Saturday, March 2, 2013

Dead Zone

I almost didn't bother to read an article in the New York Times titled The Holocaust Just Got More Shocking.  Oh, come on, I thought - how could anything possibly be more shocking than what is already known...that story must be some sensational hyperbole.  So I was surprised when I got to a number that made my jaw drop - literally!  I had thought that was just an expression...but there I was, staring at the laptop screen, my mouth gaping open in astonished horror.

"THIRTEEN years ago, researchers at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum began the grim task of documenting all the ghettos, slave labor sites, concentration camps and killing factories that the Nazis set up throughout Europe."


"The researchers have cataloged some 42,500 Nazi ghettos and camps throughout Europe, spanning German-controlled areas from France to Russia and Germany itself, during Hitler’s reign of brutality from 1933 to 1945."

"The figure is so staggering that even fellow Holocaust scholars had to make sure they had heard it correctly when the lead researchers previewed their findings at an academic forum in late January at the German Historical Institute in Washington."

This is more than just a new embellishment to the historical record.  It has terrible implications for the future.  It's particularly unsettling because it demonstrates ever more clearly that the claim that ordinary citizens genuinely weren't aware of Nazi atrocities is preposterous...which clarifies just how intrinsically capable people are of extreme self-deception.  It seems there is no crime so brutally heinous that we cannot collectively overlook it when it suits our purposes.

Of course, this is obvious from the trees in their death throes all around us, while virtually no one notices that air pollution is poisoning them.  In fact the world is being destroyed in front of our eyes, and the most dissent we can muster is tepid marches, faux arrest spectacles, and pathetic petitions.
Stephanie McMillen
In a time when we are on the brink of numerous converging catastrophes, it lends credence to bleak warnings that overt fascism will overwhelmingly become the response.  The following documentary is a little under an hour, based on the book by Chris Hedges, Death of the Liberal Class.

Maybe they'll let me keep posting in the FEMA camp...


3 comments:

  1. A German friend of mine told me several years ago that it was absolutely impossible for the people in her town not to have known about the camps, an old castle in the town was used to house those on their way to them, and yet all of the elders maintained they'd had no idea of what was going on.

    It is scary, when people feel threatened or economically insecure, it is frighteningly easy for them to turn to totalitarianism. I think the Kahnemann book that came out maybe 18 months ago made that case.

    I believe the article in the NYT substantially increased the death count from the Holocaust without saying so, I think it was previously thought that some 6 million died in the camps. I don't mean to diminish the horrors of that, but I do wonder why it is that nobody I know has any idea that according to conservative estimates, some 9 million women were burned at the stake as witches in Europe.

    ReplyDelete
  2. G'day Gail

    Dunno why Temujin locked his great video...but here it is on youtube

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hH6UynI5m7Y

    Be seeing you...

    Jacob Horner

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks so much, Jacob! I replaced it.

    ReplyDelete

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