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Auschwitz Preservation Effort - NYTIMES article 4/15/2015

Discussion in 'Concentration, Death Camps and Crimes Against Huma' started by Incessant, Apr 16, 2015.

  1. Incessant

    Incessant New Member

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  2. edhunter76

    edhunter76 Member

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    During my visit in Auschwitz and Birkenau I was very annoyed about the fact that people have carved all kind of greetings to the walls etc. Especially in Birkenau there are just couple of stone barracks left and there were all kind of stupid writings in the walls like "Sven was here in 1995, greetings from Sweden". Disrespectful and disgrace.

    So I don't mind about little preservation work and it is anyway important to keep those places alive.
     
  3. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member

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    Agreed. The issue remains that the education of youth on the Holocaust is very suspect. Many want to do everything to forget but it's quite the opposite. Preserving the historical significance of this dark period in history (especially for the local population who may have had a hand in it) is crucial to education. Being an educator I see many colleagues scoff at the idea of instructing the Holocaust and the lessons it provides. "It won't do them any good," they retort. "Why focus on evil? We should be positive." And many other explanations similar. If every human were to visit these sites and or museums with authenticity, we may stamp out some of the disrespect and create better character individuals.
     
  4. gtblackwell

    gtblackwell Well-Known Member

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    Indeed the sign at Auschwitz is a replica but the original was recovered, cut into three pieces by the thieves. It is now in the Auschwitz Birkenau State Museum. The Dachau sign was never recovered so putting them inside a museum is safe keeping. The Quadria, the four bronze houses on the roof of St. Mark's in Venice, stolen by Napoleon, are replicas, the returned originals are safely inside. Michelangelo's David in front of the Uffizi is a replica, the original is in the Academia near by. All considered too valuable to expose.

    Passing generations never hold previous icons in the value earlier ones did, just a sad fact of life To me the "Death Camps" are a notable exception. I feel they should be maintained and repaired as needed so they do not deteriorate into oblivion. A good German friend took his children to Dachau a few years ago. They were early teens and ask hundreds of questions which he thought were difficult and healthy at the same time. He told me he wanted the truth about his country's role in WW2 known to his children.I use to accompany architecture students on our Studies Abroad Program and depending on our route would announce that I was going to Dachau or Theresienstadt ( There are numerous spellings ) for a day trip and anyone interested could come. Those that did invariably thanked me. It is a powerful and moving experience .. I did not know of any other faculty that did take them. The first time I simply took all of them but some parents complained saying it was not something they wanted their children to see. They could have argued it was not architecture.

    I have not been to Dachau in years and do not know it's state. But Theresienstadt, the so called "Model Camp is kept in good repair. It was not an extermination camp but rather a transient one. The Swiss red Cross were allowed to visit, a village was built for the officer;s and men, with tennis courts and a pool, a school for their children. But people passed through it on the way to labor or death camps. 10,000 people are buried there, they did have firing squads and a small crematorium . Most of those buried were Czech partisans.

    I have often wondered how SS soldiers could send their children off to school then go next door and send children off to be killed. The frightening part is that was not long ago. When you go to Germany today you find bright, hardworking, courteous people that tell me there is a monster inside all of us, less we guard against it.

    The camps , sadly, will mean less and less as time passes I passed through Magdeburg in about 1995 and the entry point of the rail and road connecting Berlin to the West . All the wire checkpoints, towers, bunkers were said to be destined to become a museum to the Cold War. My next time through, perhaps five years later , looked like a shopping area outside Phoenix. Politics and money will out in many cases.

    Gaines
     
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  5. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    Some states require instruction on the Holocaust, most do not. That is a very sad state of affairs. Pennsylvania makes it a recommendation as an important part of recent history. but provides no force to make sure it is taught.

    As time goes by, the Holocaust, or Shoah, will recede to the past and be no more relevant than the 30 Years War unless we take steps to keep the horror alive. Sadly, as the survivors of the Holocaust diminish, the deniers grow stronger. We need to do all we can to prevent this from happening.
     
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  6. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Yes...and no.

    The law signed last year keeps the door open for requiring schools to teach the Holocaust. If, by 2017, less than 90% of the schools are teaching the Holocaust, the state will enact rules and regulations requiring the Holocaust to be taught.
    http://www.legis.state.pa.us/CFDOCS/Legis/PN/Public/btCheck.cfm?txtType=PDF&sessYr=2013&sessInd=0&billBody=H&billTyp=B&billNbr=1424&pn=3712
     
  7. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    I've read over HB 1424, and I'll wait to see if the regulations are adopted. I hope they are.
     
  8. Takao

    Takao Ace

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    Me too. From what I remember from the upper grades back in the 80's, it was only briefly touched upon.
     
  9. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    I taught in Pennsylvania for 35 years. While there was no mandate then (I retired in 2003), I made sure I taught it in my Social Studies classes, whether it was in my European History class, or in my World Geography class. However, I'm sure others didn't. I sure hope it is mandated.
     
  10. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member

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    The CT guidelines are almost identical to PA. It's a recommendation, not a directive. Not tough enough, IMO, but at least those educators who are forward thinking can take some initiative.
     
  11. Incessant

    Incessant New Member

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    I think it should be mandatory to teach of the Holocaust in all High Schools. I assume it is mandatory in Germany?
     
  12. KJ Jr

    KJ Jr Well-Known Member

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    I agree.
     

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