WE started this on Tuesday, but only finished now. And even that we didn't finish...
Somehow 1/IX/1939 never really "made it" to the Hungarian calendar. We start in '43 or '44. maybe a little earlier for the Munkatabor folks. ----- Imagine yourself going to shul in the afternoon after a day's work and being greeted by German tanks. Not exactly what you needed after maybe having it out with your boss, or being told that your work here is done and to look for another job... But it DID happen - on a nice late summer's day. Schneur complains about our lack of holocaust knowledge and study, but that could very easily be explained - no matter where your ancestors came from. It's all about - where you shtam from. If your zeides are/were Polish, chances are they suffered through 5+ years of hell - sorry, heck. Any person that made it out and built a family, and has grandkids, his grandkids will probably tell you that he was a nervous old man by the time they got to know him. He never sat with the grandkids and told them how he survived, he just tried to forget those terrible times. Only recently have many begun to pen their memories; and had that not happened much of that would've been forgotten. Find me a man of Polish descent who knows how his zeide survived those 5+ years and I'll bake him a potato kugel. Hungarian style.
Kutno Ghetto, October, 1939
Even the Hungarians, who fancy themselves great historians and fighters for tradition, know little about their family history during the war, unless theirs is some sort of Rebbishe story, or there was some great "smuggle across the border" story. Most others will tell you that the old folks never said much because remembering was just too difficult. My own mother zg"z tells of those terrifying seder nights as a kid, an only child at that, when her parents would sit and cry the night through, remembering the Golus Mitzrayim they had encountered just a few short years before. And they were Hungarian, they didn't have the 5+ years in the lager, but they DID lose entire familes, including husbands, wives and children. The point is that people who suffered so, and for whom thinking about it was such a terrible thought, didn't sit their children down and explain to them the step-by-step process of extermination of Hungarian Jewry. So yes, you may know what happened to Hungarian Jewry in general, but you probably know very little about your particular family. By the time you were old enough to ask or be interested chances are that the zeides and bubbes were already gone to a better place...
We need to talk about the Russians, but there's no time now. We'll do that after Shabbos, iy"h.
Both of my parents are survivors and they rarely talked. I think it is survivor guilt, how can they talk about starvation, hiding, escaping and their families were murdered, HY"D. I think the concentration camp survivors are more willing to open up, since they lived in a real physical hell, so this may account for the hungarians being more open about it.
Did you see this!! I just thought it was amazing. Color. Clarity. Together with all the feelings it brought out.
Ask Mordechai ben David, Mendy Werdyger, their 2 brothers and their sons how their zeide survived in Poland. While the book was not great R. Dovid Werdyger did write about his experiences during the war and the book came out years ago.
I guess you owe the Werdygers a kugel.
OK Tzig,the Kiegel question: My grandfathers didn´t survive. But may father and mother did. You are right, they didn´t want to tell me how. But I overheard when they spoke with other survivors. Both my parents hade professions that the Germans needed in their war industry. They were taken to forced work. And when the Germans in 1944-1945 didn´t need their kind of work any more, they were healthy enough to survive long marches and other kinds of German evilties. Those who didn´t have a needed profession or lost their health were killed.
The Kiegel you promised you should give to somebody who needs it more than I.
who speaks like that
Kigel, is more like it. Like a "shvoh" sound under the K.
I speak like that! I am living in a non-english speaking country in Europe. And that is the way I spell the word if I want to pronounce the it correctly.
Nu, will you give the Kiegel (Kigel) to a needy person/family or not? If not I have to take the cake to our local Lubavitcher ;)
Anon 1:19:00 AM
Thanks for the link. It's a hair raising numbing tingling video.
Thank you it is nice and learning experience, when my son grows older I would definitely recommend
der alter naar harry is back plodding thru the mud in the center of the road....
shlomoc.com has a most inspiring pre rosh hashona video of shlomo
The chuster Rov, I think is the only Hungarian rov that put out a detailed history or his survival,
Tzig. You are correct as far as you go, but you are not going the distance.You seem to place all the responsibility on the parents.
If the 2nd and 3rd generation were dependent on their parents and grandparents for instruction in Yiddishkayt (Jewish religion) ochen vay ! We would all be lost, and anyone growing uo in the 1950 and early 1960's 's knows what I am speaking about. Except for a small group of Chassidim and perhaps a few Hungarian Jews all the Shearis hapleita Jews including those now walking about in bekishes and beards were very shvach in Yiddishkayt and not just in minhogim.It was the Orthodox schools that saved the day.
So what transmitted Yiddishkayt - our schools the day schools, yeshivas , chedorim etc . There Jewsih values and dinim were taught.That together with the jewish culture in their homes created our new world of Orthodoxy.
So Reb Tzig why was the Holocaust not taught in day schools and chedorim of all stripes ? Why is it still not taught. Why in schools where the day starts before 9 Am and ceases after 6PM can 50 minutes weekly not be found to study the Holocaust. Why in summer camps can this not be studied. Are the menahelim scared that their camps will be turned into the type camp where the grandparents of the kids spent their "good" years.The question stares us in our face why are we ignoring the Holocaust. the secular Jewish community started coming to terms with the events in 1980 and earlier , we seem just to be starting at least certain groups. Do our "gedolim" have theological problems ? Are they worried about their emunah ? Or could it be that most of our preent day gedolim and their parents were in America in 1939 and perhaps feel guilty about having done almost nothing to help their brothers in Europe.
About 10 years ago Rav Moshe Meiselman the grandson of Rav Moshe Soloveitchik wrote an excellent piece about the Holocaust in his journal called Oraisa and among other things he stated that no generation of Jews ever responded to catastrophe with silence. Not the Churban Bayis Sheni, nor the events of 1492 , or the events of 1648-1658 or toher gezeiroth. Why the silence ??
IN another area go through years of issues of magazines like Jewish Action, the JO, KFAR CHABAD,Jewish Life (came out until 1973 by the OU) and you find very few articles about the Churban. Only Dos Yiddishe Vort edited by Reb Yossef Friedenson covered the Churban as it should have been. Amazing in the 1950's and 1960's the survivors were alive and magazines from the whole rainbow of Orthodoxy ignored the Holocaust and I include the Jewish Life, Tradition,Yiddish Heim (I can hardly recall more than a few pieces here ) and the JEWISH PRESS. What we did have were pieces by R. Hutner blaming the Zionists for the Holocaust.
There was and to a degree still is a conspiracy of silence about the Holocaust in the Orthodox world. Thank G-D in many chugim its changing.
Ginzbergs father in law
Sorry Mr Guma.
Chuster Rov -Reb Yeshua Grunwald z"l.
Ainikel of the Arugas Habosem.
He lived on 12 Ave in Boro Park. Was niftar 1969.
Wrote "Aayinn Dimoh" as a Hakdomo to his sefer "Chesed Yehoshua". A chiuv to read.
for those that share the pain of the tragic loss of the radziner rebbe zatzal, it would be kiday to buy the new sefer just published by the family that was the rebbes last project before he was nistalek, it is on orchos chaim, very timely and well done. you may also take note of tyhe integrity and brutal poilishe honesty with the titles and honorifics. im sure it will be a chizuk for the family if it should sell out as tiferes yeruchim did. at least in lakewood it did...
Why "a conspiracy of silence about the Holocaust in the Orthodox world"? First of all, there is no silence in the Orthodox world in general, it is in the Chareidi world you have the BIG silence. And a piece of the answer to the "why" is that the post-WWII "Gedolim" can´t explain why not only zionists but even anti-zionist real Gedolim and their innocent familys and followers went up the Chimneys, and what would have happened if we had had a Jewish state. Perhaps e.g. my brother and sister would have lived longer than 12 and 9 years.
Anon 3:39 - Thanks for that information. Surprisingly, it was written in 5708. Literally just after the war ended.
The sefer is online at Hebrewbooks.org. Just looked it up.
High school children may be too young to grasp the depth of the tragedy, and if they do they may lack the inner resources to continue to live with hope and determination.
A partial explantion for not paying sufficient attention to the Holocaust might be that the usual narrative linking the tragic fate of European Jews with the heroism in the establishment of the State of Israel is unappealing to charedim. Frum Jews end up looking too passive and lacking in courage.
I want to mention an important book by Rebetzin Esther Farbstein, "Hidden in Thunder, Perspectives on Faith, Halacha and Leadership During the Holocaust." I felt that after reading this very serious and well researched book I had a much better understanding of the role of rabbinical leadership during the Nazi occupation of Poland and Hungary. She has a new perspective on the actions of the Satmar, Belzer and Gerer Rebbes during the war, plus much else.
In Once Upon a Shtetl: A Fond Look Back at a Treasured Slice of Jewish Past, Chaim Shapiro states that the mehalach of many gedolim he spoke with was simply VaYidom Aharon.
"High school children may be too young to grasp the depth of the tragedy", that´s correct. But if you can teach non-Jewish high school kids about the Holocaust, as is the fact in many European countries,it looks like some kind of cover up not to teach the same to jewish kids of the same age.
The teshuvas Mekadshai Hashem by Reb Hirshel Miezels of chicago is full of historical facts on the war WW11 some of them seem fictional but he was a odom godal and honest.
Its ironic that from the Satmar camp that they unofficially have a tendency to low profile the holocaust, since it can wake up a revenge feeling to the gentile(that we have to fear 24/7)or chas vesholem a prohibitive thought that it is the right and logical thing to have our own piece of land with a few F16, but its shocking that Sender Deutsch their propaganda minister, had a soft spot for the history of the war , and he wrote some books on its history
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