This is the second of 3 interviews with personal friend, the children of Survivors of the Holocaust. These interviews are devoted to the memories and our obligation to remember so we can tell the following generations of the horrors inflected by Nazi Germany and their Allies of Evil. Entire generations and families have been wiped out. These are the stories of the children of the survivors. So some day we might forgive but we may never forget!
How was your family impacted by the Holocaust?
Both my parents are Jewish and at both sides most of the families were murdered in concentration camps. My mother had the luck of being on an excursion with school when the Nazi’s raided their house and took my grandparents and uncle away. A teacher understood what happened and brought my mother to a farm in the south. The farmer family took her and organized false papers. My mother stayed there in hiding throughout the occupation and after that she was officially adopted by the family, now my family. All family member of my mother were killed by the Germans.
My father was 11 when the war started in Holland. His family was spread between Amsterdam and Rotterdam. My grandfather brought the children in hiding with brave families, his brother did the same. I am sad to tell you that most of the family members were captured by the Germans and they also executed the families who tried to hide them. My father, my uncle and aunt barely survived in camps where they were abused as workforce. A few months after the war, my uncle died. His body was weakened from all the beatings and lack of food and he couldn’t recover anymore.
So my mother, my father and my aunt are the only survivors. Before the war, the families of my mother and father were over 100 people and they even knew each other. A cousin of my father was engaged to the niece of my mother before the war broke out. Only 3 survived. Only 3! That is what the Nazis did to my family.
How has the Holocaust impact you personally?
I have no family besides my sister and my parents. My aunt died before I was borne. The family which adopted my mother are very loving, very special. The bravery they showed during the war is still with them in everything they do. I consider them my family and with saying that, I again realize that they are not my real family. I can start crying when I see family gatherings in the park. Since I was a kid, I am aware that my family was taken away from me. It has impacted my personality and emotions, it gave me long depressions. I am not able to bond, I fear that it will be taken away from me. All the therapy didn’t change that.
I am alone, I can’t accept people close to me. I tried to have a relationship, I really tried. But I can’t, I run away and destroy everything. My family was taken away from me and I feared it would happen again, I still do. Now it is too late for me, I am old.
How do you feel about the current events in Ukraine and the open glorification of Nazi collaboration?
I don’t understand how anyone in his right mind can do this. Are they blind and deaf? Or do they know and approve? The Ukrainians were very active in the Holocaust and the concentration camps but I was hoping they would all have been punished for their crimes or dead. As it turns out, the next generation is maybe even worse and they don’t even hide their preferences.
The criminal Bandera is seen as a Hero by many, even by the state! Can you image that NSB’ers would be declared Hero’s of the Nation in our country? I know there are neo-nazis everywhere but not as part of the Government as far as I know. In Ukraine they are the Government! I shiver when I see them in television or internet. I fully understand that the Russian population is afraid of them and wants to defend themselves. After all, they have done it before, what would keep them from starting the next Holocaust? They are the Hero’s of the Nation…