The good fortune of Joseph Meister but yet a tragic end.

I hear a lot of fear mongering in relation to vaccines. One argument given by some people for not taking a vaccine is that one of the side effect is death. Usually these arguments are given with the back up of a meme, but never with actual facts.

It is true that one of the side effects could be death, but this can be said for every medical procedure. If the adhesive used on a plaster can cause an allergic reaction in people causing death.

When it comes to vaccines it is less then 1 percent of a risk. Not taking it will give a much higher risk in death.

On July 4th,1885, a rabid dog attacked a 9-year-old boy from Alsace, France. His name was Joseph Meister. The vicious and crazed dog proceeded to throw the boy to the ground and bite him in 14 places, including the hand, legs and thighs. Some of the wounds were so deep that he could hardly walk. Twelve hours later, at 8:00 in the evening, a local doctor named Weber treated Joseph’s most serious wounds by cauterizing, or sealing them, with searing doses of carbolic acid, in and of itself a horribly painful process.

This procedure did not help on July 6,1885, the boy’s mother brought her son to Paris, she suspected the boy had contracted rabies. She had heard rumours of a scientist who could prevent rabies. This scientist turned out to be Louis Pasteur.

Pasteur was so taken by the boy’s plight that he consulted two physicians, Alfred Vulpain and Jacques Grancher at a weekly meeting of the French Academy of Sciences. They, too, were struck by the need to do something, and to do it fast. Pasteur later reported, “Since the death of the child appeared inevitable, I resolved, though not without great anxiety, to try the method which had proved consistently successful on the dogs.”

Bacteriologist Louis Pasteur, who kept kennels of mad dogs in a crowded little laboratory and was hounded by medical criticism, had never tried his rabies vaccine on a human being before.

Pasteur escaped the medical license dilemma by having his medical colleagues present when the vaccine was first administered on July 6, 1885, some 60 hours after the initial dog attack. Mrs. Meister expressed little concern over the potential dangers of the experimental vaccine because she was so fearful that her son would die and she readily gave Pasteur her consent. The first injection was made in a fold of skin covering the boy’s right upper abdomen. Over a period of three weeks, Joseph was given 13 such inoculations.

For three weeks Pasteur watched anxiously at the boy’s bedside. To his overwhelming joy, the boy recovered.

Joseph Meister did not only recover but also went to work for Louis Pateur in later life. For decades he worked as a concierge at the Institut Pasteur, Louis Pasteur’s laboratory where some of the most important discoveries elucidating infectious diseases were made.

On June 14, 1940, the Nazis invaded Paris from Germany. Fearing for their safety, Meister, then 64 years old, sent his family away and stayed behind to protect the Pasteur Institute from the German soldiers. Ten days later, on June 24, 1940, Joseph Meister was overcome with guilt because he was certain that his family had been captured by the Nazis. He committed suicide by a gas furnace. In an ironic and sad twist of fate, his family was safe. They returned to the Institute just a few hours after Meister committed suicide.

Although his life was cut short by suicide. If he hadn’t received the vaccine against rabies he would have died aged 9.

I can understand why some people are reluctant to take any of the Covid 19 vaccines today. The misinformation that goes around on social media is phenomenal. But do not base your decision on anecdotal evidence(which is often made up) but base it on medical scientific facts. Inform yourself.

If I was to believe some of these antivaxers , this blog would not have been possible because I should be dead, given the fact I had a double does of the Moderna vaccine. Several members of my family received different vaccines and I am glad to report they are all alive and well.

sources

https://artsandculture.google.com/entity/joseph-meister/m051w1w?hl=en

https://time.com/3925192/rabies-vaccine-history/

https://historydaily.org/the-life-and-death-of-joseph-meister

https://www.pbs.org/newshour/health/louis-pasteurs-risky-move-to-save-a-boy-from-almost-certain-death

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Holocaust Suicides

Something which maybe a controversial topic is suicide. However in the context of the Holocaust I believe it is an important subject to address.

I have said this before that I don’t believe that number of ,6 million Jews murdered in the Holocaust, is a correct number. I believe it to be much higher.

I was looking at some figures of deaths in the immediate aftermath of the invasion of the Nazis of the Netherlands. The Dutch army capitulated on May 14,1940. On that same day and the following days a great number of Dutch Jews committed suicide. Sometimes it would ne complete families that would take their own lives, or that by the hand of parents. This was not because they were ill but because they feared that the fate that awaited them would be worse then death.

These numbers are not included in the official Holocaust numbers.

Below is a list of some of those who saw no other way out then to take their own lives and sometimes that of their children too. May they never be forgotten. #WEREMEMBER

Eduard Wiener, wife Henriette van Gigch and son Eduard.

Zofja Josefsberg

Leonard Polak Daniels

Emanuel Boekman and wife Jansje Boekman-Nerden

Bruno Asch

Bernard Aa and his wife Dina van der Kar and his parents , Hermanus Aa and Sara Klok.

Walter Maijer,his wife Anneliese Maijer-Cohen and 4 year old daughter Marianne Yvonne Maijer

Eduard Henri Benjamin van Lier

Abraham Leviticus

Jacob Benjamin Gersons and his wife Sientje Gersons-van der Kous

Andries de Metz

Isaac van Loon

Elkan Sanders, his wife Betsy Cornelia Sanders-Kooperberg and 2 year old daughter Els Sanders.

Abraham Delmonte

Jacob Keesing and his wife Esperance Keesing-Peekel

Jacob van Gelderen, his wife Alexandrina van Gelderen-de Vries, his son Johan van Gelderen, daughter Margreet van Gelderen

Mozes de Haas.

There were many more but my heart can’t take looking any more of these poor souls.

It is just so hard to fathom the desperation and the lack of hope, that they resorted to such a tragic measure. This is just a snap shot from one country, I am sure the Jews in the Netherlands were not the only ones. These tragedies must have been repeated throughout occupied Europe.

The bigger tragedy is that they probably would have been murdered either way. Approximately 75% of the Dutch Jewish citizens were murdered.

#REMEMBERTHEM

Walter Seifert-Adolf Hitler the 2nd.

The case of Walter Seifert is a disturbing one. It is also an indication on something that I have argued for a long time, the Denazification program after World War 2 did not work. It was merely a political bit of veneer.

For you who don’t know what the Denazification program was;Denazification (German: Entnazifizierung) was an Allied initiative to rid German and Austrian society, culture, press, economy, judiciary, and politics of the Nazi ideology following World War 2.

It was attempted through a series of directives issued by the Allied Control Council, seated in Berlin, beginning in January 1946. “Denazification directives” identified specific people and groups and outlined judicial procedures and guidelines for handling them. Though all the occupying forces had agreed on the initiative, the methods used for denazification and the intensity with which they were applied differed between the occupation zones.

Although I have seen no records to show that Walter Seifert had been subjected to the program, it is sage to presume that he did. As a former sergeant with the Luftwaffe in the fact he joined the Germany security police at the end of 1945, one can conclude from this that he must have been a subject to the Denazification program.

On 23 August 1946 he was treated for a bronchial catarrh, and an examination by a specialist on 5 September diagnosed with tuberculosis in the right lung, resulting in his dismissal from the police on 30 September, as he was unfit for service. From then on Seifert attempted to enforce his claims for subsistence, feeling he was being treated unfairly by the government which he claimed was cheating him of his war pension.

He reportedly fell apart after his wife died of an embolism during premature birth on 11 February 1961. Holding the doctors responsible for the death of his wife he wrote a 120-page letter titled “Muttermord — Einzelschicksal und Analyse eines Systems” (Matricide – Individual fate and analysis of a system), and sent it to agencies, doctors and pharmaceutical manufacturers. Therein he tried to prove that the treatment of his wife’s embolism was done wrong, called society a criminal system and equated doctors with murderers, writing:

“The doctor is the greatest mass murderer of the poor in the history of mankind (…) What to do? Appeal to their ‘conscience’ – useless, whoever does something like that has no conscience. Does the aforementioned science count before any court? No, thus begins the vigilante justice, the terror of the medical society in the pluralistic chaos of criminality. But terror can only be extirpated with counter-terror, and whoever denies me the protection of the law forces the cudgel into my hand.”

While doctors said he had schizophrenia, they did not consider him violent.

However on June 11,1964, his 42nd birthday ,he entered a Catholic elementary school in Cologne, located at the Volkhovener Weg 209-211, with a homemade flamethrower and a long lance, reportedly yelling, “I am Adolf Hitler the Second!” He used the flamethrower to start fires in classrooms, stabbing victims with his lance. Killing eight pupils and two teachers, and wounding twenty-two others. When police arrived at the scene, he fled from the school compound and poisoned himself by taking cyanide.. He was taken to a hospital, where he died the same evening.

The victims:

Teachers; Gertrud Bollenrath, aged 62, Ursula Kuhr, aged 24.

None of the children immediately. Some suffered for more then a week before they died.

Dorothea Binner, 9, died on 15 June, Renate Fühlen, 9, died on 19 June, Ingeborg Hahn, 9, died on 30 June, Ruth Hoffmann, 10, died on 20 June, Klara Kröger, 9, died on 16 June, Stephan Lischka, 9, died on 16 June, Karin Reinhold, 11, died on 20 June, Rosel Röhrig, 12, died on 18 June.

I know he may have been diagnosed with schizophrenia. But I think the fact that he had actively been a Nazi ,he was still indoctrinated with that ideology, and that ideology was not rooted out with the Denazification program, because it was successful on only very few Nazis.

Walter Seifert basically had a chip in his shoulder and suffered from this sense of entitlement that so many Nazis had.

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sources

https://amok.fandom.com/wiki/Walter_Seifert

https://murderpedia.org/male.S/s/seifert-walter.htm

http://www.findingdulcinea.com/news/on-this-day/May-June-08/On-this-Day–Walter-Seifert-Goes-on-Killing-Spree-in-Cologne–Germany.html

Grietje Lea Philippus Cohen-van Bergen

Grietje Lea Philippus Cohen-van Bergen such a long name.

Although there is quite a lot of data about her , there is still very little known about her.

Born in Weesp, the Netherlands on 9 September 1884.

Daughter of Philippus Hartog van Bergen en Maria Levie de Vries‏.

Married to Salli Cohen‏‎ , son of Mozes Cohen en Reintje Rubens‏.

Married on 1 November 1906

Witnesses to the marriage ; Barend Cohen, 31 , trader , brother of the groom.

Hartog Philippus van Bergen,33 ,trader and Asser Philippus van Bergen,24, traveler . Brothers of the bride.

Gabriel Levie de Vries, 53, uncle of the bride.

Children

Mozes Cohen;Barend Cohen;Maria Cohen;Philip Cohen;Hartog Cohen‏‎ and Levie Cohen.

We also know that Grietje was treated at “Het Apeldoornsche Bosch” which was a Jewish psychiatric hospital in Apeldoorn, the Netherlands.

We know this because on June 1943 the assistant secretary of the hospital wrote a letter to Hartog Cohen, one of Grietje’s sons, confirming that his mother who had been in treatment at the hospital since 23 December 1924, had been put on transport on January 21,1943 to an unknown destination. She had been put on transport because the Hospital was cleared out.

All 1200 patients and 50 staff were transported to Auschwitz that day.

The last thing we know about Grietje is that she was murdered in Auschwitz on February 16,1943 aged 58.

Her son Hartog survived the war, her daughter Maria died a year after birth. The other 4 children all were murdered in Auschwitz and Sobibor. Her son Levie comitted suicide on September 30,1942.

Her Husband Salli, survived and died February 18,1975 aged 92.

Grietje Lea Philippus Cohen-van Bergen such a long name and yet such a short life.

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Sources

https://www.joodsmonument.nl/nl/page/218097/grietje-lea-philippus-cohen-van-bergen

http://www.maxvandam.info/humo-gen/family.php?id=F7325&main_person=I19616

The curious suicide of Hajime Sugiyama

Hajime Sugiyama

Now I am not a person who subscribes to conspiracy theories , but the suicide of Hajime Sugiyama appears to be a bit odd to me.

There were many Japanese officers who committed suicide at the end of WWII, but most would do this in the traditional way of of the ritual suicide of Seppuku, sometimes referred to as harakiri.

However, on September 12,1945 Hajime Sugiyama committed suicide by shooting himself four times in the chest with his revolver while seated at his desk in his office, 10 days after the surrender of Japan. At home, his wife also killed herself.

Getting back to Sugiyama’s  suicide though, he shot himself FOUR times in the chest with his revolver, this means he had to pull the trigger four times.

Maybe it is just me but to me that sounds quite bizarre. There are very few law enforcement agencies who would considered that to be a clear cut suicide. I am pretty sure under normal circumstances that would be treated as a homicide.

I have no way of proving that of course but to me it is a curious suicide.

 

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Jeremy spoke in class today.

jermy

The title of this blog is a line from the Pearl Jam song “Jeremy” it is one of my favourite Rock tracks and by far the best track of the album “Ten”. Although I have listened to the song hundreds of times I never really paid to much attention to the history of the song.

I assumed it was a made up tale of a made up boy in a made up school, but I was wrong. The Jeremy in the song was a real boy, who tragically committed suicide on January 8, 1991.

Jeremy Delle attended Richardson High School in Richardson, Texas

He was 15 at the time. On the fateful day he was late for his second period English class.Because of this tardiness the teacher urged Jeremy to go down to the office and get an attendance slip. However Jeremy did not go to the office, he went to his locker. Took out a with a Smith & Wesson .357 revolver and returned to the classroom . He turned to his teacher and said “Miss, I got what I really went for,” and then shot himself in front of his classmates.

metro

Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder read about the suicide in a newspaper article and decided to write a song about it, in a way as an ode to the troubled teenager.

Even though the song was well intended it does not portray an accurate picture of the situation.

One line of the song talks about a father who didn’t pay attention and a mother who didn’t care. This is however not true. Jeremy  was living with his father, his parents were divorced and he had been in counseling at the school which he was also new to. In the video of the song it is also suggested that he was struggling with his sexuality but according a friend that was not the case at all, in fact most of the video is totally inaccurate. Why Pearl Jam decided on this direction of the video, I don’t know.

king

He was a quiet boy but there wasn’t any real evidence of bullying. The fact is the teenage years in anyone’s life are complex years, Stuck between childhood and adulthood, hormones flying of the charts. If you add an uncertain future to that and new surroundings it can easily lead to bigger problems. It is not a coincidence that a a great percentage of suicides are committed by teenage boys.

His mother said in a recent interview she said ‘That day that he died did not define his life. He was a son, a brother, a nephew, a cousin, a friend. He was talented,’ she said.

My heart goes out to her and the family. Each time I will hear the song now, I will say a quick prayer for a poor troubled boy and his family.

Ending the blog with Pearl Jam’s video.

 

 

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A failure as a father

JG

If you would not know the man in the picture you would think that it was a loving family man, doting on his daughter.

However since we know the man is Joseph Goebbels, the dynamic of this picture changes.

Goebbels did portray himself as a good family man and a loving father, but clearly he had no comprehension what constitutes a good parent.

The job of a father,or mother for that matter, is to look after the well being of their children and provide them with a safe home. The child’s needs,health and safety  is what takes priority over everything and everyone else.

But both Joseph Goebbels and his wife failed in this. Their priority was the Nazi regime. So sick and twisted were they that they judged their children by their own(Joseph and Magda’s )standards.

Rather then ensuring their children would be safe and no harm would come to them, they decided to kill them, even though they had plenty of opportunities to smuggle their kids out of Berlin.

Both parents were to blame but since Joseph was the head of the family and one of Germany’s most powerful men it makes him nothing more than a failed Father.

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The murder of the Goebbels children

Goebbels

Regardless what you think of their parents, when you analyse it the Goebbels children were victims of the same warped ideology and regime as so many other children. The only difference they may have died in less painful circumstances, at least 5 of them.

So enthralled were Joseph  and Magda Goebbels with Hitler that they gave all 6 of their children names starting with H to honor their beloved leader.

Helga Susanne.Hildegard Traudel,Helmut Christian,Holdine Kathrin,Hedwig Johanna and Heidrun Elisabeth.

Obersalzberg, Besuch Familie Goebbels bei Hitler

There also was a half brother called Harald, born in November 1921. from a previous marriage between Magda Goebbels nee Behrend Rietschel and German business man Günther Quandt,founder of several companies including BMW. Harald,He served as a lieutenant in the Luftwaffe during World War II.   he survived the war and together with his half brother Herbert Quandt, ran their father’s businesses including the aforementioned BMW after the war. The picture below is a photograph of the whole Goebbels family including the half brother Harald.Bundesarchiv_Bild_146-1978-086-03,_Joseph_Goebbels_mit_Familie

Like any child anywhere in the world a child is formed and conditioned by the environment it grows up in, as was the case with the Goebbels children. And on the surface they were loved by their parents, and  maybe even a bit deeper then the surface but not much. For any normal thinking and loving parent will do anything to safeguards their child’s life.

In the case of the Goebbels parents their love for Hitler was bigger then the love for their children. On May 1st 1945 ,a day after Hitler committed suicide, Joseph and Magda Goebbels decided to follow suit and also kill the children. Some people say they did this because of fear what the soviet army might do to the children, they imagined it a fate worse then death, Joseph Goebbels was of course well aware what this might entail, for he was one of the leaders of the regime who slaughtered millions of children in the most horrendous conditions , and he  had lost not one night sleep over it.

But I believe they killed their own kids so that could die pure Aryan, for there had been plenty of opportunities to smuggle their kids to the west of Germany where the US and UK troops had occupied the country. Many of those who had been in the bunker did just do that and could have easily taken the kids with them, if they had been asked.

Adolf Hitler [Misc.]

Joseph and Magda wrote goodbye letters to Harald, explaining their decision, calling death the “the only possible and honorable conclusion.” Magda, convinced she was sparing her children from a life of humiliation, finalized the plan to end their lives.

It isn’t entirely clear as to who helped the Goebbels poison their children. The plan was to sedate them, but it is not certain who actually administered the drugs that put the children to sleep. The most likely candidate was Helmut Kunz,Helmut Kunz a dentist who served as one of the Nazi’s chief medical officers. Supposedly, Magda had asked him to help her kill the children, but he refused to do it, saying he was “incapable” of such an act. She then told him that it was an order from Hitler, and he agreed to do it.

Kunz did give the children morphine, but it’s unclear who gave them the cyanide. Magda was unable to do it and was said to have called Dr. Ludwig Stumpfegger, one of the SS’s doctors, to administer the “candy” to the children.

He gave the children cyanide in some form of chocolate.

Rochus Misch, the bunker telephone/radio operator, stated that Werner Naumann told him that he had seen Hitler’s personal physician, Dr Stumpfegger, give the children something “sweetened” to drink.[Another account says that the children were told they would be leaving for Berchtesgaden in the morning, and Stumpfegger was said to have provided Magda with morphine to sedate them. Erna Flegel claims that Magda reassured the children about the morphine by telling them that they needed inoculations because they would be staying in the bunker for a long time.

On the same night that their children were killed, Magda and Joseph Goebbels went into the study in the Führerbunker. According to legend, the couple stood near where Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun had died and been burned as they bit into cyanide and shot themselves, perhaps at the same time. Another theory is that Günther Schwägemann, Günther SchwägemannNazi officer and object of their daughter Hedwig’s affection-Hedwig insisted, in 1944, that when she grew up she was going to marry Günther Schwägermann, having been captivated by the fact he had a fake eye.  -shot them. The bodies of Magda and Joseph Goebbels were set on fire.

On 3 May 1945, the day after Soviet troops led by Lt. Col. Ivan Klimenko had discovered the burned bodies of their parents in the courtyard above, they found the children down in the Vorbunker dressed in their nightclothes, with ribbons tied in the girls’ hair after they died.

Goebbels family

Based on autopsy findings, there was some trouble when it came to giving Helga the poison. She either woke up from her slumber and resisted taking it or the dosage was insufficient to kill her. When Russian doctors autopsied Helga’s body, they found bruises, indicating that there had been a struggle. Her jaw may have been broken as well.Helga

Helga was killed age 12,Hildegard was killed age 11.Helmut was age 9 when he was killed.Holdine was eight years old at the time of her death.Hedwig was six years old, four days shy of her seventh birthday, at the time of her death. And Heidrun was only 4 when she was killed.

children

I know some people will say”They deserved what was coming to them” and to an extend I can understand that sentiment, but these kids were not responsible for the actions of their parents, in fact they were a victim of the warped ideology their parents had subscribed to.

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The desperate act of Ernst Kurt Lisso,Deputy Mayor of Leipzig.

Deputy Mayor Ernst Kurt Lisso and his family after committing suicide by cyanide to avoid capture by US troops, 1945 (1)

As the Red Army and the Western Allies pressed closer and closer to Berlin suicides grew. Thousands of Germans committed suicide in the spring of 1945, rather than face occupation and the expected abuse by their victors. 3,881 people were recorded as committing suicide during April in the Battle of Berlin, although the figure is probably an underestimate. Although the motives was widely explained as the “fear of the Russian invasion”, the suicides also happened in the areas liberated by the British and American troops.

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On the 18th April 1945 a number of officials of Leizig committed suicide in the New Town Hall (Neues Rathaus). The Deputy Mayor of Leipzig Ernst Lisso decided to end his life but also that of his wife and daughter as the Americans press towards the city hall. In the death tableaux his wife Renate Lisso sits across from her husband and most shockingly his daughter Regina sits on the bench. She has an armband on and presumably was part of the German Red Cross aiding German soldiers before her premature death. In another room, the mayor and his wife and daughter similarly killed themselves before the Allied forces could do their worst. In both cases they used cyanide capsules.

Deputy Mayor Ernst Kurt Lisso and his family after committing suicide by cyanide to avoid capture by US troops, 1945 (2)

Unlike in Japan–where many people also killed themselves at the end of the war–suicide is not embedded in German culture as a potential response to shame or dishonor. Yet thousands of people felt that life was no longer worth living if it wasn’t under the Nazi order. Perhaps the expected hardships and privations of defeat, coupled with family and personal losses during the war, drove many people over the edge.

Life Magazine reported that: “In the last days of the war the overwhelming realization of utter defeat was too much for many Germans. Stripped of the bayonets and bombast which had given them power, they could not face a reckoning with either their conquerors or their consciences. These found the quickest and surest escape in what Germans call selbstmord, self-murder.”

Deputy Mayor Ernst Kurt Lisso and his family after committing suicide by cyanide to avoid capture by US troops, 1945 (3)

There were several reasons why some Germans decided to end their lives in the last months of the war. First, by 1945 Nazi Propaganda had created fear among some sections of the population about the impending military invasion of their country by the Soviets or Western Allies. Information films from the Reichs Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda repeatedly chided audiences about why Germany must not surrender telling the people they faced the threat of torture, rape and death in defeat. Secondly, many Nazis – who had been indoctrinated in unquestioning loyalty to the party – also felt obliged to follow the example of Adolf Hitler when it was reported that the Führer had taken his own life. Finally others killed themselves because they did know what would happen to them following defeat.

800px-Volkssturm

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The tragic death of Szmul Zygielbojm-The man who exposed the Holocaust to the allies.

Szmul-Zygielbojm-1023x946My heart was broken when I heard about this Hero. If the allies just would have listened to him and taken him serious so many lives including his own could have been saved. What make this even more tragic and poignant that he did not die by direct Nazi violence but by his own hand due to grieve and frustration.

When Szmul Zygielbojm stood up and denounced ‘the greatest crime in history’ in 1942 the Polish politician was revealing to the world for the first time the full horror of the unfolding Holocaust.

Three years before the liberation of the death camps, Zygielbojm issued his clarion call but also sowed the seeds of his own destruction warning it would ‘be a shame to go on living’ if nothing were done.

Szmul Zygielbojm (February 21, 1895 – May 11, 1943) was a Jewish-Polish socialist politician, leader of the Bund, and a member of the National Council of the Polish government in exile.

Ac.manif1917

He committed suicide to protest the indifference of the Allied governments in the face of the Holocaust.

When the Nazis ordered Jewish leaders to help with the creation of a ghetto in the Polish capital, Zygielbojm publicly opposed the command – and was subsequently smuggled out of the city.

After travelling to Belgium, France and the US, where he spoke at a series of meetings to raise awareness about the plight of Jews, he eventually found himself in London in March 1942 to join the National Council of the Polish government in exile.

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Realising that he was dealing with a sceptical non-Jewish public, Zygielbojm used British newspapers and the BBC to pass on detailed information he was being supplied with from occupied Europe.

In June 1942, The Daily Telegraph headline read ‘Germans murder 700,000 Jews in Poland’ and readers were told it was ‘the greatest massacre in the world’s history

WWII Warsaw Ghetto 1943

In April 1943, the US and UK governments met in Bermuda, supposedly to come up with answers to the unfolding plight of Jews in occupied Europe.

Ironically this happened just as the Jewish resistance rose up the Warsaw Ghetto despite facing overwhelming numbers of well armed Nazi troops.

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An estimated 13,000 Jews died during the uprising and the 50,000 or so survivors were immediately shipped to extermination camps.

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In May, Zygielbojm realised that the Allies were not going to act and then, to compound his despair, he learnt that his wife Manya and son Tuvla had died in Warsaw.

On the 12th of May he took an overdose of sodium amytal at his home in west London and left a long and detailed suicide note, explaining his decision to take his own life.

In a long, detailed “suicide letter”, addressed to Polish president Władysław Raczkiewicz and prime minister Władysław Sikorski, Zygielbojm stated that while the Nazis were responsible for the murder of the Polish Jews, the Allies were also culpable:

The responsibility for the crime of the murder of the whole Jewish nationality in Poland rests first of all on those who are carrying it out, but indirectly it falls also upon the whole of humanity, on the peoples of the Allied nations and on their governments, who up to this day have not taken any real steps to halt this crime. By looking on passively upon this murder of defenseless millions tortured children, women and men they have become partners to the responsibility.

I am obliged to state that although the Polish Government contributed largely to the arousing of public opinion in the world, it still did not do enough. It did not do anything that was not routine, that might have been appropriate to the dimensions of the tragedy taking place in Poland….

I cannot continue to live and to be silent while the remnants of Polish Jewry, whose representative I am, are being murdered. My comrades in the Warsaw ghetto fell with arms in their hands in the last heroic battle. I was not permitted to fall like them, together with them, but I belong with them, to their mass grave.

By my death, I wish to give expression to my most profound protest against the inaction in which the world watches and permits the destruction of the Jewish people.

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He wished his letter to be known not only by the Polish President and prime minister in exile. He wrote: “I am certain that the President and the Prime Minister will send out these words of mine to all those to whom they are addressed, and that the Polish Government will embark immediately on diplomatic action and explanation of the situation, in order to save the living remnant of the Polish Jews from destruction.”

After his death, Zygielbojm’s seat in the Polish exile parliament was taken over by Emanuel Scherer.

Zygielbojm’s younger son, Joseph, survived the Ghetto’s destruction. After taking a leadership role in the Polish resistance during the war, he immigrated to the United States, where he became a scientist at NASA. He died in 1995, survived by his sons, Arthur and Paul.

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