The founding Finnish members called the moshav Yad Hashmona in memory of the eight Jewish refugees who escaped to Finland from Austria in 1938 and were handed over by the Finns to the Nazi Gestapo in November 1942.
This was during a time when the Finnish government collaborated with Nazi Germany in an attempt to recover the Karelia region which Stalin had conquered during the “Winter War” of 1939–1940.
Seven of the eight refugees taken to Auschwitz, were murdered. The lone survivor, Dr. Georg Kolman, who lost his wife and baby son in the extermination camp, later made “Aliya” to the Land of Israel.
The Finnish founders wished to atone with a practical act, on behalf of the Finnish people, for handing over the eight Jews to the Nazis. They viewed their contribution of founding a settlement in the Land of Israel, as an act of restoration and forgiveness.
Seppo Raulo, the driving force behind the Yad Hashmona establishment, was a young boy when he heard the story of the eight refugees that were handed over to the Nazis. The burden of the “debt” stayed with him until the moment the Israeli government signed the permits for the new settlement in Israel, Yad Hashmona.