President Barack Obama speaks at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. on April 23, 2012. (Getty Images)
President Barack Obama on Sunday paid tribute to the victims of the Holocaust by vowing to "stand in the way of any tyrant or dictator who commits crimes against humanity."
"We honor the memories of the 6 million Jews and millions of other innocent victims whose lives were tragically taken during the Holocaust over sixty years ago," Obama said in a statement marking International Holocaust Remembrance Day. "Those who experienced the horrors of the cattle cars, ghettos, and concentration camps have witnessed humanity at its very worst and know too well the pain of losing loved ones to senseless violence."
Obama has invoked the phrase "senseless violence" multiple times in his push for more gun control following the Newtown, Conn. massacre.
Jan. 27 marks the anniversary of the 1945 liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp, designed as part of the Nazis' "Final Solution" to systematically exterminate the Jews -- a deliberate act that while incomprehensible, was hardly "senseless."
Obama said while Holocaust remembrance is a time for mourning and reflection, "it is also the time for action."
"On this day, we recall the courage, spirit, and determination of those who heroically resisted the Nazis, exemplifying the very best of humanity," he said. "The United States, along with the international community, resolves to stand in the way of any tyrant or dictator who commits crimes against humanity, and stay true to the principle of 'Never Again.'"
"By remaining vigilant against those who seek to perpetrate violence and murder, we honor those we lost during one of the darkest periods in human history. And we keep their memory alive for generations to come," he said.