During the Word War II, when Alytus was occupied by Germans, Jewish people were shot in Vidzgiris forest and buried in common graves. According to written sources, mostly people from the east of former Soviet Union and Czech Republic were killed here. This forest became the place of eternal rest for many Jewish people from Alytus region. On March 18, 1993, reconstructed memorial, designed for Jewish victims, was unveiled in Vidzgirio forest. Memorial ensemble is composed of the symbolic 'Star of David', 9 pyramids, indicating the burial-grounds, an obelisk and a stela. In the highest hill of the memorial stands a monument of pain a broken 'Star of David', symbolizing broken destinies and lives of humans. The author of the project is architect Rasa Vasiliauskienė, and the author of the broken star of David is sculptor Aloyzas Smilingis.References:
My husband and I recently traveled to Lithuania where my ancestors were from. Fortunately we knew this from several ships manifests that my Grandparents traveled on the states to. One relative had lived in Alytus before immigrating to the states. To my husband and I the Jewish Genocide Cemetery dramatically brought home the tragedy of the Holocust as we walked among the mass graves in a dark forest. One could almost feel the souls and spirit of those murdered. Those Jews of Lithuanian decent should visit this cemetery so as to NEVER FORGET ONES routes and this tragic event.
The Palace of the Kings of Navarre of Olite was one of the seats of the Court of the Kingdom of Navarre, since the reign of Charles III 'the Noble' until its conquest by Castile (1512). The fortification is both castle and palace, although it was built more like a courtier building to fulfill a military function.
On an ancient Roman fortification was built during the reign of Sancho VII of Navarre (13th century) and extended by his successors Theobald I and Theobald II, which the latter was is installed in the palace in 1269 and there he signed the consent letter for the wedding of Blanche of Artois with his brother Henry I of Navarre, who in turn, Henry I since 1271 used the palace as a temporary residence. This ancient area is known as the Old Palace.
Then the palace was housing the Navarrese court from the 14th until 16th centuries, Since the annexation (integration) of the kingdom of Navarre for the Crown of Castile in 1512 began the decline of the castle and therefore its practically neglect and deterioration. At that time it was an official residence for the Viceroys of Navarre.
In 1813 Navarrese guerrilla fighter Espoz y Mina during the Napoleonic French Invasion burned the palace with the aim to French could not make forts in it, which almost brought in ruin. It is since 1937 when architects José and Javier Yarnoz Larrosa began the rehabilitation (except the non-damaged church) for the castle palace, giving it back its original appearance and see today. The restoration work was completed in 1967 and was paid by the Foral Government of Navarre.