German death camps

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by v2, Jan 28, 2016.

  1. v2

    v2 Well-Known Member

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  2. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Thanks for the post. All hope will be lost if we allow humanity to forget this tragedy and horror.
     
  3. VBF-13

    VBF-13 Well-Known Member

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    Today I understand is recognized as the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. I just thought a mention of it fits, here. It of course was back one World War.
     
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  4. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    It's a shame that the passage of time tends to soften the harsh realities of the past.

    The education systems of the world have let down our society by not explaining in complete detail, the horrors that were suffered
     
  5. michaelmaltby

    michaelmaltby Well-Known Member

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    "..... the passage of time tends to soften the harsh realities of the past"

    Survival mechanism
     
  6. Capt. Vick

    Capt. Vick Well-Known Member

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    I didn't even realize that this mis-naming was an issue. Sad commentary on the lack of basic historical knowledge some people must have.
     
  7. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    At the end of Frederick the Greats reign Minister Friedrich von Schroder (or Schrotter) remarked that, "Prussia was not a country with an army, but an army with a country".

    Another prominent European philospher Joeseph De Maistre, a Savoyan lawyer living in the first half of the 19th century once said: "Every nation gets the government it deserves". This was in a letter on the topic of Russia's new constitutional laws (27 August 1811); and published in 'Lettres et opuscles' . The English translation has several variations, including "Every country has the government it deserves" and "In a democracy people get the leaders they deserve." The quote is popularly misattributed to better-known commentators such as Alexis De Tocuerville and Abraham Lincoln, but its significance to this situation ought not be diminished.

    There is no excuse for what happened here, and no possibility for forgetting for some. Some still live with its consequences. There is no sin to forgive, but that should not be mixed with forgetting.

    This is what some of the great men of Europe were saying in modern history. I dont need to say anything more
     
  8. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    #8 stona, Mar 25, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2016
    It was George Santayana who wrote (in The Life of Reason, 1905) :

    “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”


    Churchill expanded on this in 1935, after the ill fated Stresa Conference, in the House of Commons:

    “When the situation was manageable it was neglected, and now that it is thoroughly out of hand we apply too late the remedies which then might have effected a cure. There is nothing new in the story. It is as old as the sibylline books. It falls into that long, dismal catalogue of the fruitlessness of experience and the confirmed unteachability of mankind. Want of foresight, unwillingness to act when action would be simple and effective, lack of clear thinking, confusion of counsel until the emergency comes, until self-preservation strikes its jarring gong–these are the features which constitute the endless repetition of history.”

    More succinctly, in 1948, he said that the loss of the past would result in:

    “the most thoughtless of ages. Every day headlines and short views.”

    As Parsifal notes, it's not like we don't have precedents. These men were Cassandra's prophesying and destined not to be heard, worse, they were actively ignored. Ignorance and denial of the past is only compounded by the wilful way in which it is done to suit short term objectives by many in our political classes. Churchill's 1948 prophesy fulfilled.
    Any student of history would have cringed at the ignorance displayed in our media and governments when the Russians recently reacquired the Crimea. It was almost as if they couldn't put Tennyson's 'The Charge of the Light Brigade', which they must surely know, into any context. It might as well have happened on a different planet.

    All this on the day after Radovan Karadzic was convicted of one of the rare genuine attempts at a genocide since WW2.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
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  9. l'Omnivore Sobriquet

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    "Those who forget the past do not deserve the future."

    Engraved in large letters at the entrance of one of the main WWI ossuaries, that I visited some decades back.
     
  10. VBF-13

    VBF-13 Well-Known Member

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    Forgive whom? They're all dead. You're certainly not suggesting their offspring or the German people as a whole should be held accountable for or share in the guilt for this.

    Let's get this one thing straight. The ones who did this deserve the accountability and guilt. Nobody else. And there's another thing we might never forget.
     
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  11. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    They are not all dead im afraid, and more worrying, for some, the memory of these monsters is motivation for them to follow in their steps. Synagogues and minorities are still targetted across the world in the same xenophobic manner as they were in 1938. Not just Germans, but like it or not many people look to German traditions and beliefs for their inspiration, such as the modern day PLO, who still publish an Arabic version of Mein Kampf (their 3rd or 4th most popular book I believe) to this day. But even if you want to argue that the main players are dead, if you study the history, I think it necessary to undertake a forgiveness process , but not a forgetting process. Germany today does not have the same problems as existed 70 years ago, but some of the values that led to that situation do remain in some.

    But I was referring to the people that did it, and quoting from the society that allowed this to happen. It wasnt me that made those observations, I just quoted them, and Im not going to make any apologies for what they said because they might lead to some sort of online equivalent of a ceremonial book burning of these great men's opinions , in one case it was a member of the Prussian ruling class himself, in one case, and in another a European philosopher. For me their credentials are worthy of respect

    Saying "they are all dead", seems to suggest "we have nothing to worry about now". If that implication is what you believe, I disagree. We have plenty to worry about because it could easily happen again. There is a two stage process to go through if you have been personally touched by these events from so long ago, on the receiving end i mean. The first is to forgive the crime, that just doesnt happen if the perpetrator is dead, the crime lives on after them. For the victims and their descendants, and even those, like me, that have known some of them and the suffering they still endure. Without forgiveness, hatred and vengeance will result. The second stage to that healing is a defensive process, to not forget. Forgiving is necessary as a letting go process. Not forgetting is making sure it doesnt happen again.

    As far as the German people are concerned, the average Germans are law abiding, decent people. Most of them that fought their war were the same. But the principal of collective guilt did apply, however distasteful and counter that is to our western values. Someone started the war, someone sustained it. That just wasnt a fluke of nature. It happened because a people carried with them a belief system that the regime could rely on. The war wasnt caused by just a few Nazis hijacking the nation. German war guilt, as a nation,. was established in as fair a way as could be contrived after the surrender. Cockeyed and unjust, I would have to agree. But history I think generally judges that Germany as a nation was responsible for the outbreak of the war. Other people have different views to that, I can respect that, but I dont agree, im sorry.
     
  12. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    Much of this could be applied to slavery, the consequences of which we are still wrestling with in the US.
     
  13. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Because history has taken a back seat in the modern education system, leaving the door open to "modern interpretation". For example: current social complaints claim that the U.S. engaged in slavery for nearly 400 years and even the U.N. recently encouraged the U.S. to apologize for that. However, history shows us that the European powers that each claimed territory in North America brought slaves with them (the Spanish, British, French and Dutch) and it wasn't until 1778 that any slaves within the boundaries of the United States were actually owned by American citizens - this only lasted until 1864...less than 100 years.

    So there is a great deal to be learned from history, as it's not just an outlet for nostalgia, but a reminder of past mistakes that should be avoided at all costs.

    As far as the Holocaust is concerned, there were far too many mass-murders in the 20th century (during a time of so-called heightened civilization), inflicted upon citizens by a wide range of regimes and none of those events were acceptable. Each and every one of those events should be at the forefront of learning curriculum in it's entirety, so that students will always remember just how badly we civilized nations failed.

    To forget this lesson is to open Pandora's box over and over and over again...
     
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  14. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Agreed GrauGeist.

    History should never be forgotten, and it should be a big part of school curriculum. I think that is an important thing. Forgetting tragedy will only lead to further tragedy.

    Extending collective guilt to those born after the events (or to children alive during the events) however is not the answer, and in my opinion makes things worse. That is where I draw the line, and lose all respect for those who do so and its ignorance.

    Not saying you are doing this, just stating my opinion on the overall subject. I will leave it at that however...
     
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