Holocaust Survivor, Elie Wiesel's Strategies in The Perils of Indifference

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Elie Wiesel—a Holocaust survivor and award-winning human rights activist—passionately gave his speech, “The Perils of Indifference,” while in the White House on April 12, 1999. The speech was part of the Millennium Lecture series, which was hosted by President Bill Clinton and his wife. Mrs. Hilary Clinton introduced Elie as well, saying: "It was more than a year ago that I asked Elie if he would be willing to participate in these Millennium Lectures...I never could have imagined that when the time finally came for him to stand in this spot and to reflect on the past century and the future to come, that we would be seeing children in Kosovo crowded into trains, separated from families, separated from their homes, robbed of their childhoods, their memories, their humanity." Indeed, the events in Kosovo created an effective environment that Wiesel could use to tell the audience about some of his experiences during the Holocaust and to communicate why humanity must fight against the evil of indifference. Wiesel knows about that evil firsthand. How could he not with his experiences in the Holocaust? This experience is a large factor in his relationship with the issue, and he references it subtly several times, as he frequently uses the words “we” and “us” when talking about those who have experienced the worst effects of indifference. The reason he felt such a need to communicate why humanity should despise indifference is, in fact, because it so directly affected him. The

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