By Alexander Feldman, Member of Parliament of Ukraine
The 27th of January is the International Holocaust Remembrance Day. Day of sorrow. Day of grief… 62 years ago, on the 27th of January 1945 troops of the First Ukrainian Front released a small Polish town Oswiecim in Upper Silesia. And a true situation of what had been happening there was revealed.
Reality turned out to be bloodcurdling. Hundreds of kilograms of women’s hair, piles of toys, bales of assorted clothes, thousands pairs of glasses worn by somebody at one time… And at the rail terminal on the camp’s territory, soldiers found a stock of Zyklon B, a toxical agent, the amount of which would be fair to slay 20 million people more. It happened when “the Jewish question” in Europe had been already solved by Nazis.
Time will pass, and the Holocaust revisionists will declare all over the world: “Oswiecim is a Jewish myth. It’s just a labour camp where Hebrews were made to work and exposed to disinfection. Aerial survey has not confirmed presence of gas chambers, compressor stations and crematoria.” Unfortunately, a revisionists’ lie on the Holocaust will be put forth by some mass media, by reputable ones sometimes. Someone is likely to be generously paying for this lie.
No compressor stations were in Oswiecim really. Zyklon B was placed in specific gas reservoirs that were kept underground in Auschwitz as distinguished from other extermination camps. According to R. Hess, the camp commandant, crematoria used to function round-the-clock, so pipes were burned through and dismantled. The last burner was blown up by a Resistance squad.
The Holocaust revisionists have always been fed with “the Nazis’ gold”, by Fascists’ supporters and anti-Semites of all kinds. And today they shamelessly go on working off dirty petrodollars.
The Holocaust defiers are not only engaged in re-writing history, disasters and tragedy of the Second World War. They are also trying to cross out remembrance of Hitler’s genocide in order to rehabilitate fascism somehow or other. Revisionism of the Holocaust has used an interpretation such as: the Holocaust was not in existence, it was dreamt up by Jews, or Jews used to be killed but the death toll was fairly overstated, and, at last, the Holocaust was a rightful vengeance on the Bolsheviks for the October Revolution or the Holodomor.
Such interpretations are an attempt to reanimate Nazism. Today’s fascism is a mutant and modernist, it can get into different guises and act under the veil of national political, youth, religious, sport and cultural movements. There is always ground for neo-fascism where social demagogy and deceit exist, where a ruling elite does nothing to liquidate a gap between the rich and the poor, and unsettled living conditions of the majority of population become routine.
Hitler came to power riding along on economic chaos and political crisis. The national socialists promised everything at once to all groups of the population for account of foreign nationals. It’s notable that more than 65% of members of Hitler-Jugend were the children of workers. For them a brown uniform was the only chance to work their way up. Fascists began by burning books on town squares and ended with Oswiecim ashes.
That’s why mankind should not forget the results of past wars. We are turning to the lessons of the Holocaust so as not to betray our bleeding memory, not to allow Nazis, fascists and their supporters to be rehabilitated. People, in particular youth, should know the truth of their crimes. Oradour in France, Lidice in Czechia, Khatyn in Belarus, Babi Yar and Drobitski Yar in Ukraine as well as over 200 Ukrainian villages burnt up by Nazis with its dwellers – are appealing to our memory, screaming.
The Holocaust is not only a problem of Jews, but Jews became the first victims of the Nazis. Fascists terminated their political opponents, members of the resistance, POW’s, non-combatants of many invaded countries; but the only reason for murdering Jews was that they were Jews. It’s hard to believe that in the twenty-first century, the president of Iran and the highest legislative body of that country are appealing to destroy Israel only for its being a country of Jews. But this is true.
Historians have not discovered written instructions of Hitler or of his minions concerning killing Jews. But this does not change the substance of the matter. Which murderers or hangmen would purposely leave traces of their bloody villainies?
Plans of the “Final Solution of the Jewish Question” were straightforwardly spoken of by Nazi elite as early as the eve of World War II, and since the 22nd of June 1941 the plans became reality. It was not by mere accident that top secret reports like “There are no more Jews in Belaya Tserkov”, “There are no more Jews in Zhytomir”, “There are no Jews in Priluki…” were constantly received by “a Jewish Department” of Adolf Eichmann in Berlin from murderers of the Einzatsgruppe SS. Hitler’s secret services always concealed masterfully traces of their crimes. That’s why official documents did not speak of murdering Jews without disguise. Information on punitive actions against the Jewish population was substituted by words deportation, special procedure, transfer, resettlement, etc.
Paucity of SS Einzatsgruppe made it impossible to rapidly solve the “Jewish Question”. That’s why on the eve of war the SS authorities and Supreme Command of the Armed Forces (Wehrmacht) agreed on rendering assistance (people, ammunition, equipment) to SS Einzatsgruppe by regular army units.
If you attentively trace the arrows on the Operation Barbarossa map, you can see that tanks and infantry of a German regular army are followed by the destroying flames of the Holocaust.
“A Jewish race is being exterminated… – this is our programme and we are going to execute it. It’s a glorious page of our history, never written and never to be written”, used to announce H. Himmler to the SS and army commanders.
Jews were not only the Holocaust’s victims. The world is proud of the heroic deeds of Jews, soldiers and officers of the Soviet army, armies of the USA, Great Britain and Canada, partisans of Ukraine and Belarus, resistance fighters of France, Italy, Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, and the courage of the rebels of Warsaw ghetto and Sobibor.
For all people of the globe, the Holocaust is a lesson of where fascism, anti-Semitism and racism may lead us. As a centuries-long blaze, a memorial stone at the Oswiecim concentration camp bears some words inscribed in many European languages. The words are: “Let this place for ever be a howl of despair and warning for mankind. The place where Hitlerites murdered nearly 1.5 million men, women and children, mainly Jews”.
Alexander Feldman is a Member of Parliament of Ukraine and President of Jewish Fund of Ukraine.