This Holocaust Author's Auschwitz Blog

This Holocaust Author's Auschwitz Blog

This blog describes my thoughts and experiences in visiting Auschwitz in September 2014, and Belzec, Majdanek and Sobibor in January 2016

I blogged my preparations for my visit, I posted daily during my visit to Poland...there are also my ongoing thoughts posted here; in the aftermath of my visit...
(Please note due to the sensitive nature of this blog, and the prevalence of trolls, comments have been blocked)

I Choose to Remember

HolocaustPosted by P.A. Draigh Fri, August 11, 2017 15:40:46

It is with all honesty, that I threw every emotion I could muster into ensuring, not only do we Remember that 6,000,000 innocent People were Murdered, because they were Jews, but that we lay claim to its memory and place the full ferocity of its conduct and implementation where it belongs. On a pyramid scale, Hitler stands atop of this pile of iniquity, of the human carnage which ensued and of the total disregard for any morality which was clearly on display. No one should argue other than this position which has been properly raised by Raul Hilberg to damn and even condemn those who aided and abetted Hitler’s endeavour. That is unless of course you are a denier!

"..first and foremost perpetrator was Adolf Hitler. ..without him it would have been inconceivable." Raul Hilberg.

Underneath this single insignificant man who became a significant person in the dishevelling influence of civilisation, are the guilty, the complicit, the duplicitous, the perpetrator, the participator, the collaborator, the mealy mouthed, the haters and the bystander who chose to look the other way. Of course not all of these are equally as guilty here. I would strenuously argue that avoiding the atrocity is less reprehensible that participating in it, but just as morally bankrupt. For those who issued the laws and decrees, and for those who fulfilled them to the devastating degrees achieved, all share an enormous guilt.

"..Every day they keep issuing new laws against ..Jews. Today ..for example ..they took all our appliances away from us ..sewing machine ..radio ..telephone ..vacuum cleaner ..electric fryer and my camera. I don't care about ..camera any more ..even though they didn't leave a receipt for it ..like when they took ..bicycle." Eva Heyman.

What Eva Heyman did not, nor could not know was, that Hitler and his regime were in the process of taking away 6,000,000 Jewish lives so as to profit further from their demise. Under guise of carrying forth these laws from Hitler demands, would come an entire echelon of mass Murderer's, Himmler, Heydrich, Eichmann and the entire cadre of SS, Wehrmacht, Polizei, Collaborators from many nations and all other willing executioners. There were spectators to the growing and escalating hatred and those like Hugh Greene of the Daily Telegraph actually reported what he saw.

"..I was in Berlin at that time and saw some pretty revolting sights ..destruction of Jewish shops ..Jews being arrested and led away ..police standing by while ..gangs destroyed ..shops ..even groups of well dressed women cheering. Maybe those women had a hangover next morning ..as they were intoxicated all right when this was taking place. I found it ..utterly revolting. In fact to a German journalist who saw me on that day and asked me what I was doing there ..I remember I just said very coldly ..I'm studying German culture." Hugh Greene.

From here, an advantage point underneath the fuller deeds to segregate, emasculate and destroy the Jews, states of nations read these reports and chose to do nothing. These too are as guilty as any of those who stood idly by and watched as innocent Men, Women and Children were disregarded from life because they were Jews. Now these witnesses are never going to be as guilty as the bystander who so much as profited a bean in some way from the deepening Catastrophe that was rapidly unfolding for the Jewish People. The scale of the entire atrocity lasted some 12 to 13 years, from 1932 till 1945 and yet the full crescendo of The Holocaust enactment was during a period of some 4 to 6 years during that period, from 1939 till 1945.

"..Only one judgement is passed on ..executioner ..he ceases to be a human being. Though looking on his victim as Less Than Human ..he becomes his own executioner ..he executes ..human being inside himself. But ..victim ..no matter what ..executioner does to kill him ..remains a human being forever." Vasily Grossman.

Exactly what Vasily Grossman states as the degrading personality of a debased person, allows us to see through the obfuscation of facts and figures to identify those individuals responsible for their own actions. Still again, atop this myriad of those guilty of many facets of the same crime, The Holocaust, we cannot ever engineer all people into the blame for what some, even many from varying and possibly all states chose to do or decided not to do. So once again we stand away from the atrocity and seek to afford blame to those who were rightly guilty so as such acclaim cannot be rendered upon those who were innocent. We should never involve these innocent, and there were many, in what needs to be certain is guilt in the process of this Jewish Annihilation.

"..When I stand before you ..to lead ..Prosecution of Adolf Eichmann ..I am not standing alone. With me are 6,000,000 accusers. ..they cannot rise ..and point an accusing finger. ..For their ashes are piled up on ..hills of Auschwitz and ..fields of Treblinka ..and are strewn in ..forests of Poland. Their graves are scattered throughout ..length and breadth of Europe. Their blood cries out ..but their voice is not heard. ..I will be their spokesman and in their name I will unfold ..awesome indictment." Gideon Hausner.

The indictment of course is for Gideon Hausner to label all those would be accusers with the ability to reign over their accused. That he did so, with an integrity supported by truth and honesty is the worth of any man aspiring to deliver Justice to those previously denied it. Remember too, Gideon Hausner did not accuse all Germans. He accused Adolf Eichmann as the accused who railed against Jewish antecedence and delivered for Hitler, the 6,000,000 lost voices of those quelled in the culling of all civilisation. Believe me! I am one who feels the best voice to add to the missing voices from The Holocaust are those Jews who know, those Jews who saw and those Jewish People who witnessed what no Human Being should ever have been a witness to. So for me, what Chaim Aron Kaplan acknowledges is a clear knowledge of what we now seek to know of.

"..anyone ..attempting to write ..on ..nature of Nazism ..will not be able to express ..truth ..Nazism's cruelty and barbarism. ..no writer among ..gentiles is qualified for this task. ..a Jewish writer who lives ..life of his people ..who feels ..suffers their agony ..cannot find a true path here. Only one who feels ..taste of Nazi rule ..only one who ..bared his back to ..lashes ..only ..a writer ..if he is a man of sensitivity ..might be able to." Chaim Aron Kaplan.

It is above all my hope that you will best accredit my obvious intention with the emotive sensitivity I believe I deliver in what stands as a motto for me in that I seek Always to Remember, Never to Forget what happened and indeed what was allowed to happen to 6,000,000 Jews. So I too am here to accuse those of their guilt! So please accuse, please blame and please ensure that for those who respectfully deserve our integrity to speak for them, that they are all Remembered in all honesty. We deliver them a posthumous memory with the surety we must accord to their murderer's, their executioner's and those willing to assist in this calamity for all Humanity an accurate indictment of their crimes.

"..I am happy to die amidst fighting Halutzim. We will take with us into our graves ..awareness that ..Jewish People will endure eternally." Yitzhak Katzenelson.

Yitzhak Katzenelson accords death with a certain victory that while Jews have been targeted for extinction, Jews will endure and Jews will certainly Survive. So while I am aware of the rawness of grief which the Survivor must feel, I share a sense of that grief giving way to optimism. The future is always bold. For me, while I am sure the Children of those who did not Survive, which is ably assisted by such grief, it remains too enormous for us ever to comprehend its manifest and compounding effects. But no one ever has the right to accuse anyone of a wrong that was not done by them. So if 6,000,000 accuser's look down on the German People, they will find many who are neither guilty nor attributable to these crimes for which they have paid the ultimate price.

"..misery ..SS inflicted on their victims defies description ..cool ..calculating manner in which it was inflicted is atrocious. ..to look back on this piece of human history fills us with horror." Elie A. Cohen.

As we continually look back we are, like Elie A. Cohen, all becoming more and more aware of what atrocity The Holocaust is for 6,000,000 Jewish People, and then on their behalf for World Jewry. We are becoming more aware to the atrocity, but believe me, we are not as yet awake to the mounting threat which has been led by the wrong lessons from The Holocaust period. Indeed, the Jewish People have been taught a savage and brutal lesson, both deeply wounding and even terminal in terms of how they relate to the rest of the World. I am torn here by two lessons which emanate from one of the finest writer's on The Holocaust theme, and while succinct in this passage, Primo Levi's message is blunt and to the point.

"..if ..world could become convinced ..Auschwitz never existed ..it would be easier to build ..second Auschwitz .. and ..no assurance it would devour only Jews". Primo Levi.

So we guard against the platforms of growing hatreds and must acknowledge our debt to those who delivered their experience to us. But we must never forget that such experience has been borne by all too many who should have been protected by any who would call themselves, moral, ethical or even 'christian'. But in all my efforts of concern, I am no less emotive, and I lend my own words and they are the words of this Irish, former 'catholic', who wishes so much more that should have been done and which could have been done was done. Hindsight is a wondrous option, but I am certain that I could not have stood back while lines of marching People were being progressed toward their final destruction, even if I had not gathered the reason for their removal from our midst.

"..I have always made it a point ..when I meet with Survivors ..to apologise to them on behalf of what an ostensibly 'christian' body of people has done. For ..whole of Humanity that Sin of Perpetration ..Intolerance or Indifference is a stain upon our own legitimacy as human beings. So just in case I do not get ..opportunity to greet you in person ..I apologise to You for ..inability of those 6,000,000 Murdered Jews of The Holocaust who cannot direct their appreciation and respect for what you have done and what you have achieved. In each of you ..World entire has been saved." Patrick Dempsey.

Here then, as we approach a rebuke of the total humiliation, the demoralisation of people, which indeed led all too many toward that spiritual shipwreck, these are not the 6,000,000 Jews demoralised though we allowed them to be humiliated. These rebukes however are for those who sought to forget the deeds they undertook to wreck such an amassed ship filled with the lives of 6,000,000 Murdered Jewish Souls. So to this day we now choose to Remember where once 6,000,000 lives have been taken to and while we will never know where all of them have been unceremoniously dumped, I have a wish to speak for them

".. A whole generation of Germans ..children and grandchildren of ..perpetrators of ..Nazi genocide ..have heard nothing from their parents and grandparents about what they saw ..and what they did ..in Auschwitz and ..other factories of death. It is time ..at long last ..to stop forgetting and suppressing." Irene Weiss.

It truly is time to stop forgetting and always remembering, which is all too easy for those in search of a comprehension as to why 6,000,000 Jews were systematically sought out for Destruction. For me though, we do not best serve this search with any bias or a wrongly placed anger and hatred for what was done and achieved against the Jewish People. Irene Weiss asks us, and we should accept our duty is to do whatever is required to add to 6,000,000 memories, but not at a cost to what identifies those who truly must be unmasked as the guilty. It appears to me that the Jewish mistrust of the World is well placed, and considering 2,000 years of anti-Jewish rhetoric, I too am appalled it has lasted too long. So when that fully vocalised hatred was converted into an annihilation process, an all too easily adapted and accepted programme by all too many, needs to be explored.

"..I have struggled hard to overcome ..hatred of those who cruelly destroyed my early life ..my family and almost succeeded in exterminating my people. ..I have come to realise ..there are no basically evil nations or racial groups. ..There are only evil people ..seekers after wealth or power." Maja Abramowitch.

But in accepting the reasoning of one such as Maja Abramowitch, how could I argue against all she knew and came to know, I would contend that not even she could forgave anyone for what was done to the 6,000,000 Murdered Jews of The Holocaust. Forgiveness for these Destroyed Jews belongs to them solely, and they are no longer in a position to forgive. I accept that intrinsically there are only evil people who are individuals in amongst nations and racial groups. So before I get involved with even more work on Remembering why this is all a loss for us ALL, I will leave you with the knowledge that my words are mixed with those better presented to represent all that needs to be said, and believe me, Primo Levi has all I wish I could say.

"..I do not ..cannot know what I would be today if I had not been in ..Camp. No man knows his future. ..a man sets out ..almost never are our choices between ..two alternatives. ..every choice is followed by others. ..if I had not lived ..Auschwitz experience ..I probably would never have written. ..years have passed ..interposed ..artificial memory ..a defensive barrier ..between my ..normal present and ..dramatic past. ..I survived ..due ..to good luck. ..to survive with ..precise purpose of recounting. ..helped by ..determination ..to recognise always ..my companions ..myself ..men ..not things. ..to avoid ..total humiliation and demoralisation which led so many to spiritual shipwreck." Primo Levi.



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