Today on the may 4, in my country we remember the dead people of world war II. There were 50 million people killed, man, woman and children because 50% of all the dead people are civilians. Europe was at war, for years. The First World War started in 1914 and ended in 1918. It was about imperialism, but I always wondered if that was the only goal. There were many theories and reasons most economical, ideology, political and of course religion and industry reasons to start a war. As you always see in the history wars there were male fights, imperialism must be very important for man.
Europe, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, the US all these countries were somehow involved.
It was psychologically good for ‘ the Europeans’ because the modern imperialism had new sources and that gave people a feeling of being superior and stimulated self confidence. Around 6 million people got killed. Most of them soldiers.
Probably that didn’t solve anything. Europe got into economic crisis. If anybody thinks that Europe is united like the land the called America, that’s wrong. Every country here has its own language, own culture and even being right next to another country they are all very different. We have to learn a lot of languages here to be able to travel in Europe.
Its like saying an Indian, there is no. Even in Finland there are native people, they live by the sea and sometimes they kill a Whale with their small boats. They use everything of the animal and the rests of the animal they share with the white Polar bears. The government wants to forbid it, because Japan and other countries are not allowed to kill whales. These people deal with the same issues, their children grow up in modern society and many of them want top leave, they don’t want to live like their parents do. They want another life, a life with a chair, a soft couch to watch TV and a modern bed to sleep in and some money to spend and buy thongs you need, or not need at all but like to have. That’s another issue.
The First World War stopped in 1918. My father was then 6 years old. My mother was not born yet.
But.. in Europe the Germans started a war again, on the 1st September they went to Poland to attack and so the UK and France declared the war on Germany. The dramatically expanse was when the Germans attacked in 1941the Soviet Union (Russia). Not long after that the US bombed Pearl Harbor and therefor Japan declared being in war to. That was not according to what they succeeded in 1936, because Germany and Japan had a commitment what they called an ‘ Anti-Komiternpact’. It was against the communism and the purpose was to prevent the communism regime in Europe. But this commitment was over after the bombing. That’s why Russia, the communism, was the ‘enemy’ for a long time.
It were conventions, made by man who made promises, but the words were of no value because it didn’t take long before it got out of hand. (No, i do not hate man)
In the first world war people had principles, they tried not to kill innocent civilians and made a difference in soldiers, warriors, and civilians and farmers. These people were no real primary goal. That was different in the second war. It was brute, and this second war was really at its worse. Many people were killed, and many children lost one or two parents. There was no mercy on children, not on woman it was war.
Everybody, every country that participated saw the killing of civilians as normal. The principle behind it was that civilians we also part of ‘the enemy’. In Germany and in the Sovjet there was a dictatorial regime going on. (Pyramid leadership).The people were cruelly oppressed. The war of the military’s was extremely hard and rough. There were rules made after the first world was, they called that ‘ the Geneva convenient’ (1929 number 3) which describes that civilians should not be killed, prisoners and wounded people should be helped but nobody cared for these war rules, there were no principles. They treated the prisoners of war inhumane, it was an awful brute war.
In this war there were about 50-70 million people killed. Many of them were civilians who were also at war and people betrayed others who live in the same street. When the school teacher, the nurse or the doctor of your village had a wrong idea about something it was easy to let him or her be killed, all you had to do is tell somebody about his ideas and the ‘problem’ would be solved. People mistrusted their neighbors, and even their own children. Children betrayed their parents, their brothers and sisters.
The bombing of innocent civilians was done on purpose. It was a way to impress and to get the enemy down on its knees, who started that? The Japanese, who are famous because of there cruelty? The Germans, who thought they were indestructible? I don’t know the answer to that.
There was another thing that we now see as wrong. Many people didn’t belong to the definition ‘ubermensch’ according to the man who was responsible for this imperialistic way of thinking, Adolf Hitler. They had to be killed and there was no mercy in that. The numbers of people who were killed by these rules were around 11 million people in 5 years.
What does the word ubermensch means? Originally it was first used by Friedrich Nietzsche (1844 -1900) who was a German philosopher. He wanted people to be more individual and not only be part of a herd mind and he wanted to people to step out of systems. He promoted to always keep on thinking for you. He used this word with the intention to make a difference in between animal people and human people and had the idea that human were a big creature/specie. He described; ‘there is a rope in between the ubermensch and the animal’, people had something of a higher level. (‘Uber’ in German is upper, higher and ‘mensch’ stands for human)
But… when this word ubermensch is used in National Socialism terms it is related on the breed, the race and color of a human. This of course has nothing to do with the original meaning that Nietschze gave it, it was an interpretation the nazi’s gave in the word. It probably sounded nice to them. But was not how Nietschze meant it. It was an interpretation.
The nazi people, who were not thinking based on real deep insight and/or intelligence, were very impressed by the work (words) of the German Nietschze. The interpreted his work in a very ‘special’ way and developed the meaning of the word ubermensch and untermensch. Unter is in German under. The best way to describe the way the nazi used this word is a human being with the most negative mental and physical qualities. Nietzsche also wrote about gentleman agreement and said that the weak people were getting power by manipulation. Probably that was interesting and usable in this war. In war time people want revenge and they look for reasons to fulfill this need.
Because in this war it was ‘normal’ to see other people as a possible enemy, and that became normal thinking in the first year of wartime. Amazing when you realize that people didn’t have real communication possibilities but were so ‘ united’ on this standpoint. Europe is not big, and each country is very different, but they all agreed on this. Only some people resisted, they wanted it to stop. Of course when the nazi knew, these resistant people who want to be in the herd of the nazi (remember Nietschze’s original ideas) were killed and seen as ‘untermensch’.
The result of the interpretation of the work of Nietzsche was that there was a difference on breed of people. The nazi wanted to kill all the untermensch, which were many people (civilian) with a handicap, gipsy’s, Jehovah (religion), Jewish, homosexual, people from Saliva like Polish, Russian, Ukraine etc. etc.
Then the massacre of Jewish people, who were untermensch, started. Step by step their privileges were taken away. It didn’t take long before these people were systematically murdered everywhere. It became some kind of routine job, as we all can see on the (real) movies and pictures taken by the nazi’s themself. The Germans, nazi’s and the civilians were looking at it, were they proud, were they thinking, were they doubting a second? They seemed to be united about these killings. These killings were immense, on many places there are graves with thousands of people. Shot in the back, children in the arms of their parents.
In the first years of the war the nazi people shot the Jewish people by hand. To do that they went to the country’s and village by village they collected all the Jewish people who lived there. They only had to take them took them out of their houses, to recognize them was easy because they all wear a star. After that they put them in lines and then shot them in the back and the bodies fell in the holes that were dug. Many times dug by the civilians of these villages, or by the Jewish people themselves. The local civilians and police officers who shot, all helped on this job. On the road towards civilization, the new empire.
when the people fell in the wholes they put sand over the bodies. Some were dead, but many people were not dead and were pushed in the holes. On many places all over Europe there were hundreds, thousands of Jewish people killed this way.
Most of the time they first killed the males, the man. That was a psychological choice, because if they would kill the woman and children first the man would possibly start to fight because then they have nothing to lose.
Still in 2012 not all the mass graves have been found because there were so many and not all places were registered. It was such a routine job, that people didn’t register them all. The policeman, who also shot and military’s sometimes even look bored. What do you lose when killing other people gets boring?
Yesterday I watched a documentary of the war and there was a woman who was now old and she was dying. She lived there, in the Ukraine, she lived there all her life, now she was old. She lay in a bed next to a window. Right in front of her garden was such a grave, there were about 3.000 people there, and she saw what happened there. She was a child when this grave was dug and it was filled in only a few days.
Witnesses on many different places told afterword how the earth on these murdered people moved for a few days. Signs that not everybody was dead, that there were people surviving and there was air. Even after when they rode over the earth with bulldozers to make the earth equal so more people could be put there. They also did that on the bodies, they rode over the people to make more space. Witnesses, most of them now grown-ups but then they were children then, told how they heard the people shout and cry. Many people started to cry as the saw and heard these voices in their memory again. These were clear signs of people who were still alive. But nobody really cared, or didn’t dare to give any comment. It was ‘normal’.
For the civilians it meant that your neighbor, your doctor who helped you before with the birth or sickness of your children, the teacher, the owner of the shop where you buy your bread was there. It could be your friend who was killed because he or she was Jewish. On some movies you see many people watching these killings, passive. The people of the villages could take the clothing’s, many times people first had to undress before they were killed. So they were standing naked on the edge of there grave. The old woman in the bed cried, she was unable to do anything about it then. But she was glad that these people were now found, so now they would somebody is stead of nobody.
There are many stories in every country of Europe about these huge massacres. Story’s of individual people, who were witnesses, suffered on the war, lost parents, brothers, sisters, family, friends and saw the most awful things. These nazi’s were people. There are also many story’s of people who nobody ever saw again after the war was over. They might be killed like this, nobody knows for sure until the body is found.
After a while the nazi’s wanted to save ammunition, and so they build special places to be able to kill less personal and could burn the bodies. That’s when the transport of people started, a one way ticket to death. Many people knew, and were helping there children to be brave, and not lose their pride and dignity.
My own parents were at the age of 18 and 28 when this second war started, they both had a different life in those days but lived in the same town. I was not born yet, i was born 20 years later in the 60’s.
Tonight at eight o’clock there is, like every year, a national memorial for all the victims of this cruel war. There are two minutes of total silence, and everybody has his or her own private memory. On many places there are monuments, and on the 4th of may people come together, to remember and share the memory's. When i was a child i always joined my mother on this, somehow she wanted to go alone i never understood why. Not everybody talks about it. I remember very well how her sadness and her silence with her wet eyes always impressed me a lot. Mothers don’t cry, they are strong but i could feel her sorrow, her deep sadness, she was a mother.
It is hard to realize how life was in those days, all we have is memories and our imagination. Many times i asked myself, on which side would i be myself? Of course i would be on the right side, i would resist this cruel war. But do i say that because now we know what happened, and would i really have chosen the right side? After all it is very easy to scare people, and manipulate them when they are in miserable circumstances; in the 1930’s there was an economical crisis. There were many people poor, sick and there was no help. No social security, no medical help, nothing. People were poor and many people and children died. That was the main reason why woman got so many children, so when these children were old enough to work they would have some money for the family.
On which side would i be, on which side would you be in those days? Would you really understand the war, would you feel the urge of revenge and who would be your victim of revenge? A human, the fence, a stone you throw in the water…or do you pray. I don’t know the answer.
All I know is that i hope that IF I lived in those days i would have chosen the right side...
This year there was some commotion. Every year in Amsterdam there is a national memorial there on the victims. Every year a child can read out a self-made poem, it is on national television. So a boy named Auke de Leeuw (15), wrote a poem, called: 'Wrong choices' he won the price and the honor of being the one who can this year read her poem. In his poem he talks about a boy, a family member, a boy who made the wrong choice and chose the wrong side. The boy got killed a year before the war ended. The boy was part of ‘ the enemy’ is he a victim, is he an enemy and what means forgiveness without forgetting what happened. Is it possible now to see the enemy as a victim too?
The family members of the Jewish organization protested, and said this year they would not come there because of the ‘wrong’ poem.
So another poem is chosen and the girl who originally won the price will not read her poem. Wise people chose another poem of another child.
That’s not all, there is on another place, it is a national moment, there is commotion over some graves.
The important people of that place will walk over the graveyard and this year they wanted to visit the grave of 5 German soldiers too. The families of the victims were protesting and said it was not allowed to do that, the Germans are/were enemy. Enemy should not be remembered on this day.
Tomorrow there is a national day. Tomorrow on the 5th of may we celebrate the freedom? In 1945 the WW II ended and the Canadians made our country free of the Germans.
Who is a victim, who is the enemy, is there still an enemy or is the enemy inside everybody. Is this poem of the boy wrong, or is it a sensitive way to remind us to never ever let something like this happen ever again. When people get used to killing other people, then people have lost something very important. Then we lost or pride, our dignity and our real humane feeling. To me war is male, males fight. It were the female who fed the children and stayed at home. It was the men who were fighting.
All i can say is how I feel about it, a personal thought. To me everybody should be acknowledged, it is very easy to say now that somebody made the wrong choice. People still make wrong choices, every day. A boy of 18 is he mature, is he psychological strong enough to choose right, did he realize his choice? Was his mother proud on her sun, or was she sad. When she gave birth to this boy she didn’t know the future. She loved her baby. Why is it not good to read a poem of a girl who in her heart was thinking, thinking the same about the wrong choices people can make.
The lesson we should all definitely remember is to be careful to blame somebody on the past, the past belongs to us, but is us who live now. Like the Germans nazi’s were ignorant and misinterpreted the real meaning of Nietzsche. They made something awful of it, something that gets out the worst in humans. Greed, hardness, loss of humanity, hatred, fear anger all bad emotions and some not personal but humane too. Revenge and greed are human emotions.
I do hope you will read this the way it’s meant, just an opinion and thoughts out of a heart of somebody on the other side of the world.
At eight o’ clock every year I go to the horse people who live at our place. Then i am silent and remember all the people who died for nothing. I remember my parents, my brother, the people of Wounded Knee, my horse friends, the white mare and her enormous love and soft female kindness. On these days i think of many, many others who were part of any war and must have thought they made the right choice. Two minutes of silence is to short.
Every year i pray to Mother Nature that we will not mistake again. Not blame anybody for our misery now and that we all find the strength to be proud on our self, our beloved and be proud on the beautiful world around us. We live now and I was born in freedom, not in war. SO all i can do is imagine and feel. Please let there be no human revenge anymore. Let us live, life is what every mother wants for her baby, and every father wants to protect his baby against bad things.
Thank you Mothers for life, thank you Fathers for being there and protect us against the evil. Your love is the strongest love of life in common, for all people, human and animal.
As long as i live feel a deep gratitude, you are the foundation of life.
Thank you for the lessons, so we can do it on our own when we grow up and be able to make choices.
The best revenge is to be happy.