“Monument to memorize of the bombing victims in 1944 in San Marino”

Jolanta KruszkaSan Marino, Italy (Photo: Jolanta Kruszka, 22.09.2018)

The monument was created to commemorate 63 victims of British bombings during World War II. During the war San Marino was officially neutral, but when the German forces used the state for the passage of troops, the Allied forces followed them. The Allied forces occupied San Marino only for as long as was necessary militarily, and it took only a few weeks. Many inhabitants of the republic joined the ranks of Italian anti-fascist partisans. As a result of the war in Italy, the city became a victim of British bombardments, which caused damage estimated at three billion liras, as well as 63 victims. Hunger and disease, including tuberculosis and typhoid fever, were widespread in the country.

(Source: Wikipedia)

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Today is exactly 100 years since Poland regained its independence. This freedom did not come alone and would not knock on our door. To win it, several generations of Poles lost their life in the uprisings: Listopadowym i Styczniowym as well as during the First World War. After 123 years, Poland has returned to the map of Europe. The most important creators of Polish independence were Marshal Józef Piłsudski in 1918 and Lech Wałęsa in 1989. The task and their roles in history was not easy. Thanks to their charisma and wisdom, as well as the involvement of millions of Polish women and men, we have managed to regain what is the greatest value in life: freedom. Together we are stronger, divided, we can lose everything.

This year also passes 100 years from giving women’s electoral rights. Because freedom and independence is a woman!

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“Stolpersteine”

Idea: Günter Demming, Berlin, Germany (Photo: Monika Saczyńska, October 13, 2010) / Rome, Italy (Photo: Monika Saczyńska, October 22, 2011)

The inspiration for the Stolpersteine project was an event related to an earlier project by Günter Demming. In Cologne, in 1990 the artist marked with chalk the route that Cologne Roms and Sinti were led to the place of deportation. Three years later, when he walked the same path again a woman he met on the way told him that no Roms or Sinti had ever lived in that district. That event inspired the artist to create the lasting memorial signs around the city.

The first Stolperstein was laid by Günter Demming in 1997 in Kreuzberg (a district in Berlin). Today, it is already a big project, in which often local communities, schools are engaged. The artist still watches over the project by approving the laying of the new stones based on the provided documentation.

The project aims to restore the memory of the victims of Nazism, including Jews, Roma and Sinti, homosexuals, deserters, people with disabilities, members of political parties. Usually stones are laid in the vicinity of the place where the commemorated person lived. The individual stones are inscribed with first name and surname, date of birth, date of deportation or exile, death date and place, but not the reason why the person was persecuted.

From the very start the project aroused controversy because of the placement of stones in the pavement. According to the Charlotte Knobloch, President of Central Council of Jews in Germany, form of the project is not entirely proper, because it brings to mind trampling the memory of the victims.

The number of stones in Stolpersteine project has already exceeded 20 000. Memorial Stones are located on the sidewalks of many cities in Germany and also in Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Norway, Ukraine, the Netherlands and Poland, among others, Wrocław and Słubice.

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Martyrdom is not asking for thousands of giant monuments. It is sufficient human memory. Monuments for alleged “martyrs” can be quickly removed, and in the memory of people will nothing remain.

The fountain of marble to memorize Giovanni Falcone

20160313_142415Made in 2001/2002,Savignano sul Panaro prov. Modena,  Italy (Photo: Jolanta Kruszka, 13.03.2016)

In Italy, in the region of Emilia Romagna, the province of Modena is a small town called Savignano sul Panaro.  There is a fountain on the central square, named after Giovanni Falcone, an law officer murdered by the mafia. It has a symbolic meaning. The critic Vladimir Zocca wrote about it: “An architectural composition which shows, how the memory of the sacrified life for the defense of the right to freedom, can enrich the society”.
The symbolism of the fountain is as clear as the water that covers the labyrinth – the symbol of mafia’s intrigue. A girl who is released from the labyrinth is a sign of hope and victory. The drawn up hands holding a pomegranate – a mythical symbol of immortality and rebirth.