The story of Moshe the Beadle, with which Night opens, is perhaps the most painful example of the Jews’ refusal to believe the depth of Nazi evil. It is also a cautionary tale about the danger of refusing to heed firsthand testimony, a tale that explains the urgency behind Wiesel’s own account. Moshe, who escapes from a Nazi massacre and returns to Sighet to warn the villagers of the truth about the deportations, is treated as a madman. What is crucial for Wiesel is that his own testimony, as a survivor of the Holocaust, not be ignored. Moshe’s example in this section is a reminder that the cost of ignoring witnesses to evil is a recurrence of that evil.
The characters in the play were based upon real people who judged or were judged in hysteria. You'll close the book with a comma-like state, as there are a lot of ambiguities in it. But be sure to read it to the end, don't lose this superb possibility.
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At a time when it often seems that the fountains of the great deep have been opened and all is collapsing around us, it is good to remember the truths that appear in Joseph’s final paragraph, above. I am reminded of what Eliot wrote in his “Thoughts after Lambeth”: “The world is trying the experiment of attempting to form a civilized but non-Christian mentality. The experiment will fail, but we must be very patient in awaiting its collapse; meanwhile redeeming the time; so that the Faith may be preserved alive through the Dark ages before us; to renew and rebuild civilization, and save the World from suicide.”