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May We Never Forget

Updated on March 22, 2009
Awaiting death at Auschwitz
Awaiting death at Auschwitz
Adolph Hitler
Adolph Hitler
The people cheering for him.
The people cheering for him.
He was respected and trusted.
He was respected and trusted.

The Lessons of History

The words Hitler and Auschwitz may conjure up pictures of a horrible era in history. We have seen the pictures of those half dead. The people with sunken, lifeless eyes and bony bodies of the death camps. Today, the overwhelming impact of what happened is fading. Their deaths are becoming just a symbol of what happened a long time ago; like a face on a milk carton.

Not long ago, during WWII, millions of people where murdered, starved to death, tortured, burned and shot. Babies and children were not spared. Surgical experiments where performed on adults and children alike without anesthesia. The Nazi’s and German doctors who performed these atrocities lived normal lives. They had families, children of their own and most were well educated.

How could this have happened ? The German people were desperate for relief from the awful suffering they endured brought on by the Great Depression. Millions were unemployed, thousands of small businesses had failed, homelessness and starvation were real possibilities for everyone. Adolf Hitler was elected Chancellor of Germany in 1933. He was a well spoken, charismatic leader who told the people of Germany what they wanted to hear and they followed him like sheep. It happened because the people of the nation where hungry for change, uninformed, misinformed and lied to. What is to stop something like this from happening to us again? If we don’t learn from the mistakes of history we are doomed to repeat them.

Adolph Hitler hated Jews. Ya Vashem, the National Authority for the Remembrance of the Martyrs and Heroes of the Holocaust said his research indicated that the hated people were murdered at a rate of around 500 a day. Non-Jews where also targeted for elimination. The people who where ill with fatal diseases or mentally challenged where also killed. Like they where disgusting bugs to be stamped out. 6,000,000 Jews were killed by the Nazi Germany. 1.5 million children were murdered- more than 1.2 million Jewish children, tens of thousands of Gypsy children and thousands of handicapped children.

Do you hear their screams? Can you imagine even one minute of the horror they indured? Can you see the faces of the children as they where torn from their mothers arms? Can you see the mass graves filled with human bodies? Sons, daughters, mothers and fathers suddenly taken away, never to be seen again. All of them completely innocent. This will happen again if we do not heed the lessons that history can teach us. We must listen.

What group of people gets your blood boiling? Who is it that disgusts you? What views do you get angry over? Pro-Choice activists? Homosexuals? Christian Pro-Life activists? Illegal Aliens? Democrats? Republicans? Jews? Blacks? Skin-heads? Atheists? Whites? Americans? Homeless people? Those on welfare?

It is important to have our individual opinions. To be able voice them. It is when our views become laced with disdain that we enter into the danger zone. Do you have negative thoughts about a certain group of people? Even perhaps wanted to spit on them? Would prefer that they where not part of our society? So did Hitler and his regime.

We are doomed to repeat history if we do not learn from it.


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    • BirteEdwards profile image


      10 years ago

      I want to recommend you on a well written article on a subject that still causes pain to so many, and to look into the background on how and what happened.

      When I say pain it includes those who survived the horrors and have had to live with their memories of the events and the loved ones that perished.

      When I say pain, and here I transgress into reply to above comment, I talk about the pain of denial. Being the child of a survisor, I can only completely disagree with everything written in paragraph one.

      Truth-Hammer, you talk about historical accuracy and the need to have all sides of events exposed. At the same time you totally denigrate the evidence of the horrors, deny them and place them into a category of hoaxes by US State Department and others.

      Allow me to ask: is denial of one side of the picture a way of stating both sides clearly? You may agree or not with the evidence of the survivors, of the American and British armies when liberating the camps, the evidence of pedantic record keeping by the Nazi's themselves and more. But to deny these events as outright lies is to discredit yourself and your obstensible "objectivity".

      At the same time you contradict yourself when saying that the world and the German people knew of the content of Mein Kampf. Where I do agree with you is that it is up to each of us to decide whether the contents of a book speak to us.

      When remembering the Holocaust, nobody is denying or forgetting or overseeing the horrors imposed by Communist regime in Easter Europe. As a fact I can tell you that in the country where many survivors settled after the Holocaust (Israel), these horrors are also remembered and taught.

      To say that the French and the British in conjunction with the Americans turned a local regional conflict into a global one, is to distort history. It became a global conflict when the Nazis allies, Japan, attacked Pearl Harbor. Until then it was a regional conflict, if you can call Europe regional.

      You seem to consider yourself a true historian. If so, do look and present all sides as objectively as possible.

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Dear Tomato:

      Interesting point. Yes, history *should* be remembered. But whose history? Which version? Should historical review be made accurate, so the discerning individual will know *which* history to remember? Should we examine made-up history to suit one's political agenda and justify one's actions? Or factual history?Since you are interested in sharing your particular point of view, here are a few actual historical points of note for you:

      1) Auschwitz WWII abuse and gassing tales have long since been completely discredited, even by a few brave Jews. If you live outside of Western Europe (inside of which actual historical discussion has been criminalized), you are still (for now,) able to read and educate yourself on Auschwitz, the actual conditions, actual numbers of people incarcerated there, the fact that 'gassings' were a hoax perpetrated by the U.S. Department of Psychological Warfare in conjunction with the British and Russians. Discredited too are the "shrunken heads," "skin-based lampshades," and other such carnival nonsense. True historians are fortunate to now live in an era in which at least the Russians have since de-classified many documents regarding camps, numbers, and the Russian roles in vilifying same. The U.S. will not do the same for some of its activities, out of deference to the British and Russians, plus its own role in globalizing two major wars.

      2) Comparing Hitler to Obama, is like comparing George Washington to Robert Mugabe. One was white, one was black, and the similarities end there.

      3) It is rank falsehood to make statements about a whole people "not knowing" or "not understanding" Hitler's intentions, his party, or anything else about the National Socialist Party Platform. Considering the tsunami of 74 years western media dogma (both before, during, and after WWII), it can perhaps be forgiven that people today do not "remember" that Mein Kampf was a best seller in its day, as was its sequel. Both were translated into multiple languages, including English, and distributed globally both **before** and **during** the war. The foreword to the English translation in 1939 described the German situation accurately and factually. Though Jewish media interests have since gone to feverish lengths to paint "Mein Kampf" as the demonic ramblings of a lunatic --presumably to deter factual study -- the fact remains that as a book, it contains a very clear statement of one man's intent, and model for implementation. One need not agree or disagree with the book's contents to appreciate the fact that it was quite and overtly clear in its aims and intended results.

      4) Historical point of fact:  Jewish pressure groups organized a global German boycott in 1933, and called it a "War". Check the year, and compare it with the actual timeline of actual events in Europe.

      5) As the world's most advanced nation of its time, and one of the most literate, to say or infer that Germans were somehow just "stupid, desperate, and bilked by a madman" is not only a rash insult, it does not pass the litmus test of historical veracity. The German people understood their position in Europe all too clearly, and made their decisions by popular vote. If one needs further evidence of ingrained support and popularity, one can look to the "De-Nazification" purges conducted in Europe. "Purges" were conducted due to the lingering popularity of a political system of, by, and for a particular kind of people.

      6) As a point of historical remembrance, many may not know the French and British role in WWII, and how the British in conjunction with the Americans, turned a local regional conflict into a truly global one.

      7) The link list at the bottom of your Hub is slanted and skewed toward a propagandized perspective of the war.

      8)Historical analysis point to ponder: consider all actual mass death and suffering inflicted on Central and Eastern Europe during 45+ years of Communist reign. Or, consider the historical facts of a near-death alcoholic (Churchill) and crippled/mentally diseased (Roosevelt) sitting with the world's highest-ranking murderer (Stalin) and passing arbitrary divisions on Central and Eastern Europe. Does the balanced historical reviewer really believe that Central and Eastern Europe would have fared worse under a highly sophisticated, clean, non-polluted, technologically advanced, and literate National Socialist regime than it did under Jewish Bolshevik Communism? Seriously? Compare 1950's Western German living standards with that of 1950's and 60's standards in Romania for instance. Food for historical thought.

      9) Turning the lens of history for a moment to Mr. Obama, there is one parallel (and only one) which can be realistically drawn between Messrs. Obama and Hitler. And that is that each has clearly stated his intentions and political point of view. However, unlike the global reading public in the pre-WWII historical state of the globe, Mr. Obama's true political leanings were simply, shall we say "not covered" in most mainstream media. However, reparations, selective distribution of wealth to Blacks, disregard of Whites, and the use of the judicial system to enact his policies, were clearly stated many years ago.

      I'll finish by saying that I do agree with you that all points of view should be welcomed, but that really means *all*, including the historically accurate ones, and not just the slanted media-interested ones. A true historian will examine all fact in evidence before making his or her determinations.

      All the best!


    • Mr. Upper Darby profile image

      Mr. Upper Darby 

      10 years ago from Pennsylvania

      C.C.Riter I may have been a little hasty about the people of Germany knowing what Hitler was capable of but there's one thing I hit right on the head.

      We do not know anything about the Obama either....and I see on just about every site I visit more and more people are starting to ask questions. I just wish we all would have made him answer some questions before putting him that office.

    • born to be free profile image

      born to be free 

      10 years ago

      I've watched people for quite some time, in my observations I have noticed something. In my opinion, a form of shock has set in; many became hopeless because of what has been happening around the World.

      In just a few short years we have beheld disasters of Biblical proportions. Earthquakes that have killed tens of thousands, A Tsunami that took 225,000 lives, fires across America that destroyed in one month more than the previous twenty years combined, entire cities destroyed by Hurricanes, weather changes around the globe and Science warning that we have crossed some line that we will pay dearly for, the economy, the wars, and so many other issues.

      Though many may not even recognize they are in such shock, I have heard reports of escalating cases where Doctors are reporting thousands of patients who have entered a state of being lethargic, out of touch. 

      Being hopeless is one of the most horrible feelings one can have, you will do just about anything to relieve its' crushing weight. I was homeless at one point, and I can tell you, after a few days you begin to enter a state of mind where your mind has to shut down because as hope slips away the torment that replaces it will destroy you.

      The only reason I escaped it was a friend happened to see me walking the streets and he picked me up. As I explained my situation to him he offered me a job, I went to work that very day, and I worked hard and got back on my feet.

      Dictators prey on hopelessness.


    • Mr. Upper Darby profile image

      Mr. Upper Darby 

      10 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Hitler and Obama. Two great dictators. Obama is taking away free speach, censoring the press, taking away our rights to have a gun and he thinks he is the answer for every problem.

      At least with Hitler everyone knew where he stood but with the Obama we know nothing..

    • profile image

      C. C. Riter 

      10 years ago

      Well said, ne obliviscaris. Thanks great hub


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