When the children cry

The current crisis and tragedy in Afghanistan is heart wrenching. What makes it worse is that it is not unique. Throughout history there have been wars and often worse aftermaths of war.

Another thing that is also not unique is the fact that it is the children who are always the hardest. There is a line in the Elvis song “Don’t cry daddy” which describes it best. “Why are children always first. To feel the pain and the hurt the worst?”

There is no better song though, to describe the failure of mankind to protect their children, the “When the children Cry” by White Lion. Below is the text and the song itself.

“Little child dry your crying eyes
How can I explain the fear you feel inside
‘Cause you were born into this evil world


Where man is killing man and no one knows just why
What have we become just look what we have done
All that we destroyed you must build again


When the children cry let them know we tried
‘Cause when the children sing then the new world begins


Little child you must show the way
To a better day for all the young
‘Cause you were born for all the world to see
That we all can live with love and peace


No more presidents and all the wars will end
One united world under God
When the children cry let them know we tried
‘Cause when the children sing then the new world begins
What have we become just look what we have done

All that we destroyed you must build again
No more presidents and all the wars will end
One united world under God
When the children cry let them know we tried
When the children fight let them know it ain’t right
When the children pray let them know the way
‘Cause when the children sing then the new world begins”

When you come back to school, and your classmates are gone.

The last year has been a strange year for a great number of countries across the world, especially when it comes to education. There is no doubt that the Covid 19 pandemic will have consequences down the line for many students.

However most of them when they go back to school, they will still see their fellow school friend and students.

During the Holocaust a great number Jewish children were killed. In the Netherlands 75 % of all Hews were murdered. Yet the Nazis still get the illusion going that life was reasonably ‘normal’ for the Jews. Jewish children were still going to school, although their curriculum was greatly reduced. Even extra curricular activities were still encouraged.

This to me is one of the more sickening of the Nazi occupation, they gave people false hope. I have said this before that the Nazis had never been abled to succeed with their final solution plans without the help of other. The bureaucrats, the civil servants, the public transport staff and also other citizens who thought they could benefit from the removal of their Jewish neighbours, this wasn’t only the case in the Netherlands but all of occupied Europe. The one main difference with the Netherlands compared to many of the other countries, the Dutch had an extremely efficient public service, which was used to its full capacity by the Nazis.

I sometimes wonder how distressing it must have been for those poor children to see that every time they came back to school from a break, or after the weekend, some of their classmates were gone. What questions would have gone through their minds?

Any nation that kills their children kills its own future. Most of the children in the pictures in this blog would have been murdered during the Holocaust. I don’t know their names, where they lived, what age they were. But that is not important, all I know that none of them deserved to be treated like subhuman, none of them deserved the be murdered, none of their futures should have been stolen from them. What they deserve now is to be remembered and for all is us to work hard to avoid something like the Holocaust happening again.

Source

Ankie Stork- The Stork who delivered 35 Jewish children.

Ankie Stork was a Dutch resistance fighter during the German occupation of the Netherlands. She saved thirty-five Jewish children from the Nazis by hiding them in several locations the town of Nijverdal during World War II. She acted as part of Utrechts Kindercomité,(Utrecht Children Committee) a Dutch resistance group based in Utrecht.

Ankie was a member of the Hengelo manufacturing family, the daughter of Johan Charles Stork, the director of the Koninklijke Stoombleekerij in Nijverdal.
She became a lecturer and spokesperson after the war. She continued to reside at two residences in Enschede and The Hague until shortly before her death. She died in Enschede on November 23, 2015, at the age of 93.
Her father and brother,Piet, had tried to escape to England at the start of the occupation of the Netherlands, but were arrested. After they were released ,they turned their home into centre of resistance and also a hiding place for Jews.
In 1942 Ankie started to study social geography. She had to end her studies quite soon after she started because she refused to sign the Loyalty declaration, which was a declaration pledging loyalty to the German occupier.

In 1943 her cousin Anne Maclaine Pont asked her to join the resistance by starting to sell copies of “Het lied der achttien dooden” (the song of the 18 dead) by Jan Campert in order to fund the resistance.
Later on with help from others like the Pastor Hendrikus Berkhof, who had warned about the dangers of Nazism during his sermons, to find hiding places for Jewish children, she found places for these children in the eastern rural parts of the Netherlands.
In May 1944 she was caught and arrested but was released after 6 weeks due to lack of evidence.
Because of her and her helpers 35 Jewish children survived the war.

Sources

https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/irn44496

https://peoplepill.com/people/ankie-stork/

https://dirkdeklein.net/2018/01/12/jan-campert-the-song-of-the-eighteen-dead-a-ww2-hero/

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Most of them were murdered.

I have to be honest and admit that I am not entirely sure if the title is entirely correct, I am working on presumptions. However they are well founded presumptions.

More then 75% of all Dutch Jews were murdered during the Holocaust it is therefore safe to presume that the at least 75% of these children were murdered too.

I also believe that the picture below is from the same school or after school youth care organisation in Amsterdam which was organised by the Jewish Council.

The things I am certain about is that at least 2 survived one of them is Fred Lessing(below an interview with Fred from January 26,1993)

The other survivor is an unknown visitor to the NIOD Image bank website he said this about the below picture

“‘I am in this picture, sitting in the middle (round shirt collar). Born October 26, 1935. Am sitting next to Fred Lessing .'”

Just look at all those angelic faces and think of the fact that most of them were murdered for no other reason then hate.

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sources

https://www.yadvashem.org/artifacts/featured/teddy-bear-fred-lessing.html

Three Children-Two different realities- One Hate.

hj

There are 2 different pictures in this blog. Both pictures portray children but their reality could not be further apart, yet the were all victim of hate. One because he was murdered because of hate, the others because they were indoctrinated by hate from a very young age.

The picture above is of 2 toddlers dressed in Nazi uniforms. They were taught to hate, the choice to love was taken away from them.

The picture below is of Henri Markus a young Jewish boy born in Paris. He was killed in Auschwitz on August 17, 1942 aged 8.

Henri Matkus

It is always the children who suffer most.

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Children

Children

The one thing I find hardest to come to terms with in relation to the Holocaust is the murder of the Children, in fact it is something I will never be able to comprehend.

I know that some people will say The Nazis did not select children  because they were children, but because they were , or rather their parents,part  of dangerous racial, biological, or political groups as per Nazi ideology. But I really do not give a f*ck about that. Excuse my language but I really get angry when people start to look for a reason behind the murder of innocent lives. There is only one reason, pure evil.

There will be people who will say that those involved in the killing were following orders and were afraid of their won lives, because if they did not carry out those orders they wold be killed themselves. But there is no evidence whatsoever that there were any punitive actions taken to those who refused to kill children or even adults.

Even if that had been the case. If I had been in their place, I would have let them kill me before I would even think of killing a child, in fact I probably would have fought back first and killed those who ordered the killing, for the simple reason that I am human being and every fiber of my humanity tells me murdering a child is wrong and takes away my humanity.

The picture at the top and the picture below are both pictures if children who were put on transport to death camps, for the sole reason to be murdered. What strike me about both pictures, it they were put in a non Holocaust context they could have been pictures of children going on a school trip. There is no chaos, they are walking in an orderly line , completely trusting the adults that accompany them.

Trnsport

I know tonight I will have nightmares and the pictures will haunt me, but that is a small price to pay.

 

 

Source

USHMM

 

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A single rail track.

73323488_10220738785319621_217477086372167680_n

I took the picture above this morning at about 11:00 am . It is a rail track just around the corner of my home. When I looked at that rail track this morning several thoughts came to mind.

Firstly I thought how the railways made such a big change in the lives of ordinary citizens. It connected cities and also countries. People were no longer bound by the location they were born in. To this day it still fuels the imagination of children. Shows like Thomas the Tank engine are immensely popular as are the books. Even my own children when they were growing up loved to read those books and watch the show. My oldest son first learned to read from a book entitled “My first book of trains”

My second thought when I looked at the tracks  and at the picture after I took it,was that it looked like a picture of a rail track to any of the concentration camps, be it Auschwitz,Treblinka, Bergen Belsen. It occurred to me that the Holocaust really could have happened any period in history. The picture could have easily been taken in 1942.

I also realized that for the survivors and their children and grandchildren the Holocaust is still a daily reality. For those who survived they still relive that train journey every day.

The one thing that was built to connect people was used to facilitate the mass murder of millions. 1.5 million of which were  children. Children who would have been in awe of the technology,

Train journeys were supposed to be pleasant but there was nothing pleasant about their journeys.Often a hundred or more people would be cramped in a cattle car with no windows , no sanitary facilities, nowhere to sit and many would not even survive the journey.

Below is a picture of some children who survived. Who they are I don’t know. All I know is that they were liberated from the Bergen Belsen concentration camp in April 1945.

survivors

They were some of the lucky ones, but I say lucky reluctantly because even though they survived their nightmare still went on in their minds for years to come,sometimes coupled with the insult by those who claimed the Holocaust never happened. The Holocaust would forever be a part of their lives.

1.5 Million were killed,although I do believe that number is higher.

Here are just some of their names

Harry Knöpfelmacher  Murdered age 9

Hedwig Zander Murdered age 12

Frederika Borstrock Murdered age 4

Ester Kwint Murdered age 12 or 13

Peter Czeisler Murdered age 2

The scary thing is that it appears we haven’t learned from our mistakes and the one thing I fear most is that a Holocaust is very likely to happen again  and it could happen to any group of people.

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I am passionate about my site and I know 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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Lodz Ghetto . Children rounded up for deportation to Chelmno extermination camp.

Children

I wanted to change the title of the blog to evoke an emotion, but I figured if this doesn’t hit you in the gut nothing will.

It is the actual  title of the picture it is from a public domain. I only changed the names from German into the Polish names.

When you don’t know the background to the picture, you would think that it is an old picture of young primary school children going for a walk or a field trip.

I regularly see a group of children of a similar size, about 30 or so, walking from the local primary school to the leisure centre about half a mile down he road, it is the same centre I attend, they go there for swimming lessons.My children were pupils in that school and would have walked that same route.

However the children in the picture don’t go for a fun activity. They were rounded up to be transported to a place where they would be murdered. There are only 2 adults in the picture A man who is near the end of the group, he is bend over and appears to be giving some instructions.He is wearing an armband so I assuming he is a Kapo or Sonderkommando,but I can’t tell for certain.

On the right edge of the picture stands a woman, she may just be a bystander but my feeling tells me she is a female guard.

What disturbs me about this is that those 2 adults know what will happen to the children and are willingly or forcibly participating. I could not do that, I’d rather kill myself.

Time and time again I ask myself, Why the children? I know the answer but I cannot and will not accept it, the children were seen as enemies and subhuman, and they would grow up to be adult enemies. But the twisted and evil logic behind it escapes me.

This is a line from a Whitney Houston song but it is so fitting here “I believe the children are our future, teach them well and let them lead the way.Show them all the beauty they possess inside.”

They are our future by killing them you kill the future.

Every time I see a group of Schoolchildren now going for a walk or fieldtrip, I will think of this picture and will pray that no other child will ever be deported to be killed.But I will also look at the kids and will enjoy their innocent smiles and laughter, just a bit more then I did before

Source

USHMM

 

 

A broken doll and children’s shoes

doll

This blog only contains 2 pictures. A picture of a broken doll and a picture of some children’s shoes. Both were called pictures of Auschwitz artifacts, now I know the description is not meant disrespectful and was meant with the best intention and perhaps it is the only way to describe them.

But the word artifact has several definitions below are 3 examples and none really get the essence of the objects in the pictures.

1.any object made by human beings, especially with a view to subsequent use.
2.a handmade object, as a tool, or the remains of one, as a shard of pottery, characteristic of an earlier time or cultural stage, especially such an object found at an archaeological excavation.
3.any mass-produced, usually inexpensive object reflecting contemporary society or popular culture

The doll and the shoes belonged to children, children who with a high probability were killed as soon as they arrived in Auschwitz.

These children had names, unknown to us, but nonetheless names.

They played with the e doll and wore the shoes like any other kid would have done. To only difference, they were born to a group of people who were considered,subhuman, in other words less then human by a warped ideology created by men who were pure evil,sick and twisted.

The doll and the shoes each have stories to tell, Stories of lives and loves that might have been and should have been, but were cut short.

Stories we may never hear but they are compelling even so, because looking at the doll it is broken, it signifies a broken life.

The shoes are not complete it signifies lives that were not allowed to develop and be brought to completion.

So they are not artifacts but stories, perhaps not to be heard but to be experienced in our own minds by remembering all the children that were brutally killed.

shoes

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Litzmannstadt-the Children’s concentration camp.

girlsThe children’s camp on Przemyslowa Street in Lodz, which was located within the Lodz Ghetto.Separated from the Ghetto only by a high fence made of planks.

The young inmates were Polish children from all of Poland’s regions.The children were either ophans or the children of deported parents. They were aged between 2 and 17 but the majority were between the ages of 8 and 12 Not much is known how children were selected or reasons why they ended up there. There is one record claiming that a young boy was sent to Litzmannstadt because he was caught without a ticket on a train.

The Nazis were always on the look out for children who did fit the ‘aryan’ profile.Those among them found to be suitable, were transported  from Litzmannstadt to the greater German Reich for adoption and Germanisation to be raised as Germans.

The conditions were harsh in the camp.Everyone slept in bare wooden multi-storey bunks. They would eat out doors regardless what condition. Children as young as two were forced to work at crafts and small-scale industrial projects.

boys

Children who could not keep up, or who committed “violations” which could be something innocent like  wetting the bed, were severly punished by beatings, hours of exercises like running,jumping,standing, etc, reduced rations, and being drenched with cold water and exposed to the weather in winter, fall, and early spring. As in nearly all other   camps, vermin such as lice, scabies, flies, and rats were rampant.

profile

 

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know 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

Zeit

Vintage News

Many thanks to Norman Stone for pointing the story out to me