Squadron Leader Phil Lamason & the KLB Club

History of Sorts

KLB_Club

I could have gone with any of 168 stories of the members of this club, but I decided to go with the highest ranking officer.

The KLB Club (initials for Konzentrationslager Buchenwald) was formed on 12 October 1944, and included the 168 allied airmen who were held prisoner at Buchenwald concentration camp between 20 August and 19 October 1944.166 airmen survived Buchenwald, while two died of sickness at the camp.

Buchenwald Gate

The “terror fliers” heads were shaved, they were denied shoes, and forced to sleep outside without shelter for about three weeks. They were given one thin blanket for three men.  They were assigned to a section of the camp called, “Little Camp,” which was a quarantine area.  Prisoners in the Little Camp received the least food and the harshest treatment.

After a short time, the men figured out who was the ranking officer of all the prisoners. Squadron Leader Phil…

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The Dutch Churches protest.

KERK

I can’t deny the fact that the Dutch could have done more during WWII, and esepcially in relation to helping their Jewish fellow citizens.

But on the other hand it is easy for me to judge because I was never put in a situation where I had to choose between aiding a neighbor with a good chance of being harshly punished for it , or turning a blind eye.

There were however time where the Dutch openly spoke out against their occupiers, and as an unintended consequence, at least I believe it was, it brought the several Christian communities together.

Below is an English translation of a letter signed by the majority of all the Dutch churches which was published as a collective protest against the treatment of the country’s Jews:

“The undersigned Dutch Churches, already deeply shocked by the measures against the Jews in the Netherlands, which exclude them from participation in normal public life, were horrified to learn of new measures under which men, women, and children and entire families shall be deported to Reich territory and territories under Reich control. The suffering that this will inflict on tens of thousands, the knowledge that these measures are repugnant to the deepest moral consciousness of the Dutch people, and, above all, the violation inherent in these measures of the law and justice laid down by God, compel the Churches to address to you the most urgent plea not to implement these measures.

On behalf of the Christians among the Jews this urgent plea is enjoined on us by the additional consideration that by these measures they will be cut off from participation in the life of the Church.

The Dutch Reformed Church;

The Archbishop and Bishops of the Roman Catholic Church in the Netherlands;

The Calvinist Churches in the Netherlands;

The General Mennonite Sect;

The Remonstrant Brotherhood;

The Old Reformed Church in the Netherlands;

The Reformed Sect in the Netherlands;

The Evangelist Lutheran Church in the Netherlands;

The New Evangelist Lutheran Church in the Kingdom of the Netherlands.””

——————————————–

I am not sure when the letter was published but it must have been late 1940 or early 1941. It is good to note that any form of protest could lead to the death penalty.

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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Sources

Protest of the Dutch Churches, during World War II, quoted in The Yellow Star: The Persecution of the Jews in Europe, 1933-1945, by Gerhard Schoenberner, at page 132. Online, courtesy Google Books.

19 August 1934 Referendum, Germany.

History of Sorts

800px-Ja_dem_Fuehrer

On Aug. 19, 1934, the German public voted 90 percent in favor of Chancellor Adolf Hitler becoming Führer und Reichskanzler (“leader and chancellor”), a new title created after the death of President Paul von Hindenburg earlier in the month.

In its front-page report of the voting in The New York Times, Frederick T. Birchall wrote: “The endorsement gives Chancellor Hitler, who four years ago was not even a German citizen, dictatorial powers unequaled in any other country, and probably unequaled in history since the days of Genghis Khan. He has more power than Joseph Stalin in Russia, who has a party machine to reckon with; more power than Premier Mussolini of Italy who shares his prerogative with the titular ruler; more than any American President ever dreamed of.

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When President Hindenburg dictated his testament in May, he included as his “last wish” that the Hohenzollern monarchy would be restored by…

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A child is born with no state of mind Blind to the ways of mankind.

History of Sorts

figure-1Don’t worry I haven’t suddenly become a Hip Hop artist. although the title of this blog does come from a classic Hip Ho[ track. called “the Message” by Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five, but it is a powerful line and oh so true.

Children don’t see the color of a skin or a religious background. All they will see is will they play with me or not.

Below are some more examples where the children put us adults to shame. Isn’t it ironic that the children are teaching us?

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A photo of a Jewish and a ‘Palestinian’ boy overlooking Jerusalem and embracing each other

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A KKK child and a black State Trooper meet each other, 1992

A KKK child and a black State Trooper meet each other, 1992 2

The Ku Klux Klan was holding a rally in the northeast Georgia community of Gainesville, where the white supremacist group hoped to breathe some life into its flagging revival campaign of the late…

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Captain Roy Wooldridge- The British soldier saved by Field Marshall Rommel.

History of Sorts

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Captain Roy Wooldridge, who was in the Royal Engineers, was taken prisoner during a covert night-time mission to examine submerged mines along the French beaches weeks before the D-Day landings.

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Mr Wooldridge, who was twice awarded the Military Cross, was sent a telegram ordering him to report to his unit just three days after his wedding in 1944.

PAY-Roy-Wooldridge-outside-of-Buckingham-Palace

The lieutenant, who was later promoted to captain, was sent to the French beaches with a colleague to ensure there were no mines which could blow up the boats during the D-Day landings.

Due to the secretive nature of the mission, he was not wearing a uniform or carrying identification

Captured by the Nazis and treated as a spy, Captain Roy Wooldridge was told he must reveal all about his secret mission or be shot dead.Despite being grilled by the Gestapo, the British soldier refused to talk .

Capt Wooldridge, a hero…

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Gallery

Gregor Wohlfahrt and his Family.

History of Sorts

Not every Holocaust victim was Jewish, besides the Roma,Sinti, Homosexuals,Disabled, the Jehovah witnesses were also persecuted by the Nazi regime.

https://dirkdeklein.net/2016/03/09/forgotten-history-the-jehovah-witnesses-holocaust/

Unlike Jews and Romani who were persecuted on the basis of their ethnicity, Jehovah’s Witnesses could escape persecution and personal harm by renouncing their religious beliefs by signing a document indicating renouncement of their faith, submission to state authority, and support of the German military.

Nazi_JWrenunciationdocument

Gregor Wohlfahrt was born in Koestenberg-Velden in the part of Austria known as Carinthia on March 10 1896 . During World War I, he served in the Austro-Hungarian army and was wounded. Raised a Catholic, Gregor and his wife became Jehovah’s Witnesses during the late 1920s. Gregor supported his wife and six children by working as a farmer and quarryman.

The Austrian government banned Jehovah’s Witness missionary work in 1936. Gregor was accused of peddling without a license and briefly jailed. When Germany annexed Austria in 1938…

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Christie Pits riot

riot

There is a misconception that most people were appalled about Hitler coming to power in 1933, and that it was only the Germans who endorsed the Nazi policies. But that would be far from the truth.

Hitler’s rise to power was celebrated in many parts of the world, even in Canada.

It’s not hard to imagine Toronto was far  removed from the violence of antisemitism and  Hitler’s rise, but on an August evening in 1933, the hostility that troubled the streets of Berlin reared its ugly head in Toronto during a baseball game at Christie Pits.

In 1933, Jews and other minorities were subjected to  social and institutional bigotry in Canada. Quotas put a limit to the number of Jews who could sign up for  university programs. Social clubs and several corporations banned Jews.

At that time, the Jewish community in Toronto was mainly poor and working-class. During the hot summer months, Jewish families and youths in particular would  cool off by going to the predominantly Anglo-Canadian Beaches area to swim. The local residents were not too pleased about that.

At those Beaches , there weref young men walking down the boardwalk wearing swastika symbols on their bathing suits and shirts, patrolling for what they called “undesirables,” these groups were  called swastika clubs.On August 1, 1933, the “Swastika Club” were reported in the editions of Toronto’s Jewish Standard, which triggered  multiple protest from local Jewish residents.

On August 16, 1933, a gang  who called themselves the Pit Gang unfolded a banner with a swastika at a baseball game between St. Peter’s and  the Harbord Playground team at Christie Pits Park in Toronto. They were targeting the Harbord Playground team, a group of mostly Jewish, and some Italian men, who were playing a game that evening.

(The Harbord Playground baseball team in 1931. ‘City of Toronto Archives’)baseball

The night of the riot was the second game between Harbord and St. Peter’s. Two nights previously, at the first game of the series, another swastika had been displayed. The Police had been  warned in writing that there could be trouble at the second game, but the police did not heed those warnings. As the game ended, a St. Peter’s supporter opened up a large swastika flag as others chanted “Heil Hitler!”. This angered the Jewish supporters who rushed to the flag bearer.Supporters of both sides (including Italians who supported the Jews) from the surrounding area joined in, and a fight started.

A violent five-hour brawl broke out with each side wielding any weapon they could find, including bats, lead pipes, and bottles.

The following day The Toronto Daily Star reported on the riot.

“While groups of Jewish and Gentile youths wielded fists and clubs in a series of violent scraps for possession of a white flag bearing a swastika symbol at Willowvale Park last night, a crowd of more than 10,000 citizens, excited by cries of ‘Heil Hitler’ became suddenly a disorderly mob and surged wildly about the park and surrounding streets, trying to gain a view of the actual combatants, which soon developed in violence and intensity of racial feeling into one of the worst free-for-all’s ever seen in the city.

Scores were injured, many requiring medical and hospital attention … Heads were opened, eyes blackened and bodies thumped and battered as literally dozens of persons, young or old, many of them non-combatant spectators, were injured more or less seriously by a variety of ugly weapons in the hands of wild-eyed and irresponsible young hoodlums, both Jewish and Gentile”

News report

Although people were using baseball bats and knives to attack each other, no one died during the riot.

Mayor Stewart criticized the inadequate response of the Chief of Police to warnings of impending violence, and warned against displaying the swastika.

The riot did reveal the xenophobic attitudes toward Jews and other  immigrants (such as Italian immigrants) among some Anglo Canadians.

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

$2.00

Sources

CBC Radio

Times of Israel

Cities in Time

Myseumof Toronto

The significance of August 16 in Music.

History of Sorts

Elvis

August 16 is a date like any other date, except when it comes to music. Several events on this date have had a massive impact on the music industry. In fact in musical terms it just doesn’t get bigger than this .

August 16-1915 The birth of Al Hibbler

Al Hibbler

Nowadays the name Al Hibbler will mean very little to most.But if I will mention the song ‘Unchained Melody’ it will trigger a lot of memories to many, especially the pottery scene in the movie ‘Ghost’ the version of the song was by ‘the Righteous Brothers” and a great number of people may think theirs was the original but it was Al Hibbler who brought the song to the number 1 spot of the charts for the first time in 1955.It was composed by by Alex North and lyrics by Hy Zaret.

In the late 1950s and 1960s, was involved in the …

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Gallery

Elvis Presley and Robert Johnson

History of Sorts

Why did I use the names of these 2 artists as the title of this blog? Because they had nothing in common.

Well that is not entirely true. Both were born in Mississippi and both died on the 16th of August, Elvis 42 years ago today and Robert Johnson 81 year ago today. Both were pioneers in their music genre.

Also they both shaped my musical taste. It is a simple fact that there will never be any stars of their magnitude again.

Elvis was and is the undisputed King of Rock N Roll.

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Whereas Robert Johnson was and is the undisputed King of the Blues.

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Both men were legends and met untimely deaths and both were victims of circumstance.

I will not go to deep into their lives because there is nothing more that I can add to their stories. Below are 2 blogs though I have done in…

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Jewish Prisoner 2731. Auschwitz-1942.

2731

2731 was the inmate number given to this girl. Nothing else is known about her, except that it is very unlikely that she  survived.

My heart broke when I saw this picture. A life wiped out only a picture that remains. Not a picture of a young girl dressed in a gown. Or a picture of a young girl having fun. No name, only a number.

Dear young lady, I am a father of another young lady. You may not have a known name but I will designate a name for you. It is not a usual name, more a pledge, but you can use it. I call you My Prayer, for henceforth you will be in my prayers, until I take my last breath.

2731

2 Lives- One full of promise- One stolen life.

7 Days a week I’ll remember you.

3 Reasons to remember you. Your life;Your life disrupted, Your death.

1 Beautiful human being .