Thursday, March 16, 2017

Fee Thomas writes


 "Papa," the little girl said as she climbed her way into her great grandfather's lap. "Tell me a story about hope." The great grandfather, scratching his chin, thought awhile and then began. "Your great grandmother was a truly stunning woman. She was beautiful even in the gates of Auschwitz. Even those gates could not dampen her beauty. But like the rest of us, she was starving. Starving to death. I had happened upon a full piece of bread - quite the luxury in that time. And although I had to literally fight my body from keeping it for myself or even from keeping half, I gave the whole piece to my beloved. When I did, her eyes lit up like stars never before seen. Like stars that not even God had imagined. She tried to get me to at least take a bite, but I refused. This was her bread. Earned by her simply by the loveliness of her Being. The next morning we could not wake her from her bunk. She was cold and gone." "Papa," the little girl tearfully interjected, "I thought this was supposed to be a story about hope." "Oh, My Dear One, it is, I chose to give my love the full piece of bread - all that I had. And when my time comes, I know that I will take my integrity with me. The hope is that it is always our choice."

1 comment:

  1. History's largest site of mass murder was the Konzentrationslager Auschwitz, near Oświęcim, Małopolska, 50 km (31 mi) west of Kraków, near the confluence of the Vistula (Wisła) and Soła rivers. The Nazis invaded Małopolska on 1 September 1940 and occupied the entire province within a week. On 12 October Adolf Hitler established a General Government (Generalgouvernement für die besetzten polnischen Gebiete) in Kraków under Hans Frank. The first Nazi base at Oświęcim (Auschwitz I) was set up in May 1940. In January 1942 Schutzstaffel (SS) lieutenant general Reinhard Heydrich formalized the regime's extermination policy, and Auschwitz II ( Auschwitz-Birkenau) was opened in the same year and had the largest prisoner population of any of the three main camps. In January 1942 the first chamber using lethal Zyklon B gas was built there, but it was judged inadequate and four further chambers were built; they were in use until November 1944, two months before the camp was liberated. The SS systematically killed at least 960,000 Jews deported to the camp, as well as 74,000 Poles, 21,000 Roma ("Gypsies"), 15,000 Soviet prisoners of war, and at least 10,000 others. Of the six dedicated extermination camps, only Treblinka in northeast Poland had comparable fgures (about 850,000). It was also the site of medical experimentation on Jewish and Roma prisoners, including castration, sterilization, and testing the affects of contagious diseases and extreme weather. Auschwitz III (Monowitz) opened in October 1942, mostly as a base for imprisoned laborers working for the chemical company IG Farben, who were killed with a phenol injection to the heart once judged incapable of work; an estimated 10,000 workers died there. On 27 January 1945 Soviet soldiers entered the complex, days after the Nazis had evacuated, marching 60,000 prisoners 30 miles westwards to board trains to other concentration camps; 15,000 of them died during the journey. Another 7,000 starving prisoners were left behind, along with 6,350 kg of human hair and millions of items of clothing. More than 7,000 Nazi personnel served there, but only a few hundred were ever prosecuted for the crimes committed there.


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