Scrapbookpages Blog

April 27, 2016

The scale of Birkenau is overwhelming, and it was built for the sole purpose of murdering Jews

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 1:23 pm
British students on HET tour at Birkenau

British HET tour at Auschwitz-Birkenau

The title of this blog post comes from a British news article which you can read in full at  http://www.watfordobserver.co.uk/news/14454508.Time_will_not_allow_us_to_forget/

The following quote is from the news article:

Begin quote

By 1941 the Nazi genocide had stepped up and [the] Auschwitz [main camp] became too small due to the sheer number of prisoners arriving from across occupied countries.

Two miles away is the site of Auschwitz-Birkenau – a camp with an area covering an area the size of 250 football pitches [425 acres].

The scale of Birkenau is overwhelming, and harrowingly it was built for the sole purpose of murdering Jews.

The iconic railway tracks and entrance dominate the bleak and desolate camp. It is difficult not to see the brick watch tower from any part of the site.

Rabbi Barry Marcus of London’s Central Synagogue revealed that only around 25 per cent of prisoners were taken to the camps to work, while 75 per cent were sent straight to the gas chambers.

End quote

So the stupid Nazis built a camp that was the size of 250 football fields, just for the purpose of gassing Jews.

The news article continues with this quote:

Begin quote

The first camp we visited was Auschwitz [main camp], one hour from Krakow airport.

Sign in main Auschwitz camp warns against touching fence

Sign in main Auschwitz camp warns against touching the electrified fence

Originally the [Auschwitz main camp] site was used as a barracks [for German soldiers] but when the Nazis invaded Poland the empty buildings became the first concentration camp in that area.

Barracks for German soldiers at Auschwitz

Barracks for German soldiers with Appell Platz at Auschwitz main camp

Barrack building Auschwitz main camp

Barrack building in the  Auschwitz main camp was for German soldiers

Auschwitz barracks in winter 2006 Photo Credit: José Ángel López

Auschwitz barracks in winter 2006
Photo Credit: José Ángel López

As we made our way under the ”Arbeit Macht Frei” sign at the gates [into the main camp], the persecution was revealed in greater detail.

The sign translates as ‘work makes you free’ – a sick joke by the Nazis, as nobody was supposed to leave the [main Auschwitz] camp alive.

More likely than not you have heard horrifying stories from survivors or other Holocaust educators but the true extent cannot be described without seeing it for yourself.

End quote

What do British students learn from their HET tours? They learn to worship Jews and to hate Germans.  “that’s all ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.” [Ode to a Grecian urn]

 

Renee Firestone lived through the Holocaust with her sense of humor intact

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — furtherglory @ 7:31 am
Renee Firestone as she looks today

Renee Firestone today

The title of my blog post today is a line from a news article, which you can read in full at http://www.jta.org/2016/04/26/arts-entertainment/new-documentary-asks-if-were-ready-to-laugh-at-the-holocaust

You can hear Renee speak in this YouTube video:

I have previously blogged about Renee Firestone at https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2014/04/06/renee-firestones-shoah-testimony/

The following quote is from the news article, cited above:

Begin quote

“The Last Laugh,” which was a featured documentary at this month’s Tribeca Film Festival in Manhattan, is a hybrid in other ways as well. Director Ferne Pearlstein wanted to explore not only the limits of humor and free speech today, but how Shoah victims and survivors used humor as a salve, defense mechanism and weapon despite their powerlessness.

At a Nevada survivors’ convention filmed in the incongruous setting of The Venetian resort in Las Vegas, one survivor recalls how his fellow concentration camp inmates would mock the SS guards’ latest orders. Contemporary footage shot at the Theresienstadt concentration camp shows inmates performing comic skits and a children’s opera with apparent gusto. We now know that the Nazis allowed these theatricals for their own propaganda purposes, and that many of the performers were subsequently murdered at Auschwitz. But survivors tell of the relief, however temporary, provided by the performances.

End quote