Historic Scars of Anti Semitism

“What I want you to take away from my life story is just how important it is to defend your freedom, at all costs. Experience has shown me that if you lose your freedom, you are condemned to fail.” (Leon Schgrin – Holocaust Survivor)

For many individuals of Jewish faith, Anti-Semitism presents a stark reality of cruel injustice that has continued throughout history. Ponder the endless clash of Judaism vs. Christianity concerning the holy  presence of God and Jesus Christ. Think of the coldly systematic extermination of over 6,000, 000 Jews in war torn Europe. Or imagine the Nazi induced fears of Anne Frank and her Jewish family hiding in an Amsterdam attic to maintain their daily  survival. Some racist conspiracy advocates even deny that the “Holocaust” ever took place. Click on the link below for a more detailed video documentation of Anti Semitism throughout European  history. 

Clearly, Anti-Semitism  presents a serious problem in many  countries throughout the world today as well. Witness the anti-Jewish  hatred expressed in “right wing”  political rallies or examine the ominous statistical trends of such prejudice  rendered in the pictures below. Oddly, however, I have rarely seen evidence of such blatant racism in my daily life routine in suburban South Florida. In fact, my friends/acquaintances with solidly Jewish roots excel in religious, business, and educational  careers. While I thus conceded my own naïveté on this subject, I deeply desired to gain a more focused perspective about this historically human tragedy by way of my world travels.           

My Fall 2018 tourist visits to three history museums in Italy and France  thus revealed the incidence of Anti- Semitism more intensely.  The resultant  blog entry here intends primarily to serve here as an informational  tool for my readers to understand the serious nature of  this enduring problem. I also hope that social media interest in my blog  provides momentum for supporting policies of political action to fight back against this rising scourge of Anti Semitism in the United States  today. 

B54CAA29-5B8E-4ECD-AB99-A2418E720335

Rome Italy – Historical Museum of the Liberation of Rome

Picture an Italian residence standing inconspicuously on a side street  leading away from the bustling center of Rome. Transform this house into a secretive Nazi facility of black darkened windows and walled up interrogation rooms designed for systematic torture and ultimate deportation to death  for thousands of Jews during World War II. Such heinous crimes of Anti- Semitic inhumanity  were exhibited in full display on my recent visit to Rome this past September. Lining the halls along our tour of the facility, I noted the chilling presence of official, Anti – Jewish manifestos, death order records, as well as wall charts branding Jews  with inferior yellow star status. Such evidence indicated a ruthless Nazi resolve to complete their Holocaust mission in war-torn Europe at that time. 

Turckheim, France (Alsace Lorraine) – Musee Du Memorial des  Combats 

The quaint medieval town of Turckheim appeared at first glance on our recent visit as  a “fairy tale” land of bright flowered cottages, intimate French cafes , and inviting cobblestone passageways. Yet Turckheim lies in the strategically valuable plains of Alsace -Lorraine, a politically contested area historically belonging to both Germany and France. As Allied troops in World War  II fought Nazi armies to free Alsace from German occupation, a murderous reign of Jewish arrests and Nazi camp deportations took place from here and in the more populated surrounding cities of Colmar and Strasbourg. 

As I descended to a small cellar now functioning as a small museum in the center of town, I learned that this place  had functioned as a dismal shelter of refuge for town residents from the surrounding war battleground in 1944-1945. I thus imagined the Nazi Anti Semitism factor  surfacing at the time while  families lived in fear here without electricity and water here while sleeping on dark and dirty floors to avoid enemy detection. As I photographed a vast collection of Nazi weaponry/pro- Hitler artifacts  in prominent display here, I logically reasoned then that such Jewish fears  were justified. 

Paris , France – The Shoah Memorial/Holocaust Museum

The Marais district of Paris exists today as a bustling center of activity for the Judaism faith.  Jewish children busily scurry to Hebrew school. An orthodox rabbi sits quietly on a bench to recite his lines for his latest sermon. A Jewish family informally gathers together at home for “Shabbat” meal at Friday sunset.  Such freedoms to learn, worship, and assemble seemed miraculous in view of the human atrocities resulting from Anti- Semitism observed at the Memorial de la Shoah on our most recent visit. 

As a relatively recent addition to the Marais district in 2005, the Shoah induced me to feel shock  and hope  with respect to the Anti- Semitism problem. Along the exterior  of the facility,  the extensive list of Holocaust names  inscribed on the “Wall Of  Remembrance” certainly provided overwhelming negative outrage. In the interior galleries, the presence of Nazi storage cabinets containing personal documents/ physical object collections of Holocaust victims as well as adjoining photo collages of Jewish victims equally repulsed me then. 

 More positively, I now realized that the  egregious evils of  Anti-Semitism so graphically exposed at the Shoah provided a valuable educational tool  to inspire new generations to change such prejudicial thinking. For new leaders would be discovered at ongoing workshops, debates, and conferences… offered at this museum to instill new optimism that these historic evils of Anti-Semitism would never again be repeated. 

Research Sources

https://onstageformyselfnow.blog/2018/10/30/south-florida-plea-for-unity/

http://musee.turckheim-alsace.com/

https://www.romeinformation.it/en/museum-of-the-liberation-of-rome/

http://www.memorialdelashoah.org/en/english-version.html

http://theday.co.uk/politics/rising-alarm-over-incidences-of-anti-semitism

Author:

I accomplished a rewarding career as a teacher and professor for 28 years.No more daily lesson plans now frees my curious mind to experience life on my own terms now.

9 thoughts on “Historic Scars of Anti Semitism

  1. All of the places we visited were very moving. At The Shoah Museum I went to tears. And now here in the US, open your eyes and hearts to what happened in Pittsburgh, PA. Also, a lawyer sent a written threat to kill or injure a rabbi who leads a congregation in Weston, FL, according to an arrest warrant. Peace on Earth appears to be an unattainable dream.

    Like

  2. Outstanding blog! Thank you for so much for posting. My father’s family who lived in Paris but were deported to Auschwitz and died there have their names on the wall you saw. Heartbreaking. 😢

    Like

  3. The situation in the world today is frightening and disturbing. I can only hope that if each of us do what we can to extinguish hate and prejudice in our own little corner of the world, we will survive. Factual education is the key.
    Thank you for posting.

    Like

  4. Thank you for sharing this! Seeing the different triangle colors and stars shows that there were so many different kinds of people that were forced to endure this cruelty. I will never understand just how someone can hate a group of people to the degree of actively planning and carrying out their demise. Although we believe that in the US the constitution and other foundational documents protect its citizens, everyone that is not a white heterosexual is susceptible to experiencing these types of abuses, especially Jews and people of color. I have hope that God’s promise to rid this world of evil, hate and wickedness (Psalms 37:10,11) is soon fulfilled as I don’t think we’ll be able to continue carrying on like this forever.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s