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/

I have to tell your story- Betrayed by domestic violence.

Capture

I don’t want to tell your story but I have to. It is my duty as a father and as human being to ensure that no child will ever get treated like you were treated, My heart breaks each time when I see a picture of innocence, knowing that this innocence was destroyed.

What makes the story of Eva and Liane Münzer even more sad and poignant is that they were betrayed not by their enemies but by the actions of their friends. The two girls were from Jewish Polish parents who lived in the Netherlands, In 1942 their father was sent to a German labour camp.. Their mother recognized the dangers they would be facing and decided to place the 2 girls with catholic friends of the family.

Sometime in 1944 the Police was called to deal with a domestic violence case , the Police were called to the house of the rescuers of Eva and Liane. The husband and wife had a fight and the husband denounced his wife and the 2 Jewish girls. The Münzer sisters were sent to Auschwitz and murdered.Eva was 8 and Liane was 6.

They had a younger brother who survived the war, as did their mother, The father died a few months after liberation, at least the only comfort he had he died a free man.

It is just so heartbreaking to see that a mother who thought she did the best for her children had to find out that the decision she made turned out to be the wrong one. But she was not to know. as a parent I more then likely would have done the same.

Everyday I am thankful that I have never been out in that position.

The people to blame for the death of Eva and Liane were the Nazis and those who helped them, I don’t even blame the foster or rescue mother , she put her life at risk as did her husband but he eventually put his own life above that of his wife and the 2 children he vowed to protect. He though he was more valuable then the people around him. Nithing is more valuable then the life of a child.

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Sources

https://encyclopedia.ushmm.org/content/en/photo/sisters-eva-and-liane-muenzer?parent=en%2F7711

https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/83760575/eva-munzer

Remembering the innocents.

children

Every life lost during the Holocaust was an innocent life but the lost lives of Children is what disturbs me the most.

I just want to say this blog is not made up of scientific data but just an idea that came up in my head overnight, and thinking of it to me it sounded like a logical conclusion.

An estimated 1.5 million Jewish children were killed during the Holocaust. If you take the definition of  a child to be anyone under the age of 18 ,you quickly realize that if the holocaust had not happened the majority of them would more then likely be still alive today.

WWII started in September 1939, although elements of the Holocaust started several years before the start of war, there are no known records of any Jewish children being killed before that.

Lets take the year 1939, a child of 17  then would have been born in 1922. That child would have been 98 today. Then when you take 1945 ,the end of the war, and take a newborn child just days before the end of the war, lest say April 20, 1945. That child would now have celebrated its 75th birthday.

To me it is a logical conclusion that the age range of those 1.5 million children would today be between 75 and 98, Given the fact the mass murders of Jews was really accelerated from 1942 onward , one can come to the conclusion that the majority of those children would now have an age range between 75 and 78.

Especially since scientific progress has made it possible for so many people to live a long life nowadays, Just imagine the possibilities if those 1.5 million children had been allowed to live, how many of them would have become scientists? Working on  cures for life shortening diseases?

1.5 million

I don’t know who the children are in teh pictures above, maybe some of them survived. However I aslo don’t know if the figure of 1.5 million is correct. Again I have no scientific data for this but it only stands to reason that the number must be much higher. There are no records of children who died at birth during the holocaust, nor are there accurate numbers of children who died during  or just before transport. Then there are pregnant women whose pregnancies were forcibly terminated either through experiments or otherwise. I just want to add a note to this last point I do not want this used in any current -pro life vs pro choice- debates because that is not at play in the context of the Holocaust.

All I want tod is remember all those who could have walked among us but because if the ideology of a warped lunatic, whose birthday it is today, and his cronies these 1.5 million + human beings were denied a life.

 

Four Innocent Lives

4 kids

This picture really upset me, it comes from an album from the National Monument of Camp Vught. When I saw the picture first I thought it was a family picture of 4 siblings. But these kids are not related, it appears to be a staged picture taken at  Vught Concentration Camp

But that is not what upset me, what did, is the notion that these 4 kids were given some bit of hope of a life, but that life was taken from them.

4 futures taken for no other reason but hate.

What is even more upsetting is that so little is known of these children , only the bare facts and not even all the facts either.

The boy in the picture, top left, is Simon Koster born 20 January 1934 in Amsterdam.Murdered in Auschwitz 17 September 1942 .aged 8.

The little girl in front of  Simon is Dora Fresco, born 13 September 1940.in the Hague Murdered in Sobibor 16 July 1943, aged 2.

The oldest girl ,top right is Rabecca Pemina Vorst, date of birth not known, birthplace not known. Murdered in Auschwitz 26 March 1943.

The baby lying down on the bed is Rosalie van Baale, born 22 June 1941, in Amsterdam. Murdered in Vught Concentration Camp on 12 April 1943, aged 1.

NEVER EVER FORGET WHAT HATE CAN DO.

A slight correction, one of my readers found some additional information and discovered that the 4 children are related through their mothers who were sisters from each other, and the picture was made before they were sent to Vught.

The kids all have different surnames which indicates 4 mothers. This makes that picture even more upsetting because it means that 4 young families were either killed or torn apart.

 

 

 

 

My heart is broken

walk

I don’t know how often I have seen this picture but it is today it finally broke my heart.

I sat down and looked at it for a few minutes. Where before I only saw an woman, probably an elderly woman and 3 children walking towards the gas chambers.

What is so utterly disturbing about this is that they did not know what fate awaited them.

I cam clearly see their shies in the picture. Those shoes ended up in a pile of other shoes. Maybe were even sold on.

But what utterly devastated me is the innocence, one child is holding the hand of a younger child. I can only presume they are siblings.If I didn’t know the context in which this picture is places , I would think that it was a picture of a grandmother who is going to visit a family member or a friend with 3 kids who are reluctant to do so, but yet they do because they love their grand mother so much.

That is what I see in this picture, love. Love despite the hate that surrounded them.

 

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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Werner Catel- deciding who lives.

Werner Catel

One of the most disturbing aspects  of the Holocaust I find is the fact that so many who were instrumental in so many evil deeds, were allowed to continue after the war.

In February or March 1939 a farmer called Richard Kretschmar requested Catel’s permission to euthanize one of his children, the child we now know to have been  Gerhard Kretschmar, often referred to as Child K, who had been born blind and deformed.

Werner Catel deferred the matter and advised the father to write directly to Hitler for permission. Hitler subsequently sent Dr. Karl Brandt to confer with Catel and decide on a course of action. On July 25, 1939 the child was killed. It would be the first child to be killed under Aktion T4 or the T-4 program, technically the poor boy would become the pilot case.

T-4

A year later, Werner Catel set up »children’s wards in Leipzig-Dösen and in the University Children’s Hospital in Leipzig. He was an expert on the Reich Committee for the Scientific Registering of Serious Hereditary and Congenital Illnesses, even killing children with mental or physical disabilities himself.

The T4 program was influenced by a popular book, ” die freigabe der vernichtung lebensunwerten lebens(Allowing the destruction of life unworthy of living)”, written in 1922 by Alfred Hoche and Karl Binding.

Book

Catel argued for the reintroduction of euthanasia. As had Binding and Hoche, Catel identified three possible types of euthanasia.

Reine Euthanasie:
“Real” euthanasia was seen as the killing of a person who was suffering from so much pain, that an ever-increasing amount of pain reducing drugs had to be administered. This consequently lead to the person’s death.

Euthanasie im engeren Sinne:
The killing of a patient whose illness “according to medical experience” is so bad “that there is no hope of recovery”, but whose death is also not to be expected in the near future. (See terminal sedation)

Euthanasie im weiteren Sinne:
The “extermination of the life of an “idiot child” or an adult in a similar condition. Catel defined “idiot children” as being “such monsters … which are nothing but a massa carnis”.

Basically Werner Catel was one of the people who felt they had the right to decide who would live or die.

After the war Catel fled from Soviet controlled Leipzig in 1946. To West Germany.The West German authorities ‘de-Nazified’ him in 1949 and classed him as »Persons Exonerated. Afterwards, he was shortlisted for several professorships. In 1954, he was appointed Professor of Paediatrics in Kiel, despite the facts his function on the Reich Committee was known. Due to public pressure and the debate about his role in National Socialism, Catel took early retirement in 1960. Catel continued to propagate in public the idea of the euthanasia of children with mental and physical disabilities.

He died April 30, 1981, aged 88. Where many of his victims did not even reach the age  88 months.

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Sources

T4-Denkmal

Der Spiegel

All I feel now is pain

Siblings

At first I felt joy because who could not be joyful seeing those 2 beautiful smiley faces.

Then I am amazed because I see you two have the same birthday, April 4, 1932.

This is followed by bewilderment because you appear to have different last names.

Milan Herrmann and Dagmar Herrmannová. But after a bit of research I discover that it is the same surname but just a male and female version of the name.

You are twins. A whole world is open for you, The world is your oyster,you have the ability to achieve anything you want in life.

You have the ability but the opportunity was never given to you.

Evil men put you on a transport. 3 weeks after your 10th birthday. Shortly afterwards you were both killed.

Two beautiful children brutally murdered because of hate.

Knowing this hurts me.

All I feel now is pain.

 

 

Two 10 months old babies- 2 different futures.

babyy

This blog contains 2 pictures of 2 baby boys both aged 10 months. With these pictures I will be attempting to explain the Holocaust in a way that most anyone can understand it.

Having that said no one will really ever understand how it was possible to massacre so many innocent lives on such an industrial scale.

The pictures are nearly identical but were taken with a time span of 25 years between them.

The picture above is a picture of Bernhard Arend Sanders born on March 20,1943 in Schalkwijk, Houten, Utrecht, The Netherlands .

Bernhard was killed on January 28, 1944 in Auschwitz, he was barely 10 months old . He was killed because of someone’s warped ideology of how the perfect human being looked like and because a twisted sense of entitlement.

Although Bernhard was Dutch, seen by the Nazis as a pure race,he was also Jewish, Jews were subhuman,even vermin, according to the Nazi doctrine as lined out by the Nazi leadership, Hitler,Himmler,Hess,Goebbels,Goering and others.

According to these men the Aryan race was the purest form of humanity and everyone else would either be subjected to the Aryan race or eradicated altogether.

There were 3 ironies in this, Firstly none of the aforementioned leaders of the Nazi regime fulfilled the Nazi criteria of being pure Aryan. Because Aryans were meant to be tall,blonde,blue eyed,Germanic blood  and athletic.

Secondly, many of those the Nazis had deemed to be subhuman  actually fulfilled all the criteria for being Aryan

Thirdly, the actual Aryan race were Indo-Iranians from origin.

But because of this warped ideology a young beautiful boy like Bernhard Arend Sanders was murdered in a most horrible way, gassed to death.

The Nazis had this twisted sense of entitlement, they believed they were meant to rule and therefore everything belonged to them. They felt they were entitled to take anything they desired,regardless who owned it.

I deliberately mention Nazis rather then Germans, although the Nazis were able to control a great number of Germans by feeding them false promises and propaganda, there were Germans who resisted them. Also the Nazis did not only control the Germans there are very few occupied countries who did not fall for the Nazi propaganda in one way or another/ Although mostly a minority, there were a substantial number of National Socialists in other European countries and even in the UK and the USA.

Yes the Nazis also  used violence to achieve their goals but it all started off via a democratic route.

baby

Fast forward to 1968/69 and imagine an alternative history. A new  political movement, whose name we don’t know yet, has come to power in one of the smallest countries in Western Europe, the Netherlands. This new government declares that the Aryan race with blonde hair and blue eyes are subhuman, even vermin, and need to be eradicated.

Just imagine that, the little baby boy in the picture above would have been killed, and this blog would never be written, because you see that little boy was me 10 months old.

We should never ever forget the Holocaust and should always hold those responsible accountable. But we also should never forget that this could easily happen again but this time it might be the blonde blue eyed Europeans, the Asians, the Muslims or the Jews again.

Evil has no nationality or creed.Next time it could be me or you.

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