9.17.2014

Excavations Continue at Sobibor

Excavations continue at Sobibor, and have now confirmed the location - and existence - of gas chambers at the death camp.

Gas chambers at Sobibor death camp uncovered in archaeological dig:
An archaeological dig in Poland has revealed the location of the gas chambers at the Sobibor death camp, Yad Vashem announced on Wednesday.
This is important, as although the vast majority of people are reasonable and not only acknowledge but regret the Holocaust in which millions of Jews and Gentiles, Poles, Greeks, Catholics, homosexuals, Roma, disabled and the politically inconvenient were killed ... there will always be idiots, some theoretically highly educated, who continue to deny the Holocaust.

Last summer's excavation located an escape tunnel: Escape tunnel discovered at Nazi death camp Sobibor - Telegraph

In 2012 the finds were highly personal items left behind by those sent to their deaths.



Israeli archaeologist digs into Sobibor death camp in search of Nazi killing machines Israel News | Haaretz

70 years after revolt, Sobibor secrets are yet to be unearthed | The Times of Israel

The problem is that we forget, or we 'move on' and ... make the same mistakes all over again. In Yugoslavia, in Rwanda, now under ISIS or ISIL or whatever abbreviation you want to use for the fundamentalists pushing a strange misinterpretation of the teachings of Islam.

Every time I watch one of the many movies and documentaries about Rwanda, a part of me hopes that that Clinton administration official won't repeat her inane description of the massacres there as "acts of genocide" and instead admit that it was "genocide" pure and simple. Obviously, she never does. The distinction is important, and not just a legal nicety - had the US acknowledged that there was genocide there, they would have been obliged to interfere to prevent it under the 1948 UN Genocide Convention.

I understand people standing by and doing nothing because they were too scared to do so, fearing that they too would be the victims of reprisals, but I find it impossible to believe that people living in the vicinity of death camps did not realise what was going on. When Downtown reopened after 9/11 there was still the smell of barbeque; I know people tend not to talk about it, but it was distinctive, and obvious. Far fewer people were incinerated on 9/11 in the WTC than were on an average day in an extermination camp.

Former Harvard professor Samantha Power is currently the US Ambassador to the UN, so when she produces another revised edition of her seminal work A Problem From Hell, after having dealt with the current atrocities, it will be particularly interesting.

For now I can only recommend the most recent edition of A Problem From Hell: America and the Age of Genocide: x, x and the usual places.

It rightly won the Pulitzer in 2003, but unfortunately she has had to  update it many times since then. Given the situation in the Middle East, it is still a key read for anyone interested in current events, the history of geo-politics and nationalism run wild.


2 comments:

  1. This is not a subject i would normally comment upon, but just what qualative distinction is ther between 'an act of X' and plain 'X', outside the confines of Hollywood or the theatre? If I kill you is it not an 'act of murder'? Or is this a viable defence in American Law? Maybe someone should have let the innocent negroes George W fried as governor of Texas know that illiteracy was a defence, but then that governor probably would not have got it!

    I suppose that since the only way to prevent these things is to kill another bunch of people and face a backlash it is a difficult position unless you don't care about being the Great Satan (Hitler, Stalin etc never did, maybe we should be thankful that the US does; to get Sokratic, is it better to fuck up trying to do the right thing or to succeed doing the wrong thing?).

    Personally I am a military interventionist and as such support the maximum amount of civilian casualties necessary (aka collateral damage) BUT without a post action plan killing people is just plain murder, no matter the cause.

    Please delete the post if you find it offensive, I am just a bit fed up with the jellyfish in charge of Britain - whatever happened to Civis Romanus sum? Since we do not negotiate wit terrorists the only option is the 'Il Principe' solution - if a person harms you either forgive him or deal him such a blow that his revenge will be inconsequential.

    Apologies

    ReplyDelete
  2. "genocide" is admitting that it's taking place, and is a crime the UN is legally bound to intervene in

    "acts of genocide" is that a few people were a bit 'naughty' but honestly it's not that bad, and it's not 'real' genocide so we're not legally bound to intervene.

    ReplyDelete

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