Saturday, June 05, 2010

The Holocaust

For some reason--must be Providence, because it's certainly not a conscious decision--I've been focused on World War II lately, specifically the Holocaust.

It started a couple of months ago, when my book club read SARAH'S KEY, an excellent book about how the Jews in France were rounded up and deported to concentration camps after the Nazi occupation.

Then last month we read SUITE FRANCAISE, an uncompleted novel about the Nazi occupation of France. The book was written by a Jewish-converted-Catholic woman who was herself swept up by the Nazis, so she didn't live to complete the other three books in her intended "suite" of stories.

A couple of nights ago I watched a documentary about Hitler's occupation of Hungary, and how he sped up the destruction of the Jews even as he was losing the war. A tonight I watched "Into the Arms of Strangers," another documentary about the kindertransport--a program that moved Jewish children from Germany and Austria to England for the duration of the war. Many of those children never saw their parents again; some did.

The thing that struck me, though, as I watched these now aged children share their stories, was that England was the only country that volunteered to take these children. A congressman in the United States proposed a bill that would allow our country to take in these children, but it died in committee reportedly because "taking children without their parents went against the law of God."

Ten thousand children were spared because they were transported to England in 1939. Once the Nazis stopped allowing the transport and began to move Jewish people to concentration camps, 1,500,000 children were killed by the Nazis.

Our country has done many things that make me proud. Refusing to take in these children, however, is not one of them. May God forgive us.



Mocha with Linda said...

I bet my girl would enjoy that movie. That's one of her favorite time periods to read about or watch.

Mocha with Linda said...

Oh, and yes, I'm astounded that the USA didn't take any kids!

Lynda in MO said...

Angie, funny you should say that - i'm also in a WW2 mood these days in my reading. I just finished a wonderful book called All the Way Home, by Ann Tatlock - it's about a young girl who befriends a Japanese-American family, who then get sent to an internment camp after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. It's a thought-provoking story given today's issues regarding racial profiling. I downloaded the audio version from Audible on my Ipod - wonderfully narrated!

Anonymous said...

There are some who believe that the USA will become like Germany in the future. God may be preparing your heart....