The Condition of Survivors


Commentary by Dr. Gerhard Falk


Holocaust Survivors


The word holocaust was used by Winston Churchill with reference to the slaughter during the First World War. The word literally means “Whole Fire” and is derived from Greek. We use the word caustic.

Later it became associated with the mass murder of six million Jews and five million others by the Germans and their allies during the Second World War. Although eleven million human beings were murdered because of their religion, political opinion, or on the grounds of being racially inferior, some of the persecuted did survive and are therefore called holocaust survivors.

After the Nazi horrors ended in 1945, nothing was reported or spoken about these nightmares in either the Jewish of general community. It was only in 1967 when in the early part of that year the Arabs, seeking to make money by killing all Jews, were threatening to kill all the Jews in Israel. The threat was real as Egypt, with eighty million inhabitants, together with Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi, and others seemed capable of killing every Jew in Israel as they had promised to do ever since the United Nations voted to divide the Holy Land into a small Jewish state and give 75% of the land to the Arabs. 

Egypt had received huge amounts of Russian weapons, as did Syria. Therefore it seemed certain that the end of the Jews was in sight, as American and other media drooled with joy to experience another mountain of Jewish corpses and “the final solution” of the Jewish presence in this world.

Then, a veritable miracle occurred, as the Israelis, without the help of anyone, suddenly destroyed the entire Egyptian Air Force and then, in six days, wiped out the armies of Egypt, Syria, and Jordan.

Only then did the American Jewish community suddenly remember the holocaust, which had never been mentioned among the American Jewish establishment since 1945, a total of twenty-two years.

American Jews did not want to know that they had abandoned the European Jews, and particularly the German Jews, to mass murder, and had voted for Franklin Roosevelt, who was undoubtedly a co-conspirator in the horrors inflicted on the Jews of Europe. One technique used to shut off all discussion of the survivors’ memories is for American Jews to interrupt survivors by announcing that they, the American born Jews, were also victims because their cousin twice removed was also persecuted.

Today, seventy-six years after the end of the Nazi dictatorship, the words “holocaust survivor” is still an opprobrium among the American Jewish community. The survivors themselves live with these horrors every day, even now.

Unlike all other immigrants to this country, the holocaust survivor cannot return to Europe and visit his relatives, who have all been murdered; nor can he write to them or call them. While all other immigrants were able to bring their relatives to America, holocaust survivors have no relatives and must forever feel the terrible burden of knowing that their fathers and mothers, their brothers and sisters, and all they knew were murdered because they were Jews. Not a day goes by that the survivors don’t review these nightmares, which are unknown to the American Jewish community.

Another condition burdens holocaust survivors and especially German Jews. While the persecution of the Jews in Germany began in 1933, it did not start in Eastern Europe until the invasion of Poland by the German army  in 1939. This means that German Jews were already victimized by Hitler and his cohorts more than six years before the eastern European Jews became the target of Christian fury. Before that, only German Jews were labeled “Christ killers” and murdered in revenge for the death of the Christian god.

Yet, Rabbi Steven Wise, a confidant of Roosevelt and president of several Jewish organizations, wrote that “the German Jews exaggerate their persecution. Protestants and Catholics are also persecuted.” That was a lie which pleased Roosevelt and became an excuse by American Jews for failing to help their brethren in Germany and Austria. Indeed, there were some American Jews who went out of their way to help German Jews escape the Nazi horrors. This shall not be forgotten. Nevertheless, the few German Jews who were admitted here were a tiny minority of those who could have been saved had the American Jews been willing to do so. One reason for this attitude was and is revenge. American Jews like to recite how their Russian ancestors were mistreated in Germany as they traveled to Hamburg to gain passage on the Jewish owned Hamburg-America Line in the years 1884-1924, after which Congress closed almost all immigration to this country.

To this day, American Jews don’t want to know about the failure of the American Jewish community and the largely Christian community to accept the German Jews, whom the Americans labeled arrogant, ungrateful, rich, and devious. Since the 1930’s, the descendants of the 2.5 million Russian-Polish Jews now in America are revenging themselves on the German Jews for the possible “arrogance” of the Jews of Germany towards the Jews who came through Germany on their way to America.

Today, after all these years, it is a widespread practice to commemorate the Holocaust every April. At these functions, wealthy American lawyers and others hold speeches about these persecutions because they, the speakers, read about the brutality of the European population towards their Jewish victims. Holocaust survivors are not asked to speak, as they know too much. Furthermore, it is important for “leading” businessmen to address large audiences, as that is good for their businesses, although these speeches are utterly foreign to those who were there.

There is a common Jewish proverb, “Kol Yisroel Chaveyrim.” This is indeed carried out by some Jews. Yet, the majority of American Jews are so busy dealing with so called “social issues” that Israel and its survival is the least important issue interesting the American Jewish Community.

Pew Reserch has conducted a recent survey concerning  issues of interest to American Jews.

The survival of Israel turned out to be last on a long list of conditions supported by the American Jewish community. American Jews are willing to support their enemies, their detractors, and anti-Jewish hate mongers, but not Israel.

All this causes the holocaust survivors a great deal of pain. We wonder, as do many others, why American Jews consistently vote for those who hate us and refuse to support those who  seek to be our friends.

Believe it  or not, even in Germany there was a “Reichsbund Jüdischer Frontsoldaten,” all veterans of the First World War (1914-1918) who congratulated Hitler on occupying the French owned “Rhineland.”

Recently a number of commentators speaking on a TV channel discussed why Jews keep voting against their own interests. They came to no conclusion. They could not understand this strange phenomenon. Neither can we.

Shalom u’vracha.

 Dr. Gerhard Falk is the author of numerous publications, including The American Jewish Community in the 20th and 21st Century (2021).

Home ] Up ]