15 May 2015

Published May 13, 2015 by rochellewisoff

Flowers from the Hill Thoreau

Friday Fictioneers and Poppy

FF copyright banner final

 The next picture is the PHOTO PROMPT. Does it speak to you? Tell us a story in a hundred words or less. 

get the InLinkz code

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Word Count: 100

EISENHOWER’S LAMENT

            I was born seven years after the Nuremberg trials ended and in our household the subject of the Third Reich remained an open wound.

            “Never forget what ‘they’ did to ‘us,’” intoned my mother.  

            Even now, whenever I see barbed wire, I’m haunted by visions of hollow stares and sunken faces.

            Yet, there are those who try to reinvent history and their students swallow the lies like oysters on the half shell.

            “Did the Holocaust really happen?” asks my young coworker.

            “Tell me, Tanisha.” I gaze into her eyes and tap her bronze hands. “Did slavery in America really happen?”     

 

Epilogue – Click Here

Ohrdruf_Eisenhower_04650

Buchenwald_Ohrdruf_Corpses_Eisenhower_21700

126 comments on “15 May 2015

  • Oh this is so timely.. I cannot understand how it could happen.. denying it is what people do that find simple solutions to their own miseries.. and not knowing and understanding paves the way for simple solutions that will make life worse. Conspiracy rarely happens.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Every time I read something you wrote, it never ceases to amaze me how much control you have of the English language. You truly make it an art. And the depth of your emotion: it is obvious how deeply the Holocaust affects you, as it should all of us.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Betty,

      The story I wrote this week is pretty much true. Survivors were a part of life. There were many in our synagogue and among family friends. Hard not to be affected.

      Thank you for your kind words concerning my writing.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • Good story. At first I thought you were writing about the Interstate System and how many farms it gobbled up, but the open wound of the Third Reich was a real thing for lots of people. I recall that all of Hitler’s American relatives changed their last name to Heidler and other variants.

    Like

    • Dear Jessie,

      It’s one of my recurring themes and will continue to be. 😉 Such atrocities shouldn’t be swept under the rug no matter how much we’d like it.

      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • Another powerful reminder of the past Rochelle, beautifully done. As I’ve said before, I was brought up with the harrowing details of what went on at that time, although to this day I’ve never fully understood why that came about. Maybe I just read my parents’ books, maybe I was an avid reader of newspapers and magazines, but what I read definitely coloured my childhood vividly, and made me aware of the limitless extent to which men can inflict cruelty on others. Well done.

    Like

    • Dear Sandra,

      Our generation came on the heels of the atrocity that was still fresh in everyone’s minds. It was often the theme of The Twentieth Century a documentary television show that began in 1957. Those images have been indelibly etched into my mind since I can remember.

      Thank you for such a wonderful comment.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • As Previously stated, it’s a world shame if we do not learn from history. The phrase, “that was history and this is now”, comes to mind of past conversations with people I’ve known. Wrong concept. We must always remember and learn from past mistakes as well as past victories. It was prophetic that Eisenhower told the media, “take lots of pictures”. We apparently needed the proof for many who don’t believe. Great lesson story again you wordsmith, you.

    Liked by 2 people

  • A brief, poignant and important piece, Rochelle. My father’s best friend was among the troops who liberated the camp at Buchenwald. He kept photo albums that were horrifying to me to witness as a teen, but so enlightening. I am one who will never forget. Van

    Liked by 1 person

  • This is truly an important story, my friend. I especially like the way you tied the sins together. One is not more “important” than the other. We need to remember both with the same shame and move on to a create better world. Only then we can bury both.

    Like

    • Dear McGuffy,

      Right you are. Both Holocausts were shameful. Slavery lasted longer and there aren’t many photos to document. No human should be treated like an animal.

      Thank you for your comments.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • There is so much to be ashamed of in human history; over the years I think no people, race or religion can truly claim innocence. But that doesn’t make it any less important to remember, to believe man can be so evil, and to strive for a better world.
    I never knew Eisenhower had foreseen the denials – that, and your story itself, both fascinating.

    Like

    • Dear Jen,

      It’s hard for me to imagine how humans can be so cruel to one another. Of course as a mother, I find the atrocities against children unfathomable.
      That anyone could deny something so well documented as the Holocaust is beyond me.

      Thank you for reading and commenting. I always enjoy your insights.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • This is beautifully written, as always, but it hits a special chord with me this week. I’m German and was born 13 years after the war. I was shocked, ashamed, stunned when I learned about my people’s past when I was a child. I hated my country, I hated where I came from, almost all my life. Maybe that’s why many of my generation prefer to feel European instead of German. Knowledge of the holocaust is still very present in schools here, kids are taught, people do remember, at least those who want to. The neo-nazis, the holocaust deniers, the xenophobic haters that rise their ugly heads again and again–they are an ugly stain on our new-found identity as a nation.

    Like

    • Dear GAH,

      History also teaches that there were still good people in Germany, known by Jews as righteous gentiles. They were the ones who hid families in their attics and cellars and often die in the camps themselves.

      Thank you for your beautiful comment. While we need to remember, we also need to forgive. Our generation isn’t responsible for the sins of the fathers.

      Sending you hugs across the ocean.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • There is a generation that wants to distrust all that happened in the last 40-60 years thinking it is a lie, even the moon landings. We should remind them of 9/11 something most of them experienced. A horrific event and one which shapes history is hard to believe to those that come after. Distance tends to mute the pain.

    I’m interested in your Friday Fictioneers prompts and may join you in the future. I will check your page for details. I just came from Sally’s Scribbles. . .

    Like

    • Dear DG,

      Time seems to dull the memory, doesn’t it?

      By all means, jump in any time with Friday Fictioneers. Let me know any way I can help.

      Thank you for taking the time to read and comment on my story.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • History is stained with red and this part is covered in red and black. Holocaust was certainly a dark time in human history. Another story that brought emotions while reading it.

    Like

  • Dear Northstar Nancy,
    Just as I stated in my pre-ramble this week, you keep us focused with a moral compass. As one who loved and studied history, it never ceases to amaze me how large populations can fall under the spell of persuasive talkers to the point of believing it’s okay to annihilate an entire race. As Peter Coyote said, “Anyone who speaks against the status quo has an ‘ist’ added to their title, such activist, anarchist, and even artist.” Not to mention humorist.
    Yours truly – Clem

    Like

  • Great story, Rochelle, and great parallel to slavery, which no one denies. Holocaust denial is one of those conspiracy theories I find the hardest to understand, just because of the glut of evidence.
    I’m sure you’re overworked this time of the year but is the book work all done now at least?
    -David

    Like

    • Dear David,

      This is a tough time of year but I take comfort in knowing that there will be no more cake decorating for me soon.

      With the book, the real work begins, ie marketing. The sequel is due out 2 December so there are ducks to line up there.

      It’s amazing what people will believe or disbelieve isn’t it?

      Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

      • The older I get and the more I look into things like conspiracy theories, the more fascinated I am with the very concept of belief, especially since I have my own strong beliefs. Humans are certainly interesting.

        Like

    • Dear Alicia,

      This conversation actually took place when Achmagenocide was spewing his lies. The young lady who asked me the question was honest and sincere. We must never forget or let the next generation forget either.

      Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • I realize Tanisha believes she asked an innocent question, but perhaps when asked about slavery, she finally understood how hurtful the question is. I realize there’s plenty of holocaust deniers out there. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad comes to mind immediately. What amazes me is how easily people are won over by such evil men. Perhaps, this is why I like history. I like knowing what happened so no monster can lie to me. Great story, Rochelle. This is a good way to insure we never forget!

    Like

  • Dear Rochelle,
    I’m so glad that my photo got to be the catalyst for this story of yours. It wasn’t a particularly special photograph–just a picture I snapped while out looking for stock footage for some project or other. The only special thing about it is that I may have trespassed in order to take it (but who will ever know for sure?). Now, however, the stories being woven to it are elevating it to quite another place. Yours is among the cream.

    Keep telling the stories, my friend. The truth will out just as the cream will always rise.

    Love and hugs,
    MG

    Like

  • i’ve been to concentration camps in poland, hungary, and germany and the experience left me with an indescribable feeling of sadness for the inhumanity of it all. interestingly, the philippines was one of the countries who gave refuge to european jews fleeing the holocaust.

    Like

    • Dear Plaridel,

      My people thank your people. I’ve never been to see the camps. I can only imagine the feeling of actually being there. How can you say something never happened when the physical evidence is still out there?

      Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • It’s always frightening when someone asks the question – “did it really happen?” Maybe it will be asked more and more as time goes by. Let’s hope enough of the true history is preserved to make those doubters a minority.

    Like

  • No one should have to see themselves in a prison, coralled and slaughtered like animals and worse for simply being.

    In documenting the struggle, the memory is kept alive. As ignorance and corruption are self-defeating, they can never erase the reality.

    Thanks so much for writing.

    Like

  • This was yet another true story with strong impact, Rochelle. I had an aunt of German descent, married into our family, who absolutely refused to believe the Nazis had done that. My dad trusted his eyes after seeing the films in the theatre and the generals and officers accounts. He couldn’t understand how she could go into denial like that. I heard him trying to convince her one time. She was intelligent, but just mentally refused to accept it. It was as though she’d shut her mind to the truth. He shook his head in disbelief. Hatred breeds more hatred. I think men will always find their own reasons for brutality. The thing that made it so horrible with the Nazis was the methodical way they carried it out. It was, in my opinion, diabolical. They didn’t just kill Jews, They destroyed anyone who stood in their way, or they considered a threat. I’m Catholic, and we had some members of the faith, both declared and undeclared, martyrs and saints who were killed by the Nazis in those years. Nazis were a scourge on the land. — Suzanne

    Like

    • Dear Suzanne,

      Somewhere I saw a film of people being led to the gas chambers at one of the death camps. Among the crowd was a nun. Gypsies and people with Downs syndrome were among the Nazi targets. I’m sure if there had been more black people in Eastern Europe they would’ve been exterminated for not fitting the blue-eyed ideal. As you say, anyone who got in the Nazis’ way. It’s amazing that anyone, faced with the physical evidence and systematic documentation of Hitler’s minions could deny the truth.

      Thank you for sharing your insights.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • Although I have dedicated many years to study this dark area of mankind, the deeds committed will always shock and haunt.
    A very poignant story.

    Like

  • I cannot understand how anyone in their right mind would question if this happened…I shudder just thinking of the past. I think our generation needs to continue to talk about it so history never repeats itself. Rochelle, I just finished your book tonight….I tried to stretch it out it was so amazing, I reread chapters, highlighted parts I want to reread…will write a review on my blog and a shorter one at Amazon. I put this right up there with Chaim Potock…I loved his stories….such a story teller that we feel we are part of the family just like your novel. I cried on subways, buses and laughed out loud…more later. Mazel Tov, Rochelle!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Oliana,

      It’s harder to keep the memories alive with the survivors dying off. Time has a tendency to dull the memory, doesn’t it? Our generation has become the older generation. Yes, it’s our duty to keep passing it along.

      Your words on my book give me great cause to smile. I read your review on your blog and did a screen capture. .I hope you don’t mind. By all means, leave a review on Amazon…as long as you want. 😉 Chaim Potock? As Doug would say, you have be chopping some pretty tall cotton.

      Thank you and shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • Many people live in a world of conspiracy theories and with the internet is far easier to spread disinformation now than anytime ever in history. Which is why it is important for us to have the true history preserved and verified than ever before.

    Liked by 1 person

  • The disbelief in whether the Holocaust occurred is difficult to understand, given the vast number of personal accounts, the tales of the survivors, the photographs, the physical evidence of human remains…

    But humans can be disturbingly fact resistant. I wonder if its always been so?

    From the piece itself, the mood I get from it is… angry? Frustrated certainly. Use of those emotive words ‘wound’, ‘haunt’, ‘sunken’ bring the personal horror, and the line ‘swallowing lies like oysters’ shows the narrators ire at how this could be forgotten. The last line linking the reality of it to the reality of slavery was very clever.

    Its clearly a personal piece, and I think its you’ve done a great job – in the writing (of course) – but also in the other goal of keeping these stories being told so they are not forgotten.

    Cheers
    KT

    Like

    • Dear KT,

      In all honesty the only piece of fiction in this story is the name Tanisha. She asked quite innocently back in the time Ahmadinejad was spreading his load of bullshit about the Holocaust. The ending line was the first thing that popped into my head.

      As far as the rest of your assessments. Yes, the writer is angry that anyone would believe the lies. Even though the survivors are dying off, films, photos, books and articles abound. How dare we forget?

      Thank you for such insightful comments.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • The events of the holocaust were horrendous and that people try to dismiss the as untrue is sickening. We should all be learning lessons from the past, not brushing it under the rug and pretending it never happened. Good story.

    Like

  • Dear Rochelle,

    I am thinking of the 60s song, “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?” …and the chorus to the lyrics “When will they ever learn?”

    How can people possibly deny the Holocaust? What is their agenda in erasing an historical fact?

    A superbly written piece. Your last sentence says it all. Indeed, when will they ever learn?

    Your book is on my reading list.

    All best wishes
    Sarah

    Liked by 1 person

      • Dear Rochelle
        Your book is next on my list, after the one I’m currently reading. At the moment I’m slower than usual with reading, as I’m editing something of my own and trying to be disciplined, although not always succeeding.
        Of course, I will let you have feedback and give your book a review on Amazon. Also, sometimes I have author slots on my blog, so perhaps we could do something there.
        All best wishes
        Sarah

        Like

  • The Holocaust isn’t ancient history. It happened just a few years before I was born, and it’s naive (but a typical American conceit) to believe that humans have simply evolved so much in the space of 60+ years, or that ‘humanity’ has learned its’ lesson and we’re now so much wiser, that this could never happen again. Just take a look at what’s taken place in the past twenty years in places like Bosnia or Rwanda, and more recently the Middle East, where there have been reports of children being tortured then murdered in front of their parents. The human capacity for cruelty appears limitless. Sadly, humanity still remains just one rationalization away from another Holocaust.

    Like

  • Not only are there Holocaust deniers, there are people who claim slavery wasn’t so bad and is wrongly portrayed in the media. These people must be fought at every turn, lest the myth become the fact.

    Also why is Rochelle something like the Justice League of America? Years ago the JLA comic book de-emphasized the roles of Superman and Batman because they were so prevalent in other comics. Often I don’t comment on your posts because there are typically so many comments, I liken you to Batman and Superman. See that,Rochelle? You are a superhero!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Perry,

      It’s appalling how a few years can dull the senses to the horrors of the past, both to the Holocaust and slavery. If anything, the media might still be too tame in its portrayal of slavery IMHO.

      Your comment has left me speechless. Those who know me best will tell you that’s quite a feat. You also left me smiling. I’ve never been called a superhero.

      Thank you very much for such a thoughtful comment. It means more than I can say.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • It’s absolutely horrifying to think that people will forget. I can’t believe some of the ways history is twisted in the schools. There was an outrage in the school district of my home town where teachers were having students question whether the Holocaust happened. I couldn’t believe it! Your story needs to shouted from the mountain tops. Well done, Rochelle.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Amy,

      I’ve been told that there’s a trend in the schools to make history “nicer” so our sweet children don’t have to hear the horror stories. Color me horrified. You can’t change history by rewriting it. 😯

      Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • I believe there truly are people born evil who then hold sway over others. The Holocaust was the culmination of centuries of persecution, misunderstanding, and hatred. I find it difficult to look at the images, but feel I must. I went to the Epilogue as well.
    In 1939, a boat of Jews tried to find shelter in North America. They were sent back, probably to their deaths.
    It’s important to remember the Holocaust for the evil that was. Because genocide continues in other countries. Not on the organized scale as Hitler, but mass murder due to ethnicity, race, religion, territory needs to be brought under the brightest spot light.
    I recently watched a video taken by a drone flying over Auschwitz. I was amazed at the scale, and really brought home just how horrible a time it was and how determined the Nazis were to erase any sign of Jewish existence in Europe.
    Your story so shows how time seems to dull people’s memories. We need to remember all genocides, and watch out for the evil men who still hold sway over others.
    Your story also brought out so many emotions, my comment, I’m sure is more than 100 words.
    One more sad thing to add, as the Holocaust survivors age, and some develop dementia and Alzheimer’s. Often they become trapped in the past, and feel as if they were still in the camps.

    Like

    • Dear Phylor,

      The MS St. Louis is a blot on American History. No doubt Emma Lazarus was spinning in her grave over that.

      As you say, the Holocaust is most appalling in the systematic slaughter. The Nazi’s so proud of their accomplishments, kept detailed records. Just forty years before that Jews were being slaughtered all over Eastern Europe.

      The disease goes merrily on all over the world today.

      Thank you for such a detailed comment.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • A powerfully told story, Rochelle, and one that is very moving. I cannot understand WHY anyone would question the veracity of the accounts and the photographs of the holocaust, and it makes me disappointed in human beings that they so easily fall for lies and propaganda, but won’t recognize truth if it bit them on the nose. No one ever wants to belong to the same species that produced Hitler, and others of his ilk, but by denying truth, they let the monsters grow within themselves.
    I feel strongly about this. I teach it every year, around March/April, as part of my “Facing History and Ourselves” unit. I speak in terms of perpetrators, collaborators, bystanders, victims, survivors (also victims, but alive), rescuers and resisters. Sometimes, a person might be victim AND resister (like those who fought desperately in the doomed Warsaw ghetto uprising,, or those who smuggled munitions into Auschwitz, blew up a crematorium or two, and were hanged for it) and sometimes, people were survivors/rescuers/resisters (like the Bielski brothers). I always emerge from teaching this feeling somewhat battered.
    It needs to be taught, though.
    More such things need to be taught.
    And EVERYONE needs to watch the Yale experiment by Stanley Milgram: Obedience.
    Sorry! Didn’t mean to go off on this topic.
    Your beautiful, poignant story pulled it out of me.
    Thank you!

    Like

    • Dear Vijaya,

      There’s no need for you to apologize for such an amazing comment. Thank you for what you’re doing to keep the memory alive.

      Thank you for all of the reminders. That my story evoked so much emotion is a high compliment.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Margaret,

      interestingly, a well meaning friend told me recently that I should write about something else for a change. I let him know that anytime I feel the prompt lends itself, I will go this direction. No apologies. One of my missions in life. 😉

      Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • Input! I love input!

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

    WordPress.com Logo

    You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

    Google+ photo

    You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

    Connecting to %s

    WHAT PEGMAN SAW

    a weekly flash fiction prompt inspired by google maps

    Lori Ericson, Author

    An author's perspective of mystery and more.

    anelephantcant

    Random thoughts and images, some serious, some humorous, some pointless

    Honie Briggs

    SERIOUSLY!

    ALYSSAADAVIES

    Writing About Whatever Comes to Mind, Whenever it Comes to Mind...

    Flights of Fancy

    The Totally Unambitious Blog

    The Off Key Of Life

    Or….Identifying The Harmless Unhinged Among Us.

    What's So Funny?

    A WordPress.com humor blog

    The Write Melony

    Renowned Writer Extraordinaire - in my mind!

    unbuttoned or undone

    Hang on, Hang on

    A Delectable Life

    The little and large things making my life delicious!

    Hoxton Spanish Tutor Info

    This WordPress.com site is the cat’s pajamas

    Sound Bite Fiction

    where nothing is quite what it seems

    yadadarcyyada

    Vague Meanderings of the Broke and Obscure

    mezzojan

    a libretto for the comic opera of my life

    elmowrites

    Writing about writing

    What's for dinner, Doc?

    Exploring Human Connections, Health and Wellness

    Claire Fuller

    Writing and art

    Green Writing Room

    Hilary Custance Green's reading and writing notepad

    Oldentimes's Blog

    a little old, a little new, life in the slow land of country living

    Caely in the making

    - one day, they'll say "because of you, I didn't give up" -

    wmqcolby

    A great WordPress.com site

    Being MG

    Flash fiction, poetry and other written works that make me who I am.

    SightsnBytes

    A.K.A. Ted White

    Musings of a Random Mind

    Fiction based on reality. Any similarities to the characters and events in the life of the author are purely intentional.

    draliman on life

    Because sometimes life just makes you stop and think

    onethousandandtwo

    Looking at Infinity

    the EXCESSIVE GARDENER

    adventures in defensive gardening

    %d bloggers like this: