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Rina Castelnuovo for The New York Times

TEL AVIV — Shir Seniora, 16, returned from a class trip to former concentration camps in Poland haunted by images of fellow Jews herded into gas chambers.

“They showed us where the gas was piped in and you realize that you yourself are in a gas chamber and your breath just stops,” he said. “We are taught about it, but being there it brings it all together in one place.”

The trips are one way that Israel, 58 years after its establishment in the shadow of the Holocaust, is trying to cope with the fading of history, especially as the number of survivors — and perpetrators — dwindles. Another approach is to bring Israeli youths together with survivors. Teenagers tend to listen to even the smallest details of the survivors’ stories, knowing they will be the last generation to personally know those who lived through the Holocaust.

Tom Segev, a journalist who explored Israel’s complex relationship with the Holocaust in a book, “The Seventh Million,” said preserving the memory of the Holocaust was one of the few subjects that binds Israeli society.