Moshe Hecht- A cheeky boy

This little cheeky boy is called Moshe Hecht.

I would like to tell you his story. When you Google his name you will see that Moshe Hecht is a singer in a band, the Moshe Hecht band.

However the cheeky boy Moshe Hecht is not that Moshe Hecht.

I would like to tell you that Moshe Hecht grew up to become a successful business man, an award winning entrepeneur. Or that he grew up to become a great surgeon, but he is not that Moshe Hecht. in fact I don’t even know if there is a business man with that name

I perhaps could tell you that Moshe Hecht was a carpenter who fixed the stairs in our house when I was 7 years old, but he is not that man.

However that beautiful cheeky little chap. Moshe Hecht. did not to grow up passed the age of 7. He was murdered in Auschwitz om the 14th of May 1942.

A 7 year old boy who was not allowed to live just because he was Jewish. His life was taken from him, his talents were taken from us, but his smile remains as a reminder to us of his innocence.

Humanity has never really recovered from the Holocaust

I wish I could say that despite the horrors inflicted during the Holocaust, humanity found a way to restore itself.

But I would be lying, because how can we possibly say that, knowing that 1.5 million children were brutally murdered in the most inhumane way.

Children like Greetje Leger who has only become a statistic, containg the data ‘Reached the age of 3 years, born 18 October 1940, Amsterdam- Murdered February 11,1944 Auschwitz.

Like all the other 1.5 million children Greetje was not a statistic but a living human being. Who could have meant so much to humanity. She could have been a mother, grandmother, aunt, nurse, doctor, scientist, plumber, teacher, carpenter, police officer .The list is endless.

Today she should have been celebrating Sinterklaas with her grandchildren or great grandchildren. Her face should have lit up seeing the kids open their presents

However an evil ideology caused her death as a toddler. An ideology that never really went away. it just went dormant for a while and is slowly waking up again.

Klara Boda – A child with 2 fluffy toys.

Klara Boda- just a child

Klara Boda, just a child with 2 fluffy toys.

Klara Boda, just a child who wanted to go to school

Klara Boda, just a child who wanted to be a princess.

Klara Boda, just a child whose live was really not complicated.

Klara Boda, all she needed was love and care.

Klara Boda, just a child who received that love and care from her parents.

Klara Boda,Klara Boda,Klara Boda. I put down the name Klara Boda several times to mke sure it gets ingrained in your mind.

Why?

Because Klara Boda was seen as a threat. This child with two fluffy toys would cause the breakdown of society according to that sick and twisted policy adhered to by the Nazi regime.

Klara Boda was only 5 when she was murdered she didn’t even get the chance to go to school.

I want you to feel uncomfortablw. I want you to sit down for 5 minutes and look at the picture of Klar Boda and her 2 fluffy toys. I want you to realize that it was perfectly legal for this child to be murdered . I want you to even try to fathom that the murder of this child ws probably carried out by someone who may have a child of that age himself or would at least have a niece of that age, yet to him it was perfectly justified to kill Klara.

And if you can fathom that then please tell me. Because I can’t. All I can do is cry because my heart is broken.

There was no reason for Klara to be murdered , nor was there any reason for all the other 1.5 million children to be murdered or any of the millions of adults for that matter. It was all because an idea some people had, an idea that they were superior. A notion that they were a master race. But they were not. They were just evil and indifferent, filled with hate.

Klara Boda born 16 October 1938,Tamási járás, Tolna, Hungary. Murdered July 1944 in Auschwitz.

source

https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/199766373/klara-boda

Paying the ultimate price for helping others.

Maastricht is one of my favourite cities. I grew up only about 10 miles away from it and would have visited it numerous times. It is, the most south eastern city in the Netherlands and is well known for its close proximity to Belgium and Germany. It is also the the home of violin virtuoso Andre Rieu and his Strauss Orchestra.

In Europe it is known for the treaty which was signed there on February 7,1992. It shaped the future of the EU.

But I am not going to talk about any of that. I want to add a name to the Maastricht narrative and would love it if in years to come people would say “Maastricht, oh yes that is the place where Derk van Assen and his wife Berendje are from”

Derk and Berendje van Assen were heroes in every sense of the word. They paid the ultimate price for helping their neighbours.

Derk was active in the underground resistance from the beginning of
the war, in May 1940. Initially without being part of an organised group, but later he joined the Versleyen group, a group of tax officials
within the L.O (National Organisation for help to those in hiding); he
was also a member of the Trouw group, the national Christian
resistance group.

In Derk’s Christian believes and humanist principles, all people were equal and he was prepared to risk everything to save the lives of Jews and others. Using his many talents Derk contributed during the war to illegal newspapers, organized national information networks and offered professional document forgers a place to work in his home. Derk and Berendje were friendly with Isidore and Frederika Schaap, who had come to Maastricht in 1939, together with their daughter Hetty. Isidore headed a branch of a Ladies fashion firm that was based in Rotterdam and Berendje was one of his customers.

The Shaap family had totally integrated; in the ways of the more the more Burgundian lifestyle of the southern Netherlands and sometimes they even went with Derk and Berendje to the Reformed Church on Sunday mornings.

In the summer of 1942, the Schaaps received orders to report for deportation ,Derk helped them find a place to hide. They spent their first couple of nights hiding with a family who owned an optician’s shop in Maastricht. During this time their identity cards were altered and the “J” removed, which gave them the freedom to travel with less risk. The next following day, the Schaap family took a train to Utrecht, to the home of one of Derk’s cousins. They soon moved to a family in Hillegom, South Holland, also relations of the van Assens. The Schaap family then had to split up Isidore and Frederika moved to Amsterdam, where they were later arrested.

The Police Commissioner of Maastricht had requested that Isidore Schaap and Frederika Roza Schaap-Kamerling, both residents of Maastricht, be located, detained and brought to trial. They were suspected of having changed their place of residence without the required authorization. This description referred to Jews who had gone into hiding.

On 26 July 1943 Derk was arrested in Maastricht after having been
under surveillance shadowed for some time by the SD (Sicherheitsdienst). The SD had recruited “Blonde Mien”, a resistance activist. Mien was tasked to gather information about Derk’s contacts, but before she could do so Derk was apprehended and incarcerated in the local prison. In this prison, Oberscharfuehrer Richard Nitsch interrogated Derk for seven weeks, during which time Derk’s colleagues were planning his escape. However, the authorities discovered the plot and to abort it Nitsch and two other SD men executed Derk in Horst, Limburg, on September 14, 1943.

In the meantime, Berendje was also arrested and imprisoned, first in
Maastricht, then in Haaren and finally in Vught. From there she was
deported to Camp Ravensbruck in Germany where she died on 2
February 1945.

Two heroes who gave their lives for others. After the war Derk and Berendje were decorated by the Air Chief
Marshall and Vice Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Forces for
“assistance to officers of the marine, land and air forces to escape
from imprisonment, or to avoid being taken prisoner by the enemy”.
On 6 September 1989 Derk van Assen and Berendina van Assen –
Grolleman were awarded the honorary title of Righteous among the
Nations by Yad Vashem.

Frederika Roza Schaap-Kamerling born Wildervank, 28 February 1894 – Murdered in Auschwitz, 28 January 1944.Reached the age of 49 years.

Isidore Schaap ,born Rotterdam, 24 April 1894 – murdered in Auschwitz, 8 April 1944Reached the age of 49 years.

I could not find out what happened to their daughter Hetty.

sources

https://www.joodsmonument.nl/en/page/130959/isidore-schaap

https://www.tracesofwar.nl/sights/67272/Monument-Derk-van-Assen.htm

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Their crime was to earn an honest living .

The Nazis told so many lies about the Jews in order to justify their deportations and murder to the wider population. One of the lies was to the Jews were an economical threat, they were all very wealthy and lazy.

Yes there were some wealthy Jews but not more then in any other group of people. Like anyone else the Dutch Jews were trying to make a living, more then often they weren’t sure if they would earn any money.

These documents are permits to sell goods on a market. Aside from the actual permit these people had one other thing in common. They were all murdered in Auschwitz on October 1,1942. The permit at the start of the blog belonged to:

Gerrit van der Woude :Amsterdam, 15 January 1883 – Auschwitz, 1 October 1942 and his wife Heintje van der Woude-Mouwes:Amsterdam, 12 september 1877 – Auschwitz, 1 oktober 1942

Jonas Wegloop Amsterdam, 20 August 1891 – Auschwitz, 1 October 1942

Hartog Frank Amsterdam, 10 February 1891 – Auschwitz, 1 October 1942 & Elisabeth Frank-Druif Amsterdam, 11 October 1884 – Auschwitz, 1 October 1942

Their crime was to earn an honest living .

Source

Donation

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https://www.joodsmonument.nl/

So much death.

I was doing research on Elisabeth Casseres a 13 year old girl who was murdered in Auschwitz on September 28,1942.

But when I clicked on a link of her death notification it opened up a notification of the Dutch Ministry of Justice which was issued on July 20,1950.

The Motification was published in the “Nederlandsche staatscourant” the Dutch State Newspaper.

It is a list of about 100 persons, the majority of them died on September 28,1942 in Auschwitz. These are about 100 people or so murdered on only one day, most of them came from Amsterdam. Just imagine that for a minute. 100 from one city, and one country on one day.

To be honest I didn’t look at every name on the list because seeing this list made me feel sick.

So much death and yet there are some who still deny the Holocaust happened despite indisputable evidence.

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Source

It’s their birthday today, but they were murdered before the age of 6.

I was going to do a piece on Nora Italiaander. She would have celebrated her 80th birthday today, but she was murdered on June 4,1943 in Sobibor. She was just aged 2.

The picture above is of her death notification issued on the 11th of June 1947, 4 years after her death.

But like Nora there were more children who were born on September 26 and they only got to celebrate a few birthdays. They were murdered before they were six. Below are just the names ,date of birth ,place of death and date of death. Sometimes it is harrowing enough just to see the raw data. All you really need to know is that they were children murdered for no reason.

Emma Reina Kalker-Born September 26,1940. Murdered in Auschwitz November 9,1942 -Age 2

Anna Neeter-Born September 26,1940. Murdered in Sobibor June 4, 1943-Age 2 The exact same dates as Nora Italiaander.

Helene Scholte-Born September 26,1940.Murdered in Auschwitz October 27 ,1942 -Age 2.

Louis van der Velde-Born September 26,1938. Murdered in Auschwitz February 11 ,1944 -Age 5.

Henri Andriesse-Born September 26,1938.Murdered in Auschwitz October 12 ,1942 -Age 4.

Philip Salomon Witteboon-Born September 26,1937.Murdered in Auschwitz October 26 ,1942 -Age 5.

Jeanne Lens-Born September 26,1937.Murdered in Auschwitz October 8 1942 -Age 5.

Rebecca Velleman-Born September 26,1937.Murdered in Sobibor May 14 1943 -Age 5.

Anne Groenteman-Born September 26,1936.Murdered in Auschwitz September 28 1942 -Age 6.Her eyes haunt me.

Source

https://www.joodsmonument.nl/

Clara de Vries-Jazz Musician murdered in Auschwitz.

It is funny sometimes how you are researching one thing and it leads you to something completely different.
I was looking at the origin of a Dutch TV show called ‘Ter land.ter zee en in de lucht” which translates to on the land, in the sea and in the air. It was a light-hearted entertainment show where candidates from all over the Netherlands demonstrate in open air how long and far, they can keep going (sometimes only a few meters) in a self-constructed sort of go-cart, before crashing mostly in to water. But for most it was really more for showing off the design of their ‘vehicles’ rather than winning.
While I was researching it ,I noticed a piece of music used for the show called the beach party, which was performed by a Jazz musician called Willy Schobben, a Jazz trumpetist from Maastricht which is a city I know well because I grew up only a few mile away from it.
When I looked up Willy Schobben, I discovered he married Clara de Vries in 1936, like Willy Clara was also a Jazz trumpetist, and by all accounts an exceptionally talented one. Louis Armstrong once said of her “That Louis de Vries, he had a sister Clara with a ladies-band. Oh boy, she could play that horn!” Her brother Louis, another Trumpetist, was often referred to as the Dutch Louis Armstrong. Unfortunately, he died in a car crash in 1935.
Clara was the sister of Louis de Vries and Jack de Vries, received trumpet lessons from her father Arend de Vries. So, she had quite a musical pedigree.
She played in several Jazz Bands like: Shirmann Jazz Girls; Clara de Vries and her Jazz-ladies; The Rosian Ladies; the Swinging Rascals; and several other bands.

Her talent though was soon to be destroyed, Clara was Jewish and when the German invaded the Netherlands on May 10, 1940 her fate and that of many other Jews was sealed. Added to that she played Jazz, which was considered degenerate art by the Nazis. Jewish musicians were also forbidden to perform for non-Jewish people and later they were forbidden to perform their art at all
On February 9, 1941 Clara was still giving concerts outside the Jewish quarter of Amsterdam in the Café-Cabaret Alcazar. The NSB, the Dutch Nazis, had heard there was a Jewish musician playing in the club and raided the place. Which led to fights and 23 people were injured.
Clara however, refused to stop playing concerts.
On October 15, 1942 Clara and her family were arrested and sent to Westerbork, A few days later, on October 21 she was put on transport to Auschwitz where she was murdered on arrival a day later, on October 22.
Except for her brother Jakob, all her siblings and parents were murdered.

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

https://www.joodsmonument.nl/nl/page/507961/about-clara-johanna-suzanna-de-vries


http://www.nettyvanhoorn.nl/sweet_and_hot_music.html

http://resources.huygens.knaw.nl/vrouwenlexicon/lemmata/data/Vriesde

David Friedmann;painting to survive-My interview with his daughter Miriam.

David Friedmann’s story is not just a story of dealing with the horrors of the Holocaust but also a story of a second chance and hopes despite immense grief and hardships.

The artist David Friedmann was born in Mährisch Ostrau, Austria (now Ostrava, Czech Republic), but moved to Berlin in 1911. In 1944, Friedman was separated from his wife and daughter, never seeing them again, and was transferred to Auschwitz-Birkenau. Friedman survived his internment at the extermination camp. After the war he married fellow survivor Hildegard Taussig. After living in Israel for five years, the family immigrated to the United States in 1954, eventually becoming citizens and settling in St. Louis, where he worked as a commercial artist for an advertising company, later retiring in 1962

But rather me telling his story ,it is much better if this story is told by someone who was very close to him. His daughter Miriam Friedman Morris.

I had some email correspondence with Miriam before the interview and had asked her a few questions. I would like to share her answers

I would like to know though how he felt from being a decorated artist during WW1 and a well established and a renowned artist in Berlin, to having to flee his adopted hometown in 1938 because of the rise of Nazism?

David Friedmann’s talent for portraiture played a central role throughout his career and saved his life during the Holocaust. His art weaves a tapestry of the joys and horrors he experienced, witnessed, and chronicled. My father’s works are imbued with an added sense of historical accuracy, one made all the more resonate by his firsthand experience of some of the most important events in the 20th century. Numerous catastrophic interruptions took him away from his art. David Friedman painted for his life—from the trenches of World War I, under threat of Nazi SS officers and through his postwar journey from Czechoslovakia to Israel and finally, the United States. His work exemplifies defiance in the face of persecution, loss and tragedy. His art would not be silent. My father’s artwork shines a light on a dynamic life crushed by the Nazis and his indomitable inner strength to paint again.

What kept him going even after his first wife and child had been murdered?

My father wrote a diary for me when I was born. He begins with the loss of his wife and child. He had to overcome his crippling grief to build a new life. I turned the pages and saw carefully placed photos and newspaper articles in-between text with pointing arrows. He wrote about his first postwar art exhibition in Jan. 1946 and befriending a young woman named Hildegard Taussig. I learned the courageous stories of two heroes, my mother and father.

Undoubtedly he used his art as a way of therapy, but aside of his art did he talk about the horrors he witnessed to you and your mother?

No, for my father, it was too painful. He had locked his feelings in a kind of jail and closed the door. My mother told some info about my father’s first family, but mostly I learned about his life from his art. After my father’s death, my father’s diary was transcribed. I learned a great deal more about his life and even found clues to help in the search for lost artwork. The lost pieces of a renowned painter and graphics artist confirm the brilliant career the Nazis could not destroy.

After his retirement from commercial art in the early 1960’s, he returned to the Holocaust. Disturbed by the fact that people were forgetting the Holocaust, my father believed it was his obligation to make an indelible statement to all humankind. He wanted to impress upon their consciousness the ruthless persecution, torment, and atrocities practiced by the Nazis, so that it would never happen again. His tortured recollections would be transferred to paper and show the dehumanization and suffering of the Jew under Nazi rule. There would be no imagery or symbolism; his art would show the reality that only a victim could produce.

“I wish everyone had to take a good look at the artwork. They have to look at what persecution under the Nazi regime was, and it can happen again, for in America to be a Nazi, to be a Communist is not prohibited. Against an evil world I will work further and try to put my feelings down on canvas or paper against antisemitism, against race hatred of all people.”

Some of the paintings of ” the Because They Were Jews!” exhibition haunt me and are very powerful.

This is the response my father would have wanted to never forget the Holocaust”

On August 29,1944 David Friedmann was put on a transport from Lodz to Auschwitz Birkenau.

Painting by David Friedmann(courtesy of Miriam Friedman Morris)

It is the duty of all of us to never forget the Holocaust, because it can so easily happen again.

Sources

https://chgs.elevator.umn.edu/asset/viewAsset/57fbe5ec7d58ae7d76557594#57fbe5ea7d58ae7d76557593

https://www.yadvashem.org/yv/en/exhibitions/last_portrait/friedmann.asp

https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn50039

https://www.visitnorman.com/events/testimony-the-life-and-work-of-david-friedman

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Moshe Flinker- a school boy’s diary.

Education is often seen as a human right and it really should be, but so often it is a privilege taken away from many.

Moshe Flinker was a teenager born in the Hague, in the Netherlands on October 9, 1926. He had a particular talent for language,he studied eight languages including Hebrew. The language he used to write his diary.

Now I could write a lot about Moshe , about his life in the Hague or about his life in Brussels, where he and his family hid from the summer on 1942 to 1944. He and his family remained relatively safe until 7 April 1944, the eve of Passover. But they were betrayed by an informer. Moshe’s Father had managed to keep the family safe by obtaining a so-called Aryan permit snf bribery thus far.

Rather then writing about his life I think it is better to give a glimpse of Moshe’s life in his won words.

“November 24, 1942
For some time now I have wanted to note down every evening what I have
been doing during the day. But, for various reasons, I have only got round to it tonight.
First, let me explain why I am doing this – and I must start by describing why I came here to Brussels.
I was born in The Hague, the Dutch Queen’s city, where I passed my early
years peacefully. I went to elementary school and then to a commercial
school, where I studied for only two years. In 1940, when the Germans
entered Holland, I had another two years to go until graduation. They issued a decree forbidding Jewish students to attend schools staffed by gentile
(“Aryan”) teachers, and so I was prevented from finishing my course. The
exclusion of Jews from public schools is just one of a long list of restrictions:
they had been forced to hand over their radios, they were not allowed into the movies, etc.
In the big cities, where many Jews lived, special schools for Jews were
opened, with only Jewish teachers. One such school was opened in The
Hague. Our school was a high school with three departments: classical
languages, modern subjects, and commerce. I, of course, continued my
commercial studies. During the year I attended, the number of restrictions onus rose greatly.

Several months before the end of the school year we had to turn in our bicycles to the police. From that time on, I rode to school by streetcar, but a day or two before the vacations started Jews were forbidden to ride on street-cars. I then had to walk to school, which took about an hour and a half. However, I continued going to school during those last days because I wanted to get my report card and find out whether I had been promoted to the next class. At that time I still thought that I would be able to return to school after the vacations; but I was wrong. Even so, I must mention that I did get my promotion.
Now I wish to note the restrictions inflicted upon us during the vacations. I
forgot to mention that during that year we had been forced to sew a “Badge of Shame” on the left side of our outer clothing. This “Badge” was a Star of
David, on which the word “Jew” was written in Dutch.
Halfway through that year the Germans began gathering Jews into the big
cities, particularly Amsterdam. Jews were not permitted to move anywhere
except to Amsterdam. When there were enough Jews there, the Germans
began sending them to destinations which are still unknown to me today. This is the way they sent them: many Jewish families would receive letters ordering them to get ready for a three-days’ journey. They were to get food for the trip and also take whatever clothes and utensils would be necessary for the journey. Then at midnight they had to go to the railroad station. From there they were sent to Westerbork, a detention camp near the Dutch-German border”

Moshe’s siblings survived but he and his parents were murdered in Auschwitz.

Sources

https://www.facinghistory.org/resource-library/text/moshe-flinker-s-diary-entry-hiding-january-19-1943

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