Master Sgt. Roddie Edmonds saved Jews during World War II
You can read the heart-warming story of an American soldier who saved Jews in World war II at http://www.timesofisrael.com/israel-honors-us-gi-who-told-the-nazis-we-are-all-jews/
The following quote is from the news story:
The Nazi soldiers made their orders very clear: Jewish American prisoners of war were to be separated from their fellow brothers in arms and sent to an uncertain fate.
[Master Sgt. Roddie] Edmonds was captured with thousands of others in the Battle of the Bulge in late 1944 and spent 100 days in captivity. His son vaguely knew about his father’s past from a pair of diaries Edmonds kept in captivity that included the names and addresses of his men and some of his daily thoughts.
But it was only while scouring the Internet a few years ago that he began to unravel the true drama that had unfolded — oddly enough, when he read a newspaper article about Richard Nixon’s post-presidency search for a New York home. As it happened, Nixon purchased his exclusive upper East Side town house from Lester Tanner, a prominent New York lawyer who mentioned in passing how Edmonds had saved him and dozens of other Jews during the war.
That sparked a search for Tanner, who along with another Jewish POW, Paul Stern, told the younger Edmonds what they witnessed on Jan. 27, 1945, at the Stalag IXA POW camp near Ziegenhain, Germany.
The Wehrmacht had a strict anti-Jew policy and segregated Jewish POWs from non-Jews. On the eastern front, captured Jewish soldiers in the Russian army had been sent to extermination camps.
Then the Nazi officer pressed his pistol to Edmonds head and offered him one last chance. Edmonds merely gave him his name, rank and serial number as required by the Geneva Conventions.
“And then my dad said: ‘If you are going to shoot, you are going to have to shoot all of us because we know who you are and you’ll be tried for war crimes when we win this war,‘” recalled Chris Edmonds, who estimates his father’s actions saved the lives of more than 200 Jewish-American soldiers.
Note that these were American soldiers who had been captured during the Battle of the Bulge. Edmonds knew that there would be war crimes trials for the Germans. How could Edmonds have known about the ex-post-facto laws, that would be passed by the Americans, before these laws were even passed?
Young people, who might be reading this, might not know the importance of the Battle of the Bulge, so I am going off on a tangent to educate them.
The Battle of the Bulge was no ordinary battle; it was one of the biggest land battles of World War II and resulted in the highest number of American casualties.
It was a surprise attack by the Germans through the Ardennes Forest, Hitler’s last desperate attempt to split the Allied armies and reverse the course of the war. There had long been rumors that Hitler was secretly developing a “miracle weapon,” and it was at the Battle of the Bulge that the jet airplane was first used by the Germans.
The area in Belgium where the battle was fought had been the scene of similar battles in 1870, 1914 and 1940. This was Hitler’s last stand, the last counteroffensive of the German army, and the Germans knew that if this battle were lost, the war would most likely be lost. The battle was very intense with the Germans putting everything they had into it.
As John Toland wrote, regarding the gallant battle fought by the Germans at the Battle of the Bulge: “Boys of fourteen and fifteen died, rifles frozen to their hands; men in their fifties were found in cellars, feet black with putrefaction.”
The enlisted men among the Malmedy Massacre accused averaged less than 22 years in age. There were only 30 men who were original members of the Leibstandarte-SS Adolf Hitler, including Lt. Col. Peiper and General Sepp Dietrich. Many of the accused SS soldiers were baby-faced, uneducated 17 and 18-year-olds with little combat experience, but a few others were some of the toughest and most battle-hardened men in the German armed forces, who had been in combat for six years. They had fought some fierce battles on the Eastern front and seen unbelievable atrocities committed by our Russian allies, including mutilated bodies on the battlefield, sodomy on German POWs and cannibalism in which parts of the bodies of German POWs had been sliced off and eaten.
Hitler was counting on Dietrich’s Sixth Panzer Army, whose soldiers had fought heroically against the Soviet Communists on the Eastern front, to save the Fatherland from the “Judeo-Bolsheviks” by winning this crucial battle in Belgium.
Dietrich assigned Lt. Col. Jochen Peiper the great honor of leading the battle group which would spearhead the attack. Peiper was a veteran of the greatest tank battle of all time, fought between the German Tiger tanks and the Russian T-34 tanks at Kursk in July 1943.
Such was Peiper’s reputation as a panzer ace that his defense attorney made the suggestion that he should be brought to America as a consultant in America’s Cold War with the Soviet Union. In fact, General Heinz Guderian, Germany’s leading expert in armored strategy, had been brought to Ft. Knox after the war to advise the American Army on tank warfare. Peiper and his men had already been interviewed extensively in prison by US Army tactical experts.
In the first few days of the battle, there was mass confusion caused by a team of 28 Germans dressed in American uniforms, led by the famous commando Otto Skorzeny. Riding in stolen American jeeps, they created havoc by directing American troops down the wrong road, changing signposts and cutting telephone wires to General Bradley’s field headquarters. Four of the team were captured and when they confessed their mission, the American army immediately broadcast the news that there were thousands of Germans operating behind enemy lines. Skorzeny and his men were later brought before the American military tribunal at Dachau in another proceeding.
The news story should most certainly have mentioned what happened at the Battle of the Bulge, but the story is only about the Jews. In this day and age, it is all about the Jews. No one else counts.