The execution of Amon Göth. September 13-1946

Anyone who has seen ‘Schindler’s List’ will know about Amon Göth, who was played by Ralph Fiennes in the movie.

Göth was the son of a prosperous publisher in Vienna. In 1931 he became a member of the Austrian Nazi Party at the age of 23.He was granted full party membership on 31 May 1931. His decision to join the party at this early stage meant that he was considered an Alter Kämpfer (Old Fighter), i.e., one who had joined the party before Adolf Hitler’s rise to the position of Chancellor of Germany.

Göth rose steadily through the SS ranks, earning a promotion to untersturmführer (equivalent to second lieutenant) in 1941 and joining Operation Reinhard, the Nazi campaign to kill the Jews of occupied Poland, in 1942. He was made commandant of Plaszow in February 1943 but remained active elsewhere, supervising the violent closings of the Kraków ghetto (March 1943), the Tarnów ghetto, and the Szebnie concentration camp (both in September 1943). His performance so pleased his superiors that he was promoted two ranks to hauptsturmführer (equivalent to army captain) in summer 1943.

In Plaszow, Göth had many prisoners killed as punishment for infractions, but he also killed randomly and capriciously. From the balcony of his villa, he took target practice with his rifle on prisoners as they moved about the camp.

Joseph Bau, a Polish-born Israeli artist, philosopher, inventor, animator, comedian, commercial creator, copy-writer, poet, and survivor of the Płaszów concentration camp, said about Göth.

“A hideous and terrible monster who reached the height of more than two meters. He set the fear of death in people, terrified masses, and accounted for much chattering of teeth.

He ran the camp through extremes of cruelty that are beyond the comprehension of a compassionate mind – employing tortures which dispatched his victims to hell.

For even the slightest infraction of the rules, he would rain blow after blow upon the face of the helpless offender and would observe with satisfaction born of sadism, how the cheek of his victim would swell and turn blue, how the teeth would fall out and the eyes would fill with tears.

Anyone who was being whipped by him was forced to count in a loud voice, each stroke of the whip and if he made a mistake was forced to start counting over again.

During interrogations, which were conducted in his office, he would set his dog on the accused, who was strung by his legs from a specially placed hook in the ceiling.

In the event of an escape from the camp, he would order the entire group from which the escapee had come, to form a row, would give the order to count ten, and would, personally kill every tenth person.

At one morning parade, in the presence of all the prisoners he shot a Jew, because, as he complained, the man was too tall. Then as the man lay dying he urinated on him.

Once he caught a boy who was sick with diarrhea and was unable to restrain himself. Goeth forced him to eat all the excrement and then shot him”.

He was even to evil for Nazi standards. On 13 September 1944, Göth was relieved of his position and charged by the SS with theft of Jewish property (which belonged to the state, according to Nazi regulations), failure to provide adequate food to the prisoners under his charge, violation of concentration camp regulations regarding the treatment and punishment of prisoners, and allowing unauthorised access to camp personnel records by prisoners and non-commissioned officers. Administration of the camp at Płaszów was turned over to SS-Obersturmführer Arnold Büscher. The camp was closed on 15 January 1945.Göth was scheduled for an appearance before SS Judge Georg Konrad Morgen, but due to the progress of World War II and Germany’s looming defeat, the charges against him were dropped in early 1945.

All those charges against him may appear that the Nazis actually cared for the wellbeing of prisoners, but that wasn’t the case. It only meant that Göth’s crimes were against the ‘greater good’ of the third reich. He enriched himself and used prisoners for his own benefit.

After being diagnosed with diabetes, he was sent to an SS sanitarium in Bad Tölz, Germany, where he was arrested by U.S. troops in early 1945. The Americans turned him over to the restored Polish government, which then tried him for war crimes, most notably the killing of more than 10,000 people in the Plaszow and Szebnie camps and in the Kraków and Tarnów ghettos. Göth’s defense was that he was only following orders. After the brief trial, he was convicted on September 5, 1946, and hanged eight days later. He was sentenced to death and was hanged on 13 September 1946 at the Montelupich Prison in Kraków, not far from the site of the Płaszów camp. His remains were cremated and the ashes thrown in the Vistula River. Allegedly his last words were ‘Heil Hitler’.

In addition to his two marriages, Göth had a two-year relationship with Ruth Irene Kalder, a beautician and aspiring actress originally from Breslau (or Gleiwitz; sources vary). Kalder first met Göth in 1942 or early 1943 when she worked as a secretary at Oskar Schindler’s enamelware factory in Kraków. She met Göth when Schindler brought her to dinner at the villa at Płaszów; she said it was love at first sight. She soon moved in with Göth and the two had an affair, but she stated that she never visited the camp itself. Göth’s second wife Anna, still living in Vienna with their two children, filed for divorce upon learning of Göth’s affair with Kalder. Kalder left for Bad Tölz to be with her mother for the birth of her daughter, Monika Hertwig , on 7 November 1945. She was Göth’s last child. Kalder was devastated by Göth’s execution in 1946, and she took Göth’s name shortly after his death.

In 2002, Hertwig published her memoirs under the title Ich muß doch meinen Vater lieben, oder? (“I do have to love my father, don’t I?”). Hertwig described her mother as unconditionally glorifying Göth until confronted with his role in the Holocaust. Kalder suffered from emphysema and committed suicide in 1983 shortly after giving an interview in Jon Blair’s documentary Schindler. Hertwig’s experiences in dealing with her father’s crimes are detailed in Inheritance, a 2006 documentary directed by James Moll. Appearing in the documentary is Helen Jonas-Rosenzweig, one of Göth’s Jewish former housemaids. The documentary details the meeting of the two women at the Płaszów memorial site in Poland. Hertwig had requested the meeting, but Jonas-Rosenzweig was hesitant because her memories of Göth and the concentration camp were so traumatic. She eventually agreed after Hertwig wrote to her, “We have to do it for the murdered people.” Jonas felt touched by this sentiment and agreed to meet her.

Monika Hertwig in front of her father’s villa in Plaszow.

Monika’s daughter Jennifer Teege is a German writer. Her grandfather was Amon Göth. Her 2015 book ‘My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me: A Black Woman Discovers Her Family’s Nazi Past’ was a New York Times bestseller. I don’t agree with that because if it was up to her Grandfather she wouldn’t even have been born, because of her Father’s Nigerian background.

sources

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Amon-Goth

https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-24347798

https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-24347798

Inheritance: Beyond the Film With James, Monika and Helen


The Dutch in the Sonderkommando of Auschwitz

Before I go into the main story, I just want to point out the most disturbing aspect of the picture above. At the very front is a lady carrying a baby. We know now what her fate would have been. It is a disturbing sight on an old photograph, so just imagine how disturbing this most have been for those who were forced to help the Nazis in their crimes. These men would have also know what fate awaited the lady and her baby, and they could nothing about it, to safeguard their own survival and perhaps of their family. Or at least the notion that they perhaps would survive.

Sonderkommandos were work units made up of German Nazi death camp prisoners. They were composed of prisoners, usually Jews, who were forced, on threat of their own deaths, to aid with the disposal of gas chamber victims during the Holocaust. The death-camp Sonderkommandos, who were always prisoners and victims themselves, were unrelated to the SS-Sonderkommandos, which were ad hoc units formed from members of various SS offices between 1938 and 1945.

This blog is not to judge those were forced into the Sonderkommandos, none of us can judge because we were never put in that situation. This blog is about a few of the Dutch Jews who were forced into the Sonderkommandos in Auschwitz.

With the arrival of a deportation train in Auschwitz, the work of the Sonderkommandos began. They had to escort the victims to the gas chamber, reassure them and collect their belongings. After the victims were gassed, the members of the Sonderkommandos moved the corpses from the gas chamber and took them to the incineration pits or crematoria. For this arduous work, Jewish men are selected on the platform, including one hundred to one hundred and fifty Dutch. They were forced to become part of the Nazi killing machine at Auschwitz-Birkenau.

During the invasion of the German army of the Netherlands in May 1940, Josef van Rijk fought with the reserve company De Jagers in The Hague against the Germans. During that time Josef shot d a German paratrooper, and killed him. Maurice Schellekes is a tailor and didn’t notice much of the German invasion. But both Jewish men soon had to deal with the persecution of the Jews in the occupied Netherlands. Josef is fired from De Bijenkorf in The Hague and Maurice was sent the Jewish labor camp Kremboong on March 31, 1942.

Josef tries to flee to Switzerland, but is arrested during a check at Amsterdam Central Station. He is imprisoned in the prison on the Amstelveenseweg and is soon transferred to Camp Westerbork. Maurice also flees after rumors that Kremboong will be evicted. He goes into hiding in Amsterdam. On August 6, 1942, Maurice goes outside to get razors and is arrested. He also ends up in Camp Westerbork.

Josef and Maurice both only spent a brief time in Camp Westerbork. Because they were arrested after an attempt to flee and trying to go into hiding, the men are considered ‘criminal cases’. They were deported on 10 August 1942 from Camp Westerbork to Auschwitz.

The following day they arrive at the extermination camp and are selected to work in the Sonderkommando. Maurice works at the mass graves in the open Sonderkommando of Bunker II. Josef buries the corpses after they are taken from Bunker II to the mass graves via a narrow gauge railway with a small wagon.

Working in the Sonderkommando was physically very demanding. In the scorching August sun, the men barely get a drink. The SS and Kapos guarding them constantly mistreated the men. But then suddenly there was a way out. All Dutchmen were called upon to participate. The men of the Sonderkommando were not allowed to leave at all.

This saved Josef and Maurice’s lives. The group of 1200 Dutch people had to undress and were inspected. The healthy men, including Josef and Maurice, were given clean camp clothes, leave Birkenau and walk to Auschwitz. The other Dutch were gassed. Josef and Maurice end up in the Kanada-Kommando.

–When the selection process was complete, a work group of prisoners called the ‘Kanada Kommando’ collected the belongings of victims and took them to the ‘Kanada’ warehouse facility for sorting and transporting back to Germany.

To prisoners Canada was a country that symbolised wealth. They, therefore, gave the ironic name Kanada (the German spelling of Canada) to the warehouse area as it was full of possessions, clothing and jewellery.–

Both Josef and Maurice survived the war.

“An intertwined mass of people – tangle of people – who could only be separated by moistening them. They were sprayed wet. (..) By just pulling you took the bodies out, like a bunch of animals. We have been horrified done that for a few days but by then we were already used to it.”: Josef van Rijk

“I realized that this mound was loose earth, shoveled from the ground where there was now a mass grave filled with rows of women’s bodies covered with quicklime. It was such a terrible sight that words on paper simply cannot describe it. There was the work that was waiting for me.”: Maurice Schellekes

At the end of 1943 a new group of Dutchmen ended up in the Sonderkommando. Including Samuel Zoute who arrived on 21 October 1943. Before the war, he sold fruit and vegetables on the Albert Cuyp market. On 19 October 1943, Samuel is deported from Camp Westerbork to Auschwitz, together with his wife Doortje and four children. Doortje, Rachel, Abraham and Simon are gassed immediately. Eldest son Maurits is selected for labour, until he too is gassed. Samuel found his son Maurits among the gassed people and had to burn him.

On August 17, 1943, Abraham Beesemer, Joseph Peperroot, Salomon van Sijs and Louis Elzas arrived in Auschwitz. The men were first in the quarantine block and at the beginning of January 1944 they ended up together in the Sonderkommando. Jacob Beesemer, Abraham’s brother, was later also selected for the Sonderkommando.

These Dutchmen were also looking for a way out of the Sonderkommando. The number of incoming transports decreased and the Sonderkommandos were slowly reduced. The threat of the complete liquidation of the Sonderkommandos hung in the air. On October 7, 1944, a prisoner knocked down an SS man with a hammer and started the uprising. Several Sonderkommandos revolt. One of the crematoria is blown up and hundreds of Sonderkommando prisoners flee the camp. Three SS men and about 450 Sonderkommando prisoners were killed. The brothers Abraham and Jacob, Salomon, Joseph and Louis were murdered by the SS. Samuel Zoute and Hagenaar Henry Bronkhorst worked at other crematoria in other Sonderkommandos and managed to survive the uprising.

After the uprising, Henry Bronkhorst, Samuel Zoute, Maurice Schellekes and Josef van Rijk are still alive. As the Russians approach, the death marches begin to clear the camp. Henry Bronkhorst is the only one who manages to mix with the other prisoners and thus remain in Auschwitz until its liberation by the Russians on January 27, 1945. The rest are forced to join the death marches: Samuel, Maurice and Josef leave Auschwitz. Samuel ends up in Mauthausen, he is murdered on March 7, 1945. Maurice ends up in Ebensee, a satellite camp of Mauthausen, and is liberated by the Americans on May 6, 1945. Josef ends up in Leitmeritz, a subcamp of Flossenbürg and is liberated by the Russians on 9 May 1945.

sources

https://www.yadvashem.org/yv/en/exhibitions/album_auschwitz/kanada.asp

https://www.oorlogsbronnen.nl/artikel/nederlanders-het-sonderkommando-van-auschwitz

Donation

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July 6,1942- Mauthausen

On June 12,1942 64 people are transported from Camp Amersfoort on the Netherlands, to Mauthausen in Austria.

Of those 64 people, 12 were murdered on July 6,1942.

Nathan de Klijn. born in Amsterdam, 29 August 1905.Mirdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 36 years. His surname is pronounced the same as mine. Occupation: Transport bicycle hand

Louis Cohen, born on Amsterdam, 3 January 1918.Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 24 years. Occupation: Office clerk

Alexander van der Stam, born in Antwerp, 30 September 1894.Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 47 years. Occupation: Waiter

Jozua Klein, born in Wildervank, 3 April 1901.Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 41 years Occupation: Merchant

David Abraham Drielsma, born on Elst, 18 September 1903.Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 38 years

Marcus Cohen born in Groningen, 12 July 1907.Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 34 years. Occupation: Debenture bond office owner

Maximiliaan del Valle, born in Amsterdam, 23 April 1897 .Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942.

Reached the age of 45 years. Occupation: Literary scholar

Levi Messcher, born in Haskerland, 28 June 1895.Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 47 years.Occupation: Sales representative

Levie Godschalk, born in Amsterdam, 24 June 1906.Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 36 years. Occupation: Livestock wholesale dealer.

Bernhard van der Kloot, born in The Hague, 16 November 1897. Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 44 years. Occupation: Merchant

Juda Schrijver, born in Amsterdam, 21 July 1915.Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 26 years. Occupation: Dispatch boy

Albert Sluizer , born in Amsterdam, 12 August 1916.Murdered in Mauthausen, 6 July 1942

Reached the age of 25 years. Occupation: Manager

I only gave limited biographies on the men, but this is just to show that they weren’t members of political or terror groups, or criminals, or tax evaders. They were all just regular guys with regular jobs. Yet there were murdered because the Nazis thought they were different.

sources

https://www.oorlogsbronnen.nl/mensen?transport_from=https://data.niod.nl/WO2_Thesaurus/kampen/3652&transport_to=https://data.niod.nl/WO2_Thesaurus/kampen/3682&transport_date=1942-6-12

The 11 June 1941 raid in Amsterdam.

Adolph Gerson

On June 11, 1941, a second raid took place in Amsterdam as a result of the attacks on buildings occupied by the German Wehrmacht. Jewish cafes and sports clubs were ransacked. 310 young Jewish men were arrested by the Amsterdam police and Ordnungspolizei. Some came from the Jewish working village of Wieringermeer. They were taken to the SD building on Euterpestraat and then to Camp Schoorl. Some were released for health reasons. The rest of the men were sent to Camp Mauthausen on June 26, 1941. The raid was revenge for a bomb attack by the resistance on May 14, 1941 and an attack on the Luftwaffe telephone exchange on June 3, 1941. None of the Jewish men returned from Camp Mauthausen.

One of those men was Adolph Gerson Frohmann(pictured above). He was murdered in Mauthausen on January 16,1942.

The Nazis arrested 310 young Jewish men. Otto Frank was not arrested, but friends and neighbours from the Merwedeplein area, where he had been living for eight years, were. The raid happened a day before Anne Frank’s 12th birthday.

As a precaution, Otto Frank and other men from the square frequently spent the night at the homes of non-Jewish friends or colleagues. In all likelihood, these events prompted Otto Frank to start thinking about a proper hiding place. After attempts to emigrate to the US had failed, he started working on plans to take his family into hiding in the Secret Annex in earnest in the spring of 1942..

There was a stark contrast compared to the raids that had taken place in Amsterdam in February 1941. At that time, the population of Amsterdam and other cities across the Netherlands, had gone on a massive gneral strike in protest against the persecution of the Jews, but in June 1941, the city stayed silent. The Nazis had violently suppressed the February strike, instilling fear in the population. The Amsterdam resistance newspaper Het Parool and other illegal newspapers expressed their abhorrence of the raids of 11 June. They called on people to not cooperate with the Germans and to sabotage them whenever they could. For the larger part, though, the Amsterdam population largely ignored this call.

Sources

https://www.annefrank.org/en/anne-frank/go-in-depth/second-raid-amsterdam/

https://www.joodsmonument.nl/nl/page/226518/adolph-gerson-frohmann

https://www.oorlogsbronnen.nl/bronnen?term=11+juni+1941

The execution of Hans Bonarewitz

The saying goes “Music can soothe the savage beast”, but what if it is the savage beast that is using the music as a cynical form of evil and torture.

In July 1942 Hans Bonarewitz attempted to escape from Mauthausen concentration camp, he tried to hide in a box. He was captured on July 30 1942.The picture above is him forced to pose for a photograph standing next to the box he wanted to escape in.

He was going to be executed, but rather then just killing him he was paraded though the camp, as if he was some circus attraction.

He was led to the gallows on a makeshift cart pulled by fellow inmates.The camp orchestra had to continuously play the song ” J’attendrai ton retour” – I shall wait for your return.

Another song, the traditional German children’s song “Alle Vögel sind schon da” – All the birds are back again,” was played immediately before execution. It was just evil on top of evil just for the sake of being evil and nothing else. How disgusted the musicians must have been, being forced to do this.

The information was discovered by Aitor Fernandádez-Pacheco,film maker of the documentary film “Mauthausen, una mirada Española,” who interviewed the former Spanish prisoner Mario Constante for his documentary.

sources

https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/pa1144948

https://ww2db.com/image.php?image_id=10954

https://boyerwrites.com/tag/hans-bonarewitz/

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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Remembering Two Heroes

Two definitions of a Hero are :1. a person admired for achievements and noble qualities. 2. one who shows great courage. Both definitions apply to Józef Cebula and Sophie Scholl.

The reason why I am remembering these 2 people is because of today’s date May 9. Sophie Scholl was born on May 9,1921, Józef Cebula was murdered on May 9 1941.

Józef Cebula Józef Cebula was born into a modest family of Polish origin on March 23, 1902, at Malnia in southern Poland. He suffered tuberculosis as a child, and was in fact declared incurable . After an unexpected recovery, he visited an Oblate shrine where he shared his story with an Oblate priest. The priest advised Józef to study with the Oblates at the newly-established Oblate minor seminary.

He was ordained as a priest on 5 June 1927 while still in a seminary. Father Cebula became a superior at the Oblate seminaries in 1931, and became novice master at Markowice in 1937.

When the Nazis occupied Poland during the Second World War, they declared loyalty to the Church illegal. All Church associations were forbidden, and many priests were arrested. On May 4, 1940, the Oblate novices at Markowice were arrested by the Nazis and sent to the concentration camp at Dachau, Germany.

Fr. Cebula was forbidden to exercise his priestly ministry and obliged to work in the fields. But at night, the zealous priest celebrated the Eucharist and administered the sacraments in the surrounding villages, until he was arrested on April 2, 1941. He was taken to a concentration camp at Mauthausen in Austria.

Fr. Cebula was known for his humility ,he was a man of quiet prayer with a deep spiritual life. He radiated peace in the very middle of the death camp, even when he was tormented by the Nazis.

Father Cebula was forced to carry 60-pound rocks from the quarry to a camp two miles away. He had to climb a 144-step staircase called the Death Stairs, while being beaten and insulted by his tormentors. The guards humiliated and mocked him by ordering him to sing the texts of the Mass while he worked.

On May 9th 1941 , Fr. Cebula summoned up his strength and courage and said, “It is not you who are in charge. God will judge you.” The Nazis ordered him to run, with a rock on his back, towards the camp’s barbed wire fence, where a guard shot him with a sub-machine gun and declared that Fr. Cebula “was shot while trying to escape”. He died in this volley of bullets. His body was taken to a crematorium and burned.

Sophie Scholl, was only 11 years-old when Adolf Hitler came to power in Germany Sophie, like her brothers and sisters, were influenced by the changes that took place in their school.

Growing up in Nazi Germany, Sophie Scholl had automatically become a member of the girl’s branch of Hitler Youth, the League of German Girls, at the age of twelve, and she was soon promoted to Squad Leader. She was an excited and happy follower of the National Socialist cult of youth. The teenager believed in the ideals propagated at the time, as did many of her peers.

However, as discrimination against the Jews grew, Sophie began to question what she was being told. When two of her Jewish friends were barred from joining the League, Sophie protested and as she grew older she became more and more disillusioned by the Nazi Party.

The strict rules opened her eyes to Nazi doctrine and their treatment of other peoples, and she became disillusioned with German education. She also served six months in the Auxiliary War Service, but this only strengthened her resolve against the Nazis.

She joined her brother, Hans and his Munich University friends when they formed a passive resistance group called ‘The White Rose’. Their actions against the regime included peaceful demonstrations, painting anti-Nazi slogans and distributing leaflets. It was the leaflet distribution that led to their arrest. They were observed by a university janitor collecting those which had not been taken, he denounced them.

The White Rose was a small endeavor with large consequences. At its core were siblings Hans and Sophie Scholl, their fellow students Alexander Schmorell, Willi Graf, Christoph Probst, and a professor of philosophy and musicology at the University of Munich, Kurt Huber. Together they published and distributed six pamphlets, first typed on a typewriter, then multiplied via mimeograph. At first, they only distributed them via mail, sending them to professors, booksellers, authors, friends and others—going through phone books for addresses and hand-writing each envelope. In the end, they distributed thousands, reaching households all over Germany. Acquiring such large amounts of paper, envelopes, and stamps at a time of strict rationing without raising suspicion was problematic, but the students managed by engaging a wide-ranging network of supporters in cities and towns as far north as Hamburg, and as far south as Vienna. These networks were also activated to distribute the pamphlets, attempting to trick the Gestapo into believing the White Rose had locations all across the country.

The translated text of one of their pamphlets

“Our current ‘state’ is the dictatorship of evil. We know that already, I hear you object, and we don’t need you to reproach us for it yet again. But, I ask you, if you know that, then why don’t you act? Why do you tolerate these rulers gradually robbing you, in public and in private, of one right after another, until one day nothing, absolutely nothing, remains but the machinery of the state, under the command of criminals and drunkards?”

In January 1943, the group felt empowered and hopeful. Their activism seemed to be working, rattling the authorities and sparking discussions amongst their peers.

However ,on the 18th February 1943, Sophie and her brother Hans brought a suitcase full of leaflets to the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich main building. They hurriedly dropped stacks of copies in the empty corridors for students to find when they left the lecture rooms. Leaving before the lectures had ended, the Scholl siblings noticed that there were some left-over copies in the suitcase and decided to distribute them. Sophie flung the last remaining leaflets from the top floor down into the atrium. This spontaneous action was observed by the university maintenance man, Jakob Schmied.

Hans and Sophie Scholl were taken into Gestapo custody. A draft of a seventh pamphlet, written by Christoph Probst, was found in the possession of Hans Scholl at the time of his arrest by the Gestapo. While Sophie Scholl got rid of incriminating evidence before being taken into custody, Hans did try to destroy the draft of the last leaflet by tearing it apart and trying to swallow it down. But, the Gestapo recovered enough to match the handwriting with other writings from Probst, which they found when they searched Hans’s apartment. The main Gestapo interrogator was Robert Mohr, who initially thought Sophie was innocent.

But , after Hans had confessed, Sophie assumed full responsibility in an attempt to protect other members of the White Rose.

The Scholls and Probst were to stand trial before the Volksgerichtshof— the Nazi “People’s Court” infamous for its unfair political trials, which more often than not ended with a death sentence — on 22 February 1943. They were found guilty of treason. Roland Freisler, head judge of the court, sentenced them to death.

Sophie and the 2 others. were executed the same day by guillotine at Stadelheim Prison.

It takes real courage to stand up to evil, especially when you know it can result in death. It is this courage that make all these people real heroes.

Finishing up with a poem about courage by the American poet Edgar Albert Guest

Courage isn’t a brilliant dash,
A daring deed in a moment’s flash;
It isn’t an instantaneous thing
Born of despair with a sudden spring
It isn’t a creature of flickered hope
Or the final tug at a slipping rope;
But it’s something deep in the soul of man
That is working always to serve some plan.

Courage isn’t the last resort
In the work of life or the game of sport;
It isn’t a thing that a man can call
At some future time when he’s apt to fall;
If he hasn’t it now, he will have it not
When the strain is great and the pace is hot.
For who would strive for a distant goal
must always have courage within his soul.

Courage isn’t a dazzling light
that flashes and passes away from sight;
it’s a slow, unwavering, ingrained trait
with the patience to work and the strength to wait.
It’s part of a man when his skies are blue,
it’s part of him when he has work to do.
The brave man never is freed of it.
He has it when there is no need of it.

Courage was never designed for show;
it isn’t a thing that can come and go;
it’s written in victory and defeat
and every trial a man may meet.
It’s part of his hours, his days and his years,
Back of his smiles and behind his tears.
Courage is more than a daring deed:
It’s the breath of life and a strong man’s creed.

sources

https://www.nationalww2museum.org/war/articles/sophie-scholl-and-white-rose

Mauthausen

In March 1938 Austria was annexed by Nazi Germany. The event is known as the Anschluß. On March 12 1938 the first German troops marched into Austria, they were met with no resistance, the majority of Austrians welcomed the Anschluß.

Five months later Mauthausen concentration camp went in to operation.

Mauthausen was a Nazi concentration camp on a hill above the market town of Mauthausen,approximately 20 kilometers east of Linz, Upper Austria. It was the main camp of a group with nearly 100 further subcamps located throughout Austria and southern Germany.

An estimated 197,464 prisoners passed through the camp system between August 1938 and May 1945. At least 95,000 died there. More than 14,000 were Jewish.

Mauthausen was one of the most brutal and severe of the Nazi concentration camps. The prisoners suffered not only from malnutrition, overcrowded huts and constant abuse and beatings by the guards and kapos,but also from extremely hard labour.

The work in the quarries ,often in unbearable heat or in temperatures as low as −30 °C (−22 °F)[35] – led to exceptionally high death rates.The food rations were limited, and during the 1940–1942 period, an average inmate weighed 40 kilograms (88 lb).

There were also a few Prisoners of War in the camp in 1944, 47 Allied military personnel (39 Dutchmen, 7 British soldiers and 1 US soldier), all of them agents of the British Secret Operations Executive. The one US soldier was Lieutenant Jack Taylor.

Jack would become the first Navy Seal. During the Mauthausen trials he was asked the question:

“How many ways did they execute them?”

He replied “Five or six ways: by gas, by shooting, by beating, that is beating with clubs, ah, by exposure, that is standing out in the snow, naked, for 48 hours and having cold water put on them, thrown on them in the middle of winter, starvation, dogs, and pushing over a hundred-foot cliff.”

Despite the war coming to an end, the camp authorities decided to carry out the last mass murder in the gas chamber on April 28, 1945. The victims were 33 Upper Austrian Social Democratic and Communist opponents of the regime. This was the last gassing of the Holocaust. One week later on 5 May 1945, it was liberated by the United States Army.

The camp commander Franz Ziereis had fled with his wife on 3 May 1945. He attempted to hide out in his hunting lodge on the Pyhrn mountain in Upper Austria. He was discovered and arrested on 23 May 1945, by an American army unit. He was shot three times in the stomach while trying to escape and brought to a U.S. military hospital set up at the former Gusen I camp , a sub camp of Mauthausen, where he died shortly after interrogation by a former inmate of Mauthausen, Hans Maršálek. His corpse was later hung on the fence of Gusen I by former prisoners of Gusen.

sources

https://encyclopedia.ushmm.org/content/en/article/mauthausen

http://www.whale.to/vaccine/jack_taylor_oss.html

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Some random facts about an evil man

Yesterday marked the 133th birthday of Adolf Schicklgruber, better known as Adolf Hitler. I didn’t want to do a blog on the date of his birthday for 2 reasons. 1: I already wrote a blog on his birthday before. 2: I didn’t want to give any idiot the chance to use my blog to idolize that evil man.

On the other hand, he caused so much death and destruction and shaped the planet’s history so much more then any other individual, albeit for the wrong reasons. I did feel therefore that I had to write something about the man, even it is a day after his birthday.

As the title suggest these are some random fact, although still important ones, to paint a picture of the lunatic.

For 36 years he was Austrian, for 7 years he was stateless and for only 13 years he was German.

Medical records show that he only had one testicle.

He received injections of bull semen to enhance his sexual virility. Clearly it didn’t work.

A priest saved him from drowning in a frozen lake as a child, reports suggest.

Records show that he suffered a host of maladies including irritable bowel syndrome and Parkinson’s disease. Which would have made him a candidate for the T4 euthanasia program.

He was a big fan of movies and some of his favorites included King Kong and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

He collected Jewish artifacts with plans to build a museum for what he hoped would be an extinct race after World War II.

He reportedly suffered from a fear of cats.

Before his father changed it, the family name was Schicklgruber.

source

https://allthatsinteresting.com/adolf-hitler-facts#33

The murder of Jacob Hartog Morpurgo on April 7-1944

Jacob was born on October 19,1934 in Amsterdam. He was the youngest child and only son of Rachel Morpurgo-Kijl and Abraham Morpurgo. He had 2 siblings, sisters Carla Celina Morpurgo and Vogelina Morpurgo.

This family was just a regular family, the Father Abraham, was a draper by trade. Mother Rachel is what they call nowadays a stay at home mum, or home maker.

On May 9,1941 Jacob was issued with a passport, which was valid for 2 years, until May 9,1943.

I don’t know the exact date but at some stage Jacob and his family traveled to Belgium. This must have been after his passport had expired. But that would not have mattered because he didn’t ravel there for his holidays. The Morpurgo family was send to the transit camp Mechelen in Belgium. The last day they were there was April 3,1944, because the following day they were all deported to Auschwitz on transport 24. Jacob, his mother and two sisters were murdered upon arrival on April 7,1944.

Abraham was deported to Mauthausen at some point, where he was murdered on February 1,1945. He reached the age of 43. There is a tradition in the Netherlands when a man reaches the age of 50, they say he has seen Abraham. This Abraham never got to celebrate that birthday.

Rachel Morpurgo-Kijl. born in Amsterdam, 21 July 1895. Murdered in Auschwitz, 7 April 1944. Reached the age of 48 years

Vogelina Morpurgo , Born in Amsterdam, 19 February 1925.Murdered in Auschwitz, 7 April 1944.Reached the age of 19 years.

Carla Celina Morpurgo, born in Amsterdam, 4 November 1930.Murdered in Auschwitz, 7 April 1944.Reached the age of 13 years. She had been a student at the Joods Lyceum in Amsterdam.

Vogeltje Morpurgo-van Engel, was the Mother of Abrham, and the Grandmother of Jacob,Vogelina and Carla. She was also on the same transport from Mechelen to Auschwitz and was murdered also on April 7,1944. She reached the age of 68. Her name means little bird.

On April 7,194, thirteen Dutch Jewish citizens were murdered in Auschwitz. Sic were from the same family.

sources

https://www.joodsmonument.nl/en/page/530060/about-jacob-hartog-morpurgo

https://www.oorlogsbronnen.nl/tijdlijn/Jacob-Hartog-Morpurgo/02/106333

https://archief.amsterdam/indexen/deeds/fe69ebd2-1ba4-45cf-95df-2522dbd4aa06

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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Ghetto Fighters’ House Talking Memory – Austrian Cinema during the Nazi Regime Between Alliance and Resistance – 23.1.22

The Ghetto Fighters’ House – Itzhak Katzenelson Holocaust and Jewish Resistance Heritage Museum– known as the “House” – is not only the first Holocaust museum in the world but also the first of its kind to be founded by Holocaust survivors. Since its establishment in 1949, the museum tells the story of the Holocaust during World War II, emphasizing the bravery, spiritual triumph and the incredible ability of Holocaust survivors and the fighters of the revolt to rebuild their lives in a new country about which they had dreamed – the State of Israel.

Last Sunday I had the privilege to attend a zoom session organized by the Ghetto Fighters’ House . The session was about Austrian Cinema during the Nazi Regime. It was very interesting and intriguing. One thing that I hadn’t been aware of was that Jewish actors were already banned to play in Austrian movies before the ‘Anscluss’

This is the recorded session.

source

https://www.gfh.org.il/eng/About_the_Museum