93 trains left concentration camp Westerbork in the Netherlands between July 1942 and September 1944. All the trains were heading eastbound. Not one single journey would be a pleasant one , The final destination would more then likely result in death.
I deliberately call Westerbork a concentration camp, because that’s what it was, It is often referred to as a Transit camp, although technically correct, I am not comfortable with theat description, because I believe it lessens the horrific nature the camp really had. The irony,for lack of a better word, is that in the summer of 1939 the camp was designated for Jewish refugees who fled Nazi Germany.
Auschwitz 58,380 854 survived.
Sobibor 34,313 18 survived.
Theresiënstadt 4,894 approximately 1,980 survived.
Bergen-Belsen 3,751 approximately 2,050 survived.
Buchenwald and Ravensbrück 150 10 survived.
Each number is a human being with a story of life lived, and a life that could have been.
On September 3,1944 the last train to Auschwitz departed from Westerbork. On that transport was an author who go one to sell millions of books. She and her family all arrived in Auschwitz 3 days later.
The author was Anne Frank. She never got to enjoy the success of her book. The fact is that if she would have survived, her diary would probably not have been published, and if I am honest, I would have preferred it that way. I would have preferred that she would have survived the war, together with all the other millions who were brutally murdered because they were either Jewish, Gypsy, Disabled, Communist, Jehovah Witness or just someone who spoke out to the regime.
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Traces of War