Testimony and Remembrance!
” ..Opening ..Bible at random I find this:- ‘ Lord is my high tower’ I am sitting on my rucksack in ..middle of a full freight car. Father ..Mother ..Mischa ..a few cars away. ..departure came without warning ..sudden special orders from The Hague. ..left ..camp singing ..Father ..Mother firmly ..calmly ..Mischa ..too. We shall be travelling for three days. Thank you for all your kindness and care. Friends left behind will still be writing to Amsterdam ..perhaps you will hear something from them. Or from my last letter from camp. Good-bye for now from ..four of us.” Etty Hillesum.
Ettie Hillesum offers us a Remembrance which is so important on many levels! With regard to the 6,000,000 Murdered Jews of The Holocaust, Ettie was just one amongst that volume of Remembrance Memory which is clearly not enough! It is essential that we retrieve for History the exact detail which accounts for all of those Jews who were Murdered. For those Jews whose Names are Forgotten we cannot retrieve their identities! For those Jews whose Names are Missing, we may never find them and for those Jews whose Names are Unknown to us all, we have lost an integral part of our own History. We need to make the effort to remember what we can recall of them. From those who knew them or have information pertinent to their having passed this way, it is ever more urgent that we add to the detail of what is known of all 6,000,000 of those Murdered Jews of The Holocaust.
Especially for me, and in Tokele’s name, my work is for the many Infant Jewish Children, who hadn’t been allowed to live long enough to have enjoined the community of life or for some who have had no Name given to them. We need to afford a Memory that belongs to all of these Children so that History will know them! Jewish Babies, Infants, Children not even given enough life to qualify them an individual footprint in our time, we should recall their passing. All of these Children are fixed securely amongst the 6,000,000 Innocent Jewish People who are lost to us. Their Murders, in an account which defies what the Past in History expects, in a lesson we must learn for the future, shames us today for our failure in that past.
Tomorrow is that future, and while having barely scratched the surface of The Holocaust account, what can we deliver to Tomorrow that will be a positive gain? We know the personnel involved in the Murders. We know Hitler exempted himself from the litany of accusation by a death in his bunker. With a supposed ideology that he was cowardly enough to not dare face scrutiny over, Hitler cheated both his accusers and the German people. We clearly know the many acts of savagery that were enacted upon Innocent Jewish Lives in his name! What we cannot have, given his empirical effort, are the Names, the Personalities, the Memories of those who were Murdered, hidden by an effort that was Genocidal. Too many, whose loss is secreted amidst the enormous undertaking of his Final Solution, will never be found. But for us, we are left with a Tomorrow where we are supposed to learn from their Yesterday, with little or nothing of them to go on!