Sunday, July 14, 2013

Lest we Forget

We were having a FaceBook discussion about tattoos, when someone's tattoo of numbers across her wrist led to the discussion of Nazis tattooing ID Numbers on their prisoners' arms.

I had to make sure everyone knew what we were talking about. "On the off chance that some readers may not know what L___, me, & others are talking about... Prisoners in Nazi Concentration Camps had identification numbers tattooed on their arms. Right or left, and inside or outside of the arm varied by the camp. As a kid, there were always two little old ladies sitting on the front row at synagogue. The one on the aisle had hers on the upper left forearm so you always saw her number on her arm on the arm rest of the pew. 

"Lest We Forget"

I followed up with this message a few minutes later.
 I had tears in my eyes when I typed "Lest We Forget". (And I do again). Those that don't remember the past are doomed to repeat it. 

I've seen Bergen-Belsen where they burned down the dormitories for fear of disease and all that's left are mass graves marked with the number of dead in that grave.

I've seen Dachau and the Gate of the Great Lie - Arbeit Machts Frei. There they've restored some dormitories so you can see the conditions and you can see the "showers" that showered only poison gas and crematoriums conveniently located near by.

I walked up stairs hidden behind a built in bookshelf and into the world of a little girl. Her father published her diary after the war and it has sold an estimated 30 million copies.

Anne Frank died in Beregen-Belsen of Typhus. If she had survived, she'd be 84 right now and she was a teenager during the war. Soon they'll be no one left to tell the story and that is why I MUST tell the story whenever I can.

Today's entry from the Diary - 15 July 1944: "I see the world being slowly transformed into a wilderness, I hear the approaching thunder that, one day, will destroy us too, I feel the suffering of millions. And yet, when I look up at the sky, I somehow feel that everything will change for the better, that this cruelty, too, shall end, that peace and tranquility will return once more."

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