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  1. #1
    Senior Member Waterloomike's Avatar
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    I Survived the Warsaw Ghetto. Here Are the Lessons Id Like to Pass On.

    I Survived the Warsaw Ghetto. Here Are the Lessons Id Like to Pass On.
    Im 93, and, as extremism sweeps across Europe, I fear we are doomed to repeat the mistakes which created the Holocaust.
    The Guardian |

    Stanisław Aronson

    GettyImages-3422379.jpg



    The battle to draw the right lessons from that time is in danger of being lost. The Warsaw uprising, 1944.
    Photograph: Keystone/Getty Images.

    Germanys chancellor Angela Merkel stated in 2018 that when the generation that survived the war is no longer here, well find out whether we have learned from history. As a Polish Jew born in 1925, who survived the Warsaw ghetto, lost my family in the Holocaust, served in a special operations unit of the Polish underground, the Home Army, and fought in the Warsaw uprising of 1944, I know what it means to be at the sharp end of European history and I fear that the battle to draw the right lessons from that time is in danger of being lost.

    Now 93 years old and living in Tel Aviv, I have watched from afar in recent years as armchair patriots in my native Poland have sought to exploit and manipulate the memories and experiences of my generation. They may think they are promoting national dignity or instilling pride in todays young people, but in reality they are threatening to raise future generations in darkness, ignorant of the wars complexity and doomed to repeat the mistakes for which we paid such a high price.

    But this is not just a Polish phenomenon: it is happening in many parts of Europe, and our experiences hold lessons for the whole continent.

    Given what Ive learned over my lifetime I would, first, urge future generations of Europeans to remember my generation as we really were, not as they may wish us to have been. We had all the same vices and weaknesses as todays young people do: most of us were neither heroes nor monsters.

    Of course, many people did extraordinary things, but in most cases only because they were forced to by extreme circumstances, and even then, true heroes were very few and far between: I do not count myself among them.

    The same applies to those who failed in their moral obligations during that time. Of course, there were many who committed unspeakable, unforgivable crimes. But it is nonetheless important to understand that we were a generation living in fear, and fear makes people do terrible things. Unless you have felt it, you cannot truly understand it.

    Second, just as there is no such thing as a heroic generation, there is no such thing as a heroic nation or indeed an inherently malign or evil nation either. I must confess that for much of my life, I maintained the view that it was important for Poles to feel pride in their wartime record leading me, when recounting my experiences serving in the Home Army in Warsaw under Nazi occupation, to omit certain examples of indifference and uncooperativeness on behalf of my fellow Poles. It is only in recent years, as I have seen that pride turn into self-righteousness, and that self-righteousness into self-pity and aggression, that I have realised just how wrong it was not to be completely open about the failings I witnessed.

    The truth is that, as a Pole and as a Jew, as a soldier and as a refugee, I experienced a wide spectrum of behaviour at the hands of Poles from those who sheltered me at risk to their own lives, to those who sought to take advantage of my vulnerability, and all possible shades of concern and indifference in between.

    And although the Third Reich destroyed my world, it was a German woman who saved my life by introducing me to the men who would recruit me into the Polish underground. No nation has a monopoly on virtue something that many people, including many of my fellow Israeli citizens, still struggle to understand.

    Third, do not underestimate the destructive power of lies. When the war broke out in 1939, my family fled east and settled for a couple of years in Soviet-occupied Lww (now Lviv in western Ukraine). The city was full of refugees, and rumours were swirling about mass deportations to gulags in Siberia and Kazakhstan. To calm the situation, a Soviet official gave a speech declaring that the rumours were false nowadays they would be called fake news and that anyone spreading them would be arrested. Two days later, the deportations to the gulags began, with thousands sent to their deaths.

    Those people and millions of others, including my immediate family, were killed by lies. My country and much of the continent was destroyed by lies. And now lies threaten not only the memory of those times, but also the achievements that have been made since. Todays generation doesnt have the luxury of being able to argue that it was never warned or did not understand the consequences of where lies will take you.

    Confronting lies sometimes means confronting difficult truths about ones self and ones own country. It is much easier to forgive yourself and condemn another, than the other way round; but this is something that everyone must do. I have made my peace with modern Germany, and hope that all Europeans can do the same.

    Finally, do not ever imagine that your world cannot collapse, as ours did. This may seem the most obvious lesson to be passed down, but only because it is the most important. One moment I was enjoying an idyllic adolescence in my home city of Lodz, and the next we were on the run. I would only return to my empty home five years later, no longer a carefree boy but a Holocaust survivor and Home Army veteran living in fear of Stalins secret police, the NKVD. I ended up moving to what was then the British mandate of Palestine, fighting in a war of independence for a Jewish homeland I didnt even know I had.

    Perhaps it is because I was only a child that I did not notice the storm clouds that were gathering, but I believe that many who were older and wiser than me at that time also shared my childlike state.

    If disaster comes, you will find that all the myths you once cherished are of no use to you. You will see what it is like to live in a society where morality has collapsed, causing all your assumptions and prejudices to crumble before your eyes. And after its all over, you will watch as, slowly but surely, these harshest of lessons are forgotten as the witnesses pass on and new myths take their place.

    Stanisław Aronson took part in the Polish resistance under Nazi occupation. He lives in Israel


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  3. #2
    Senior Member M1917 Enfield's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waterloomike View Post
    I Survived the Warsaw Ghetto. Here Are the Lessons I’d Like to Pass On.

    If disaster comes, you will find that all the myths you once cherished are of no use to you. You will see what it is like to live in a society where morality has collapsed, causing all your assumptions and prejudices to crumble before your eyes.
    Extremism in Europe now is nothing like it was is 1930's to the late 1980's when the Italian Fascists, German Nazi's and Communists ruled over about 70% of Europe with a very heavy, bloody and dictatorial hand. Nothing like it is now.

    So, he also fought against the British and UN forces in Palestine, those who helped liberate Europe from the Nazi's!

    The Jewish insurgency in Mandatory Palestine, known in the United Kingdom as the Palestine Emergency, was a paramilitary campaign carried out by Jewish Zionist underground groups against British rule in Mandatory Palestine. The tensions between the Zionist underground and the British mandatory authorities rose from 1938 and intensified with the publication of the White Paper of 1939. Approximately 141 British soldiers and police were killed (August 1945 – August 1947) during it. In August 1947, after the hanging of two abducted British army sergeants, there was widespread anti-Jewish protests across the United Kingdom. The bodies were booby-trapped with an explosive mine which exploded as Martin's body was being cut down, injuring a British officer. The incident caused widespread outrage among the security forces in Palestine and the British public and government.

    The ruling British mandate White Paper, issued in 1939, stated that the previously mainly Arab dominated Palestine should be a bi-national state, inhabited by both Arabs and Jews. Jewish immigration would be limited for five years, and any immigration required Arab consent. This was after the Jewish population had grown tenfold, Zionist organizations dealt with the situation by organizing continued illegal immigration to Palestine. The negative publicity caused by the deteriorating situation in Palestine war and the violence erupting on both sides made the mandate increasingly unpopular in Britain and was instrumental in the government’s announcement of its intention to terminate the mandate and return the Palestine question to the United Nations (UN). After the UN General Assembly adopted the resolution to partition Palestine on 29 November 1947, Britain announced the termination of its Mandate for Palestine, which became effective on 15 May 1948. At midnight on 14 May 1948, the State of Israel declared its independence.

    The 1947–1949 Palestine war, known in Israel as the War of Independence, was fought in the territory of Palestine under the British Mandate. It is the first war of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict and the broader Arab–Israeli conflict. During this war, the British Empire withdrew from Mandate Palestine, which had been a province of the defeated Ottoman Empire before British occupation in 1917. The war culminated in the establishment of the State of Israel by the Jews, and saw the complete demographic transformation of Palestine, with the displacement of around 700,000 Palestinian Arabs and the complete destruction of their villages, towns and cities. The Palestinian Arabs ended up stateless and most in refugee camps which still exist to this day.

    Unusual how he says he has made peace with Germany but does not say he has made his peace with the Soviets/Russians for their lies and then sending tens of thousands of Poles, Jews and many others to the gulags in Siberia who were never seen again. I also wonder how he feels about how the Palestinians feel, view or think about the Jewish takeover of their homeland?

    And politicians and leaders have been lying to their citizens for like forever, at least since we have had politicians and this is unlikely to change anytime soon.
    I live among lots of sheeple and dim witted who like to think they are good Canadians for voting Lieberal

  4. #3
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    Now 93 years old and living in Tel Aviv, I have watched from afar in recent years as armchair patriots in my native Poland have sought to exploit and manipulate the memories and experiences of my generation. They may think they are promoting “national dignity” or instilling “pride” in today’s young people, but in reality they are threatening to raise future generations in darkness, ignorant of the war’s complexity and doomed to repeat the mistakes for which we paid such a high price.
    Wait... what?

    A couple things:
    -Back in Canada, I noticed that people were becoming increasingly ignorant of history. I'm sure more and more young people are skipping history class to go smoke joints. I'm willing to bet that a decent chunk of the population knows nothing about the holocaust.

    -One of the trends I've noticed in the last few decades was a change in narrative about the holocaust. When I was in school we were taught that 11 million people died as a result of the holocaust. Now that narrative has changed to focus solely on the Jewish victims. Every discussion or documentary starts with "once upon a time 6 million Jews died..." This seems almost worse than anything are dear brother Ernst Zundel would try to tell you about the holocaust. After 75 years, we won't even grant 5 million of those victims the dignity of being mentioned? Fun Fact, over half of the holocaust victims were Polish citizens (both Jews and Christians, 5.75 million in total).

    -Next you have all this weird anti-Polish propaganda that's been creeping onto the scene, since Barack Obama, who used phrases like "Polish death camps". This completely ignores literally everything that happened between 1939-1945. Let's start with the fact that Poland as a national entity literally ceased to exist after October 6, 1939. The Polish government fled to the UK and had no control over anything. Half the country was annexed by Germany and became part of Germany. Heck all Polish citizens in occupied Poland were even declared "stateless citizens". The death camps and concentration camps were built by the Germans. They are "German Death Camps" or "Nazi Death Camps"

    -Last year there was a big mess when some Israeli politicians were accusing Poles of "drinking anti-semitism from their mother's milk"

    -This might be in response to Poland refusing an extortion attempt by the U.S. Goverment, S.447, (The JUST Act of 2017) [Justice for Uncompensated Survivors
    Today]

    Here's the meat:

    REPORT.—Not later than 18 months after the date of the
    enactment of this Act, the Secretary of State shall submit a report
    to the appropriate congressional committees that assesses and
    describes the nature and extent of national laws and enforceable
    policies of covered countries regarding the identification and the
    return of or restitution for wrongfully seized or transferred Holocaust
    era assets consistent with, and evaluated with respect to,
    the goals and objectives of the 2009 Holocaust Era Assets Conference,
    including—
    (1) the return to the rightful owner of any property,
    including religious or communal property, that was wrongfully
    seized or transferred;
    (2) if return of any property described in paragraph (1)
    is no longer possible, the provision of comparable substitute
    property or the payment of equitable compensation to the rightful
    owner in accordance with principles of justice and through
    an expeditious claims-driven administrative process that is just,
    transparent, and fair;
    (3) in the case of heirless property, the provision of property
    or compensation to assist needy Holocaust survivors, to support
    Holocaust education, and for other purposes
    ;
    (4) the extent to which such laws and policies are implemented
    and enforced in practice, including through any
    applicable administrative or judicial processes; and
    (5) to the extent practicable, the mechanism for and an
    overview of progress toward the resolution of claims for United
    States citizen Holocaust survivors and United States citizen
    family members of Holocaust victims.
    This law is demanding countries (mainly Poland), pay out compensation to survivors of the holocaust. Again this ignores huge swaths of history and what actually happened in this country.
    #1) The property was not seized by the government of Poland. The Polish authorities had nothing to do with it. If you want compensation talk to Hitler or Stalin, or perhaps Merkel or Putin.
    #2) The (Communist) Polish government paid out compensation to survivors in like 1961 or so.
    #3) What value of property are they looking for? 1939 dollars, or 2020 dollars? Why are they doing this now and not at any other convenient point in history?
    #4) Everything was destroyed by the end of the war.
    #5) Anything that wasn't destroyed was stolen by the soviets, or nationalized. In effect ALL Polish people were robbed.
    #6) Someone paid to rebuild all the destroyed stuff. Also, anything rebuilt after the war is pretty much ready to be dynamited now. So maybe the original owners of that property owe people some money for the costs of rebuilding...
    #7) Under Polish law, when a person dies and has no heirs, the estate is transferred to the state.
    #8) The amount of money that Poland would have to pay out under this law is huge, into the hundreds of millions of dollars, maybe more, and it's not Poland's problem.
    #9) The edict that Poland must pay compensation for hierless property AND that it must be given to Jewish groups, and not even individuals, is rather infuriating.

    Practically every day I see people campaigning against this act of extortion in the city centre.

    But wait there's more!

    Lately Putin has been talking all kinds of strange revisionist crap, saying things like Poland started World War 2 (there is an old Polish comedy called "How I Started The Second World War", maybe Putin was watching that while drunk?).

    Last month the president of Poland Andzej Duda boycotted the Remembrance Ceremony in Israel because Putin was allowed to give a speech but Duda would not be allowed to give a speech (and respond to anything Putin might say).

    We figure either Putin is looking for a strawman to look tough for his people, or he is trying to spread revisionist propaganda to promote future aggression against Poland. If something should happen to the United States, such as the Great Electric Boogaloo, we expect to receive a visit from "Unkie Vlad" and his boys the very next day.
    Successfully escaped this crazy quack s***hole country ALIVE - 12/26/2017!!!

    Give your family tree a good shake and see if you have any dual citizenship that you can use to GTFO of this crazy quack s***hole country!

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  6. #4
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    Added bonus: probably more than a few Polish Jews were into this communism thing that was cool at the time. So that probably didn't help relations in those days.

    Of course the (2-year old) Polish Army repelled the Red Army in 1920, most likely saving all of Western Europe from the Soviets at that time. Poles hate communists and soviets and russians and anyone who would work with them.

    Also, I'm not really sure what his message is. Which "extremism" in Europe is he worried about?

    1) The Communist/Islamist Alliance, that is spreading anti-semitism and violence throughout Europe, causing many European Jews to pack up and take their chances in Israel, which at least has its Iron Dome? Or;

    2) Patriots of European countries who like their countries, their cultures, don't like women being mass raped, or hand grenade and machete attacks.

    My spider sense tells me he is more concerned with #2.

    Also, Brother Enfield, I'm gonna toss this at you:

    In my reading of the history of Israel, which is insanely complex, on account of the fact that for most of the last 3000 years, the land was almost constantly occupied by neighbouring empires, i.e. Egypt, Babylon, Persia, Greece, Rome, etc. my conclusion is that despite all that, this little plot of land is in fact the place where the Jewish ethnicity, language, culture and religion come from. Nowhere else. It is also the birthplace of Christianity of course.

    I was curious about how the muslims claim the Temple Mount to be their "third holiest site" given that Mohammad was active in Mecca and Medina, which is kind of a ways away. It turns out that the basis for this claim is the story that "one night" Mohammad was taken on a (round) trip by some angels to some unknown place. It wasn't until after Mohammad died and the muslims invaded Jerusalem and area (which was still occupied by the Romans), that they kind of arbitrarily decided that the Temple Mount (THE holiest site in Judaism) "just so happened to be" the place that Mohammad was taken to on that trip. So they are claiming that Mohammad went on a 2400 km round trip... in a night... sounds kinda bogus to me. Sounds more like they just wanted to give a big F*** YOU to the Jews.

    So I say, let the Jews have their country; there is PLENTY of land ALL around it that can be happy islamic craphole states. Isn't it odd that neither the Egyptians or the Jordanians want the Palestinians? They're muslims, they're arabs, so what's the problem?
    Last edited by joe6167; 02-10-2020 at 02:15 PM.
    Successfully escaped this crazy quack s***hole country ALIVE - 12/26/2017!!!

    Give your family tree a good shake and see if you have any dual citizenship that you can use to GTFO of this crazy quack s***hole country!

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  8. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by joe6167 View Post
    Isn't it odd that neither the Egyptians or the Jordanians want the Palestinians? They're muslims, they're arabs, so what's the problem?
    The following may shed some light on the issue:
    "Palestinians bring disaster to anyone who hosts them. Jordan hosted them, and there was Black September; Lebanon hosted them, and there was a civil war there; Kuwait hosted them, and they turned into Saddam Hussein's soldiers. Now they are using their podiums to curse us." — Mohammed al-Shaikh, Saudi author, RT Arabic, August 13, 2019.
    https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/1...e-palestinians
    We were told he wasn't ready, now we know he will never be!
    Rewarding 4 years of incompetence and corruption with 4 more years, says a lot about our electorate.

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  10. #6
    Senior Member RangeBob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waterloomike View Post
    Stanisław Aronson
    Isn't there one of these by a old woman, recounting the warning signs as well. Might be more Russia oriented. I don't know.

  11. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by RangeBob View Post
    Isn't there one of these by a old woman, recounting the warning signs as well. Might be more Russia oriented. I don't know.
    Yes, I post one such article, believe she was Austrian.
    We were told he wasn't ready, now we know he will never be!
    Rewarding 4 years of incompetence and corruption with 4 more years, says a lot about our electorate.

  12. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by RangeBob View Post
    Isn't there one of these by a old woman, recounting the warning signs as well. Might be more Russia oriented. I don't know.
    I think it was an Austrian (Jewish) lady talking about gun rights.
    Successfully escaped this crazy quack s***hole country ALIVE - 12/26/2017!!!

    Give your family tree a good shake and see if you have any dual citizenship that you can use to GTFO of this crazy quack s***hole country!

  13. #9
    Senior Member Waterloomike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RangeBob View Post
    Isn't there one of these by a old woman, recounting the warning signs as well. Might be more Russia oriented. I don't know.
    Sorry Bob. I dunno.


    Allow our Rightful Liberty or .....

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    Senior Member LB303's Avatar
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    Katie Werthmann

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