Some say there's too much attention to the Holocaust. My goodness! More effort is needed to give out information about the fate of the victims.
25. Pnina Kazir, this detail about whom comes from a report of a meeting in Israel between Holocaust survivors and survivors of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima:
"When I finally got to Israel, I decided to erase everything that was in the past," said Pnina Kazir, a survivor of Auschwitz-Birkenau who lived on just 230 calories a day in the death camp. "I was able to erase it for 50 years."
At age 70, Kazir gave testimony for Yad Vashem, and her story came pouring out. "I finally understood how much energy I'd invested in not telling it," she said.
26. Charlotte Pogel:
Ninety-two-year-old Holocaust survivor Charlotte Pogel said when she was taken to a concentration camp, German officials made her and other young girls strip and walk naked in front of them.
"They probably did it for power," Pogel said. "We were also given numbers, and that number was our new name from now on."
"When I was freed, I was so weak, I was unable to walk," she said. "We didn't realize how weak we were until we left the camp."
27. Here's a figure of a different kind, that figure being 'many hundreds of thousands', as featured in a speech to the House of Commons on 17 December 1942 by Anthony Eden, British foreign secretary:
I regret to have to inform the House that reliable reports have recently reached His Majesty's Government regarding the barbarous and inhuman treatment to which Jews are being subjected in German-occupied Europe.
They have in particular received a note from the Polish Government, which was also communicated to other United Nations and which has received wide publicity in the Press. His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom have as a result been in consultation with the United States and Soviet Governments and with the other Allied Governments directly concerned, and I should like to take this opportunity to communicate to the House the text of the following declaration which is being made public to-day at this hour in London, Moscow and Washington:
"The attention of the Governments of Belgium, Czechoslovakia, Greece, Luxemberg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, the United States of America, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and Yugoslavia, and of the French National Committee has been drawn to numerous reports from Europe that the German authorities, not content with denying to persons of Jewish race in all the territories over which their barbarous rule has been extended the most elementary human rights, are now carrying into effect Hitler's oft repeated intention to exterminate the Jewish people in Europe.
"From all the occupied countries Jews are being transported, in conditions of appalling horror and brutality, to Eastern Europe. In Poland, which has been made the principal Nazi slaughterhouse, the ghettoes established by the German invaders are being systematically emptied of all Jews except a few highly skilled workers required for war industries. None of those taken away are ever heard of again. The able-bodied are slowly worked to death in labour camps. The infirm are left to die of exposure and starvation or are deliberately massacred in mass executions. The number of victims of these bloody cruelties is reckoned in many hundreds of thousands of entirely innocent men, women and children..."
28. Viktor Ullmann:
For obvious reasons, there is very little art that was created by the persecuted during the years of the Holocaust: Miklós Radnóti's poems, taken from the pocket of his coat as his body lay in a mass grave; Charlotte Salomon's paintings; Irène Némirovsky's Suite française, unread in notebooks for a lifetime; works from ghettos, hidden or buried in milk churns. Another of these very rare exceptions is the composer Victor Ullmann, held in Theresienstadt and murdered at Auschwitz in 1944. Some of his songs are to be performed at the Inside Out Festival at St John's Waterloo on 23 October, and his opera, The Emperor of Atlantis composed in Theresienstadt, is currently in London, performed by the English Touring Opera company...
Born in 1898, Victor Ullmann was Jewish by the "Nuremburg Laws", although his family had converted to Catholicism before he was born and his father had served in the Austro-Hungarian army. Musically very talented, Ullmann studied [with Schönberg] after serving in the First World War, and later worked as conductor. After 1933 he worked as a music teacher and journalist in Prague. He was deported to Theresienstadt in the autumn of 1942, where he was able to play, compose and organise musical events. He was murdered by gas two years later.
(For an index to the whole series, see here)