Mar 28, 2017
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Holocaust Films/Books IV
by Doniphan Blair
In David Cronenberg's 'A Dangerous Method', Freud (Viggo Mortensen) and Jung (Michael Fassbender) engage in a bromance close to queer. photo courtesy D. Cronenberg
As it happened, the Swiss-Protestant Jung was himself accused of anti-Semitism and pro-Nazi activities. Complaints commenced shortly after he broke with his own father-figure, the atheist Jew Freud, in 1913, after seven years mad-love, including a three-week lecture tour/road trip in the US. Denunciations increased in the '30s, as Jung led the international General Medical Society for Psychotherapy (1933-39), the German wing of which expelled its Jews, excised Freudian theory and was run by a Nazi, Goring's cousin—not to mention the GMSP journal article justifying racism using Jung’s ideas. Admittedly, Jung shared Nazi interest in folk tales, Gothic gods and neo-paganism, and occasionally spoke of the “corrosive character” of Freudian analysis or the “superiority of the Aryan subconscious.” Still, polytheist myths continue to be revered by legions of Joseph Campbell fans; much of Freud has been dismissed by modern psychiatry; and some Jews decry their cultural, if not genetic, propensity for over-thinking and worry (see the films of Woody Allen), despite the obvious fact that neurosis and thriftiness were the normative result of centuries of insecurity and oppression. Jung defended himself, insisting that he tried to protect Jewish therapists and the profession itself, that the offending article was published without his input or permission, and that his devotion to eastern religion was good mysticism, while Nazi bowdlerizations were utterly erroneous. Moreover, as he repeated ad nauseam in various venues: I don’t hate Freud; some of my best friends are Jews; and please don’t mention my infidelities. Married into money and the father of five, Jung carried on a long affair with the brilliant Russian Jewess Sabina Spielrein, which obviously abrogated their analyst-analysand contract—she had come to him with the "woman's disease," hysteria (sex-based as usual, triggered by her father’s perversions). Cured by Jung, romantically as well as psychotherapeutically, Spielrein became an analyst and brought the new science (or art, if you prefer) back to Moscow. This sexy, heady tale, including the Jung-Freud road trip, is well-told by David Cronenberg in his “A Dangerous Method” (2011) with great performances by Michael Fassbender as Jung, Kiera Knightly as Spielrein and Viggo Mortensen as Freud, although he left out some of the tastiest tidbits. Perhaps the Freud-Jung falling out derived from unexpressed homoeroticism, as some close readers of their correspondence claim, while Jung was also a visionary artist, as was finally revealed with the 2009 publication of his “The Red Book”. Chock full of stunning paintings and creative writings from 1915 to 1930, it was withheld for almost a century by his small-minded descendants petrified to putrefy their family's cash cow.
Meanwhile, what did the world's most famous psychoanalyst AND living Jew (aside from Einstein) think of the Nazis? Alas, it's ambiguous, given that, when it comes to crucial life decisions, we are often illogical, as Freud repeatedly reminds us, while he himself was in denial about the Nazis and they were uncharacteristically restrained. Despite dire warnings from friends and invitations from the US, where he was very popular, but which he denigrated as a land afflicted with infantilism, gigantism and the sublimation of sex into money-making, he remained in Austria after the bizarre spectacle of the Anschluss. After the Christian Socialist Chancellor Engelbert Dolffuss was assassinated by native Nazis in 1934, and the country's once-powerful Socialists were repressed, Austria's ruling class decided to silver-platter their state to the also-Austrian Hitler (from a village, Braunau Am Inn, on the German border). Joining the two German-speaking nations had long been entertained on the left as well as right but it was forbidden by WWI's peace treaty and opposed by many. Claiming they were "invited," and to prevent a referendum on the subject, the Wehrmach suddenly marched into Vienna, in March, 1938, along with a beaming Hitler at his most pompous and seig-heiling. They were met by wildly cheering, even ecstatic crowds, which immediately turned on their Jewish neighbors, beating them and forcing them to scrub pavements and the like, as Nazi accountants seized their assets, although Freud's publishing company was in fact bankrupt—so much for the supposed Jewish business smarts. It was only when his daughter Anna, also a psychiatrist and his clinical partner, had to go in on his behalf for questioning by the Gestapo AND was arrested did Freud get the gravity of the situation. Miraculously, Freud was already under the auspices of a part-perpetrator, part-Samaritan, Dr. Anton Sauerwald, the Nazi assigned to administer his case. Although there's no book or movie with the bravado title "Freud and the Nazis" (save for the obviously off-topic "Freud and the Nazis Go Surfing"), there is an excellent scene from "
The Escape of Sigmund Freud
", by David Cohen, with Sauerwald played to perfection by John Kay Steel (David Suchet has also agreed to do Freud, making it a stellar project trying to manifest through Kickstarter). Sauerwald—yet another German chemist—not only felt obliged to read ALL two dozen of his charge's rather dense volumes but became enamored of "the old man," helped him and 15 family members obtain exit visas (Freud's four elderly sisters didn't and were killed in the camps), and even shipped his invaluable library and famous couch to Freud's new residence in London. If that were not indicative enough, Sauerwald also dropped by for a visit, driving all the way from Austria in late 1938, even bringing with Freud's Austrian surgeon—ALSO A NAZI—to operate on his jaw cancer (he didn't trust English doctors), which gifted him an extra year of life. Ironically, Freud then proceeded to pen his best book for the lay reader, "Moses and Monotheism" (1939), which included a late-in-life return to religion, previously derided as the futile search for the ultimate father-figure. Along with a three-quarter page footnote on why humans don't smell each others butts, "Moses" offers clues to Nazi anti-establishmentarianism and father hatred. In Paleolithic times, postulates Freud, the strongest, oldest alpha male got all the women, leaving the start of advanced cooperation and human civilization to when the frustrated young men decided to join together to overthrow him. Even though Freud's "Jokes and their Relation to the Unconscious" (1905) pioneered the revelatory nature of humor, little comes to light in his quips from that time: "In the Middle Ages they would have burned me. Now they are content with burning my books" (from 1933, evidently he didn't recall Heine's prediction); "I can most highly recommend the Gestapo to everyone" (from a coerced Austrian exit statement—they didn't get the irony and let him leave); and "Thank the Fuhrer" (on why he was so creative until dying at 83, three weeks after the onset of WWII).
Sigmund and Anna Freud, also a psychotherapist, in The Hague for the International Psychoanalytical Congress, 1920. photo courtesy
Of course, Freud had already identified the "id," the mind's animal component, in "Beyond the Pleasure Principle" (1920), which was both out-of-control among the Nazis AND craftily grafted onto their social awareness structures, called the "superego" by Freud, which, in turn, was enlisted to inflate their regular ego—forming a vast potpourri of self-aggrandizement. In that book, Freud also identifies the "death drive," the desire for death and destruction which arises in mystically-mirroring opposition to the natural lust for life and procreation—again nailing Nazi psychology (one can only wonder what Sauerwald thought reading Freud). But when confronted with those drives, off the couch and outside the lab—running amok in his beloved and heretofore highly-civilized Vienna, the elderly Freud was dumbfounded and unable to cope. Conversely, the Gestapo's approval of Sauerwald's actions, including paying part of the expensive exit visa and moving fees (wealthy patients covered the rest), can probably be attributed to their obsession with hierarchies, which left many Nazis in thrall to power, including that of celebrity. Indeed, the world's most "decadent" artist, Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), remained free in Paris the entire war. Perhaps Cohen provides an answer in "The Escape of Sigmund Freud", when his Sauerwald remarks: "Freud asked me why I helped him. I said, 'I don't know.' But since he was the great expert on the mind, I asked him. He said, 'I am afraid I don't know either. But I have learned, we often don't know why we do the things that matter.'" Speaking of things that matter, neither Freud nor his family ever thanked the somewhat Samaritan Sauerwald—perhaps understandable, given the vast destruction wrought by his party.
Seeing Nazism as a form of insanity also inhibits our ability to study the history (“They were stone-cold crazy—so what can you do…”). Hence, historians generally divide between: Was Hitler a severely injured and misguided egomaniac, narcissist and rage-oholic, but still trying to assist his people? Or was he a cynical sadist, hater and even self-hater, a Satanist of sorts, who knew full-well he was perpetrating immense evil, not only against the Jews but all Europeans and the Germans themselves, who, at the end of the war, deserved to be destroyed since they failed to follow his orders and defeat the Russians. Indeed, Hitler is quoted as saying the Russians should win, given "The nation has proved itself weak and the future belongs to the stronger Eastern nation. Besides those who remain after the battle are of the little value, for the good have fallen." When the Gotterdammerung came crashing down, Hitler ordered Speer to enact a nation-wide scorched-earth policy to deny the enemy the last remnants of German production capacity, essentially the Morganthau Plan to return Germans to an agrarian society. Being sane, Speer finally disobeyed his Fuhrer and preserved something for his people's post-war survival.
The first Hitler biographer, English historian Allan Bullock seems to support the second view, which he explicates at the end of his “Hitler: A Study in Tyranny” (1952): "Hitler frequently became intoxicated with the prospect of a revolutionary upheaval which would destroy the entire European social order." 24 years later, Joachim Fest, the son of a vehemently anti-Nazi schoolteacher, who served briefly during WWII (until he was captured) and went on to become a well-known, conservative magazine editor, supports the first thesis in his “Hitler” (1976), the first biography written in German. Obviously, something was severely psychologically twisted, if not outright insane, but, generally speaking, the road to hell was paved with explainable behavior. As it happened, when Fest was writing his book, he was also helping Speer with his, which gave him an intimate view, perhaps inspiring observations like: “Auschwitz might be said to represent the fiasco between the private German universe and its AUTISTIC NARCISSISM,” (my emphasis). Fest's follow-up documentary "Hitler: A Career" (1977, recently re-released on Netflix) was criticized for fetishizing the Fuhrer and downplaying the Holocaust but it did fulfill his objective of explaining Hitler's mysterious allure to modern democracy-dwelling Germans. In lieu of attempting what the Hollywood mini-series "Holocaust" achieved one year later, Fest turns to close-up, little-seen footage, incisive language and, in a tip of the hat to Freud, obvious underlying sex: "His success was built on oratory... Deep down he never lost his provincialism, a pathetic little man with unexceptional features... There was also a religious and erotic element... He was invested with mythical potency. Subconscious desires reached a climax..." "He would make as many a ten speeches in a single day. Always studying and improving his impact on the audience," Fest wrote, concluding that Hitler succeeded as "an opinionated dilettante on a merry-go-round of speeches," who perpetually "gambled everything and won—that was the secret to his success." Many of these points are reiterated by the well-received and recent "Hitler" (1998), by Ian Kershaw, another English historian: "Hitler did not suffer from any major psychotic disorders. He was certainly not clinically insane. If there was lunacy in the position Germany found itself in by the autumn of 1944, it was not the purported insanity of one man but that of the high-stakes 'winner-takes-all' gamble for continental dominance and world power which the country's leaders—not just Hitler—backed by much of a gullible population had earlier been prepared to take."
Conversely, English historian A. J. P. Taylor's “The Origins of the Second World War” (1961) had already set the tone for today's neo-Nazis and alt-Right by claiming Hitler was not only NOT crazy but no more anti-Semitic than most Germans and no more ambitious than most statesmen and that WWII was "simply" the unfortunate by-product of a series of bad breaks on top of the ill-conceived Treaty of Versailles (1919)—notions generally discounted, if not ridiculed.
Hans and Sophie Scholl with Christoph Probst, principals in the anti-Nazi White Rose group, 1942. photo courtesy the Holocaust Museum
According to Konnilyn Feig, the fascinating professor of history and political science, who opines on his mental illness in the title of her "Hitler's Death Camps: The Sanity of Madness" (1979), and with whom I studied at San Francisco State University, there is really no such thing as a "Great Man of History," able to single-handedly shift the flow of history. If it isn't one leader, it's another, since the masses will eventually push to the fore someone who corroborates their desires and to whom they can cede responsibility. Then they march to their doom in easy-to-rationalize baby-steps, noted Feig, like the frog which doesn't notice the pot of water it's sitting in is starting to boil. Many of the Germans who voted for the Nazis, and sympathizers worldwide, rationalized that their ending of democracy, other political parties, art styles, religions—while hardly small steps—were only temporary measures, despite Hitler's vociferous claims to the contrary. What a moderate Hitler might appear like emerges in the German bestseller "Look Who's Back" (English title), by Timur Vermes (2012), and slick film by the same name, masterfully-made by David Wnendt (2015), which addresses his charisma with concision and dry wit. Hitler, played with intense, straight-man seriousness by Oliver Masucci, comes back to life in modern Berlin but is assumed to be a comedian or actor impersonating the Fuhrer, attracting laughs, selfies and faux-seig heils. Ever the storm trooper, as it were, the actual Hitler ignores the discrepancies and jumps back into his old hustle—political organizing, now backing the Green Party, as well as his own reinstatement—and finds support among anti-immigrant Germans. Soon on television, he's revered as a ratings-getter and professional who never breaks character until the down-on-his-luck producer, who first brought in the story, realizes and attempts to reveal the truth. In a pitch-perfect "Caligari" echo (Wnendt also spoofs "Triumph", "Downfall" and other related films), the producer finds himself in a straight-jacket and padded cell.
Making all Germans nut jobs also retroactively impugns their ability to be moral actors, to stand up and resist, as a notable few did. The fearless Catholic students of Munich’s White Rose group, led by siblings Sophie and Hans Scholl, distributed six anti-Nazi leaflets calling for passive and active resistance, precipitating their beheading in 1942 but not before one leaflet was smuggled out, reprinted and dropped by Allied bombers with full attribution (easing some pain on the chopping block, hopefully). There was also Berlin’s little-known Rosenstrasse Protest (“rosen” also meaning rose), where the Aryan spouses of some 1,800 Jews (mostly men), who had been arrested in the spring of 1943, protested for days in front of Gestapo headquarters and won their husbands’ release—nothing short of a women-led miracle in the middle of the Holocaust. Nazi forbearance on Rose Street paralleled their suspension of Germany's aggressive euthanasia program, which was based on pseudo -scientific notions also popular in the US. After laws were passed in late-1939, Caligari-esque institution directors set about killing off entire wards of mentally or physically disabled patients, so-called “useless eaters” but were eventually stopped by outraged relatives, indicating the endurance of ethics among some Germans and that extremist Nazis could also be pragmatic. They saved face by claiming they were postponing that particular atrocity until after victory ("Don't worry, Heinrich, we can gas the retards later..."). By the same token, realizing that the masses had to be kept fat and happy to abide their risky agenda, the Nazis didn't ration luxury goods like butter and nylons even after England and America had long-since switched to essentials-only economies. Indeed, Detroit didn't produce a single car during the war, just tanks, tanks and TONS of trucks. Elsewhere, shipyards and aviation factories were soon pumping out about one ship and 200 planes PER DAY, fulfilling the prediction of Japanese Admiral Yamamoto, who had studied in and toured the US: "I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant," he remarked the day after Pearl Harbor. Mid-war, it even dawned on Goebbels that telling the truth, à la Churchill, rather than fabricating victories, secret weapons and prosperity, might better motivate the public. Fortunately, that was another contradiction in terms: Third Reich "kultur" was intrinsically disingenuous and Goebbels could not help but act accordingly. Berliners, in addition to defending their beloveds regardless of race, were more educated, liberal and anti-Nazi, which forced the party to mount its rallies 250 miles south in Nuremberg and abandon the house-to-house searches needed to hunt down every last Jew. In fact, Berliners hid 15,000, the highest per capita of any European city, even Warsaw, which concealed around 25,000 but had a much bigger Jewish population. As a Jewish Berliner told me, at San Francisco's Holocaust Library in 1989, she would walk the streets mid-war, hand-in-hand with her gentile father and Jewish mother, her and her mother wearing the obligatory yellow stars, which made them legal and they only removed post-liberation and the re-privatizing of faith. Although her father was subjected to untold abuse—fired from his job, repeatedly beaten—and she was spat on in the hall by the neighbor girl (directed to do so by her mother), the Nazis were reluctant to deport the Jewish family of a respected Berliner, supported by a network of friends.
Indeed, Berlin had a number of outspoken gentiles, one paragon being the artist Kathe Kollwitz, who was prohibited from showing, forced out of the Prussian Academy of Arts (where she was the first woman) and subjected to Gestapo visits and threats, though not deportation (they feared a national outcry). Kollwitz retreated to her studio (now a lovely, if lightly attended, museum in downtown Berlin) to work on her last series of lithographs, which also told the truth to all who bothered to look, in pieces titled “Woman Welcoming Death” or “Death Reaches for a Group of Children”. Kollwitz died two weeks before V-Day, almost the same day as that other WWII saint, Anne Frank.
'Death Comes for a Child' by Berliner anti-Nazi Kathe Kollwitz, from a series she worked on until death came for her, two weeks before V-Day. photo courtesy Kollwitz Museum
Then there was the aristocratic Wehrmacht officer, Claus von Stauffenberg who, much as he might have liked to shoot Hitler himself, simply couldn't, having lost two fingers off his right hand in WWI. He did, however, organize and plant the suitcase bomb, which nearly killed Hitler in July, 1944, but ultimately only inflicted blown-out eardrums. That act earned von Stauffenberg a hanging by wire (more painful than rope), which was filmed for screening by the ever-vengeful as well as film-fanatic Hitler. Even the Auschwitz underground had allies among the guards (one positive aspect of the pervasive Nazi corruption), according to the fascinating first monograph on the subject, “Fighting Auschwitz” (1975), by Jozef Garlinski, a Polish survivor AND officer in Poland's Home Army, Armia Krajowa. Europe’s largest underground with 400,000 members, Armia Krajowa didn’t do much until the tragic Warsaw (gentile) Uprising of August, 1944, which was deemed too little, too late by Stalin. Determined to deny post-war power to the anti-communist Armia Krajowa, Stalin stopped his soldiers just across the Vistula River from Warsaw, where they watched for weeks as the Germans flatten the ENTIRE city center—just one building, a church, left standing! In fact, there were a number of perpetrator-Samaritans, from Sauerwald and Kurzem's Sargent Kulis to the well known black-marketeer and businessman Oscar Schindler. The latter's flamboyant personality and daring rescue of 1,200 Jews is masterfully recounted in “Schindler's Ark” (1982), the bestselling book by Australian Thomas Keneally, now retitled “Schindler's List” in keeping with Steven Spielberg's pretty good Hollywood hit (1993). Although saddled with three endings and Schindler's crotchety Jewish accountant (played by Oscar-winner Ben Kingsley), there to prove Spielberg wasn't afraid to address negative stereotypes, the film did deliver some masterful Anus Mundi moments, notably the "Kids Hide In the Latrine Holes" scene and the "Commandant Ganz Dances with the Jewess" scene, one of the only passages in all of cinema to explore the psycho-sexual attraction that victimized, feminized Jewesses exerted on macho malevolent Nazis, in exile from the feminine principal. Admittedly, "List" was not as big as Spielberg's “Jaws” (1975), which helped create the phenomena of summer “blockbuster” (from the WWII term for a bomb able to destroy an entire city block).
There were also quite a few actual good Samaritans, from peasants to intellectuals, who rescued Jews voluntarily and without exorbitant fees, often remarking, when queried about why they risked their own and their family's lives, something like: How could I NOT do it? In 1974, Israel's Holocaust Museum, Yad Vashem, published the papers of a conference, "Rescue Attempts during the Holocaust", detailing dozens of humanitarians from France to Bulgaria, whose efforts involved ransoming, false papers, appeals, bribes, seductions, escapes and lots of espionage. In Schindler's large-group-saving league, however, the list is limited and headed by Sweden's envoy to Hungary, Raoul Wallenberg (1912-1945?). Wallenberg issued tens of thousands of Swedish identity papers in late-'44, helping save a few percent of almost a million Hungarian Jews from the Nazis and Hungary's neo-Nazi Arrow Cross party, which had already murdered 12,000 Jews ad hoc, using machine guns and ditches—not how the Nazis liked to do it ("Vee like our killings very neat and organized..."). Also in Scandinavia, Danish political parties and pastors denounced the Nazi deportation orders and, in 1943, Danish fishermen ferried to safety in neutral Sweden some 7,000, over 90% of Danish Jewry, although neither the Danish king nor his subjects donned the yellow star, as was apocryphally claimed. Less wellknown is the Portuguese consul in Bordeaux, Southern France, Aristides de Sousa Mendes (1885–1954), who was inspired by his friend, Rabbi Chaim Kruger to issue visas and passports to thousands of refugees, including many prominent Jews, like the Polish pianist Witold Małcużyński, or prominents in general, like Salvador Dali and Simone de Beauvoir's sister Hélène, also a painter. “If thousands of Jews are suffering because of one Christian [Hitler], surely one Christian may suffer for so many Jews,” Mendes explained, regarding his punishment by Portugal. Among official Christians, the Vatican priest Hugh O'Flaherty, an Irish native, is credited with saving 6,500 Jews and Allied soldiers while the bishop and mayor of the Greek isle of Zakynthos protected 275 Jews by responding to German demands for a "kill list" with a piece of paper bearing only two names: theirs. Even an Axis diplomat, Japan's vice-consul in Lithuania, Chiune Sugihara (1900-1986), when he realized what was up, wrote thousands of transit visas to Japanese territory, some scribbled on scraps of paper but embossed with Japan's imperial seal, even continuing as he was being transferred by train to another posting, passing them out the carriage window. Sugihara saved 5,558, see the old feature "
Six Thousand Visas for Life
" or the trailer for the new one "
" (2016). (In an odd bit of mystical-mirroring, a German businessman AND Nazi, John Heinrich Rabe, helped protect some 200,000 Chinese from Japanese atrocities during the 1937 "Rape of Nanking.") For their troubles, Wallenberg was dispatched by the Soviets to a gulag, where he probably soon murdered (evidence remains spotty) and Mendes was fired from the diplomatic corps, and penalized and penurized by Portugal's fascist regime. But in 1997, after 20 years of civilian rule, a national homage led by the president's wife featured extensive proclamations, posters, shows and celebrations, including the honoring and feting of the Mendes Family, who were shocked by its extent (I was told by his grandnephew, Sebastian Mendes). Sugihara was also jailed in a Russian gulag but survived and lived in obscurity in Japan until his discovery by one of his rescued, leading to his being honored by Israel as a "Righteous Among the Nations" just before he died. (The Nazi-Samaritan Rabe was arrested by the Gestapo, after publicly condemning the Japanese atrocities, including by writing to Hitler, but was released and allowed to keep his evidence, except the films).
The Amsterdam monument honoring the '41 dock worker's strike, the only pro-Jewish protest of its kind. sculpture: Ryan Buterbaugh
A curious perp-Samaritan was described to me by Sophia Shulman, a Polish-Jewish-American organizer of a
child survivors group
, at their 1992 picnic in New York’s Central Park. Shulman was hidden by a Nazi officer for almost a year in Warsaw, along with her father and brother (both also at picnic), because he not only liked her dad’s boot-making abilities (“Why would I kill such a skilled artisan…”) but because he was, in fact, a "decent one" and a rebel. When Stroop announced the Warsaw (Jewish) Uprising was over and the city was “Judenrein” (Jew-free), just in time for Hitler’s birthday on April 20th, 1943 (“The Fuhrer loves presents…”), the Shulmans' savior stood up and said something like, I happen to know a few still alive. While the big issues of WWII are in brutal black and white, the cataclysm was so immense and intricate, grey areas worthy of exploration remain for generations to come. A film about the Shulmans should include Sophia's reunion with “her SS man” in Germany in the late-‘60s, when he teased her about Israeli power after the Six Day War (“Ach, Little Sophia, even you Jews can get a little rough when in power…”), suggesting humor may be central to humanity.
Ironically, aside from a few wily businessmen, Germany's Jews—the SS’s supposed diabolical enemy—were deeply devoted to basic German traditions of discipline, hard work and good citizenry, even if some talked fast, self-promoted and scanned parties for more prestigious people to chat up (as author von Rezzori once joked). There were the "big three" who changed the world, of course—although Marx immigrated to England, Einstein to Switzerland, and Freud was Austrian—but also a surprising number who excelled at medicine, music, math, media and professions starting with letters other than "m." Despite being a mere .7 percent of the German population, Jews delivered one third of the nation's 12 chemistry Nobel Prizes from 1901 to 1933 (notably Haber’s). Moreover, intermarriage was so common by the Cabaret Era, Jews would have soon faded into Germany’s very-mixed gene pool. Indeed, DNA tests indicate they had already done so centuries earlier due to “droit de seigneur,” the medieval princes’ bizarre “Right of First Night” to the brides of their serfs, which included Jewish “fiduciary serfs," as well as their "right" to anyone residing in their castles, as Jews often did. The only fly in the ointment of Germany's miscegenation was the slightly elevated, if also highly exaggerated, “Jewish influence,” which would have coaxed Germany towards democracy, prosperity and peace, and away from hyper-masculinity, uni-cultural obsession and the blood lust for “lebensraum” (living space) idolized by the Nazis. Two months after Hitler’s ascension to chancellor, Jews were barred from government jobs and schools and, two years later, from marrying “pure” Germans, the lag due to the difficulty of defining pure on the North German plains, where dozens of passing armies had “pissed in their blood.”
In fact, many Germans gentiles had a Jewish grandparent or two, or thought they did. Indeed, Hitler suspected his father, Alois, was the illegitimate offspring of his peasant grandmother's affair with the 18 year-old son of the Jewish Frankenberger family, for which she kept house. Raised and living much of his adult life as a Schicklgruber (his mother's maiden name), Alois adopted Hitler at age 39, taking it from his step-father, Johann Georg Hiedler (an alternative spelling of Hitler), who had married his mother 35 years earlier—a late-in-life name change which inevitably aroused suspicion of Jewish heritage. After researching Hitler’s region and ancestry, however, both the Nazi SS (ordered to do so by Hitler, who was being blackmailed) and the Nazi hunter-supreme Simon Wiesenthal found no Frankenberger family. In conclusion, Alois’s blood father was either his supposed step-father or step-uncle, Johann Nepomuk, who probably foisted Alois on his brother, Johann Georg, to conceal from his neighbors that he had him illegitimately, but then took Alois back in when he turned ten, with the excuse his brother could not afford to raise him. Either way, it appears that the entire genocidal and self-destructive nightmare germinated from a case of mistaken-identity "paternity doubt" and "father hatred." After a few years of ad hoc dismissals and arrests of Jews, the Nazis decided that a single Jewish grandparent equaled being bar mitzvahed, regardless of how spectacularly that devalued Aryan blood or spelled difficulty for the many Nazis of mixed heritage unable to fabricate a family tree going back to 1750, as had Hitler.
Although Captain Gustav Schröder, of the MS St. Louis, valiantly tried to find a port to take his 908 Jewish passengers in 1939, the US Navy forced him back to Europe, where 250 died in camps. photo courtesy Holocaust Museum
Someone not embarrassed by his heritage—indeed, one of the Good Jews Himmler referred to—was Otto Frank (1889-1980), Anne’s father and the family’s sole survivor, although he was attacked for not becoming a “bad Jew” by Bruno Bettelheim. Yet another Viennese-Jewish-American survivor-psychiatrist, Bettelheim insisted Frank should have hid his family in a forest (despite the absence of such things in Holland) and bought a gun (ditto) to shoot a Nazi or two on his way to the deportation trains. Known for his “new age-y” child-rearing and therapeutic practices and theories on autism, Bettelheim has been discredited for both bad research and bad behavior (sexual). Still, he penned a fascinating Anus Mundi text, “The Informed Heart” (1960), with good examples of the shaman-like understandings that arose out of Auschwitz's psychological particle accelerator. “Experience with both the analyzed and unanalyzed in the camps,” he wrote, “was a convincing demonstration that, when the chips were down, it was utterly unimportant WHY a person acted the way he did, the only thing that counted was WHAT he did,” (my emphasis). Continuing in this vein, Bettelheim raises a fundamental question on the minds of many, Jews and gentiles alike, and second only to “Why did the Germans so slavishly follow Hitler: Why didn’t the Jews overcome the starvation and abuse of the ghettos and camps—where the last ring of guard towers and barbed-wire fences was Europe itself—to buy weapons, train militarily and mount revolts? In other words, why did the Jews “go like lambs to the slaughter?”
In point of fact, when Auschwitz initiated Zyklon-B gassing in September, 1941, the first "lambs to the slaughter" were 600, fully-trained Soviet soldiers. Moreover, that ignoble phrase was first used a few months later in the Vilna Ghetto, in a resistance recruitment poster, by someone who inherently refuted it: Abba Kovner (1918-1988). A slight, bookish young man, Kovner was smuggled out of the ghetto IN A SUITCASE by Dominican nuns, the Mother Superior of whom, Anna Borkowska, was a great Samaritan, hiding Jews in her countryside convent and spoiling to join the fight herself! Like Warsaw-native Mordecai Anielewicz, who snuck back into the Warsaw Ghetto to take partial command of its underground, Kovner returned to the Vilna Ghetto to form the United Partisan Organization, to become the first to identify the Nazi policy of genocide (early 1942) and to fight running battles with the Germans and their Lithuanian collaborators, though they never rose in full-scale rebellion due to squabbling among the ghetto's various organizations. Unlike Anielewicz, who took cyanide when trapped in a bombed-out basement with no sewer access, Kovner went over the wall and out to the forests (plentiful around Vilna) to form a hard-fighting unit, Nokmim (Hebrew for "avengers," which was under Soviet auspices), part of the 25,000 Jewish partisans across Europe (US Holocaust Museum estimate) and a significant percentage of the overall partisan effort. Indeed, Kovner's comrade-in-arms, Hirsh Glik (1922-1944), composed "Zog Nit Keyn Mol" ("Do Not Ever Say", music by Dmitri Pokrass), which became the partisan anthem and continues to be sung by Jewish survivors today. It closes with a message for poets and partisans alike: "[This] is not a song of a free bird flying overhead. Amid crumbling walls, a people sang this song; With grenades in their hands. So, never say the road now ends for you; Although skies of lead block out days of blue. Our longed-for hour will yet come; Our step will beat out—we are here!"
Post-war, Kovner helped organize immigration to Palestine, where, after three years and a comparatively small war ("only" 10,000 died on each side), Israel became a state and Kovner one of its premier poets, winning its 1970 national literature prize for “Ad Lo-Or” (1947, “until no light” in Hebrew), a lyrical novel about partisan life. Conversely, he also formed the group Revenge to do just that to the Germans, its plans coming to light after he was arrested in 1946 while sailing from Palestine to Europe with copious amounts of arsenic in condensed milk cans, plus plans to poison German drinking water, potentially killing tens of thousands. The plan was aborted, in part due to the conspirators' own guilt over enacting such evil, although Kovner's battle-tested band did assassinate a couple of war criminals and use arsenic-laced bread to sicken some 3000 imprisoned SS men, a plot piloted by the 21-year-old Joseph Harmatz (see NY Times, 9/29/16). Aside from this and a few scattered beatings and killings, there were almost no acts of post-war retribution by Jews.
A slew of books on Jewish partisans finally arrived around 2010, though many still referenced “They Fought Back”, the first, illuminating collection from 1967, compiled by Yuri Suhl (1908-86), an Austrian-Jewish-American, who immigrated before the war. Among its many stories of asymmetric struggles, suicide missions and symbolic strikes, “The underground of the Luchwa Ghetto,” writes Suhl, “[was] unable to obtain a single revolver, yet… staged a heroic revolt with hatchets, knives and their bare hands.” Also a sculptor, poet and novelist, Suhl authored “Uncle Misha's Partisans” (1973) for young readers and ''On the Other Side of the Gate” (1981), a folksy, Isaac Bashevis Singer-esque tale about a Polish-Jewish couple, who achieve a small victory by smuggling their child out of the ghetto to be hidden by a decent Polish family.
Jewish partisan leader Tuva Bielski said, 'I’d rather save one old Jewish woman than kill ten Nazis,' and here are some of the his squad who helped him do it. photo courtesy Bielski Brothers
The ”Bielski Brothers: Jerusalem in the Woods” (2006), Dean Ward’s fascinating documentary, follows three brothers who formed an effective fighting unit and community under the eldest, Tuvia, a Polish Army veteran, after their parents and other brothers were murdered by the Germans. The Bielskis established a free Jewish town in a Belorussian swamp, near their home village, replete with two hand-dug wells, a hospital and extensive bunkers and services. They saved 1,200 Jews, mostly ghetto escapees, including many women and elderly, since they never turned anyone away, as did other partisans, who were often anti-Semitic and sometimes pro-Holocaust. Ward's film features copious conversations with the brothers' children, who recall a homey village vibe between battles, sabotage actions and ghetto liberation raids, and the abject terror during them. The film draws directly from "Defiance: The Bielski Partisans" (1993), by Nechama Tec, a Polish-Jewish survivor, professor and author of half-dozen Holocaust books, including her autobiography "Dry Tears" (1987), which is both dryly observational, as it were, and totally deranged. It notes, for example, that after the Germans outlawed Jews attending school, "Any of us could be shot simply because I was trying to memorize a poem" (contradicting Adorno while corroborating Frankl). Tec's "Defiance" is a mashup of heroic rebellion, biography and sociology, its chapters bristling with long quotes from dozens of interviewees about Bielski history and strategy, and village life, plus a fascinating section on women. Although partisan war was an extremely masculine field of battle, with fighters obliged to not only fight to the death but start from scratch, training themselves and supplying their own guns and ammo—bought, stolen or won by force of arms, the Bielski partisans included a large Women's Way of War component. Many women, notably nurses, doctors and cooks, or wives of powerful fighters, were treated as equals, while all able-bodied of any gender had to stand guard. Some women were raped while making their way to the swampy redoubt but, once out there, they usually fell in love or sex, trading for survival assistance with men, often lower-class youths their families would abhor but who were better fighters than rabbis or doctors, leading to "transit" or "battlefield" marriages that sometimes lasted a lifetime. Especially beloved by the women, despite his gorgeous, young wife, was Tuvia Bielski, a slouching hero-type, who would often appear on horseback, wearing a long, leather duster and brandishing an automatic weapon, to take charge and save the day. Although Tuvia was well-rendered by Daniel “James Bond” Craig in “Defiance” (2008) and the film tried to incorporate the WWW issues covered by the documentary and book, it was a tad too Hollywood, even as it portrayed a flawed Tuvia, his fights with his brother Zus (who advocated less Jew-saving and more Nazi-killing and eventually joined the Russian partisans) or some of his soldiers as effete, ineffective intellectuals, and earned a drubbing from reviewers. The real Tuvia and Zus, and their wives, survived and made it to New York, via Israel, where they ran a small trucking company and not once sought recognition for their deeds.
There were also tens of thousands of Jewish Samaritans, from clandestine helpers to brave activists and full-on espionage masters. Although only 18, Adolfo Kaminsky led a band of Parisian forgers, who worked out of a cramped Left Bank room stinking of solvents and inks, explaining to their neighbors they were house painters. "In fact, the friends were members of a Jewish resistance cell... operating a clandestine laboratory to make false passports for children and families about to be deported to concentration camps," (NY Times, 10/2/16). Kaminsky survived and finally told his story to his daughter, Sarah, who wrote “Adolfo Kaminsky: A Forger’s Life” (English, 2016). All across Europe but especially in traditionally Jewish cities like Berlin, Warsaw, Lodz and Lvov, among others, Jews, mostly women but also many men, were passing as gentiles and assisted the Jewish underground in various ways, enabling 2.7 millions Jews to survive in hiding, among partisans, even in the lagers. In Buchenwald, five miles outside of Wiemar (the storied home town to the writers Goethe and Friedrich Schiller and composer Franz Liszt), the inmates saved hundreds of children. As they got organized towards the end of the war, they began plucking kids (almost all boys) from death barracks, work details or the arriving masses, secreting them away in holes, attics, 50 gallon drums and other hiding places, and supplying them with some food and water. The vast majority survived to liberation!
Poet and Vilna Ghetto resistance leader, Abba Kovner, flanked by ebullient women partisans, Russia, circa 1944. photo courtesy A. Kovner
The best partisan film, albeit about gentiles, is without a doubt “Come and See” (1985), by the Russian master cineaste Elem Klimov, which concerns a 15 year-old determined to fight the Nazis, despite dire warnings from his mother and others. Its title taken from “Revelations”' Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and its content from Klimov's own horrific experiences (worse than the film, he says), “Come and See” follows his hero's accelerating descent into a demon universe, starting with a Russian “sleeper” intro (the antithesis of a Hollywood car-chase opening) but building slowly through subtle reveals: while racing to a hiding place, the boy runs past a pile of bleached-white bodies, stacked like firewood behind a house; while enjoying a sleepy, romantic moment with a girl near the partisan camp, the forest explodes with Luftwaffe bombs. Finally, Klimov arrives at his very believable—if still unbelievable—atrocity extravaganza: an entire village burnt alive in a barn, as happened hundreds of times across Russia. “Come and See” concludes with a surrealist summary of Nazism, ending on Hitler as a boy and a slightly upbeat note: our hero declines to shoot him. "Don't do unto others what is hateful to you," as Rabbi Hillel (110-10 BC) famously summarized "The Bible".
While gentile partisans could often return to their mothers or at least civilian life, for Jews it was endless, Russian nesting-dolls circles of hell. ALL the countries of the world, in fact—save the city-state of Shanghai, which accepted all 23,000 Jews able to make their way across up to ten thousand miles of hostile territory or open sea—joined together to form Anus Mundi's final ring of barbed wire, guard towers and machine guns. Even if the Jewish internees were able to rise up and escape the ghettos or camps, as a few did, they would be hunted to death by the locals as well as Germans; even if they could escape their region, ditto by other Europeans; and if Europe, ditto the rest of the world. Although the US accepted 85,000 refugees in 1938, it was a tiny fraction of those in need and far fewer, percentage-wise, than Bolivia’s generous offer to take 30,000, while the following year the US Navy was threatening to sink refugee ships. The St. Louis arrived off the coast of Florida with 900 visa-less Jewish men, women and children but was forced back to Europe, where a quarter were slaughtered in lagers. England accepted some 7,500 Jewish children, their part of the humanitarian Kindertransports (1938-40), including future rock impresario Bill Graham and sexologist Dr. Ruth Westheimer. But it also issued the infamous 1939 “White Paper”, limiting Jewish immigration to Palestine, where it was the colonial power, to 15,000 annually—a pittance sometimes not even filled.
Admittedly, the English Army was stretched preternaturally thin. Indeed, it had been fighting the Third Reich almost single-handedly until the arrival of the Americans in June, 1940, and the Russians, two long years later (June, 1942). Alas, the former was in North Africa ONLY and the latter had four-fifths of the Wehrmacht at its throat, including advance units on the hills overlooking Moscow for a few dark days in November '42. The German were eventually rebuffed by Russia's notorious winter, their lack of winter clothing, columns of fleece-clad Siberian troops marching over those Muscovite hills and, of course, Stalingrad, August 1942 to February 1943, the biggest battle of the war and, thereby, all of history. Almost a quarter million German as well as Rumanian, Danish and other European Nazi-supporting soldiers were killed and about half that encircled and captured, while half-a-million Russian soldiers perished. Admittedly, Stalin had no compunction about wasting troops and a tactical feint north of Stalingrad, to distract from the critical Russian counter-offensive, cost 70,000 soldiers, the bloodiest military sacrifice in the annals of war. While the Brits had the support of their former colonies, including significant forces from Canada, the tough ANZACS (Australian and New Zealand troops), and the fearless, knife-wielding Nepalese Gurkhas, they were still losing badly to the Japanese in the Pacific theater. Indeed, Singapore, their main fortress on that front, "The Gibraltar of the East" and defended by more troops than England itself, fell in February 1942, with 80,000 English, Indian and Australian troops—on top of the 50,000 from earlier in the Malayan Campaign—taken prisoner of war. Called by Churchill the "worst disaster" as well as "largest capitulation" in British military history, its aftermath is covered in David Lean's film "The Bridge over the River Kwai" (1957), about the brutal building of the rail line to Burma, during which about a quarter of the Allied POW laborers died.
Given the antipathy towards Jews by Arabs, in general, and by some leaders, in particular—the Mufti of Jerusalem, Palestine's Islamic spiritual leader, spent much of the war in Berlin, met with Hitler several times and lobbied him to accelerate the genocide, opening unlimited Jewish immigration to Palestine would have been catastrophic. (To be sure, not all Arabs or Arab leaders opposed the Jews; there were some Arab good Samaritans helping Jews escape the Nazis, although they preferred to remain anonymous, and others who supported their immigration to Palestine; and there is even a small
Holocaust Museum in the West Bank
.) While it could have saved some Jews—or many, if enacted before WWII and the sealing of borders across Europe and managed properly by the British, during the war, it would have pushed the Arabs into the arms of the Axis, much as Turkey joined Germany in WWI ("Remember Gallipoli? That was tough..."). A third British front would have cost innumerable Jewish as well as English lives, while handing over German access to desperately-needed Middle Eastern oil, precisely the purpose of their Stalingrad drive, and likely leading to their triumph on the all-important Eastern Front.
22 year-old poet and army officer Hannah Senesh parachuted into Hungary to help its Jews but was captured. photo courtesy Yad Vashem
Once the war started, there were almost no pro-Jewish protests in ALL of Nazi-occupied Europe save Berlin's miraculous Rosenstrasse "spouse's protest" and the spectacular February Strike (1941) by Rotterdam's dockworkers and communists—viciously put down in two days. There were a few more international actions, often as woefully small as ambitiously large: the Jewish-Palestinian who trudged 'round American government offices demanding a response to the Holocaust, like bombing the rail lines to Auschwitz, a tactic supported by Churchill but rejected by Roosevelt along with other suggestions of succor for the Jews—other than simply winning the war. Admittedly, using England-based B-17s to bomb Auschwitz's rail head would've meant long flights over enemy territory for largely symbolic reasons, since rebuilding tracks are easy, while perhaps handing Goebbels a propaganda coup, in the event inmates were hit (a high probability since targeting technology was still in its infancy), and delaying slightly the defeat of the Third Reich outright. Symbolic or not, the Jews of Palestine insisted something be done and, after being kept out of the war by the English, the latter acquiesced, coincidentally right after Menachem Begin (the future Israeli prime minister) and his Irgun fighters, began their guerrilla attacks in early 1944. By May, the Brits were airdropping a modest 37 Jews fighters into Hungary to try to help save the 800,000 Jews then being devoured by the Nazis. Indeed, Eichmann himself had journeyed to Budapest, met with and deceived its Jewish leaders and, in a few weeks, deported over 400,000 Jews to Auschwitz, a speed which could have been slowed by rail line bombardment. "It was actually an achievement that was never matched before or since," Eichmann bragged, although he later denied personal culpability. Among the parachutists was the 22 year-old Hannah Senesh, a dedicated writer and poet as well as a special operations officer, whose story is well-told in the re-enactments, comrades-in-arms interviews and animated maps of “Blessed is the Match” (2009) by Roberta Grossman (who also did the lower-rez if more upbeat music documentary, “Hava Nagila: The Movie”, 2012). Captured and tortured, Senesh spoke not a word of her operation but her written words continue to reverberate, especially across Israel, through her diary and the poem penned shortly after touching-down in Nazi-territory—that simple fact speaking volumes about the power of poetry, both in the moment, for the comfort of the self, as well as over time for the community: “Blessed is the match consumed in kindling flame. Blessed is the flame that burns in the secret fastness of the heart. Blessed is the heart with strength to stop its beating for honor's sake.”
In addition to Dr. Bettelheim’s objections, Otto Frank was criticized for de-Judaizing his daughter’s dairy, when he edited it, supposedly to to sell more copies or universalize it. Admittedly, Anne focused on feelings, not faith, and her story was about hiding, not the horror of the camps, making it more palatable for middleclass folks in atrocity avoidance or outright denial. Nevertheless, her diary proved significantly more powerful than the single pistol Bettelheim advised Frank to find and discharge into a Nazi. Indeed, Anne's private musings became the Holocaust’s loudest literary cri de coeur, the shot heard ‘round the world, and thoroughly heartbreaking, given the forgone finale of its loving and lovable protagonist, who bared her soul and stuck by her dreams— the triumph of love over hate, come what may. Sadly, she not only died but in a nauseating way, from typhus, mired in the filth of the Bergen-Belsen KL, a few weeks shy of V-Day, making her story a tale of one who perished, in accord with the dictum of “Son of Saul”'s creators. Regardless of the immensity of WWII's survival of the fittest struggle, Anne's diary proves the power of Darwin's second theory of sexual selection and Survival of the Lovingest. In point of fact, philosophies, art and other cultural memes come down through the ages not through genetics or histories written by victors but by culture and the democracy of human interest—people choosing to buy, read, quote to others or otherwise reproduce Anne's ideas. Indeed, the Franks, father and daughter, working together, gave loud voice to the barely-recognized but utterly essential Women’s Way of War.
War is mostly a male and macho affair, involving weapons, machines and masses of hierarchically-organized people, mostly men, who often start studying its difficult duties with toy guns around age three, just as even younger girls generally start channeling an interest in motherhood and families into doll-play. (Not entirely socially-programmed, it's a combo of genetic and cultural cues and both genders are astoundingly perceptive about practicing for the difficult tasks they may be called upon to perform.) Some women have always enlisted, of course, from Senesh to the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, where pistol-wielding women shocked SS man Stroop, or the American military, where exact gender equality became the law in late-2015, not to forget the Germanic tribes, whose Hildegardes and Brunhildas (meaning “battle-maiden" and “shield-maiden") fought alongside their men. Less well-known is that women have ALWAYS participated as FEMALES, instead of honorary men, but especially in the total wars of the 20th century: nursing and feeding fighters and civilians but also giving comfort, hope, romance and, of course, sex and, thereby, birth, despite the extreme duress of bringing new life into a graveyard. Not investigated much by feminists nor historians, although war philosopher Clausewitz cites the centrality of morale to the fight, WWW is as indispensable as it is obvious, given the presence of women on total war battlefields and the critical need to heal from so much injury, even in the middle of the maelstrom.
Anne Frank, age 12, at school, perhaps working on the diary which rocked the world. photo courtesy A. Frank House, Amsterdam
Admittedly, the lagers also were overflowing with laser beam-like self-interest, even among women. In a first-of-its-kind documentary, "Kitty: Return to Auschwitz" (1979, by an English TV station), Kitty Hart-Moxon tells of working as a Sonderkammando, as in “Son of Saul”, and about her mother, who was also in Auschwitz. Kitty recalls her mother's survival strategy as: First, I thought about myself, second about myself, and third, MYSELF! Alas, this is contradicted by the fact that, when selected for deportation to another camp, she stepped in front of the commandant car and demanded, in perfect German, that her daughter accompany her. He obliged, saving Kitty from the monthly Sonderkammando cullings. Admittedly, that was a blood connection but, from small gifts or "mere" words of encouragement to monumental acts of generosity, self-sacrifice and bullet-taking, Holocaust survivors depended not just on luck, as they often said, nor survival of the fittest, as others have disparaged, but Survival of the Lovingest. While near- or actual-homoerotic bonding is essential to all male fighting units, men rely on superior fire power to finish the job while the biggest gun in the little-examined Woman’s Way of War arsenal is love. As noted by Sappho, the famous bisexual poetess of ancient Greece (620-570 BC): "Some celebrate the beauty of knights, or infantry, or billowing flotillas at battle on the sea. Warfare has its glory, but I place far above these military splendors the one thing that you love... the power that none can disobey."
Not coincidentally, WWW and the Holocaust are intimately intertwined. Jews figured in many facets of the female German identity and culture for both anti-Semites and liberals. For the latter, there was respect for the gentler, more moral values of Judaism (Jews generally refrained from beating their children, a standard German pedagogical practice); there were many business arrangements between Prussian front men and Jewish secondary partners and vice versa when Jewish diplomats represented Prussia; there were marriages between Jewish women and gentile men. In fact, "Every German stallion deserves a Jewish mare" was a German saying while in Poland "Down with the Jews but the Jewesses with us" was a common refrain, especially among intoxicated men, as shown in "Shoah". The fact of the matter is, militarism is self-defeating in the home, an inherently matriarchal space. Under Judaism, the sabbath is governed by women, making it a goddess holiday from the patriarchal work week: women light the sacred candles, are encouraged to engage in sex and do NO chores, not even cook (unlike their Christian counterparts, who slave away on their sabbath). Meanwhile, male warriors often tire of battle maidens and turn to women of kinder, more romantic tribes, often recently conquered, although who by whom can be debated. German patriarchs may presume the Teutonic identity of their issue by Jewish wives without realizing that, to defend against rape after the Jewish Diaspora, the Jews reverted to matriarchal practice and made all children born of Jewesses automatic Jews. Sure, German-gentile-Jew is a meaningless assignation in a religiously free society but as Europe reached the apex of its anti-Semitic, "blame the other" orgy in the 1940s, it attained life-or-death as well as psycho-sexual significance. Indeed, that catastrophe involved insecure machos fleeing romantic responsibility and its humanist values, while killing off feminine virtues to prove their hardness, both in actual battle and symbolically to their buddies, a psychological phenomena explored by German sociologist Klaus Theweleit in his fascinating, two-part “Male Fantasies” (1970s, in English 1987). Citing examples from the diaries of Freikorpers and other sources, his first volume catalogs their out-sized female phobia of menstrual blood, naturally, but also liquids in general, and any displays of tenderness or weakness—indeed, many SS bore on their faces scars from the saber dueling long since outlawed elsewhere. The second book covers how they retooled themselves, physically and metaphorically, into men of steel, flesh machines, spiritual robots.
Holocaust Films/Books Chapter 5
Doniphan Blair is a writer, film magazine publisher, designer and filmmaker ('
Our Holocaust Vacation
'), who can be reached
Posted on Mar 01, 2016 - 03:20 AM