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March 25, 2012

Commemorating Jewish deaths in Poland? (the dilemma faced by Germany’s soccer team)

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 1:14 pm

The debate goes on: Should Germany’s National Football Team pay a visit to Auschwitz to commemorate the deaths of 1.1 million prisoners at Auschwitz-Birkenau, including 900,000 Jews?

International Monument at Auschwitz commemorates the deaths of 1.5 million prisoners

Today, March 25th, is the anniversary of the first transport of Jews, from the former country of  Slovakia, to the Auschwitz main camp in 1942.  That was 70 years ago.  Why stop at 70 years in commemorating Jewish deaths?

Before Hitler, there was a man named Bogdan Chmielnicki, who perpetrated the world’s first major pogrom against the Jews in 1648.  Shouldn’t the German National Football Team also go to the Ukraine to pay their respects to the Jews killed in 1648?

This quote is from The Jewish Virtual Library here:

In 1648, a Ukrainian officer Bogdan Chmielnicki, with the support of the Tatar Khan of Crimea, roused the local peasants to fight with him and the Russian Orthodox Cossacks against the Jews. The first wave of violence in 1648 destroyed Jewish communities east of the Dnieper River. Following the violence, thousands of Jews fled west, across the river, to the major cities. The Cossacks and the peasants followed them; the first large-scale massacre took place at Nemirov (a small town, which is part of present-day Ukraine). It is estimated that 100,000-200,000 Jews died in the Chmielnicki revolt that lasted from 1648-1649. This wave of destruction is considered the first modern pogrom.

In 1648, Germany had been completely destroyed as a result of the Thirty Years War which went on between 1618 and 1648.  It took 100 years for the Germans to recover.  Then came another 30-year period in which Germany was destroyed again during World War I and World II.  Germany has finally recovered from the destruction of World War II, but they have not recovered their national pride.  If the Jews have anything to say about it, the Germans will NEVER AGAIN be able to have pride in themselves.  They will forever be admonished to “take responsibility for the Holocaust” and hang their heads in shame.

Today, the German people cannot walk down the streets of 60 of their cities without stumbling (literally) over stones on the sidewalk which commemorate the deaths of individual German Jews who died in the Holocaust.

"stumbling stones" on a German sidewalk

There are over 10,000 of these stones in Germany. The stones have the names of the Jews that once lived in the house where the stone is located.

Enough already!  It is time for Germany to move on and forget about the Holocaust.

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