The title of my blog post today is a line from a news article, which you can read in full at http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2016/jun/05/dutch-get-holocaust-museum-20160605/
The following quote is from the news article, cited above:
AMSTERDAM — More than 70 years after tens of thousands of Dutch Jews were deported and killed by the Nazis, the Netherlands is finally getting a national Holocaust museum.
In all, 104,000 Dutch Jews were among the 6 million Jews murdered in the Holocaust. The theater is now home to a memorial to those victims.
The most important part of the news article comes later in this quote:
The nine paintings on show are collectively titled “The Demise of Abraham Reiss.” They trace the life of [Jeroen] Krabbe’s grandfather, who was murdered by the Nazis in 1943 in the Sobibor death camp in occupied Poland.
From a man sitting in a forest of birch trees on the edge of Amsterdam, the paintings trace Reiss’ life in pre-war Amsterdam to his detention in the Westerbork camp in the northeastern Netherlands and his arrival at Sobibor, where he was greeted by a snarling dog and shadowy, faceless guards. The final painting shows thick smoke billowing out of the chimney of Sobibor’s gas chamber and a flock of geese, whose honking was intended to drown out the screams of Jews being murdered, according to a text accompanying one of the paintings.
The artist said he couldn’t bring himself to visit Sobibor. So instead he drew on the memories of camp survivor Jules Schelvis, who wrote a book about his experiences and built models of the camp and its gas chambers. The models are exhibited in the same room as Krabbe’s paintings.
Krabbe said he also used his acting skills to imagine how his grandfather would respond to the horrors unfolding in his life.
“I wanted to get under his skin,” Krabbe told The Associated Press. “To imagine how it would be to experience what happened to him and how he would have reacted. It was like I had to play a role.”
Only 104,000 Dutch Jews were “murdered”? How many other Dutch Jews, including Anne Frank, died of disease, or natural causes, during the Holocaust?
It hardly seems worth it to have a national museum dedicated to only 104,000 citizens who were murdered. Why not have a memorial to all the Dutch citizens who died during World War II, which would include Anne Frank, who died of typhus at Bergen-Belsen?
But to get back to Sobibor…..
Sobibor is one of the few places, related to the Holocaust, that I have not visited. From everything that I have read about Sobibor, I believe that it was a transit camp, from which Jews were sent to the east, never to return.
I have written several blog posts about Sobibor: https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/tag/sobibor/
I have a section about Sobibor on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/Poland/Sobibor/Tour01.html
Alert readers of my blog post might have noticed that the news article mentioned “thick smoke billowing out of the chimney of Sobibor’s gas chamber.”
A real gas chamber, like the one in Jefferson City, MO, is supposed to have a tall chimney to vent the gas high into the air. Did the Nazis have a gas chamber consultant, like Fred Leuchter, to advise them on the construction of the gas chamber at Sobibor?