Kristallnacht, 2016


kristallnacht

Intro to Kristallnacht, 2016

Edited by John R. Houk

By Ari Bussel

Posted November 13, 2016

 

Have you heard of the Kristallnacht? My guess is if you are younger than a Baby Boomer (and probably a significant amount of Boomers too), you have no clue what the word Kristallnacht represents.

 

Kristallnacht is German for “NIGHT OF BROKEN GLASS”. That horrendous night came on November 9, 1938 aimed at Jews:

 

… violence against Jews broke out across the Reich. It appeared to be unplanned, set off by Germans’ anger over the assassination of a German official in Paris at the hands of a Jewish teenager. In fact, German propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels and other Nazis carefully organized the pogroms. In two days, over 250 synagogues were burned, over 7,000 Jewish businesses were trashed and looted, dozens of Jewish people were killed, and Jewish cemeteries, hospitals, schools, and homes were looted while police and fire brigades stood by. The pogroms became known as Kristallnacht, the “Night of Broken Glass,” for the shattered glass from the store windows that littered the streets.

 

READ THE REST (THE “NIGHT OF BROKEN GLASS”; United States Holocaust Memorial Museum)

 

Now that those of you who were unaware are updated this submission by Ari Bussel should have more meaning. Ari is a descendant of Holocaust Survivors. He attended his first remembrance event at annual conference held in California on the anniversary of Kristallnacht.

 

Ari writes of how few Holocaust survivors were at this annual event largely because of age. He notices that some of the other attendees were quite inconsiderate to the few survivors in attendance as if they forgot the significance of the reasons to remember that around SIX MILLION Jews were slaughtered by Nazi Germans.

 

Ari also spends a little time pointing out there is NO moral equivalence between Jews fleeing the Nazis and Syrian Muslims fleeing ISIS/Assad. The Syrian refugees are primarily Sunni. They may be fleeing the effects of war, but they are fleeing from a regime that hates their existence as the Jews did fleeing Nazis. Leftist err in vainly trying to make that moral equivalence.

kristallnacht-explained-2

JRH 11/13/16

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Kristallnacht, 2016

 

By Ari Bussel

Sent 11/9/2016 5:10 PM

 

And you will be mad of the sight of your eyes which you will see” (Deuteronomy 28:34)

 

And your life shall hang before you, and you will fear night and day and will have no assurances of your life.  In the morning you will wish it be evening, and in the evening you will say may it be morning, for the fear of your heart which you will fear and the sight of your eyes which you will see.”  (ibid:66-67)

 

It was a November night in 1938, a night that would be remembered ever after as the Night of Broken Glass.  Jews were no longer safe in Europe.

 

The 1939 Club – Members Now Extinct

 

Some years ago, Jews and Christians working together in defense of their shared values had an event at the exclusive Hillcrest Country Club in Los Angeles.

kristallnacht-event-ca-11-9-16

The event was held by the Israel Christian Nexus and sponsored by the 1939 Club (today the 1939 Society).  I remember entering the room designated for our event, alongside Pastor John Hagee of Christians United for Israel.

 

Our hosts, members of the Los Angeles based 1939 Club, were seated at tables.  What I clearly remember are not the individual faces, just the fact they were all very old, very frail and dressed up so elegantly as if they came from a different world.  I do not remember canes or walkers, but the image of people hardly able to stand or walk has been etched deeply in my mind.

 

Small people.  People who, if one dares touch them most gently, might turn to dust or fog and disappear.  Appearing as a figment of imagination, or perhaps a prop?  Clearly, they did not seem real, making the entire event both surreal and holy.

 

The 1939 Club was supporting many causes at that time and doing so most generously.  Their money had to be put to good use, and they were there observing, stewards and guardians.
They were not checking, micromanaging or overseeing and gave most generously, no questions asked.  Rather they were a living testament to an awful era, and their task, with plentiful means was:  Do whatever is necessary to ensure such evil happens “Never Again!”

 

I saw small, little, frail individuals from whom intense will and determination emanated.  Powered by the means to do good, educate, influence, teach, instill courage, fight and ensure continuity, they focused on the task at hand, for it was apparent to everyone that time was of the essence.  Time was running out, yet the obligation was as formidable as always.

 

These were the survivors, and I am told not one of them is here with us today.  How is it possible?  Simple:  My parents were young children during the Holocaust.  The members of the 1939 Club were at least 20 years older, thus, they would be nearing 100 today.

 

Like them, other survivors are all disappearing.  On October 28th, Sol Berger z”l, would have turned 97.  He passed away on Rosh Hashana, three and a half weeks earlier.  His younger friend, Joe Davis celebrated his 96th birthday on November 7th and his wife turned 92 on the very same day.

 

Sol z”l, a member of the Partisans, and Joe and his wife are three of several Holocaust survivors I know and dare to call my friends.  Julius with a number tattooed on his hand and Leslie, saved by Raul Wallenberg, are two other survivors.  They all reside at the same “retirement home,” and I am privileged and most blessed to be with them every Shabbat.

 

Remembering the Holocaust – Annual Events

 

Year after year, my friend Lily Steiner invites me to the annual Kristallnacht Commemoration event at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.  Year after year I promise to go, but something always comes up, and I never had; until this year.  Lily came back from Australia especially for me to join her, and I am so grateful I did.

 

The 10th annual event now joins Dr. Joel Geiderman’s annual event at Cedar Sinai Medical Center as a “must attend” event on my calendar.

 

Dr. Geiderman is the co-chair of the Emergency Department at Cedar Sinai and for some three decades has brought thousands of doctors, nurses and staff, alongside community members and Holocaust survivors for the annual lunch-and-lecture.

 

At Loyola I discovered some of the same elements:  faculty and staff, community members and students.  Students, young, oh so young and impressionable, yet eager to hear and learn.

 

While at Cedar Sinai the number of survivors dwindles down every year, there are still some.

 

Sol z”l, Joe and his wife, Leslie and Julius, as well as Irene (“I am 94, I survived the Holocaust and I am blind!”) all reside two blocks away from the hospital, yet there has been no effort to send someone and bring them and other Holocaust survivors who are alive and live nearby to the event.  Apparently this extra effort is beyond necessity.  It will be a “feel good” and fulfilling event anyway, so why bother.

 

At Loyola I found no more survivors.  The Director of Jewish Studies responsible for the ten annual commemoration events explained that the date was set a very long time in advance and happened to clash with a long weekend for Holocaust survivors, who were too exhausted to attend.

 

There was, though, one elderly woman with a walker who fit the age.  The intensity of her look convinced me she was a survivor, but I did not ask.  When the film screening started, she was unable to see from the place she was seated.  It was too far away.

 

I brought two chairs for her and her companion, likely her daughter.  A lady from the back came toward us, shouting, “you cannot sit here we will not be able to see!”

 
Not only was she very far back, the elderly lady could not have blocked her line of sight.  To be at a Holocaust memorial event and show not the tiniest iota of kindness begs the question, why does one even bother to show up?

 
The lady without compassion could have moved her chair two inches to the right or the left, as there was so much space.  But she decided to be confrontational toward a person much older and so much more fragile than she.

 
And we ask ourselves, how could a nation so intelligent, so cultured and advanced as Germany in the early 1930s become so evil?  We wonder if it can happen again, if we could have partaken in the same madness.

 

The answer apparently is yes.  As human beings we do not find in our hearts to be kind, to try, to overcome the urge to “go and make a scene,” “complain!” and insist “she must not sit in front.”  Instead, we behave in such an inconsiderate and loathsome manner.

 

Such untoward behavior at a Kristallnacht Commemoration event is tragic.  Oh, the person must be so proud!  She disappeared quickly before the last credits were shown, skipping the reception.  I was actually looking for her, to take her picture.  How people who look “normal” and “cultured” can turn so ugly and evil.

 

Refugees

 

Following the screening of “Jan Karski & the Lords of Humanity” about the Polish Karski who was assigned to inform the world of the Nazis exterminating the Jews, a panel response with the director allowed Q&A.

 

In a most vivid discussion about refugees, the survivors and the world’s reaction to them were compared to the modern-day Syrian refugees crisis.

 

Remember, my friend Lily and I were seated among some 120 people we did not know.  I am among the very few children of Holocaust survivors who were in the audience, and my friend Lily is a fierce fighter for Israel and the West.

slawomir-grunberg-and-lily-steiner-visiting-from-australia

I am thinking about the students, those young, impressionable minds, who experienced no war or real threat in their lifetimes, hearing from two prominent and very respected individuals (a professor and a film director) that Holocaust survivors, like my mother who managed to arrive illegally to Palestine then under British Mandate, or my father who managed to arrive to Israel after the formation of the modern state, are very like today’s Syrian refugees in Europe or those being admitted to the USA by the Obama administration.

 

I am livid.  I am ready to explode.  I boil.  Just moments earlier we all watched footage from the Warsaw Ghetto.  My father was there until his escape.  And now, I am told that he is very much the same as those purportedly escaping their brethren in Syria?

 

Those who are dressed nicer than I am?  Who demand where they prefer to live?  Many among whom rape and grope German women?  Or perpetrate horrific terrorist attacks against their new home countries?  Who have fake passports and ulterior motives to infiltrate and overtake Western civilization?

 

Or maybe the “similarities” can be found in the fact that the Arab world, other than Jordan, does nothing to aid the Syrians?  Indeed, the Jews of America during WWII behaved in much the same way.  But how can anyone compare the Muslims to Holocaust survivors?

 

Lily raised her hand, was given a microphone and very politely but powerfully contested the corrupt “moral equivalency” presented.

 

The same fake equivalency was shown in Spielberg’s movie “Munich.”

 

And the same has happened time after time when the world compares Israel and Gaza’s Hamas.  “So many dead among the Gazans; so few among the Israelis – Israel is at fault!  Israel is the evil-doer, not Hamas and the non-stop, non-discriminating barrage of rockets it unleashes against the Israeli population!”

 

Celebrating the Holocaust, Appeasing Our Senses

 

It seems that seven decades after the end of WWII, as Holocaust survivors are disappearing and their voices become too frail and hard to hear, we are creating our own notions of the Holocaust.

 

We have annual commemorations where we forget the most basic decency.

 

We bring politics and similar baggage to higher education institutions, and professors utilize the classrooms and their students as breeding grounds for indoctrination.
We allow anti-Israel and anti-Jewish sentiments, so prevalent nowadays, to pervade every fabric of our being.  Many of the detractors are Jewish.  Some even are Israelis.  And we do not really need any enemies.  The Arabs understood it all long ago, a simple lesson:  Leave the Jews to their own bidding, and they will destroy themselves.

 

Apparently, we will continue to “celebrate” the Holocaust, with more movies and stories, now done by members of the second generation who were not there but only witnessed the Holocaust via their parents or grandparents, the living remnants of the Holocaust.

 

We do not do the simplest deed that requires effort, like going out of our way to bring a Holocaust survivor, since we live in a different day and age.

 

Today the Holocaust does not really matter, except when we see a movie that manages to touch us, and we leave convinced “we remember,” and even that “we did something good by simply watching a movie.”

 

Can the same evil happen again?  Undoubtedly.

 

So what was Kristallnacht in 1938?  What happened in Europe from 1933—1945?  What started on September 1st, 1933?

 

Judging by the behavior of too many…a whole lot of nothing.

 

___________________

This is the latest in the series “Postcards from America – Postcards from Israel,” a collaboration between Zager and Bussel, a foreign correspondent reporting from Israel.

 

Ari Bussel and Norma Zager collaborate both in writing and on the air in a point-counter-point discussion of all things Israel-related.  Together, they have dedicated the past decade to promoting Israel.

© Israel Monitor, November, 2016

 

First Published November 8, 2016

Contact:  bussel@me.com

 

Year 1942 – 768 Jews on the Struma Fleeing Nazis, Blasted out of the Sea


768 Jews Refused Refuge & Eventually Sunk by Soviets 2-24-1942

John R. Houk

© March 2, 2014

 

About a week ago was the 70th anniversary of the ethnic cleansing of 768 Jewish men, women and children by a combined policy decision of Great Britain and Turkey to keep Jews from reaching the British Mandate for Palestine during and shortly after WWII. Those 768 Jewish souls were on the Romanian vessel Struma. 103 of those Jewish souls were babies. All of the Jews on the Struma were fleeing the Nazi extermination of Jews.

 

The Struma was eventually torpedo blasted out of the Black Sea by a Soviet submarine. Their voyage of death began December 16, 1941 and ended in utter destruction on February 24, 1942. Only one survivor was picked up from the debris of the blasted Struma – 19-year-old David Stoliar. Stoliar was picked up ironically by a Turkish fishing boat.

 

The Spiegel Online International tracked down the then 90 year old David Stoliar in Oregon to conduct an interview published May 23, 2013. Here is an excerpt of Stoliar’s harrowing experience of survival now over 70 years ago:

 

Setting Out for Freedom

 

David Stoliar grew up in Romania, home to nearly 800,000 Jews before World War II. By the summer of 1940, their life, too, had become unbearable, thanks to anti-Semitic laws, deportations and, ultimately, bloody pogroms.

 

Stoliar’s mother fled to Paris to seek safety. The 19-year-old son stayed behind with his father, who eventually bought him a passport and a ticket to freedom — or, rather, a ticket to Palestine on a ship named Struma. In today’s value, that ticket cost $1,000 (€775).

 

The Struma followed an armada of previous ships that had been trying to make it to the Holy Land since the beginning of the war. Many of these passages, however, ended in death, and most were illegal. Great Britain, which administrated the British Mandate of Palestine back then, had been curbing Jewish immigration since 1939 and ultimately blocked it altogether in the hopes of keeping the Arabs from taking up arms in support of Nazi Germany.

 

The Struma was no more than a pile of junk. Built in 1867, this former luxury yacht had been sadly degraded to a cattle transport ship. The masts were long gone, leaving just a wooden hull, barely held together by metal plates. The engine, added later, worked only sporadically.

 

That didn’t prevent two Jewish groups from Romania from chartering the Struma in 1941 for their escape from the Nazis. They advertised the journey into the unknown with promising pamphlets, some of which read “Bon voyage!” and “Welcome to Palestine!”

 

Stoliar signed up along with his fiancée, Ilse Lothringer, and her parents. But when they finally caught a first glimpse of the Struma in the Black Sea harbor of Constanta, it was a bad omen: The ship, originally meant for only 150 passengers, had been retrofitted to carry almost 800, in tiny wooden bunks on three low levels — and that in the coldest winter in generations.

 

“Like sardines,” Stoliar says. “We couldn’t even turn over. But we had no way of going back.”

 

After several delays they finally put out to sea on December 12, 1941. Their route was supposed to take them through the Black Sea, the Bosporus and the Mediterranean to the port of Haifa. But they had gone only a few kilometers when the engine started sputtering – and then died completely as they approached the Bosporus.

 

A Turkish tugboat schlepped them to the harbor of Istanbul, supposedly to have the engine fixed. The refugees, lacking visas, were forbidden to disembark. Instead, the authorities raised the black and yellow quarantine flag over the Struma.

 

Trapped in Turkey

 

Meanwhile, a long, diplomatic tussle began behind the scenes. Great Britain refused to allow the Struma to continue on to Palestine. Romania didn’t want it back, either. The United States stayed out of it completely. And Turkey, still neutral at the time and not wanting to get on the wrong side of anybody, forced the passengers to stay on board, where they were slowly starving.

 

“We were not considered human”, Stoliar says. “So why should you help?”

 

Conditions on board worsened rapidly. Food became scarce; a pregnant woman suffered a miscarriage. The only help came from Simon Brod, a local Jewish businessman who rescued many refugees over the course of the war. He occasionally brought food and water.

 

Turkey eventually took action on its own. On February 23, 1942, policemen stormed the Struma, cut the anchor chain, tugged the ship back into the Black Sea — and set it helplessly adrift.

 

“We knew we had nowhere else to go,” Stoliar recalls. “We all smelled the end of it.” (Holocaust at Sea: The Lone Survivor of the ‘Struma’; By Marc Pitzke in Bend, Oregon; Spiegel Online International; 5/23/13 03:29 PM)

 

Crazy stuff, right? The above quoted data was an excerpt of a Spiegel part one on David Stoliar. As Paul used to say, you should read the rest of the story in part two entitled, “A Sudden, Explosive End”.

 

Imagine living in an age when a Super Power nation as a matter of Policy has a Final Solution for Jewish people – regardless if they are religiously Observant or not – to wipe them off all land under their control. Imagine living in an age in which other powerful nations could care less of the Super Power’s internal Policy even though they are geopolitical rivals that eventually engage in war AND they do NOTHING to help Jews facing a government’s Policy of the extermination of all Jews. Imagine living in an age in which one of the warring nations against the Super Power actually has governing control of a parcel of land created SPECIFICALLY for Jews but stop the immigration of the very Jews facing extermination from the Super Power’s Final Jewish Solution.

 

Millions of Jews under the power of Nazi Germany in Europe were indeed exterminated! Before, during and after WWII devastated Jews tried to make it to the land designated as the British Mandate for Palestine which was created to provide a Jewish National Homeland long before Adolf Hitler came to power as the Nazi Fuhrer of Germany with the design to making the German people the Master Aryan Race empire of a new global power the Nazis called the Third Reich. “Third” implying the Roman Empire was the first empire, the German based Holy Roman Empire was second and Hitler’s intended new German empire would be the third version of European global superiority.

 

The Struma tragedy was one of many of Jews thwarted from escaping Nazi death camps. Another notorious doomed ship was the St Louis that departed a German port on May 13, 1939 with nearly a 1000 Jews fleeing the beginnings on the Nazi Final Solution was bound for Havana Cuba. The St Louis reached Havana the ship was forced to lay in port for several days with a quarantine flag attached to it to prevent the Jews from departing and entering Havana. It took 43 days for the St Louis to travel to Havana. Cuba ultimately refused the Jews from leaving the ship except a mere 29 passengers. President Roosevelt forbade the St Louis to dock in the USA. Eventually the St Louis was forced back to Germany to the welcoming arms of Nazi death camps.

 

Check out the lame excuse reason the British would not allow European Jews to embark to safety to the land designated as a Jewish Homeland in the British Mandate for Palestine. The British official reason was they believed intelligence reports that many of the German Jews were actually enemy Nazi spies sent to infiltrate British authority.

 

Now this is lame because no proof of any intelligence has ever turned up validating the official reason AND British Policy had changed from providing Jews for a National Homeland to placating the large majority of Arabs – primarily Muslims – that had a great sympathy for the Nazi Jewish Final Solution. It was becoming clear that there was huge deposits of oil in Muslim Arab lands thus the Brits desired to make nice with Arab nationalism because of oil – the black juice that kept and still keeps modern industry to be successful.

 

The British White Paper of 1939, passed on the eve of the destruction of European Jewry, was a death sentence for tens of thousands of Jews who wanted to escape the Holocaust.


Illegal ships of Jews continued to attempt to infiltrate Palestine, and most were turned away – often to tragic consequence. Even as the situation grew more and more dire, British officials remained adamant in severely limiting the number of Jews who could enter Palestine.

On February 7, 1940, Vernon Bartlett asked that the ban on immigration be lifted. The answer, by Malcolm MacDonald, alleged that there was a danger associated with illegal immigration:

 

Malcolm MacDonald, alleged that there was a danger associated with illegal immigration:

 

Mr. Bartlett asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he is aware that the tragic plight of some 2,000 Jewish refugees now marooned in small barges on the Danube is due mainly to the fact that shipowners are threatened with confiscation of their ships and imprisonment of their crews if captured near the Palestine shore; and will he consider raising the ban on further immigrants to Palestine to cover these victims of Nazi racial doctrines?

Mr. M. MacDonald I understand that reports have reached the Foreign Office that a number of Jews who were on their way to embark at a Rumanian port on a ship chartered for the purpose of carrying illegal immigrants to Palestine were recently stranded on the Danube. It is well known that masters and crews of ships engaged in this illegal traffic are liable to imprisonment and the ships to confiscation.

…The normal objections to illegal immigration are increased in time of war owing to the danger of enemy agents travelling to Palestine by this means. In the circumstances I cannot adopt the hon. Member’s suggestion.

 

This supposed fear of enemy agents became an actual allegation in a debate on March 20, even though no proof was offered:

 

Mr. Stokes asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he is aware that amongst the Jewish illegal immigrants into Palestine there are German citizens, many of whom are German spies; and what steps he proposes to take to stop this illegal traffic on that account?

Mr. M. MacDonald: Yes, Sir. Though local inquiries have not yet produced conclusive proof, the High Commissioner has strong reasons for suspecting that the passengers of two ships which about a month ago landed illegal immigrants in Palestine included German agents. These persons, together with other illegal immigrants, are held in detention camps. As regards the second part of the Question, His Majesty’s Government and the Palestine Government are taking various measures to suppress the traffic in illegal immigrants.

§Mr. T. Williams Will the right hon. Gentleman state exactly what he implies when he states that many of these illegal immigrants may or may not be German spies?

Mr. MacDonald I cannot add to the answer which I have given, which was that the High Commissioner has strong reasons to suppose, from information at his disposal, that some of these people are German agents.

§Mr. Shinwell Can the Minister say how many have been detained?

Mr. MacDonald Some hundreds.

§Mr. Lipson Has my right hon. Friend any reason to believe that these German agents are Jews?

Mr. MacDonald As I say, we have not any conclusive proof, but from the information we have received we understand that there are strong possibilities that some of the Jewish members of these parties are German agents.

§Mr. Leach Would they not be in serious danger of their lives in such company in such a ship?

 

No answer is recorded.

 

 

Macdonals (sic) insists that evidence exists that German agents are among the detained Jews, but even weeks after their detention he cannot reveal any details, nor can he even say that any evidence is conclusive.

And he never did return to the topic. As far as I can tell, not one Jewish immigrant was charged with spying for Germany.

But there was one postscript. On April 3, as seen above, MacDonald claimed that any offers of help by Jewish organizations to help vet the immigrants for German ties would be welcomed. He was lying.

 

 

From all evidence, the British authorities in Palestine made up the charge that there were Jewish German spies, and they used this bogus charge to punish all Jews attempting to flee the Holocaust in 1940. (1940 Britain claimed “German agents” among illegal Jewish refugees to Palestine; By Elder of Ziyon; 9/26/13)

 

 

I’ve known of these antisemitic global occurrences for some time but I found a reminder in my inbox of the anniversary the Struma travesty through Facebook group Israel Hasbara. For some reason the Israel Hasbara post was removed (probably by Facebook) so I went to the person that my inbox gave credit for posting. Fortunately I found it there. That which piqued my interest in the first place was this message:

 

Please repost this, along with the link explaining the incident, and email it to all you know. This needs to go viral.

 
Here is where you can learn more about this sickening event:
http://www.israpundit.com/archives/63594313

 

Then a few hours later she posted this about the Struma Jewish deaths:

 

This has me so sad and disturbed. It is hard to get it out of my mind.

 

The link she provides is to one of my favorite blogs – Israpundit. The original article written by Sarah Honig is on the Jerusalem Post dated 2/23/14. As you can see I am a bit behind the curve in getting this out; nonetheless the flood of global antisemitism flowing toward Israel and defensible borders as well as traditional land that is of Jewish heritage is reprehensible. Americans at the very least need to be reminded of the treatment of the Jews before their homeland was returned. This not just the Holocaust even though it was the Holocaust that elicited a guilty conscience from the sane parts of the world. Devastation of Jews is at least 2000 years old and that is even before their last ejection from their homeland between 70 AD and 135 AD. Below is the Jerusalem Post version of the story of the Struma by Sarah Honig.

 

Related Link: The sinking of MV Struma – February 1942

 

JRH 3/2/14

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Another Tack: Lessons from the floating coffin

 

By SARAH HONIG

02/23/2012 21:24

Jerusalem Post

 

The world’s apathy-cum-enmity toward Jews hasn’t disappeared, it has simply mutated.

 

Exactly 70 years ago – on February 24, 1942 – 19-year-old David Stoliar terrifyingly clung to bobbing debris in the Black Sea. At first he heard screams in the frigid waters but the voices died down. It eventually emerged that Stoliar was the sole survivor of the Struma, an un-seaworthy vessel chuck-full of frantic Jewish refugees.

World War II was already in fever pitch. Against the enormity of the then-unfolding Holocaust, the loss at sea of 768 Jewish lives (103 of them babies and children) was at most blithely overlooked as a marginal annotation.

Moreover, although these Jews fled the Nazis, in the pedantic literal sense they weren’t executed by Third Reich henchmen.

This atrocity was the coldblooded handiwork of Great Britain (committed while it combated the Germans but remarkably without compassion for their Jewish victims), supposedly neutral Turkey (whose so-called nonalignment didn’t extend to outcast Jewish refugees), by the Arabs (who were openly and unreservedly Nazism’s avid collaborators and who pressured London into denying endangered Jews asylum in the Jewish homeland) and, finally, by the Russians (who targeted the immobilized sardine can that carried Jews to whom nobody would allow a toehold on terra firma).

The entire world seemed united in signaling Jews how utterly unwanted they were anywhere.

Such apathy-cum-enmity hasn’t disappeared.

Only its form and context had mutated but the essence is still ultra-relevant to the Jewish state.

We’re still threatened with annihilation. Nonetheless, unmistakable harangues from Tehran notwithstanding, the international community worries about an Israeli preemptive strike – not a genocidal strike against Israel.

To put it plainly, our fate today interests other nations just about as much as the fate of the Struma’s Jews did back then, which (to resort to understatement) was hardly much.

Today’s disingenuous post-Holocaust lip-service is invariably accompanied by hand-wringing about lack of foreknowledge of Germany’s fiendish plot to systematically exterminate the defenseless Jewish people (unmistakable harangues from Berlin notwithstanding).

What sets the Struma apart and imbues it with extraordinary significance is that from December 16, 1941, until the afternoon of February 23, 1942, its ordeal was played out before the entire watching but unfeeling world. No country could deny awareness of the impending calamity and yet all countries let it happen in full view.

The Struma, then a 115-year-old Danube cattle barge, was a pitiful peanut-shell of a boat packed with nearly 800 refugees from Romania. Bound for the Land of Israel, they desperately fled Hitler’s hell and the horrors of Bucharest’s fascist regime.

Pogroms and ghastly atrocities had already sullied cities like Iasi, where thousands of Jews were assembled in the market square and mowed down with machine guns. Venerable old rabbis and Jewish community leaders were impaled on meat hooks in town centers.

THE STRUMA wasn’t struck suddenly. It was slowly tortured, accentuating with demonic deliberation how disposable Jews were, just when genocide’s monstrous machinery was switched into high gear. This 75-day shipboard melodrama underscored the total helplessness and humiliation of Jews without power.

Struma passengers gathered in the Romanian port of Constanza on December 8, 1941. For four days, Romanian customs officials “examined” their belongings. In fact, they pilfered all they saw – clothing, underwear, jewelry and most important, food. The immigrants left on the perilous journey bereft of provisions and medications. But the Struma did carry 30 doctors, 10 engineers and 15 lawyers.

On December 12, the rickety vessel chugged out to sea. After four hair-raising days (instead of the routine 14 hours) the Struma unsteadily dragged itself into Istanbul Harbor. It couldn’t continue. Its makeshift motor had sputtered its last. There was no fuel, food or water.

Several passengers held valid entry visas into pre-independent Israel. All others were “illegals.”

The hope, though, was that once in Turkey, they’d all be allowed to proceed to their destination.

After all, with Europe in the throes of war, thousands of Jewish immigration certificates (British Mandate permits) remained unutilized.

But the British authorities refused unequivocally.

The Arabs raged and rallied against giving haven to Jewish refugees. Eager to appease pro- Nazi Arab opinion, Britain chillingly declared that under no circumstance could the Struma’s human cargo set foot in Eretz Yisrael.

Furthermore, Britain pressured Turkey not to let anyone off the crippled boat at its end either.

Obligingly, the Turkish premier argued that “Turkey cannot be expected to serve as a refuge or surrogate homeland for people unwanted anywhere else.”

Thus hundreds were imprisoned in narrow, unventilated confines. A sign saying “Help!” was suspended over the Struma’s side. One of the visa-holders, who after weeks was allowed ashore, described the boat as a “floating coffin.”

The freezing hull below reeked, but there wasn’t sufficient room on deck. Refugees took turns to climb up for a breath of air. There was no sleeping space for all, no infirmary, no galley, no bathing or sanitary facilities. Minimal food rations, provided by local Jews, were smuggled aboard after enough Turkish palms were greased.

An official Jewish Agency appeal, forwarded to the British on January 19, 1942, stressed that the Struma transported refugees escaping the most tangible threat of massacre. The Mandatory authorities didn’t even dignify the Jewish Agency with a reply.

On the next day, the Struma’s 35th in Istanbul, the Wannsee Conference opened in suburban Berlin to formally decide on “the final solution for the Jewish problem.” Hitler surely hadn’t overlooked this latest demonstration of utter callousness toward hapless Jews.

The British didn’t bother to answer ensuing emotional Jewish Agency entreaties on January 30 and February 10. Then they acquiesced to the entry of four visa-holders, who only at this point were permitted to disembark. More news of the dreadful conditions on the Struma now came out.

The new British line was that the Struma’s refugees were suspect Nazi agents because they came from enemy territory. The assertion that the Germans’ most hideously persecuted victims were their tormenters’ spies was labeled “Satanic” in embryonic Israel.

In a very long February 13 communication to the Mandatory government, the Agency noted that Britain was helping with much fanfare to resettle in the Mideast thousands of non-Jews – Greeks, Yugoslavs, Poles and Czechs – all of whom came from German-controlled areas.

More than any of them, Jews had reason to be loyal to the Allies.

On February 15, the British announced they’d make an exception in the case of Struma children aged 11 to 16. Wartime rationing was cited as the pretext for barring younger or older kids.

The Jewish Agency guaranteed maintenance for all 103 underage Struma captives. In the end no child was freed.

Meanwhile, Turkey, egged on and emboldened by Britain, threatened to tow the floundering deathtrap beyond its territorial waters.

The Jewish Agency warned that “the boat is in total state of disrepair and without life-saving equipment. Any sea-journey for this vessel cannot but end in disaster.”

The Turkish government, however, pitilessly ordered the condemned Struma tugged out to the Black Sea. Hundreds of truncheon-wielding Turkish policemen were dispatched to the Struma on February 23. They viciously clubbed passengers below deck. Despite resistance from the refugees, the anchor was cut, the Struma was towed out and was left paralyzed, to drift precariously without supplies or a drop of fuel.

On February 24, an explosion ripped it apart.

A Soviet submarine, Shchuka-213, patrolled northeast of the Bosporus. Stalking Axis craft, it torpedoed the wobbly barge, which sank in minutes. It’s estimated that as many as 500 were killed outright by the blast. The rest flapped feebly in the waves, till they expired of wounds, fatigue and hypothermia. Stoliar alone hung on, semi-conscious.

In pre-state Israel there was shock and grief.

Demonstrations were mounted. For one day all work and commerce were halted and the population imposed a voluntary protest curfew on itself. Posters appeared on exterior walls everywhere bearing British High Commissioner Harold MacMichael’s photo and announcing that he was “Wanted for Murder.”

The Struma’s heartrending end marked the effective end to most attempts to break Britain’s anti-Jewish blockade until the conclusion of WWII. A few fishing and sporting sailboats briefly tried to ferry handfuls of refugees. Some of them were sunk. Europe’s Jews had no escape left. Embattled Britain took time out from the war to make sure of it.

Stoliar was imprisoned by the Turks for six weeks for the crime of not drowning. He was finally allowed into Mandated Palestine despite MacMichael’s warnings that “this would open the floodgates” and “completely undermine our whole policy regarding illegal immigrants.”

Today, to most Israelis, Struma is a curious street name in a few towns. Israeli school children barely encounter its esoteric story. Politically correct authors and trendy leftwing filmmakers shun the subject, preferring postmodern portrayals of Arab terrorists as Zionism’s prey.

Oblivion is perhaps the greatest sin against the Struma but also against ourselves. If we forget the Struma, we forget why this country exists, why we struggle for its survival. We forget the justice of our cause.

Dimmed memory and self-destructive perverse morality hinder our ability to protect ourselves from the offspring and torchbearers of the very Arabs who doomed the Struma. They haven’t amended their hostile agenda. We just don’t care to be reminded.

The state the Jews created is threatened with destruction and its population with obliteration.

Yet there’s negligible sympathy for Israel and even less practical support to avert tragedy. The Struma’s story is seminal in understanding why the Holocaust was possible and why a second Holocaust cannot be ruled out. More than anything, the Struma powerfully illustrates what happens when Jews rely on others’ goodwill.

www.sarahhonig.com  

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The is 1942 – 768 Jews on the Struma Fleeing Nazis Blasted out of the Sea

John R. Houk

© March 2, 2014

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Another Tack: Lessons from the floating coffin

 

All Rights reserved © The Jerusalem Post 1995 – 2012

Government tells us, ‘Gun Control is for the Greater Good’


Raise Hands to Gun Control - Sieg Hiel 2

John R. Houk

© December 28, 2013

 

Leftists/Liberals have blamed gun ownership for the last decade or so for the tragic massacres that have occurred at schools, movie theaters and public locations in general. Left Wing Elitists used this hysteria over guns as a means to attempt maximum gun control legislation contrary to the 2nd Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

 

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed. (2nd Amendment; U.S. Constitution; via Legal Information Institute [LII] of Cornell University Law School)

 

Leftists argue that a “well regulated militia” implies government control of an organized military perhaps something like the National Guard today. The well-meaning utopian Leftists (as opposed to the Liberty-stealing power hungry Leftists) point to the wording of “being necessary to the security of a free state.”

 

If the 2nd Amendment ended with that which I just quoted they would have a decent argument. BUT the 2nd Amendment DOES NOT END THERE. The rest of amendment clause adds clarification by letting WE The People know are the well regulated militia by saying “the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” The Revolutionary War that liberated the 13 American Colonies from British rule occurred because citizens from everyday life of the day banded together and organized as a paramilitary group and then received a bit of on the job training as a soldier. Even during the Civil War the Union Army consisted of volunteer militias that would then be organized under the auspices of the U.S. Army but often retaining the name of the State from whence the Army Unit came.

 

The Declaration of Independence gives us excellent reasons as to why Americans should have the right to own and bear arms independent of government control.

 

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

 

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government.

 

READ ENTIRETY (Transcript of Declaration of Independence (1776); OurDocuments.gov)

 

The Founding Fathers did their best to craft a Constitutional government in which the people were not exploited by government despotism. The same Founding Fathers prior to the Constitution laid the potential that good government is not infallible and go down the road of despotism for some or all its citizens. Sometimes the ONLY recourse to throw off the bands of a despotic government is by the citizens rising up by reason of arms to change the power structure of government.

 

AND SO BEWARE, when our government tells you must give up your guns for the safety of the greater good, something nefarious toward Liberty is undoubtedly soon to follow. A Michael Dorstewitz article I found on Right Wing News wrote down reminisces of Katie Worthman a survivor of NAZI occupied Austria pertaining to guns. She warns, “Don’t give up your guns”. Here is the article.

 

 

JRH 12/28/13

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Nazi survivor’s warning to Americans: ‘Keep your guns and buy more guns

 

By Michael Dorstewitz

December 28, 2013

Right Wing News

 

A survivor of Nazi-occupied Austria who sees parallels between that dark period and the United States of today has a word of warning and advice to Americans: “Keep your guns and buy more guns.”

 

Katie Worthman spoke earlier this year of what she witnessed as a child in Austria during Adolph Hitler’s rise to power, which was followed by Soviet occupation of the country. She said the Nazi takeover happened gradually, as opposed to media accounts to the contrary, according to NRA News, which reported that Worthman said:

 

In 1938, the media reported that Hitler rode into Austria with tanks and guns and took us over. Not true at all. The Austrian people elected Hitler by 98 percent of the vote by means of the ballot box. Now you might ask how could a Christian nation… elect a monster like Hitler. The truth is at the beginning Hitler didn’t look like or talk like a monster at all. He talked like an American politician.

 

Worthman said gun control also began gradually, before the Nazis eventually confiscated every firearm. According to NRA News, she said:

 

We also had gun registration. All the Austrian people… had guns. But the government said, “the guns are very dangerous. Children are playing with guns. Hunting accidents happen and we really have to have total controlled safety. And we had criminals again. And the only way that we can trace the criminal was by the serial number of the gun.”

So we dutifully went to the police station and we registered our guns. Not long after they said, “No, it didn’t help. The only way that we won’t have accidents and crimes [is] you bring the guns to the police station and then we don’t have any crimes anymore and any accidents. And if you don’t do that: capital punishment.”

So that’s what we did. So dictatorship didn’t happen overnight. It took five years. Gradually, little by little to escalate up to a dictatorship.

 

Worthman quoted Thomas Jefferson make her biggest point.

 

“When the people fear the government, that’s tyranny. But when the government fears the people… that’s liberty,” she said. “Keep your guns. Keep your guns and buy more guns.”

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Government tells us, ‘Gun Control is for the Greater Good’

John R. Houk

© December 28, 2013

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Nazi survivor’s warning to Americans: ‘Keep your guns and buy more guns

 

© Copyright 2001-2012 John Hawkins

 

About Right Wings News

 

John Hawkins runs Right Wing News, Linkiest and is the co-owner of The Looking Spoon. He also does weekly appearances on the #1 in it’s market Jaz McKay show, writes a weekly column for Townhall and his work has also been published at the Washington Examiner, The Hill, Hot Air, Pajamas Media, and at Human Events.

 

Additionally, he’s also the blogosphere’s premier interviewer and has interviewed conservatives like Thomas Sowell, Mark Levin, Victor Davis Hanson, Mark Steyn, G. Gordon Liddy, Dick Morris, Karl Rove, Michael Steele, Milton Friedman, Ron Paul, Jim DeMint, Jonah Goldberg, Jim DeMint, Walter Williams, Robert Novak, Ann Coulter, Newt Gingrich, & Michelle Malkin among others.

 

Additionally, John Hawkins’ work has been linked and discussed in numerous publications and on TV and radio shows including READ THE REST

Obama Prepares to Deliver Jewish Heritage to Muslim State


Left to right: Harold Rhode in the Mukhabarat basement; Torah scroll drying in a courtyard; 1918 letter from the British Military Governor’s Office in Baghdad to the Chief Rabbi regarding the allotment of 500 sheep for Rosh Hashanah. (National Archives)

John R. Houk

© October 23, 2013

 

Caroline Glick gives us a glimpse of history that the Mainstream Media too often fails to report. The glimpse relates to Nazi/Muslim Jew-hatred that extinguished a 2500 year long history of Judaism in Iraq running through the Jew-hatred of Saddam Hussein’s regime and finally to the shame of the Obama Administration led State Department that incredulously has indicated it will cavort with Muslim Jew-hatred some time in 2014.

 

Here are some teasers from the Glick article:

 

In 1940, the Iraqi Jewish community numbered 137,000 people. Jews made up more than a quarter of the population of Baghdad. A 2,500-year-old community, Iraq had for centuries been a major center of Jewish learning. The Babylonian Talmud was written there.

 

####

 

Due to rampant Islamic Jew hatred, Arab leaders were drawn to the Nazis. For their part, the Nazis were quick to capitalize on their popularity.

 

####

 

[In Iraq] On June 1, 1941, as Jews celebrated the festival of Shavuot, the pro-Nazi government carried out a massive pogrom. Estimates place the number of Jews murdered at anywhere between 180 and 900. Nine hundred Jewish homes were destroyed. Hundreds of Jewish shops and businesses were looted and burned.

 

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Iraq was one of the five Arab states that invaded Israel on May 15, 1948.

 

####

 

[In Iraq] The few thousand Jews left in Iraq lived in utter terror. But even in their reduced state, they tried to protect the property of their phantom community.

In Baghdad, only one synagogue remained in operation. The Jews brought all the communal documents and holy books there for storage.

 

####

 

… [I]n 1985 Saddam Hussein sent his henchmen to the synagogue with several trucks. They stole the documentary history of the community in broad daylight.

 

Rhode explained that Saddam ordered the theft of the Jewish community’s property both to humiliate the Jews and Israel and to impress his fellow Arabs. As he put it, from a local cultural perspective, “Humiliation – i.e., shaming another’s personal reputation – is more important and more powerful than physical cruelty.

“By capturing the Jewish archives, Saddam was humiliating the Jewish people. He was showing how powerless the Jews were to stop him.”

 

####

 

[After U.S. victory against Hussein regime] When he realized the dimensions of the archive, now largely underwater, Rhode moved heaven and earth to save it. Due to Rhode’s action, and the support he received from Iraqi leader Ahmed Chalabi, vice president Dick Cheney and defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld, the archive – which included everything from school records to 500- year-old copies of the Bible – was saved on Shavuot 2003 and sent to the US.

Once the archive was safely in the US, the State Department spent $3 million restoring the 2,700 books and tens of thousands of documents. In the meantime, back in Iraq, there are still hundreds of Torah scrolls languishing in a government cellar, inaccessible to the public, and in a horrible state of disrepair.

 

As you can read this is a historical moment so interesting it could be made into a Hollywood movie. BUT it won’t. The saga of the Jewish cultural heritage from an ancient Iraqi community could end in an unsavory manner. Obama’s State Department intends to send back the restored historical artifacts and documents to the Muslim government of Iraq with the pitiful excuse that the U.S. government saved the Jewish heritage from Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi government ergo the history should be returned to the new Iraqi government.

 

What kind of nutty thinking is that President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry?

 

Read all of Caroline Glick’s article in which she notifies her readers there is a petition being circulated to send the Jewish historical artifacts to the remnants of the Iraqi Jews living in Israel rather than to a Muslim government in Iraq that does not give two hoots about Jewish heritage. Glick does not provide a link to such a petition so here is a little Google research in which you can make your voice heard AGAINST Islamic Jew-hatred:

 

o   AVAAZ.org Petition: Don’t let the Jewish archive go back to Iraq!

 

Related Story Sources:

 

o   PJ Media: Outrage: U.S. Returning Artifacts Looted from Iraqi Jews to Iraq, Instead of Lawful Owners

 

o   TabletMag.com: Iraqi Jewish Treasures Displayed in D.C. Before Being Shipped Back to … Iraq

o  
Gloria.tv: Jews Fight U.S., Iraq, Obama Over Stolen Torahs

 

JRH 10/23/13

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The Nazi Hunter


Nazi Shooting Jews

The Holocaust was more than the discovery that millions of Jews died horrifically in Nazi death camps. Ari Bussel establishes that memories of the horror of what Jews experienced on a personal level must be relayed to future generations. Read this essay and remember there are people out there that deny there was a Holocaust. Hearing or seeing a denier should produce seething anger.

 

You can read Bussel’s article at SlantRight.com.

 

JRH 3/2/11