Holocaust

British Historians (Kikes): “Adolf Hitler’s Tiny Deformed Penis was the Cause of the Holocaust”

The mainstream media is now citing a bizarre claim based off of dubious evidence that Hitler had a micro penis. They are also regurgitating the unfounded claim that Hitler had one testicle.

That sounds crazy enough, but they go further. Many of these articles are claiming that his small penis was the cause of World War II. The people writing this crap are an embarrassment to themselves and their profession.

From the Telegraph:

It has long been suspected that Hitler’s conquest of Europe was an attempt to compensate for a lack of potency elsewhere.

But the notorious playground rhyme about his testicles appears to have only told half the story, as a book claims the leader of the Third Reich had a micropenis.

Hitler suffered from a condition called hypospadias which left him with an abnormally small manhood, according to historians Jonathan Mayo and Emma Craigie.

In their book Hitler’s Last Day: Minute by Minute, they say they have uncovered medical records which confirm the Fuhrer’s embarrassing deformity.

The condition is so severe that sufferers have to urinate from a hole at the base of the shaft, instead of the tip.

It comes just two months after a German historian said he had found proof that Hitler really did have one testicle, as per the famous 1939 playground ditty.

“Hitler himself is believed to have had two forms of genital abnormality: an undescended testicle and a rare condition called penile hypospadias in which the urethra opens on the under side of the penis,” Mr Mayo and Ms Craigie wrote.

The discovery could offer some explanation as to why Hitler was allegedly afraid of being seen naked and the cause of his famed fits of rage.

It also likely to add fuel to the debate on Hitler’s sex life – or lack thereof – which is fiercely contested by historians.

In his biography of Hitler, the British historian Ian Kershaw said the Austrian-born Nazi leader was repelled by sexual activity of any kind as he feared catching an infection.

However, there is evidence he had romantic encounters with a series of women in his lifetime, including his mistress Eva Braun, with whom he committed suicide on April 30, 1945. One German biographer, Heike Görtemaker, has insisted that the couple enjoyed a happy and healthy sex life.

Hitler’s personal doctor, Theodor Morell, is also said to have diagnosed the Fuhrer with hypospadias and had prescribed him with hormones and amphetamines in an attempt to improve his sex drive.

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Holocaust Survivor Plagiarized Pulp Fiction

http://www.renegadetribune.com/holocaust-survivor-plagiarized-pulp-fiction/
By Rollie Quaid

Pulp fiction was a Neo-Noir film released in 1994. I am a fan of the film and I think that Irene Zisblatt is too. My theory is Irene Zisblatt’s story of defecating diamonds was ripped off from Captain Koon’s monologue.

Captain Koons, played by Christopher Walken, interrupts a young boy named Butch from watching “Clutch Cargo” during his after school television time. Captains Koons explains to the boy that he has brought a gold watch that’s been passed through generation to generation through the Coolidge family since World War One. Captain Koons knows Butch’s father because they were POW prisoners together for 5 years during Vientma. Koons tells Butch his father died of dysentery, but before he died he requested that he would give his son a special watch. Butch’s father had been hiding the watch in his rectum for five years until his death, and then the watch went to Captain Koons, who had the responsibility of hiding the watch in his rectrum him for two years. Both men kept the watch in their rectums so the Vietcong prison guards would not take the watch away.

In 1995 Irene Zisblatt gave her testimony of the so-called Holocaust for the Academy Award-winning documentary film “The Last Days” (1998) by Stephen Spielberg. Not every testimony that Stephen Spielberg collected was irrational, but apparently he was only interested in the Left field. Irene claims that her mother handed her some diamonds originally rolled up in her skirt to use in case she needed money for food. She lost the skirt and feared her diamonds being confiscated by the Nazi prison guards, so she decided to digest the diamonds and then fish out her excrement to retrieve the diamonds, every day… for years.

I get moved when talking about bowel movements. I shed tears of sorrow for Irene Zisblatt as I did the first time I listen to Christopher Walken’s Pulp fiction monologue.

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ADL alarmed by author speaking to Congress who links gun control and Holocaust

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Anti-Defamation League expressed concern that a witness at a congressional hearing on a controversial gun bill  wrote a book arguing that gun control rendered Jews defenseless during the Holocaust.

Stephen Halbrook, who wrote “Gun Control in the Third Reich” in 2015, is set to appear Tuesday at a meeting of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Natural Resources, which is considering the Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act. The bill would loosen controls on transporting firearms across state lines, an area that Halbrook has litigated as a prominent gun rights attorney.

“We have long been concerned about facile comparisons of gun control legislation in America to policies upheld by Nazi Germany during the Holocaust,” Jonathan Greenblatt, the ADL’s national director, said in an email to JTA. “The national debate over gun control is a divisive issue with many strong opinions. While there are legitimate arguments on both sides, the notion that Jews could have saved themselves from the Nazi onslaught is not one of them. It is historically inaccurate and deeply offensive to bring the Holocaust into this debate where it simply does not belong.”

Halbrook’s book argued that a key element in the Nazis’ repressive policies was the disarming of Nazi enemies, a theory embraced last year by the then-presidential candidate and now-Housing Secretary Ben Carson. Halbrook emphasizes in his book that gun control was not a factor leading to the Holocaust. Instead, he says, it facilitated it.

Historians of Nazi Germany have widely discredited the theory, saying that whatever restrictions on gun purchases the Nazis placed on Jews must be seen as part of the array of repressive measures Nazis imposed on Jews and not as Nazis favoring gun controls per se. In fact, the Nazis in 1938 loosened controls on gun ownership for non-Jewish Germans.

Others have questioned how Jews in Germany, who made up only 1 percent of the population, could have staged an effective rebellion against the Nazis’ military regime.

JTA was alerted to Halbrook’s scheduled appearance before the committee by Americans for Responsible Solutions, a gun control advocacy group founded by Gabrielle Giffords, the Jewish Democratic congresswoman from Arizona who was shot and critically wounded by a gunman in 2011 in a deadly attack. She has since retired from Congress.

David Chipman, a senior adviser to the group, also appeared as a witness, testifying against a provision of the bill that would loosen restrictions on silencers. Its sponsor, Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-S.C., says silencers protect hunters’ hearing.

Argentina turns over tens of thousands of Holocaust documents to Israel

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (JTA) — President Mauricio Macri of Argentina gave Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tens of thousands of documents about World War II, some of them related to Nazi war criminals.

Digital copies of the documents — mainly letters, telegrams, newspaper articles, notes and reports — were delivered Tuesday in a box with five discs totaling 5 terabytes of information.

Argentina’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs produced the 139,544 documents mostly between 1939 and 1950.

“I gave to the prime minister an historic Argentinean documentation digitalized about the Holocaust for the use of the State of Israel to investigate and spread the information. This is very important for us,” Macri said at the presidential residence in Buenos Aires at the first-ever formal meeting between the leaders of both countries.

The documents will clarify the help that Argentina, which stayed neutral for much of World War II before joining the Allies, provided to Nazi criminals. The country was a postwar refuge for Nazis: Adolf Eichmann was captured in the northern area of Buenos Aires in 1960 and another Nazi war criminal, Erich Priebke, also lived there.

Claudio Avruj, Argentina’s secretary of human rights, told JTA that the documents “will help us to know the truth.” He said their delivery to Israel reaffirms the leadership that Argentina has regionally in Holocaust research.

Argentina is the only regional member of the United Nations International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, formerly the Task Force for International Cooperation on Holocaust Education, Remembrance and Research, or ITF.

Among the documents are the communications between Argentina and countries involved in the war —  — as well as information sent by the Argentine Embassy in Germany. Some documents also contain records related to the blacklist of Jews, among others.

Macri at the meeting with Netanyahu said Argentina will work “together with Israel and our allies against terrorism.” He also announced that Vice President Gabriela Michetti will visit Israel.

Netanyahu thanked “my friend Mauricio.”

“It is not by chance that I start the first-ever visit of an Israeli prime minister to Latin America in Argentina. For sure the next visit will occur before another 70 years,” he said.

Netanyahu also spoke of Iranian terrorism and the nuclear threat.

“They have a terror machine that encompasses the entire world, operating terror cells in many continents, including in Latin America,” the Israeli leader said.

Addressing the world powers’ 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, he said, “I’ll be straightforward. This is a bad deal … either fix it or cancel it. That’s the Israeli position,” he said.

Next week, Netanyahu will meet President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in New York.

Also Tuesday, Argentina and Israel signed cooperation agreements on security, taxation, social security and air space collaboration.

Netanyahu later in the day was to meet with President Horacio Cares of Paraguay. In the evening, he and the delegation of businesspeople who traveled with him will meet with Argentine government and business leaders to talk about economic ties and trade deals.

Impressionistic visual essay ‘Red Trees’ reinvents Holocaust film genre

https://www.timesofisrael.com/impressionistic-visual-essay-red-trees-reinvents-holocaust-film-genre/

 

When Alfred Willer was a boy in Czechoslovakia, he drew a forest and colored the trees red, as though they were on fire. But the forest was not burning, and the trees were in fact green. This is how Willer discovered he was color blind.

Alfred Willer, now 87, is color blind in a figurative sense, as well. With a religiously blended family and a warm and open attitude to all people in his multicultural adopted country of Brazil and elsewhere, he has always seen beyond race and religion.This anecdote figures prominently in Marina Willer‘s new feature documentary film,“Red Trees,” about her father’s experiences as an adolescent during the Holocaust. Alfred Willer and his parents were one of only 12 Jewish families to survive the Nazi occupation of Prague during World War II.

“I have never understood an attachment to one nation, to one culture, one origin. Our origins our many, our journeys utterly unpredictable. We are a mixture, and in this there is beauty,” Willer says in the film.

His color blindness not withstanding, Willer is a highly visual person. Having always loved drawing, he eventually became a successful modernist architect, working mainly in the Brazilian city of Curitiba. Willer passed on his creativity and visual instincts to his children, including his London-based daughter Marina, who is a noted graphic designer and partner at Pentagram, the world’s largest independently owned design studio.

This being said, it’s not surprising that Marina Willer chose a visual idiom to tell her father’s story. However, “Red Trees,” opening September 15 in New York and Los Angeles, busts open the genre, taking Holocaust memoir film into new artistic territory.

An impressionistic visual essay, “Red Trees” bursts with stunning, colorful images shot in the Czech Republic, London and Brazil by Academy Award nominated cinematographer César Charlone (“City of God”). A few old family photos are interspersed here and there, but not one frame of black and white archival footage appears.

 

And in a world in which images appear and disappear instantaneously, Willer purposely chose to let Charlone’s linger, as they tell her father’s story along with narration by her, her father, and the late distinguished actor Tim Pigott-Smith (reading from Alfred Willer’s memoirs).

“We don’t pay attention to anything, and meanwhile the world is collapsing around us. The film has a lyric and poetic way of reflecting. I felt the subject deserved time, space and silence out of humility and respect for the families and their loss,” Willer said.

Producer Charles Cohen came on board, impressed with Willer’s artistic vision and professionalism after seeing a promotional Kickstarter video she made about the film. Willer had intended to make a short film, but Cohen convinced her”Red Trees” should be a feature.

“I was very affected by the story and how the film is being executed. It’s not another Holocaust memoir of loss and tragedy. It’s a great example of the perseverance and resourcefulness of a family. It mourns those who were lost, but also celebrates those who survived,” Cohen said.

Alfred Willer never discussed what happened during the war to him, his family, friends, and neighbors with his children until they took him on a trip back to the Czech Republic for his 75th birthday. (Some home movies taken on the trip are expertly edited into the film). It was around that time that he also began to write his memoirs, upon which Marina Willer based “Red Trees.”

The only son of Vilem and Charlotte Willer, Alfred had a happy childhood in Kaznějov, where his father, one of the creators of the formulas for synthetic citric acid, worked at the Poldi Steelworks. Following the German occupation of Czechoslovakia, Vilem was fired from his job and the family was forced to move in with Jewish friends in Prague. The friends, the Epsteins, were deported to Auschwitz in 1942. Alfred’s paternal grandmother Theresa was deported to Theresienstadt, where she died of typhoid. Of all of Alfred’s many Jewish summer camp friends, he was the only one left.

Alfred and his parents managed to survive thanks to his mother’s being Christian and of “good breeding,” and his father’s usefulness to the Nazis and jobs as a consultant to paint and shoe polish factories. A Gestapo raid on their home, in which Alfred’s father successfully hid his formula for manufacturing citric acid in his wife’s recipe book, resulted in their passports being confiscated — thus dashing any hopes they had of trying to escape.

In February 1945, 15-year-old Alfred was nearly killed during a British bombing of Prague. The teen had gone to a village on the outskirts of the city to sketch an old church when British war planes mistakenly dropped 152 tons of bombs on populated areas of the Czech capital due to a navigational error during the bombing of Dresden, Germany.

During the Prague Uprising and subsequent Soviet liberation of the city in May 1945, the Willers hid in the basement of their building for days. Alfred recalled seeing people being shot on the building’s doorstep and being hanged in the streets.

Following the war, Vilem Willer decided to emigrate with his family to Brazil, where he had a brother. One of the most touching scenes in the film shows a boat’s foamy wake as Tim Pigott-Smith reads from Alfred’s memoirs a list of the the various people, things and memories the teen leaves behind in Europe forever — one of them his beloved childhood friend Lisa, who disappeared without a trace. (Alfred believed she was sent away to safety on a Kindertransport, but he was never able to located her after the war.)

“It’s been a huge learning curve for me, not only in terms of making my first feature film, but also in terms of getting to know my father,” Marina Willer said.

“My father is quite reserved with his emotions. He never talked about living through the war. He only spoke about historical facts. He never said anything about the deaths of relatives and friends, or about shootings that happened right in front of him,” she said.

Willer said her father was finally ready for the film to be made, and to help his daughter create this legacy for her 10-year-old twins, Dylan and Alfie.

Willer was initially moved to make “Red Trees” as a political statement in response to the global refugee crisis and growing nationalism and xenophobia. She hoped to make a film that would inspired positive attitudes toward migration, diversity and multiculturalism.

“When people are dislocated, it can end up being a gift to the receiving country, as it was with my family,” said the Brazilian-born filmmaker.

As time went on, the project took on a more personal meaning for Willer.

“It’s moved everything around me in terms of family. I feel much closer to my origins. Going into this film, I didn’t realize how close I would come to feel toward the people in it, and how much better I would understand my father,” she said.

LITHUANIAN FM (WHITE FREEMASON, ZIONIST): ‘HOLOCAUST MEMORY IS IMPORTANT, BUT TIES WITH ISRAEL ARE THE FUTURE’

 

Close Israeli-Lithuanian ties should not be held hostage to the dark days of the Holocaust, Lithuania’s Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius told The Jerusalem Post during his two-day visit to the country this week.

“It is important to remember the past and to know what happened, but it is not less important to focus on the future,” he said during a conversation at the capital’s King David Hotel.

Lithuania has been a staunch diplomatic ally for Israel, particularly at the UN and the within the EU.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Linkevicius at the start of their meeting in Jerusalem on Monday, “You are a friend. Israel has had a long-standing connection with Lithuania – personal and national.”

Lithuania was one of six European Union countries that voted against UNESCO’s resolution disavowing Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem resolution.

The former Soviet bloc country has been generally opposed to Palestinian unilateral moves in the international arena. It was one of 14 countries that were against UNESCO’s 2011 decision to recognize “Palestine” as a member state of its organization. In 2012 it abstained from the UN General Assembly’s vote to upgrade the Palestinians’ status at the UN to one of a nonmember state.

But it is often chastised within the Jewish world for not doing enough to recognize the role Lithuanians played in collaborating with the Nazis to kill Jews during the Holocaust. Jewish history in Lithuania dates back to the eighth century and the community was numbered at over 210,000 when World War II started.

A number of participants at a breakfast meeting with Linkevicius and the Israel Council on Foreign Relations were blunt in their criticism of Lithuania.

“When you talk about Lithuania, the one thing that comes to mind is the horror our people underwent because of collaborators in your country,” a participant told him, later asking if children in Lithuania were taught about it in history.

“I have two daughters and they have zero tolerance for any discrimination and racism, not only against Jews, but against everyone,” Linkevicius said.

“We condemn the Nazis and the collaborators,” he said, adding their actions “will never be forgotten or forgiven.”

But he said “there is a new generation coming. We should look to the future and we should trust that the new generation will never repeat what happened in that period.”

He later told the Post that he disagreed with those who believe Lithuania has not come to terms with its history during WWII.

“The situation is changing in Lithuania very rapidly,” he said. “The new generation does not share the aggressiveness, xenophobia or nationalism [of the past].

If something happens, we react immediately. I do not think that we are not reacting.

I disagree with those who think otherwise,” Linkevicius said.

He noted that among other measures, his country grants citizenship to the descents of those who left before 1990, allowed for property restitution and has recognized Jewish cultural sites, including the place where Vilna’s Great Synagogue once stood. Its remains are now being excavated.

Linkevius noted that the Jewish Lithuanian Diaspora is a particularly prominent one, particularly in Israel, where leaders such as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, former presidents Shimon Peres and Chaim Herzog and former prime minister Ehud Barak all have Lithuanian ties.

As part of Lithuania’s efforts to pay homage its strong Jewish past, Linkevicius during this visit gave Netanyahu a miniature statue of a little girl. The original stands in the city of Seduva, in memory of the Jewish community that existed there before the war.

Herzog’s grandparents and Netanyahu’s great-grandmother are buried in Seduva’s Jewish cemetery, according to the Prime Minister’s Office.

A veteran diplomat, who has also been his country’s defense minister and its ambassador to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Linkevicius was in Israel to bolster the economic and security ties.

The two countries established relations in 1991, but Israel only opened an embassy there in 2015.

Annual bilateral trade between the two countries stands at about €270 million, the majority of it being the security arena which includes cyber and military hardware. Israel exports some dairy products to Lithuanian and is also looking to start importing kosher beef.

Lithuania’s Jewish community today has around 3,500 to 4,500 members.

But Linkevicius said that his country’s believes Jews have had and always will have important status in his country.

HOLOCAUST EXHIBIT EXAMINES HOLLYWOOD DOCUMENTATION OF ATROCITIES

 

LOS ANGELES- A exhibition detailing efforts by three leading Hollywood directors to document atrocities committed by the Nazis opened this week at the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust.

Directors John Ford, George Stevens and Samuel Fuller created shocking yet historically important depictions of the liberation of German concentration camps, later used at the Nuremberg war crimes trials.

“This was the first time that this kind of footage was made with the intention to be presented as evidence,” said Christian Delage, curator of “Filming the Camps: John Ford, Samuel Fuller, George Stevens, From Hollywood to Nuremberg.”

Up to six million Jews died during the Holocaust, many sent to death camps such as Dachau, which is profiled in one of the exhibit’s videos.

Delage said the filming units including young soldiers trained to be cameramen and photographers.

“All these units, they were professional. They had a certain liberty in doing what they wanted to do,” he said.

The museum held a special advance viewing of the exhibition for some Holocaust survivors living in the Los Angeles area.

“With the rise of bigotry all over the country, it’s very important that people show what hatred can do and what we can avoid,” said Eva Nathanson.

The exhibition runs through to April next year.

Hungarian monument to Jewish Holocaust victims smashed

A monument in Hungary commemorating Jewish slave workers later murdered in the Holocaust was defaced.

At least three marble plates signifying Jewish headstones were smashed Sunday in Balf, a town located 120 miles west of Budapest, the Hungarian Jewish weekly Szombat reported Monday.

A government spokesman issued a “strong condemnation” of the act, which police are investigating. There are no suspects.

The monument, which comprises dozens of marble tablets in the shape of headstones, was unveiled in 2008. The positioning of the headstones evokes a group of people walking – meant to honor the memory of those forced to work there by pro-Nazi Hungarians before they were murdered.

Those commemorated in the monument are victims of what the Yad Vashem Holocaust museum in Jerusalem calls the death marches of Hungarian Jews through Austria in the spring of 1945. The previous year, Hungarian Interior Minister Gabor Vajna pledged to provide the German Reich with 50,000 Jewish men and women as slave laborers.

By 1945, Hungary’s fascist Arrow Cross handed over 76,209 Jews to the Germans “on loan” until the end of the war. After an arduous march from Budapest at the height of winter, in which thousands died, the survivors arrived in a weakened state to the border and were handed over to the Germans. Some were forced to dig trenches, other to build structures.

Of the 35,000 Hungarian Jewish forced to work in the Lower Danube Gau area, a third died of starvation, exhaustion and diseases. To prevent the spread of epidemics, Nazi guards would shoot anyone suspected of being ill.

Claims Conference negotiating with Germany over Holocaust reparations for Algerian Jewry

Retired insurance professional Robert Blum, now 91, was a 14-year-old high school student in the Algerian capital Algiers in the early 1940s when he was expelled from his school for being Jewish.

Algeria, under the control of Vichy France at the time, was introducing a series of anti-Semitic laws which stripped Jews of their French citizenship, barred Jewish children from public schools, and prevented Jewish doctors, lawyers, pharmacists and other professionals from working in their trades.

Now the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, also known as the Claims Conference, is making the case to the German government that it should compensate Jews who were in Algeria at the time of the Shoah.

“It was obviously not like the camps in Poland, but it doesn’t mean that there wasn’t persecution — and on that basis we believe that people are entitled to compensation,” said Greg Schneider, the executive vice president of the Claims Conference.

There were approximately 130,000 Jews in Algeria during World War II, and it is estimated that about 25,000 of them are still living — mostly in France, Schneider said.

As far as Blum remembers, being kicked out of the government school wasn’t so bad — he just had to go to a different school nearby, where all the students and teachers were Jewish. The Jewish school was not far from the French school, so he could still spend time with his old schoolmates.

‘It’s true that Jewish students were kicked out, but at the same time, separate schools were organized for them’

“Nothing terrible happened,” he says. “It’s true that Jewish students were kicked out, but at the same time, separate schools were organized for them. There was no animosity between the Jewish and Catholic students.”

But historians say the bigger picture was bleaker. During the war, the quota for Jewish students in both primary school and high school in Algeria was lowered from 14 percent to 7%, according to Jean Laloum, a historian who specializes in contemporary Jewish history in North Africa at the Centre Nationale de la Recherche Scientifique in France.

“It was catastrophic for parents that their children had no future because they couldn’t go to school. It was the worst of the measures,” said Laloum.

Contemporary Jewish historian Jean Laloum. (Courtesy)

In addition, after Algerian Jews were stripped of their French citizenship in October of 1940, the quota for Jews who could work as doctors, lawyers, pharmacists, midwives, architects, and in other professional fields was lowered to 2%. Many Jewish professionals lost their jobs.

Jewish businessmen were also targeted after anti-Semitic laws were introduced to transfer property that was owned by Jews to non-Jewish businessmen.

For example, in July of 1942, an Algerian law barred Jews from operating drinking establishments, which included both cafes and bars, Laloum said.

In addition, Jewish real-estate and businesses in Algeria were often taken away and transferred to Aryans. The homes where Jews lived were not seized, but their commercial properties were often targeted, said Laloum.

Blum says that this actually almost happened to his aunt and uncle. They were arrested under fraudulent allegations, imprisoned and sent to court in Lyon, France. Luckily, the court in Lyon dismissed the case after finding the allegations absurd and his uncle was freed, he said.

‘There were people who wanted to take advantage of the situation to seize shops and businesses that belonged to the Jews’

“There were people who wanted to take advantage of the situation to seize shops and businesses that belonged to the Jews,” Blum said. “But then the court cases didn’t hold any water, and the cases were annulled.”

But according to Laloum and Schneider, many Jews in Algeria did lose their properties and businesses.

“Jewish property was confiscated, I think it was common,” Schneider said.

In addition to economic difficulties, historians say that there were also labor camps in southern Algeria during the war, and some of the prisoners were Jewish, although Laloum did not know how many Algerian Jews may have been sent to these labor camps.

The prisoners in these camps had to break stones and build roads under the hot sun and the conditions were so severe that some prisoners died, Laloum said. While most people were sent there because they opposed the regime or because they were communists, a “certain number of Jews were imprisoned in these camps because they were Jewish,” Laloum said.

Illustrative: Algerian Jewish tailors. During Algeria's WWII Vichy occupation, quotas were imposed limiting the number of Jewish white-collar professionals allowed to practice. (Courtesy of JIMENA)

Jews from other parts of French North Africa compensated

In recent years, the Claims Conference has successfully persuaded the German government to expand the eligibility for compensation for more Jews who lived through the Holocaust.

Most recently, the German government agreed to compensate Jews who had been in hiding for at least four months during the Holocaust, while previously the criteria called for at least a year and a half, Schneider said.

Jews from the town of Iasi, in Romania, have become eligible for compensation since this past July. The German government even provides some funds to Jews from the former Soviet Union who never lived under Nazi occupation — such as those who survived the siege of Leningrad and those who fled from the war together with other Soviet civilians.

Homes in the mellah, or old Jewish quarter, of Fez, are located very close together, with tiny alleys as streets. (photo credit: Michal Shmulovich)

More markedly, the German government has recognized the persecution of Moroccan and Tunisian Jews but has not done so for Algerian Jews — even though Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria were all similarly under the control of Vichy France during WWII.

In Morocco — unlike Algeria — Jews did not lose their citizenship and their property was not seized, Schneider said. Still, Germany recognized that Moroccan Jews suffered from fascist persecution because some were forced to move into historic Jewish districts, called mellahs, which were similar to ghettos. These mellahs were not fenced off or locked, but they were Jewish neighborhoods nonetheless. German law recognizes forced residence as a type of persecution, Schneider said.

Children run along the walkways of the mellah. The old Jewish quarter is discernible by its narrow, rundown alleys. (photo credit: Michal Shmulovich)

In Algeria, on the other hand, Jews were not forced to live in Jewish neighborhoods.

So why haven’t the Jews from Algeria received any compensation?

“It’s not relevant what country they’re from, it’s relevant what persecution they endured. In Algeria, you didn’t have mellahs. There were also no concentration camps in Algeria, they were not wearing yellow stars, so the Algerians are not eligible,” said Schneider.

“We’re trying to get [their other] persecution recognized — like the fact that they got their French citizenship revoked,” said Schneider.

‘It’s not relevant what country they’re from, it’s relevant what persecution they endured’

But Blum, who lived through the war in Algeria after his family fled there from Paris, says that historians must not confuse the situation for Jews in Algeria with the Holocaust.

“What happened in Algeria was totally not what happened in Europe. It was totally different,” he said. “When they say it was horrible for Jews [in Algeria] — I say, ‘No.’”

But the way Schneider sees it, just because one person who lived in Algeria says that it wasn’t so bad, does not negate the suffering of other Algerian Jews.

“There is a general history, and there are people’s individual experiences,” he said.

Belarus Holocaust monument is haunting — and subversive

KHATYN, Belarus (JTA) — Even by Soviet standards, the massive memorial complex near Minsk to the victims of Nazi atrocities stands out for its immense scale and ambition.

Spread across half a million square feet — roughly the size of 10 football fields — the haunting Khatyn Memorial is essentially a graveyard not for people, but for entire villages wiped out by the Nazis in Belarus. Byelorussia, as it was then known, was one of the few places in Europe where German brutality toward non-Jews matched their anti-Semitic savagery.

The memorial features soil from each of the 186 villages razed by the Nazis in Belarus — 3 million civilians here were killed by Nazis, including 800,000 Jews — and a symbolic tombstone for each village. Bell towers toll here every hour for each of the houses that the German and Ukrainian troops burned in the former village of Khatyn in the massacre of March 22, 1943. And there’s a bleak, black marble monument called the Wall of Sorrow.

The monument “was revolutionary,” said Chaim Chesler, founder of the Limmud FSU Jewish learning group. “There is nothing quite like it anywhere in the former Soviet Union, not in terms of scale, design and concept.” Limmud FSU regularly brings visitors to the monument.

But the Khatyn monument is unusual not only for its size and the scale of the tragedy it commemorates.

The complex’s chief architect was Leonid Levin, an uncommon honor for a Jew at a time of virulent state anti-Semitism in the Soviet Union. It also features a rare Soviet depiction of individual, unglorified grief and suffering by ordinary people: a statue called “The Unbowed Man.”

Designed by sculptor Sergei Selikhanov, the work depicts Yuzif Kaminsky, the only villager who survived the Nazi massacre in Khatyn, cradling the corpse of his dead son, Adam. The Kaminsky family wasn’t Jewish, but the father’s grief stands for all the suffering inflicted on the region — and in stark contrast to typical Soviet-era statues of defiant soldiers or a glorious Mother Russia.

Tombstones commemorating entire villages at the Khatyn Memorial Complex in Belarus. (Flickr/CC-SA 2.0/ Adam Jones)

“The inclusion of such work was revolutionary when my father decided on it,” said Levin’s daughter, Galina Levina. “Architecturally and conceptually, he was decades ahead of his time.” Leonid Levin died in 2014.

The Soviet rulers selected Levin along with two other partners to head the project in 1967. State anti-Semitism reached new heights that year with Israel’s victory in the Six-Day War against Moscow’s Arab allies.

“I think it was a recognition of Leonid Levin’s excellence, and a realization that he was the best man for the job,” she said.

‘Architecturally and conceptually, he was decades ahead of his time’

In 1970, Levin won the prestigious Lenin Award, the highest civil distinction of excellence conferred by the Soviet Union, for his work on Khatyn. He became one of only a handful of Jews who received it.

Chesler of the Limmud FSU group said he found this honor “the most astonishing element of the whole story” of the Khatyn monument. “Clearly, it shows Levin had a great deal of trust from Belarus’ communist rulers, and he used that trust to make something truly great,” Chesler said.

Simon Lewis, a historian and research fellow at the Freie Universität Berlin who has written about the Khatyn monument, told JTA that Levin was probably selected for the job because he was trusted by the government to deliver a monumental, patriotic message.

It didn’t hurt that Levin had nationalist credentials to offset his Jewish ethnicity, Lewis noted.

‘His work shows a commitment to Belarusian nationality in a certain understanding of the term’

“He was a very prominent architect before he made Khatyn,” Lewis said of Levin, “and his work shows a commitment to Belarusian nationality in a certain understanding of the term.”

Levin headed projects in Minsk commemorating Yanka Kupala and Yakub Kolas, two of Belarus’ greatest poets.

To Lewis, Levin’s case is indicative of how individual Jews who did not engage in Zionism or other activities frowned upon by Moscow could be promoted within the Soviet system, despite its anti-Semitism.

After the fall of communism, Leonid Levin became the head of the Jewish community of Belarus and devoted much of his professional efforts to projects commemorating the Jewish genocide.

The Pietà-like Kaminsky statue, Lewis said, may have been a concession by Moscow to the population of Belarus, in recognition of the scale of atrocities committed against their nation. A third of its population perished.

A woman cleaning a monument at the Khatyn Memorial Complex in Belarus. (Flickr/CC-SA 2.0/ Adam Jones)

To Galina Levina, the architect’s daughter, this loss forever binds Jews and Belarusians. “It is even appropriate that the man who designed the main monument for the tragedy of the Belarusian people be Jewish,” she said.

Today, hundreds of thousands of schoolchildren each year visit the Khatyn monument, where the country’s leader, Alexander Lukashenko, delivers speeches on memorial days.

“It is a great honor that my father created the site that is responsible for the main effort of genocide education in the country he loved so much,” she said.

When Levin died, he was working on a memorial for the victims of Maly Trostenets, an extermination camp where the Nazis killed the Jews of Minsk, which he was never able to finish. When Levin passed away, his daughter took over from him. The project was completed in 2015.

She said the monument was not only her father’s last project, but also “the most important” one to him.