Hello Cruel World
Saturday, March 22, 2008
Failure and Persistence of Memory
[NB: If I could make Blogger's "expandable posts" work like LJ-cuts, I'd tuck this & other long posts away. Any advice?]
Looking for something about the Gray Order of anti-Nazi liberal Catholics ..., mentioned in the Making Light thread 'Winning Hearts and Minds' (September 27, 2005, 12:19 AM:) by bellatrys
A few weeks? months? back [see below] I posted the link on my blog to an "On This Day" from the BBC (a feature where they post what was on their broadcasts 10, 20, 50 years ago) - a lengthy diatribe against the genocidal actions of the Nazis against the Jews, by a British cabinet official, from 1942 or 43. So those who say that the Allies didn't know, or couldn't have known, are just wrong. The truth *was* out there. And around the same time I posted a lot of the leaflets of the White Rose, with background information on the membership, and how they found out about the atrocities in Poland and Russia - some of these kids were in the German Army, remember, and working as medics because that was the closest they could get to CO status - some of the guys saw things themselves, and came home on leave, or heard about them from buddies who *committed* them. They were *adamant* in their reproaches, directed towards their fellow German citizens, that only those who chose not to know as hard as they could, who made the mental choice to disregard the testimony of atrocity as "unreliable" compared to the assurances of their government that they were behaving honorably towards the Poles and Russians, who were themselves barbarians - only willful ignorance among adults was possible. (Remember that many of them were teens, had been resisting since they were *young* teens some of them, and none of them very old at all, except for the professor they recruited eventually.)
... The only hard stuff was tracking down about the Gray Order, the extinct liberal Catholic youth group, which has been almost totally memoryholed and required a lot of translating of German source matter.
In short, "none so deaf as will not hear, none so blind as will not see." As ever. Why? Because knowledge requires change of belief; change of belief requires action, or change of action, or cessation of action.
who refers to an earlier entry, which I'm excerpting here.
5th subhead of You just can't get away from it, it's like the humidity (July 26th, 2005)You just can't get away from it, it's like the humidity - Collective Failures of Memory, Part I
Collective Failures of Memory, Part I
The "mythtery" that is commonly taught and accepted, which is not even part of the "history is written by the victors" problem but the unacknowledged "apparently, history is written by the same people who come up with urban legends" problem, is all around us. How often have you "learned" that "they" thought the earth was flat in the middle ages, and Columbus challenged Church and State to prove his radical new idea that the world is round, after all? 100% false, apparently first concoted by Washington Irving of Headless Horseman fame, to spice up a children's textbook that he was writing over a hundred years ago. Easily debunkable, too. But who cares about textual provenance and first hand sources?
Now, here's another one you've probably all heard: nobody knew about the genocides during WWII, until after the death camps were taken by Allied troops. Recited as dogma, over and over again. Who of those who recite it has ever gone and looked at old newspapers or other contemporary records? Obviously, none. That people in Germany didn't know, couldn't have known (unless of course they were a) being rounded up, b) doing the rounding) is also frequently recited, and yet as I showed by finding the text of the White Rose's press releases not long ago, this was false.
Equally, so was the rest of it. People may have chosen not to believe it back then, the way people in America are choosing to believe that no real torture has been committed by us upon our prisoners - but the truth was out there.
BBC "On this day" - December 17, 1942
The British Foreign Secretary, Anthony Eden, has told the House of Commons about mass executions of Jews by Germans in occupied Europe…
08:54 pm July 26th, 2005
BBC "On this day" - December 17, 1942
http://news.bbc.co.uk/ onthisday/ hi/ dates/ stories/ december/ 17/ newsid_3547000/ 3547151.stm
1942: Britain condemns massacre of Jews
The British Foreign Secretary, Anthony Eden, has told the House of Commons about mass executions of Jews by Germans in occupied Europe... Four days ago, synagogues all over Britain held a day of mourning as a mark of concern for the massacre of the Jews in Nazi-occupied Europe...
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