Saturday, November 12, 2005


It is strange and disturbing that the day following Armistice Day is the anniversary of the 1938 meeting where Herman Goering announced:
I have received a letter written on the Fuhrer's orders requesting that the Jewish question be now, once and for all, coordinated and solved one way or another... I should not want to leave any doubt, gentlemen, as to the aim of today's meeting. We have not come together merely to talk again, but to make decisions, and I implore competent agencies to take all measures for the elimination of the Jew from the German economy, and to submit them to me.
This was to be the Final Solution. It is indeed salutary and sad to note that Armistice Day is bookended by Goering's exhortation of 'competent agencies' and the preliminary horror of Kristallnacht on the 9/10 November.

When I was younger these events seemed impossibly distant, but now I remember that in 1938 my father was was five years old. That is the same age that my son is in 2005. For some reason that strange symmetry brings the Nazi horror into my compass in a way it has never been before.

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