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July 16, 2016

Everything you ever wanted to know about Elie Wiesel and his book entitled “Night”

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , , — furtherglory @ 5:09 pm

Wiesel.jpg

Chapter Summaries in Elie Wiesel’s book entitled Night

Chapter 1: Wiesel grew up in Sighet, a small town in Translyvania. He is a strict Orthodox Jew who is tutored by Moshe the Beadle. When all foreign Jews are expelled, Moshe is deported. He returns to Sighet with horrific tales. Nobody believes him.

Fascists gain control in Hungary and allow Nazis to come into the country. The Jews of Sighet do not believe that anything bad will happen to them. Days later, the town is ordered to evacuate. Eliezer Wiesel’s family is part of the last group. Their former Gentile servant, Martha, warns them of impending danger and offers them a place of refuge. They refuse.

Chapter 2: Eliezer and his townsmen are packed into cattle cars and suffer terribly. One woman, Madame Schacter, continually screams of a fire. She is silenced by her fellow prisoners. As the train arrives at Auschwitz-Birkenau, they see smoke rising from chimneys and are inundated with the horrific smell of burning flesh.

Chapter 3: The first selection occurs. Eliezer and his father lie about their age and avoid going to the crematorium. As they walk to Auschwitz they pass a pit of burning babies. When they arrive in their barracks, they are disinfected with gasoline, receive a tattoo, and are dressed in prison clothes. Eliezer’s father asks to go to the bathroom and is clobbered by a kapo. The prisoners are then escorted to Monowitz Buna, a work camp four hours away.

Analysis: Wiesel emphasizes the human failure to comprehend just how evil humans can be. He and his family are warned several times to flee, yet they and the town find the truth to be impossible.

Elie Wiesel’s primary goal in publishing “Night” is to prevent another Holocaust from happening. He emphasizes the need to be aware of evil in the world and to believe first hand accounts of it.

His recounting of the miserable conditions on the cattle cars and the horrific events he witnessed at Birkenau are examples of first hand accounts that must be taken seriously in order to prevent something this horrible from happening again.

Chapter 4: At Buna, Eliezer is summoned by the dentist to have his gold crown removed. He feigns illness. The dentist, he discovers, is hanged. Eliezer’s only focus is to eat and stay alive. He is savagely beaten by the kapo, Idek and is consoled by a French worker, whom he meets again, years after the war.

The prison foreman, Franek, notices Eliezer’s gold crown and demands it. He refuses. Franek beats Eliezer’s father and he gives up the crown.

Eliezer catches Idek having sex with a female French worker. Idek whips him mercilessly and warns him that one word of what he saw will result in more severe punishment. During an air raid, two cauldrons of soup are left unattended. A prisoner crawls to them and is shot right before eating some. The Nazis erect a gallows at camp and hang three prisoners, the last one, a boy loved by all, causes even the most jaded of prisoners to weep.

Chapter 5: It is late summer 1944 and another selection occurs. This time Eliezer’s father is on the wrong side. He gives his spoon and knife to his son. Eliezer rejoices as he returns and discovers there was another selection and his father still lives. Eliezer hurts his foot and is sent to the infirmary. He hears rumors of Russians approaching. The Nazis evacuate the camp. Eliezer assumes infirmary patients will be killed so he leaves. He discovers later that the patients were liberated the next day.

Chapter 6: The prisoners are forced to run 42 miles in one night during a blizzard. Those unable to keep up are shot. The refugees stop in a small village where Eliezer and his father keep each other awake to avoid freezing to death. Rabbi Eliahu enters a small shack occupied by Eliezer, looking for his son. Eliezer recalls–after Eliahu’s departure–seeing his son desert his father, something he prays for strength never to do. Another selection occurs. Eliezer’s father is sent to the death side. A diversion is created and his father switches lines.

Chapter 7: The survivors are packed into cattle cars and sent to Germany. The train stops frequently to remove dead bodies. Eliezer recounts how German workers throw bread into the cattle cars to witness the prisoners kill each other. Eliezer is nearly killed.

Analysis: Wiesel attributes his survival to luck and coincidence, two ideas that play a prominent role in the novel. Each selection is a matter of luck and coincidence; being assigned to easier jobs is a matter of luck and coincidence; leaving the infirmary is a matter of luck and coincidence. Wiesel honestly portrays his feelings toward his father. He recognizes that his father gives him strength to continue; he acknowledges also that his father at times becomes a burden.

Chapter 8: Upon their arrival at Buchenwald, Eliezer’s father is unable to move. Eliezer brings him soup and coffee, against the advice of other prisoners who counsel him to keep it for himself. Eliezer’s father, suffering from dysentery, begs for water. An SS guard becomes annoyed and knocks him in the head. Eliezer wakes up the next morning and discovers his father’s empty bed. He is more relieved than sad.

Chapter 9: Eliezer is only concerned with food during his remaining months at Buchenwald. On April 5, the evacuation of Buchenwald is ordered. Nazis murder thousands daily. On April 10, Eliezer’s block is ordered to evacuate, but it is cut short by air raid sirens. The next day the camp is liberated. Wiesel nearly dies from food poisoning. He recovers, looks in a mirror, and is shocked by his appearance.

Analysis: Eliezer’s reflection that he resembled a corpse ends the novel with a sense of hopelessness. Despite this hopelessness Wiesel dedicates his life to human rights.

Characters in Night by Elie Wiesel

When reviewing characters in Night by Elie Wiesel, keep in mind that these Night characters are actual human beings and that Night is a memoir of Wiesel’s actual experience in a concentration camp.

Eliezer – Wiesel gives a first person psychological account of life in a concentration camp. It is important not to confuse the narrator with the author, even though they are the same person. Eliezer’s experiences cause him to question his faith and the existence of a loving, merciful God. Eliezer’s (the narrator’s) account leaves the reader with a sense of hopelessness, that humanity is irredeemable, that God has abandoned his creation.

Chlomo – Eliezer’s father is the only other character who appears consistently. He is a respected member in Sighet before being deported. Eliezer and Chlomo remain together throughout the ordeal. The narrator is honest and frank in his assessment of his father. He needs his father to keep going, but resents having to take care of him at times. He acknowledges a sense of relief when Chlomo finally dies. One of the more powerful scenes occur towards the end of the novel when Rabbi Eliahou searches for his son during the forced evacuation of Buna. Eliezer recalls seeing Eliahou’s son, recalling that he had abandoned his father. Eliezer then utters a prayer, asking for the strength never to do such a thing to his own father.

Moshe the Beadle – Moshe is Eliezer’s teacher who is deported along with other foreign Jews in Hungary. He escapes, returns, and warns the town about atrocities he witnessed. Nobody believes him.

Madame Shachter – She is deported in the same cattle car as Eliezer. She screams of fires the entire time. The passengers mistake her for a mad woman only to discover she is a prophetess as they see the furnaces of Birkenau and the pit of burning babies.

Juliek – Eliezer first meets Juliek, a young musician, at Auschwitz. He hears him play his violin at Gleiwitz toward the end of the narrative.

Idek – Idek is a kapo at the electrical parts plant at Buna where Eliezer works. Eliezer catches him having intercourse with a French woman. Idek whips Eliezer as punishment.

Franek – Eliezer’s foreman at Buna who steels Eliezer’s gold crown with the help of a dentist and a rusty spoon.

Dr. Josef Mengele – Eliezer encounters Mengele after his arrival at Auschwitz. Known as the angel of death, Mengele sentenced thousands of Jews to their death. He also oversaw cruel experiments on prisoners.

Hilda, Bea, Tziporah – Eliezer’s mother and sisters, whom he never sees after entering Auschwitz.

Important Quotes from Night by Elie Wiesel

Quote: Never shall I forget that night, the first night in camp, which has turned my life into one long night, seven times cursed and seven times sealed. Never shall I forget that smoke. Never shall I forget the little faces of the children, whose bodies I saw turned into wreaths of smoke beneath a silent blue sky.

Analysis: As Eliezer arrives at Auschwitz he is greeted by his first selection. He and his father follow the line that passes a pit of burning babies. It is difficult for even the most hardened reader not to wince at this passage; it stands out as the most horrible atrocity in a chronicle of horrible atrocities.

Wiesel writes three times in this passage “Never shall I forget.” He uses anaphora, a poetic device that involves the repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of clauses, to highlight the novel’s major theme–to never forget.

Quote: Never shall I forget those flames which consumed my faith forever. Never shall I forget that nocturnal silence which deprived me, for all eternity, of the desire to live. Never shall I forget those moments which murdered my God and my soul and turned my dreams to dust. Never shall I forget these things, even if I am condemned to live as long as God Himself. Never.

Analysis: A continuation of the first quote in this section, the phrase “Never shall I forget” is repeated four more times. This section of the passage highlights another major theme of the novel–the struggle to maintain faith in a world full of evil.
More Important Quotes from Night by Elie Wiesel

Use these Night quotes as a reminder to thwart prejudice, racism, hatred, and discrimination, for they are the seeds of human rights violations. These important quotes from Night will help you remember.

Quote: One day I was able to get up, after gathering all my strength. I wanted to see myself in the mirror hanging on the opposite wall. I had not seen myself since the ghetto. From the depths of the mirror, a corpse gazed back at me. The look in his eyes, as they stared into mine, has never left me.

Analysis: The narrative’s last lines leaves the reader with a sense of hopelessness. Eliezer views himself as dead; innocence is dead; humanity is dead; God is dead. It is important not to confuse the narrator with the author. Elie Wiesel, the older version of Eliezer, the death camp survivor, has dedicated his life to serving mankind and to prevent human rights atrocities, showing the world that humankind is capable of goodness, notwithstanding its inherent evil. For more on Wiesel’s life after his liberation, check out his website.

Quote: The night was gone. The morning star was shining in the sky. I too had become a completely different person. The student of the Talmud, the child that I was, had been consumed in the flames… A dark flame had entered my soul and devoured it.

Analysis: Wiesel uses parallel structure–the like grammatical structure of adjacent phrases or clauses that signify equality of importance–to draw attention to the two things which died: his faith and his childhood.

Quote: Yet another last night. The last night at home, the last night in the ghetto, the last night in the train, the last night in Buna.

Analysis: The repetition of “the last night” emphasizes death, not just the death of his fellow prisoners, but the death of humanity.

Themes in Night by Elie Wiesel

Night themes include the dangers of silence and the importance of remembering. Putting into practice these themes from Night by Elie Wiesel can help prevent human rights atrocities. Night themes include the inhumanity of humans toward others and the struggle to have faith in a benevolent God during suffering.

Silence – As Eliezer and his family exit the train at Auschwitz, they are shocked at its existence, causing one of the prisoners to insult them, in disbelief that it was 1944 and they had never heard of Auschwitz. They weren’t alone.

How many otherwise good humans were aware of the existence of concentration camps but chose to remain silent? It is silence which allows the Nazi takeover in Europe. Another silence Wiesel emphasizes is the silence of God to allow such atrocities to occur. Wiesel counsels his readers to not be silent witnesses to hate.

The Importance of Remembering – One of Wiesel’s main objectives in writing Night is to remind his audience that the Holocaust occurred, in hopes that it will never repeat itself. Wiesel has maintained his vigilance against hatred and inhumanity through the Elie Wiesel foundation for humanity.

The Existence of Evil – Philosophers and religious scholars have theorized on the existence of evil for centuries, asking the question “How or why does God allow evil to exist if he is, in fact, all powerful and good. Throughout the narrative, Eliezer answers the question by asserting his God is dead. Despite his avowal that his faith is dead, he maintains scraps of it, praying, for example, that he will never betray his father as Rabbi Eliahou’s son does. He also recognizes that those prisoners who completely lose their faith soon die.

Inhumanity – Eliezer is shocked that human beings can be so cruel. The first section of the narrative portrays the entire city of Sighet in denial. When foreign Jews are deported, the town insists all is well. When Moshe the Beadle returns and reports Nazi atrocities, the town insists all is well. When the Fascists take over in Hungary, the town insists all is well. When the SS begin patrolling the streets, the town insists all is well. When Eliezer suggests they move to Palestine, his father refuses. When Martha the former servant offers them refuge, even after most of the town had been expelled, they remain. Those in Sighet cannot comprehend that other human beings can be so evil.

The Animalization of Humans – Eliezer comments on how prisoners themselves become inhuman in concentration camps. In addition to the kapos who treat regular prisoners almost as cruelly as the SS, Eliezer witnesses three instances of sons turning against their fathers: (1) He witnesses a son abusing his father; (2) He witnesses Rabbi Eliahou’s son abandon him during the forced evacuation from Buna; (3) He witnesses a son beat his own father over a piece of bread on the train to Buchenwald. Eliezer feels guilt over the manner in which he treats his father, feeling him a burden at times.

Symbolism in Night by Elie Wiesel

Understanding Night symbolism brings greater appreciation for Wiesel’s memoirs.

1. Night – The title of the novel symbolizes death, the death of innocence, childhood, faith, and millions of people. The narrative contains many last nights, the last night in Sighet, the last night in Buna, the last night with his father, the last night of innocence, etc. Night also symbolizes a world without God. The worst suffering occurs at night. Wiesel contends that God does not live in the concentration camps and God’s people have no recourse.


2. Fire – Fire represents hell. Eliezer’s hellish experience is foreshadowed by Madame Shachter’s insane screaming on the train to Auschwitz. The pit of burning babies scars Wiesel for life. The specter of the furnace haunts Wiesel and his fellow prisoners throughout. The symbol of fire in Night, however, is ironic. No longer is fire a tool of the righteous to punish the wicked. It has become a tool of the wicked to punish the righteous. It emphasizes Wiesel’s belief that God has abandoned his people.

3. Silence – Silence symbolizes fear, apathy, and inability. Wiesel cannot comprehend that the world can remain silent as the Nazis commit atrocities. It also represents the silence of the oppressed. Eliezer, for example, remains silent when his father is beaten, unable to help him. The entire town of Sighet remains silent to the pleas of Moshe the Beadle, who warns the town of what is coming. Silence also represents the absence of God. Note the camp’s reaction to the young boy’s hanging–silence. A common theme in the narrative is God’s silence as his people suffer.


4. Corpses – Corpses symbolize the living dead. Prisoners are often referred to as corpses, corpses whose spirits have been crushed by suffering. Eliezer looks in the mirror as the narrative ends and sees a corpse, symbolizing the death of innocence and childhood.

 

Elie Wiesel’s book “Night” is about what happens when “the Nazis get you”

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 8:49 am

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The title of my blog post today comes from a news article which you can read in full at https://newrepublic.com/minutes/134838/elie-wiesel-boy-lived

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

Begin quote

Night was first published in English in 1960, and it would take many more years before it became a staple of high school and college courses. (It was chosen for Oprah’s Book Club in 2006.) Sequentially and substantively, it is a kind of sequel to Frank’s diary: It is about what happens when the Nazis get you.

End quote

Why were the Nazis out to get the Jews? It was because of the Jewish propensity to Lie, Steal and Cheat.  Basically, the Nazis were puritans: they loved their mothers, and they did not lie, steal and cheat.

Everything that Elie wrote was a lie. Elie was never in a camp. Elie was in hiding throughout the war. Elie never even met a Nazi. Elie was safe at home in Romania, hiding in his basement.

Elie Wiesel and Oprah at Auschwitz-Birkenau

Elie Wiesel and Oprah at Auschwitz-Birkenau

My photo of the ruins that Elie and Oprah visited

My photo of the ruins shown in the photo of Elie and Oprah at Auschwitz-Birkenau

In January 2006, Oprah Winfrey had chosen “Night”for her book club selection. Shortly after that, she toured the Auschwitz main camp and the Birkenau camp with Elie Wiesel as her guide. The photo above shows Oprah and Elie in Birkenau, standing beside the ruins of Crematorium III, where thousands of Hungarian Jews were allegedly gassed and burned in 1944. Oprah was speechless as Elie Wiesel described the horror of the Holocaust, including the murder of innocent children.

What will be the legacy of Elie Wiesel? Will he go down in history as “Elie the Liar”?

You can read more about Elie Wiesel at http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/reading-elie-wiesel-in-auschwitz/article8860273.ece

 

July 14, 2016

Elie’s first Night in the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 9:17 am
This is what Elie Wiesel saw on his first night at Auschwitz-Birkenau

This is what Elie Wiesel allegedly saw on his first night at Auschwitz

Display board shows the road on which Elie and his father walked

Display board shows the road on which Elie and his father allegedly walked into the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp

Note the photo on the display board; the photo shows a woman and three children, who are allegedly on their way to the gas chamber. This famous photo is from the Auschwitz Album; it was taken by an SS man on May 26, 1944.

This photo was shown as evidence at the Auschwitz Trial in Frankfurt where 22 SS men, who had formerly worked at Auschwitz-Birkenau, were put on trial by the Germans in 1963.

On his alleged first night in the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp, Elie Wiesel allegedly saw German soldiers throwing  live babies into a burning pit. That is why Elie used the title “Night” for one of his numerous books.

Born on September 30, 1928 in the Jewish community of Sighet in Transylvania, which is now in Romania, Elie Wiesel was 15 and a half when he allegedly arrived at Birkenau on a train transport of Hungarian Jews in May 1944.

Elie and his father allegedly stayed in the Birkenau camp for only a few days before being transferred to the main Auschwitz camp where he was kept in quarantine for a couple of weeks.

Elie was saved from the gas chamber because he and his father were allegedy selected to work in the Buna Werke camp at Monowitz, also known as Auschwitz III. His two older sisters also survived, but he never saw his mother and younger sister again after he was separated from them upon his arrival at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

According to the display board shown in the photo above, the road through the Birkenau camp was a shortcut to Krema IV and Krema V where there were gas chambers, disguised as shower rooms.

After arriving around midnight at the Birkenau camp, Elie Wiesel and his father were allegedly assigned to a barrack in the Gypsy camp, which was to the left on the interior camp road, shown in the photo above, behind the Men’s camp.

The interior road runs north and south, connecting the Women’s camp to the new section, called “Mexico” by the prisoners. At that time, part of the Gypsy camp had been converted into a transit camp for the Durchgangsjuden who were held there temporarily until they could be transferred to another location.

Elie Wiesel could not have seen the alleged gas chambers at Birkenau because they are at the western end of the Birkenau camp, beyond the intersection of the main camp road and this interior road which bisects the camp from north to south.

Elie wrote in his book, entitled “Night”, that on his first night in the camp, a night that he would never forget, he saw two burning pits, one for children and one for adults, where Jews were being burned alive.

Elie and his father were miraculously spared at the last moment when, only two steps from the burning ditch, they were ordered to turn left and enter the barracks.

The following quote is from “Night” by Elie Wiesel:

Begin quote

Not far from us, flames were leaping up from a ditch, gigantic flames. They were burning something. A lorry drew up at the pit and delivered its load-little children. Babies! Around us, everyone was weeping. Someone began to recite the Kaddish. I do not know if it has ever happened before, in the long history of the Jews, that people have ever recited the prayer for the dead for themselves …. Never shall I forget that night, the first night in camp …. Never shall I forget that smoke. Never shall I forget the little faces of the children, whose bodies I saw turned into wreaths of smoke beneath a silent sky.

End quote

After a few days in the Birkenau camp, Elie and his father were allegedly transferred to the main Auschwitz camp, where they were allegedly housed in Barrack 17 for a short time.

In his book entitled “Night,” Elie Wiesel wrote that he was tattooed with the number A-7713 at the main Auschwitz camp. After a few weeks in the main camp, Elie and his father were then allegedly sent to Auschwitz III, the Monowitz camp also known as Buna.

Monument in honor of the Jews who worked at Monowitz

Monument in honor of the Jews who worked at the Monowitz camp

The figures in the monument, shown above, are supposed to look like the  curved fence posts in the three Auschwitz camps.

 

July 4, 2016

Ely Wiesel was a “global symbol of dignity and righteousness”

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 12:07 pm
Monument to the prisoners who died at Monowitz

My photo of the monument to the prisoners who died at the Monowitz camp

The figures in the photo above are supposed to look like the fence posts at Monowitz.

The title of my blog post today comes from a quote in a news article which you can read in full here: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/elie-wiesel-a-global-symbol-of-dignity-and-righteousness/article30739375/

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

Begin quote

It began with Night, Mr. Wiesel’s seminal memoir of Jewish life, such as it was, in the Nazi camps. Though he struggled to find an American publisher and the book barely sold at first, Night caught on and changed the world. It gave voice to the voiceless, and turned Mr. Wiesel into a living symbol of the martyrdom of the innocent. It is impossible to finish his book and be unaffected by the experience.

Mr. Wiesel was an unusually gifted communicator. He wrote dozens of memoirs, novels, plays, essays, and more, overwhelmingly focused on the Holocaust and its legacy. He sold millions of copies of Night, alone. But his communication skills extended well beyond the written word. Mr. Wiesel’s quiet, still voice, softly accented with a European inflection, and his sad, puppy dog eyes made him an astonishing and captivating speaker.

And speak he did, for Mr. Wiesel did not see the abject horror of the Holocaust and its relentless machinery of mass death as a one-off aberration. Instead, he saw it as an ever-present threat to humanity. What happened to the Jews yesterday could happen to someone else today, he correctly reasoned, and frequently added his voice on behalf of those who were in the genocidal crosshairs. From Cambodia to Rwanda, from Kosovo to Darfur, Elie Wiesel spoke out eloquently and urgently. In doing so, he transformed himself from a chronicler of the Holocaust into a global symbol of dignity and righteousness.

End quote

You can read about Monowitz on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/AuschwitzScrapbook/History/Articles/Monowitz.html

Prisoners working at Monowitz

Prisoners working at Monowitz

The following information about Monowitz is from my scrapbookpages.com website, written before I became a Holocaust denier:

Auschwitz III, aka Monowitz, was established in 1942 at the site of the chemical factories of IG Farbenindustrie near the small village of Monowitz, which was located four kilometers from the town of Auschwitz. The IG Farben company had independently selected this location around the same time that Reichsführer-SS Heinrich Himmler decided, in April 1940, to locate a new concentration camp in the town of Auschwitz. The most important factory at Monowitz was the Buna Werke, which was owned by the IG Farben company.

Of the three Nazi concentration camps located near the town of Auschwitz, the Auschwitz III camp was the most important to the Nazis because of its factories which were essential to the German war effort. The Monowitz industrial complex was built by Auschwitz inmates, beginning in April 1941. Initially, the workers walked from the Auschwitz main camp to the building site, a distance of seven kilometers.

The decision to build chemical factories at Auschwitz transformed both the camp and the town. On February 2, 1941, Herman Göring ordered the Jews in the town to be relocated to a ghetto, and German civilians moved into their former homes.

Auschwitz quickly went from a primitive Jewish town of 12,000 inhabitants to a modern German town of 40,000 people which included an influx of German engineers and their families. Both the main Auschwitz camp and the Birkenau camp were expanded in order to provide workers for the factories. Before Monowitz became a separate camp with barracks buildings, the prisoners had to walk from the other camps to the factories.

When I visited Auschwitz in October 1998, I was told that some of the Monowitz factories were still in operation, but this area was off limits to visitors. On my trip to Auschwitz in October 2005, I hired a taxi driver to take me to the site of the factories, but I was told that they didn’t exist anymore. On my way back to the Krakow airport from Auschwitz, the taxi driver from my hotel pointed out the factory buildings, partially hidden behind the concrete wall.

End quote from my website

 

April 25, 2015

New book entitled Holocaust High Priest: Elie Wiesel…is now available on Amazon

Filed under: Buchenwald, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 8:16 am

Yesterday, I tried to order the new book by Warren B. Routledge, which has just been published, but it was not yet available on Amazon.com. Today I received an e-mail from the author himself, who alerted me to the news that the book is now ready to order. I put in my order as fast as I could and now I am eagerly waiting for the book to arrive.

Here is the full title and information about the book: Holocaust High Priest: Elie Wiesel, “Night,” the Memory Cult, and the Rise of Revisionism (Holocaust Handbooks) (Volume 30) Paperback – April 17, 2015 by Warren B. Routledge (Author)

To prepare for reading this book, you might want to read this website: http://www.eliewieseltattoo.com/

I have written extensively on my blog about Elie Wiesel and his claim that he was in a famous photo, taken at Buchenwald. https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2012/01/23/the-famous-buchenwald-photo-is-that-elie-wiesel-or-a-40-year-old-man/

Here is a quote from  the promo of the book:

Begin  quote:

Holocaust High Priest weaves together five compelling and interrelated narratives. The book’s main concern is to present the world’s first unauthorized biography of Elie Wiesel. It shines the light of truth on the mythomaniac who, in the 1970s, transformed the word “Holocaust” and made it the brand name of the world’s greatest hoax: the unfounded claim by an extremist segment of World Jewry to the effect that the German government’s wartime policy of territorial transfer of Europe’s Jews out of the Reich was in actuality an “extermination program.” In these pages, both Wiesel’s personal deceits and the whole myth of “the six million” are mercilessly exposed and laid bare for the reader’s perusal. Unfortunately, Zionist control of the U.S. Government as well as the nation’s media and academic apparatus has allowed Wiesel and his fellow extremists to force a string of U.S. presidents to genuflect before this imposter

End quote

January 4, 2012

Grandma Nisel and 15-year-old Elie Wiesel’s gold crown

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 1:40 pm

The title of my post today is in reference to a long article, written by Caryolyn Yeager on her Elie Wiesel Cons the World blog.  I predict that some day Carolyn Yeager will be more famous than Elie Wiesel because of the fantastic job she has done in revealing the truth about Elie Wiesel.  Yeager’s latest article on her blog begins with the headline:

Why is Grandma Nisel not mentioned in Elie Wiesel’s Night?

Later on in the article, you will see this headline:

A fifteen-year-old with a gold crown?

Yeager questions Elie Wiesel’s claim that he had a gold crown at the age of 15, which he mentions in his book Night.  It is highly unusual for a person of 15 to have a gold crown on a tooth today, but it was not unusual for a Jewish teenager in the 1940s. Keep in mind that Anne Frank mentioned in her diary that she had to have a root canal on a front tooth while she was in hiding, so she had a gold crown when she arrived at Auschwitz at the age of 15.  (Did Elie Wiesel copy this little detail from Anne’s Diary?) The Frank family had invited a dentist to go into hiding with them because they anticipated that someone in the family might need some dental work.  The dentist brought all of his dental equipment with him.  Old photos of Anne’s father, Otto Frank, show that he might have had some gold crowns on his front teeth.

Yeager’s article is very long and involved, but it is a must read for everyone.  She has done a  detailed analysis of the books written by Elie Wiesel and also books that were allegedly written by Elie Wiesel.  You can read it here.  Prepare yourself to be shocked at her conclusions.

July 19, 2011

Elie Wiesel’s description of Buchenwald in his book “Night.”

Filed under: Buchenwald, Germany, Health — Tags: , , , , — furtherglory @ 8:08 am

Carolyn Yeager has put up a new article on her web site www.eliewieseltatto.com which addresses the issue of Elie Wiesel’s description of the Buchenwald concentration camp in his book “Night.”  You can read the full article here.

Ms. Yeager does not believe that Elie Wiesel was ever an inmate at Buchenwald.  One would think that a highly acclaimed writer like Elie Wiesel would have painted vivid word pictures of the Buchenwald camp.  But that is not the case, as Ms. Yeager points out.  She has come to the conclusion that he was not at Buchenwald because he did not describe the camp at all.

This quote is from http://www.eliewieseltatto.com:

I have to say Wiesel doesn’t describe Buchenwald at all. You don’t know anything about Buchenwald from reading Night. You don’t learn much about Eliezer or anyone else. You are given an impression of suffering, without rhyme or reason, so Buchenwald becomes synonymous with suffering, that’s about it. We don’t know what it looks like.

In the few pages in which Wiesel described his suffering at Buchenwald, he tripped up twice.  The first time was when he wrote “Then I came to a block where they were distributing black coffee.”

In every Holocaust survivor book that you will ever read, you will learn that the morning beverage that was always served in every camp was a coffee substitute, which was called “ersatz Kaffee” in German.

Coffee was very expensive in Europe during World War II.  Keep in mind that coffee beans do not grow in Europe, so coffee had to be imported, and in wartime, there were more important uses for ships. Even in America, coffee was expensive and lots of people drank Postum, a coffee substitute.  My family drank real coffee, but my mother made it so weak that I hated the taste of it.  To this day, I have such bitter memories of her light brown coffee that I never drink coffee.

One might argue that Elie Wiesel was only 16 years old when he was in Buchenwald and he may not have been familiar with the taste of real coffee, so he didn’t recognize that he was drinking a coffee substitute.  However, back then it was common for very young children to drink coffee.  I started drinking coffee at such a young age that I don’t even remember how old I was at the time.

Besides that, Elie wrote that he had previously been in Auschwitz; according to numerous Auschwitz survivors, ersatz coffee was the only drink ever served.  At Auschwitz, the water wasn’t fit to drink, so it had to be boiled and the foul taste disguised with coffee flavor.  How could Elie have thought that the Germans were serving real coffee to thousands of prisoners in war time?

Ms. Yeager also quotes Wiesel as writing this:  “we had not eaten for nearly six days except for a few stalks of grass and some potato peels found on the grounds of the kitchen.”

This was his second big mistake.  Potato peels found on the grounds of the kitchen?  Has Elie Wiesel ever been to Germany?  The German people do not throw potato peels on the ground — ever.  Except maybe on a compost pile.  But in the camps, the potato peels were put into the soup.

Heinrich Himmler, who was in charge of all the concentration camps, was a health nut.  One of the main foods in all the camps was potatoes, which were put into the soup with the peeling still on.  Himmler knew that the prisoners had to get all the necessary vitamins and minerals from a small amount of food, so he would not have allowed the potatoes to be peeled and the peelings thrown on the ground.  Many Holocaust survivors and Prisoners of War have written that the peelings were left on the potatoes that were in the daily soup.

The health movement started in Germany and back then, people in America were not yet eating potato peels.  As far as I know, the utensil known as a potato peeler did not yet exist back then.  Potatoes were peeled with a paring knife.  Knowing that Americans did not eat potatoes with the peeling on during World War II, all the Holocaust survivor books, that I have ever read, describe the potato peelings that were in the daily soup.  This was one of the greatest crimes of the Holocaust according to the survivors, who interpreted being forced to eat potato peelings as being treated like animals.  The POWs were especially critical of the Germans for serving soup with the peeling still on the potatoes.

Elie Wiesel probably heard a survivor of Buchenwald talk about eating potato peelings and assumed that they ate peelings that had been thrown away.

The Buchenwald camp was built on a hillside so that, from the roll call square, a prisoner could look out over the entire camp.  The orphan’s barrack in block 66 was in what was called “the Small camp,” which was at the bottom of the hillside.  Elie Wiesel claimed that he was put into the orphan’s barrack after his father died.

Buchenwald was mainly a camp for political prisoners, but the prisoners in “the Small camp” were mostly Jewish.  That’s because the Jews didn’t arrive at Buchenwald until late in the war when they were marched out of Auschwitz and brought to Germany.  “The Small camp” was used as a quarantine camp for new prisoners.

At first, the newly arriving Jewish prisoners had to be kept in quarantine at Buchenwald, so as not to spread any diseases that they might have brought from Poland.  Yet, Elie Wiesel described how the Jewish prisoners were allowed to enter the barracks on their first day without taking a shower.

Elie also wrote in Night that he and his father were taken to the former Gypsy barracks on their first night in Auschwitz — without taking a shower. According to his book Night, Elie and his father were not put into the quarantine barracks at Auschwitz-Birkenau, which are the barracks near the Gate of Death that are now shown to tourists.

The problem is that Elie wrote Night before other Holocaust survivors wrote their books and gave little details about the camps that are so important if one is going to write a fake Holocaust book. On his own web site, Elie called Night a novel, but then Oprah had to ruin everything by selecting his book as her Book of the Month.  A new edition, translated by Elie’s wife Marion, was put on the market and it was classified as a true story.

December 10, 2010

Why is there so much interest in Elie Wiesel?

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 4:32 pm

Not too long ago, I checked my wordpress “site stats” to see which post had gotten the most hits “of all time.”  It turned out that one of my posts about Elie Wiesel was the all time favorite of the readers of my blog.  I have been posting on my blog for almost a year now, and I have written 364 posts so far.  Out of all those posts, why is there so much interest in the subject of Elie Wiesel?  The obvious answer is that students in most schools in America are required to read Elie’s book Night.  But I find it hard to believe that students are reading a blog written by an old fogey like me.

I read Night many years ago, before I knew a lot about the Holocaust.  I knew about the gas chambers at Auschwitz, but Elie’s book didn’t mention the gas chambers, which I thought was odd.  When Oprah picked Night as her book club selection a couple of years ago, a new edition was released, which has some changes.  You can go to amazon.com and search inside the new edition.  The part about the burning pits starts around page 32 and continues to page 34.

How could Elie Wiesel not have known about the gas chambers at Auschwitz?  Anyone who was there would have known.  Many survivors have written books in which they said that the Kapos, who met the train and removed the luggage, told them to lie about their age so they would not be waved to the left during the selection process; the left meant that you were in the group that was destined for the gas chamber.  (Elie was told by one of the Kapos to lie and say he was 18; his father was advised to say he was 40.)

Selections for the gas chamber at Auschwitz-Birkenau

The photo above shows the selection process for the incoming prisoners at Auschwitz-Birkenau.  Two SS officers in uniform are shown, along with several prisoners in striped uniforms on the far left.  The woman carrying a baby is headed toward Krema II, but she will have to walk a long way to get around the train that is in her way.  According to many survivors, mothers were asked to hand over their babies to the elderly women, but those who refused were sent to the gas chamber.

In his book entitled Absence of Closure, Dr. Gustav Schonfeld wrote about what happened when his family was transported to Auschwitz from the town of Munkacs in Czechoslovakia, which had become part of Hungary after Czechoslovakia was invaded by the Hungarian army in 1938. Schonfeld wrote that, during the selection process at Birkenau, his father ran ahead in the line to see what was going on, and then ran back to tell his wife that she should let her mother hold her baby, and she should tell the selections officer that she was a nurse. This saved his mother’s life because if she had not handed her baby over to her mother, she would have been sent to the gas chamber.

According to Dr. Schonfeld, Dr. Josef Mengele told his mother not to worry, that she would see her baby later. Later, when his mother asked Dr. Mengele where her baby was, she was told to look at the camp’s smokestacks. Dr. Schonfeld wrote that his mother never forgave herself for giving her baby to her mother.

Elie Wiesel wrote in Night that he and his father were waved to the left.  Then he wrote:

“We did not know, as yet, which was the better side, right or left, which road led to prison and which to the crematoria.”

I am not sure, but this sentence might have been added in the new edition released for Oprah’s book club.  He couldn’t add the term “gas chamber” in the new edition, but since everyone knows that the gas chambers at Auschwitz were in the crematoria buildings, this was just as good.

Train that has just arrived at Auschwitz-Birkenau

In the background of the photo above, you can see the tall chimneys of the Krema II and Krema III crematoria where the gas chambers were located.  Almost every survivor mentioned that the first thing that they saw when they got off the train was smoke, or flames, coming out of the two chimneys.  Elie and his father arrived at night so, of course, they didn’t see the chimneys.  What they saw instead was far worse: two burning pits, one for children and one for adults.

Here is the part about the burning pits in the new version of Night:

Not far from us, flames, huge flames, were rising from a ditch.  Something was being burned there.  A truck grew close and unloaded its hold: small children.  Babies!  Yes, I did see this, with my own eyes …. children thrown into the flames.  [..]  A little farther on, there was another, larger pit for adults.  [….]  We continued our march.  We were coming closer and closer to the pit, from which an infernal heat was rising.  Twenty more steps.  If I was going to kill myself, this was the time.  Our column had only some fifteen steps to go.  I bit my lips so that my father would not hear my teeth chattering.  Ten more steps.  Eight.  Seven.  We were walking slowly, as one follows a hearse, our own funeral procession.  Only four more steps.  Three.  There it was now, very close to us, the pit and the flames.  I gathered all that remained of my strength in order to break rank and throw myself onto the barbed wire. […] Two steps from the pit, we were ordered to turn left and herded into barracks.

Many survivors wrote that mothers with children were always sent to the gas chamber and that mothers and babies were gassed together.  I have read many survivor books, but none of them ever mentioned that the babies were grabbed out of the mothers’ arms and thrown into a truck to be taken to a burning pit.

Painting illustrates how the babies were thrown into a burning pit at Birkenau

Elie Wiesel and his father were marched down this road

According to the display board shown in the photo above, this road was a shortcut to Krema IV and Krema V where there were gas chambers, disguised as shower rooms. Note the photo on the display board which shows a woman and three children; the text on the display board says that they are on their way to the gas chamber. This famous photo is from the Auschwitz Album; it was taken by an SS man on May 26, 1944. The photo was shown as evidence at the Auschwitz Trial in Frankfurt where 22 SS men, who had formerly worked at Auschwitz-Birkenau, were put on trial by the Germans in 1963.

If my memory of the original version of his book is correct, Elie Wiesel and his father arrived at Birkenau around midnight, and were assigned to a barrack in the Gypsy camp, which was to the left of the interior camp road shown above, behind the Men’s camp.

Map of Birkenau camp. The top of the map is West, not North

(Click on the photo to enlarge)

In the new 2006 version of Night, on page 37, it is mentioned that Elie and his father were “herded into yet another barrack inside the Gypsy camp.” In 1944, part of the Gypsy camp had been converted into a transit camp for the Durchgangsjuden who were held there temporarily until they could be transferred to another location. Elie and his father were transferred to the main Auschwitz camp and then to the Auschwitz III camp, also known as Monowitz, which was a labor camp.

There is a story, often told, that Heinrich Himmler witnessed Jews being shot by the Einsatzgruppen, early in the war, and this affected him so much that he decided to use gas chambers to kill the Jews.  But why did Himmler change his mind and decide that innocent babies should suffer the most ignominious death of all — being burned alive?

Elie Wiesel and his father were selected for work when they arrived at Birkenau.  Why were they sent down the same road where the babies were being burned alive?  Did the Nazis deliberately provide witnesses to the cruel deaths of the babies?

A couple of months ago, I got into an argument with one of my readers and a history professor about whether or not the prisoners were marched out of the camps so that they could be killed because the Nazis didn’t want to have any witnesses who could potentially testify about the atrocities in the camps.  I maintained that the prisoners were marched out so that they could be taken to labor camps in Germany to work.

Elie and his father were witnesses to the most horrible atrocity of all, yet they were marched out of Birkenau on January 18, 1945 and taken to Buchenwald.  O.K. now I am confused.  First Elie and his father were marched down the road to the burning pits so that they could get a good look at the babies being thrown off a truck into the fire, but then, according to the history professor, they were marched out of the camp in order to kill them because they were witnesses.

As it turned out, Elie wasn’t killed on the march out of the camp; he survived and told the world about the babies being burned alive.

The German people are some of the smartest people in the world, yet they made many stupid mistakes during the Holocaust.  Like bringing witnesses to see the burning pits and then allowing them to survive.

You can read more about Elie Wiesel and Night here on the web site with the title Elie Wiesel Cons the World.

November 9, 2010

Did Elie Wiesel ever dream that something like this would happen?

Filed under: Buchenwald, Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 2:32 pm

When Elie Wiesel was a young man, studying at the Sorbonne in Paris in the 1950s, did he ever dream that there would some day be a web site devoted to him, called Elie Wiesel Cons the World?  Back in 1955, Elie Wiesel had his first book published; it was a thin volume, entitled Night, which used all the creative writing techniques that he had learned at the Sorbonne.  I think he actually wrote this book, as I previously blogged here.

I am about the same age as Elie Wiesel and, back in the 1950s, I was in college, studying creative writing during the two years of study that it took to get into Journalism School.  I was writing short stories for class assignments and actually sending them to well-known magazines, foolishly thinking that I could become a published writer.  Maybe Elie Wiesel was collecting rejection slips from magazines the same way that I was.

In my college classes, the students were taught to write their fictional stories about what they knew, in other words, about their own personal experience.  It never occurred to me to write about someone else’s life and maybe that’s why I never got any of my short stories published.  Maybe Elie Wiesel was on the same track, when he realized that his own life was too boring, and he decided to write about someone else’s life as a prisoner at Auschwitz and later at Buchenwald, never dreaming that anyone would accuse him of plagiarism, 50 years later.  (In my day, students used to say: “Don’t shade your eyes — plagiarize.” It was done all the time. No big deal.)

Elie Wiesel was truly a pioneer in writing a book about the Holocaust.  In the 1950s, not many people were interested in this subject, especially not in America.  The war was over and life was good.  There was great prosperity and Americans were happy and contented.  There was no reason to dwell on the past.  The Holocaust was not yet a word and people in America didn’t talk about the “genocide” of the Jews.

However, there was more interest in the subject in Europe.  A Frenchman named Paul Rassinier wrote his first book Crossing the Line in 1949, in which he described the Buchenwald concentration camp, where he was imprisoned because he was a captured French Resistance fighter.  (Buchenwald was the main camp for French Resistance fighters.)

Rassinier is called the “father of Holocaust denial” and his book is considered to be the first Holocaust denial book. In the book, he criticized the Communist prisoners who actually ran the Buchenwald camp. He claimed that many of the brutalities in the camp were committed by the mainly Communist prisoners who took over the Haftlingsfuhrung and ran the internal affairs of the camp to benefit themselves. Rassinier blamed the high death rate at Buchenwald on the corrupt prisoners who actually ran the camp.  The Communist prisoners decided who would eat and who would not.

But I digress. I don’t think that Elie Wiesel ever considered that using someone else’s story as his own was wrong.  His main consideration was that he was using all the techniques that he learned in creative writing and his book today is mostly taught in English classes in America, rather than in history classes.

His book Night does not mention the gas chambers at Auschwitz, nor at Buchenwald.  Not mentioning the gas chambers at Auschwitz makes Elie Wiesel a Holocaust denier himself.  Maybe that’s why he said on his own web site that the book was a NOVEL.

I blame the current controversy about the book on the Oprah Winfrey TV Show.  Oprah selected Night as her Book Club selection a few years ago, and Elie quickly changed his web site, so that the book was no longer called a novel.

Now the Elie Wiesel Cons the World web site is sponsoring a contest for college students to write about the ethics involved in the book controversy and Elie’s claim that the story of Night is his own life experience.  Will Elie Wiesel finally come clean and tell the truth?  I don’t think so, and I also don’t think that any of the students at Boston University will write an essay for the contest.  If anyone does have the courage to write such an essay, he or she will probably be kicked out of college.

September 13, 2010

Keeping up with the Wiesels…

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 12:09 pm

No, the title of this blog post does not refer to a new TV reality show.  This is about the ongoing controversy regarding two men named Wiesel: Elie Wiesel and Lázár Wiesel.  Elie Wiesel is the author of the famous book, Night, that is currently assigned reading for virtually every school kid in America.  Lázár Wiesel is the name of a young man from Elie Wiesel’s home town in Hungary, who was a prisoner in the Buchenwald concentration camp, the same place where Elie Wiesel claims to have been a prisoner in 1945.

Elie’s full name is Eliezer Wiesel and there has been some speculation that he and Lázár Wiesel might be the same person. Both were born around the same time in 1928 and both were allegedly liberated from the Buchenwald concentration camp on April 11, 1945.

There are documents which prove that Lázár Wiesel was one of the 904 “orphans” at Buchenwald and that he was sent to France in July 1945.  Elie Wiesel was living in France after World War II and he also claims to have been on that list of “orphans,” although there are no documents to prove his claim.  There are no documents to prove that Elie was registered in Buchenwald, nor even that he was registered in Auschwitz.

Now a researcher has proved that Eliezer Wiesel and Lázár Wiesel are definitely not the same person because their signatures are not the same.  Some people might say “So what?”  Others are outraged. Elie Wiesel is an icon; he has made millions off his books and speeches about the Holocaust, and has been awarded prizes for his stories.  But is he a fraud?

I believe that Elie Wiesel wrote the book Night, but there is no proof that he wrote the original book, that Night was based on.  You can read the three part essay entitled Shadowy Origins of “Night” here.

In 1948, America changed the laws which had previously limited the number of immigrants from Germany coming to America, and thousands of Holocaust survivors came here, while thousands of others emigrated to Israel.   Almost none of these survivors wrote books about their experience in the Nazi death camps in the 50s and 60s, probably because they did not want to be confronted with the obvious question: “How did you manage to survive when 6 million Jews were killed?”  Many people thought that the obvious answer to that question was that the survivors had co-operated with the Nazis.

In 1954, at a time when there was no market for Holocaust survivor books, Elie Wiesel allegedly wrote an 862 page book called Un di Velt Hot Gesvign (And the World Remained Silent). This 862 page book became the basis for the book Night.  Elie claims that he typed up this book, which was written  in Yiddish, while he was on an ocean voyage to Brazil in the Spring of 1954.  Yiddish is a dialect of German, but it is written with Hebrew letters.

The researcher, who questions whether Elie Wiesel wrote the original book, brings up the question of where the author got enough typewriter ribbons to type up a 862 page book while he was in the middle of the ocean.

Elie Wiesel worked for a Yiddish newspaper in 1954, so that’s why he had a Yiddish typewriter. There is a photo of a Yiddish typewriter included in part III of the article about the Shadowy Origins of Night.

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