Instead of Truth about the Holocaust – Myths about Saving Jews

January 15, 2013 2:53 am 2 comments

Survivors of the Mauthausen concentration camp cheer the soldiers of the Eleventh Armored Division of the U.S. Third Army one day after their actual liberation in May 1945. Photo: National Archives and Records Administration.

Neither I nor my wife Anita are specialist researchers of the Holocaust. We are simply witnesses saved by a miracle. Until the last days of our lives we will consider the Righteous to be saints, the only ray of light in the darkest world of murderers and collaborators, like Juozas Brazaitis–Ambrazevičius, Antanas Impulevičius and Aleksandras Lileikis.

In 1998, the International Commission for the Evaluation of Crimes of the Nazi and Soviet Occupation Regimes in Lithuania was formed by decree of the president of Lithuania.

Everybody agrees that these two regimes have a lot in common and their crimes need objective and unbiased evaluation. However, I will never agree with the idée fixe of the president of this commission, Mr Emanuelis Zingeris, about the complete identity of these regimes, with attempts to equate the Holocaust and Stalin’s crimes against the Lithuanian people. However, my opinion will hardly be of interest for Mr Zingeris, a Lithuanian politician of Jewish descent. To my mind, the authorities are using his Jewish descent.

In recent years, attempts for the mass rehabilitation of Nazi collaborators have been made in Lithuania. Some collaborators were even reburied with military honors like national heroes. Simultaneously, myths about Jews are being created and disseminated. I’d like to share with the world by whom and how this is done. No fiction, just pure facts.

The commission mentioned above held a European forum at the Lithuanian Parliament on November 15-16 titled “United Europe – United History.” All of the countries of the European Union took part, together with former Soviet republics such as Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldavia, and others. I’d like to draw your attention to a report given by Mrs I. Vilkienė, deputy director of the commission and coordinator for educational projects. That is how she was introduced by the chairman, Dr N. Šepetys, who added that “she doesn’t only create curricula but also gets teachers of history into shape and makes them think.” I bring your attention to two audio files accompanying my article: a eulogy from Dr Šepetys to Mrs Vilkienė (attachment 1) and the final part of her speech (attachment 2). I am doing this for two reasons: firstly to avoid accusations of malicious libel against the commission, and secondly to give those readers who know Lithuanian a chance to “enjoy” her speech. Others, unfortunately, will have to content themselves with the quotes in the text. I cannot add simultaneous interpretation of her speech, as its speed considerably exceeds the abilities of  my interpreter.

In the final part of her speech, Mrs Vilkienė took 4 min. 57 sec. to present a detailed story of a Lithuanian family who “saved 43 (forty-three!) Jews over the course of three years in a huge bunker that was dug with the family’s own hands.” She said she had “heard the story at a conference dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the extermination of ghetto in the town of Telšiai. About two or three hundred high schools pupils and lots of teachers from the schools in and around Telšiai took part in the conference.” Mrs Vilkienė described the details of the story with brilliance, as if she was a real witness of the events. The participants of the forum were told that “the head of the family was 30-32-35 years old and his wife was pregnant” and “a girl was born in the bunker, so actually there were 44 saved, not 43.” “Although the family wasn’t rich, they fed everyone, and took the people from the bunker for fresh air at night.”

I thought I misheard the number 43. So after the speech I got up and said:

“Unfortunately, I’ve never heard of a Lithuanian family who saved 43 (forty three!) Jews in the course of three years in a huge bunker that was dug with the family’s own hands. Could you please give their surname?”

A fantastic answer followed:

“I can’t remember now!”

With full responsibility I can assure you: this Lithuanian family did not exist. This is pure myth running in the light of the high tribune of an international forum. Moreover, it was created by an official introduced as the “deputy director of the commission and coordinator for educational projects.” All the rest are minor details.

In relation to what has been said, I’d like to receive answers to three questions:

How to inform all the participants of the forum that instead of objective information they were palmed off with complete nonsense?

How to inform hundreds of Lithuanian pupils that while learning about the Holocaust they are given myths, not facts?

And, most importantly, can we trust any of the materials of the commission?

PS:

My grandmother Rahil, grandfather Itshak and numerous relatives from my mother’s side found eternal rest in Paneriai. I myself have lived through the Shoah. The story of my rescue is unique and could be the plot of a film.

Girsh, my wife’s father, and her grandfather Joseph died in Dachau, her grandmother Sterle in Salaspils. My wife Anita was a prisoner (Ausweis #4426) of the Kaunas Ghetto. Subdued by a sleeping pill, she was taken out of the ghetto in a bag of rotten potatoes by Righteous among the Nations Bronislava Krištopavičienė, zikhroyno livrokho.

This article was originally published by www.defendinghistory.com.

2 Comments

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Blogs Book Reviews The Origins of Palestinian Refugee Relief Efforts (REVIEW)

    The Origins of Palestinian Refugee Relief Efforts (REVIEW)

    Romirowsky and Joffe’s book Religion, Politics and the Origins of Palestine Refugee Relief is an important volume for those interested in truly understanding the origins of the Palestinian refugee issue. Utilizing a treasure trove of newly released documents, the authors link UNRWA’s (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine) origins to the Quakers/American Friends Service Committee (AFSC). For those readers who thought they knew most of the Middle East story, Romirowsky and Joffe’s version provides another twist. The authors meticulously [...]

    Read more →
  • Sports Israeli Soccer Team Faces Prospect of International Ban

    Israeli Soccer Team Faces Prospect of International Ban

    The Israel National soccer team could be facing a World Cup ban, and other soccer sanctions, unless it alleviates travel restrictions and increases field access for Palestinian players and coaches. The head of the Palestinian Football Association is pushing for international soccer’s governing body, the Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA), to issue a ban on Israel competing internationally, claiming Israel’s restrictive travel for Palestinians is equivalent to a form of oppression. “It’s not only the athletes,” Jibril Rajoub explains. [...]

    Read more →
  • Beliefs and concepts Book Reviews Jewish Author of ‘Eat to Live’ Dishes on Health Care, Nutrition, Disease Prevention

    Jewish Author of ‘Eat to Live’ Dishes on Health Care, Nutrition, Disease Prevention

    JNS.org – While the national debate on “Obamacare” rages on past the recent March 31 sign-up deadline, bestselling Jewish author Dr. Joel Fuhrman says the “current disease care model of what we call ‘health care’ cannot possibly be sustained.” “There is simply not enough money available to support a system in which the lion’s share of expenditures is devoted to acute care, with virtually nothing being spent on preventive medicine, i.e. health care,” Fuhrman says in an interview. “To make [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Jewish Identity ‘Tears of Color’ Art Exhibit Shows Struggles of Israelis With Eating Disorders

    ‘Tears of Color’ Art Exhibit Shows Struggles of Israelis With Eating Disorders

    JNS.org – “This is how I want to be—without fear. Independent. I want to be like a bird. I want to spread my wings.” So reads part of the description beneath one of the 30 paintings on display until the end of May at the ZOA House in Tel Aviv. The collection represents the first-ever art exhibit of its kind: an exhibit created entirely by Israelis in treatment for eating disorders. Dubbed “Tears of Color,” based on one of the [...]

    Read more →
  • Beliefs and concepts Book Reviews Overprotective or Loving? Daughters Reflect on Jewish Mothers in New Anthology

    Overprotective or Loving? Daughters Reflect on Jewish Mothers in New Anthology

    JNS.org – Rachel Ament noticed that she and her friends often shared humorous anecdotes that were typically variations on a theme: overprotective, worrying Jewish moms who smothered them with love. That included Ament’s own mother. “My mom is probably every Jewish stereotype scrunched into one,” the Washington, DC, resident tells JNS.org. “At the root of all these stereotypical, worrying, overprotective moms, is love.” A social media writer for Capital One, as well as a freelance writer, Ament decided about three years [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Commentary ‎Kosher Lust: Love is Not the Answer (REVIEW)

    ‎Kosher Lust: Love is Not the Answer (REVIEW)

    Kosher Lust, by Shmuley Boteach (Gefen Publishing House, 2014). You really do want to find something positive to say about Shmuley Boteach. He is a phenomenon; very bright, an articulate bundle of energy and self-promotion. Anyone who has the chutzpah to describe himself as “America’s Rabbi” deserves ten out of ten for effort. I believe that along with most Chabad alumni, official and unofficial, he does a lot of good and is a sort of national treasure. In this world [...]

    Read more →
  • Jewish Identity Theater Hollywood’s Revisiting of Passover’s Exodus Story a Part of Throwback ‘Year of the Bible’

    Hollywood’s Revisiting of Passover’s Exodus Story a Part of Throwback ‘Year of the Bible’

    JNS.org – In a throwback to the golden age of cinema, Hollywood has declared 2014 the “Year of the Bible.” From Ridley Scott’s Exodus starring Christian Bale as Moses, to Russell Crowe playing Noah, Hollywood is gambling on new innovations in technology and star power to revisit some of the most popular stories ever told. “It’s definitely a throwback to the 1950s and early ’60s,” Dr. Stephen J. Whitfield, an American Studies professor at Brandeis University, told JNS.org. Starting with The [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture US & Canada ‘Jewish Giant’ Headlines New York Jewish Museum Exhibit

    ‘Jewish Giant’ Headlines New York Jewish Museum Exhibit

    Eddie Carmel, dubbed “The Jewish Giant” by American photographer Diane Arbus, is the centerpiece of a new exhibit opening April 11 at The Jewish Museum in New York. Arbus met Carmel, who was billed “The World’s Tallest Man,” at Hubert’s Dime Museum and Flea Circus in 1959 but waited until 1970 to photograph him at his parents’ home in the Bronx, according to the museum. The son of immigrants from Tel Aviv, Carmel posed for Arbus with his head bowed to [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.