeweller oversaw the Nazi WWll surrender in May 1945

The coronavirus has forced the cancellation or limitation of most of the world’s highly-anticipated ceremonies to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. For my part, all of my scheduled lectures and public events here in Canada this spring have been postponed or called off entirely, due to the pandemic. However, the milestones of the liberation of Holland and #V-EDay75 are far too important to ignore. That is why I want to pay tribute, virtually, to the vital contribution of Canada’s 17,000 Jewish fighting military personnel to winning the war against Hitler, and rescuing the survivors of the Holocaust.

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The 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Holland and the end of WWII: Ellin speaks at the Scugog Museum

As the world commemorates the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War, author and journalist Ellin Bessner brings her new book “Double Threat” to the Scugog Shores Museum Village and Archives. As Canada, and indeed the world, marked the end of the fighting in the spring of 1945, hundreds of Canadian airmen and soldiers were still hard at work overseas with a new humanitarian mission: rescuing the survivors of the Holocaust,  including in Germany at the site of the notorious Nazi death camp Bergen-Belsen.

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