War Correspondents panel
- Film Title
- International Liberators Conference, 1981
- Event Date
- United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
War Correspondents panel continues from Film ID 2642 with Svenn Seehusen. Neighbors ask Jews to stay with them and offer help and helped Jews escape during the Danish action in 1943. Resistance organized transport along Danish coast, fishermen helped, no one said no. Praises Sweden for their acceptance of 7,000 Jews. Support action to tell the world about the Holocaust. Applause.
Chairman introduces Mr. Friendly. Starts to talk of Murrow, Denmark, Elie Wiesel. Speaks on how he ended up at Mauthausen. Holds up book of U.S. constitution. Events like Buchenwald will be remembered by history, Murrow recorded the first draft of history. Quotes Wiesel. "We cannot let this be forgotten because the consequence of forgetting is that we could cause it to happen again." Applause. Chairmen talks of sharing a unique occasion. Applause.
Afternoon panel on Historians. Chairman Raul Hilberg. Victims, liberators have different view than future generations; they saw, felt, smelt it. A historian speaks of camps. Historians have to understand what produced horrors, methods of perpetrators. Talks of legality of actions in Reich and its organization, i.e. charging for tickets to camp. Historians have to understand all of this.
Introduces speaker, Dr. Yorgen Haestrup of Denmark. Gives figures of Jews, talks of assimilation in Denmark and the Nazi takeover. In 1940-43, Danish government wouldn't tolerate anti-Semitic action; but in 1943, government was forced to resign. October 1+2, when Action against Jews was to take place, but they were warned. Only 284 out to 8000 were apprehended. Jews went to Sweden. Danes even forced inspection of camps (Theresienstadt). 99% of Danish Jews survived.
All stand in honor of Denmark. Hilberg introduces Dr. Greenhouse from Canada, WWII historian. No camps on Canadian soil and liberation action was limited. "The historian has to become the moral guardian of his people." All historians have failed in one way as there are still Holocaust deniers. Historian's role as explainers. He says historians have failed, because there is no explanation as to how or why these things came about, only facts. They fail to consider how to ensure the Holocaust doesn't happen again. How German people came to live with the camps, compartmentalizing reason. Historian's duty is to restore men to a whole personality. He feels historians have failed. End, Hilberg thanks him, agrees with Greenhouse.
Hilberg introduces French Gen. Henri Raguet de Brancion de Liman. Deported to Flossenburg. Speaks in French.
Hilberg briefly talks about the General's speech. Introduces Gen. Yitzhak Arad of Israel. He was a partisan in occupied Soviet territory. Talks about eradication attempts by the Germans, of camp records. Talks about liberation, liberators arriving too late, no survivors or traces of atrocities. Since summer 1942, SS aimed to hide proof of atrocities, talks about why. Himmler decided that corpses in mass graves should be destroyed, to burn the bodies and bury the ashes. Describes process of burning/hiding bodies. Elie Wiesel. Few bodies found in some camps, but liberators, survivors, witnesses knew what had happened.
Hilberg introduces Prof. Yehuda Bauer, Israeli historian. Talks about death marches, explains process. Discusses figures of people put in camps at the end of the war, figures of people on death marches and number who died. In 3.5 months of death marches at the end of the camp's existence, more died than in the rest of the time camps existed. What was SS intention? Discusses why left people in Auschwitz and why some weren't put to work. He gives two reasons: 1) Nazis saw people as enemies of Reich - must never fall into hands of enemy, must never be liberated; 2) another way of killing people. Talks about non-SS people killing prisoners. Tells story of a Czech gardener at Czech railway station watching thousands of people being starved on a train (many were Czech). He had to beg the station commander for permission to give them a drink with his hose. What did the Allies know, what did they do? He analyzed Western press and found only one article about the death marches. All records covered only POWs who were on the same march as concentration camp victims. Only one attempt to save people from the death marches. Thinks we're only at the beginning of this research.
Record last modified: 2018-11-27 11:01:13
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