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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 8:00 pm 
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I cannot imagine the emotions felt by the GIs or prisoners that day.
US Holocaust Memorial Museum wrote:
On April 29, 1945, American forces liberated Dachau. As they neared the camp, they found more than 30 railroad cars filled with bodies brought to Dachau, all in an advanced state of decomposition.
http://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/article.php ... d=10005214

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 8:36 pm 
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29 April 1945 - liberation day at Dachau
Quote:
The sight of the dead bodies on the train enraged the soldiers of I Company in the 157th Infantry Regiment of the 45th Division and it was understood that they would take no prisoners. The first four SS soldiers who came forward carrying a white flag of surrender were ordered into an empty box car by Lt. William Walsh and shot.

Then Lt. Walsh "segregated from surrendered prisoners of war those who were identified as SS Troops," according to a report by the Office of the Inspector General of the Seventh Army, dated June 8, 1945.

The following is a quote from the I.G. report:

Quote:
"6. Such segregated prisoners of war were marched into a separate enclosure, lined up against the wall and shot down by American troops, who were acting under the orders of Lt. Walsh. A light machine gun, carbines, and either a pistol or a sub-machine gun were used. Seventeen of such prisoners of war were killed, and others were wounded."

The war was not over; the fighting had just found a new battlefield.


Pile of shoes found at Dachau

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 9:03 pm 
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From TollandRCR's link:
Quote:
Lt. Col. Felix Sparks, an officer in the 45th Thunderbird Division, described what it was like that day, in an account which he wrote in 1989:

During the early period of our entry into the camp, a number of Company I men, all battle hardened veterans became extremely distraught. Some cried, while others raged. Some thirty minutes passed before I could restore order and discipline.

Never Again

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 9:06 pm 
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Poor souls :(

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 9:06 pm 
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Hitler died the next day.


But Germany died years earlier.

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 9:15 pm 
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My former FIL was in Army Intelligence in Europe and part of a contingent that had first entered one of the camps (Buchenvald, IIRC). As with a lot of GIs in similar circumstances, he'd never really talk about it, beyond it being horrifying.

Never again.


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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 9:27 pm 
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As for "never again," that is what animates Israel today in its desire to see that Iran never gets the bomb. It was, after all, Jews who were specially singled out as an ethnic group for extinction, not Iranians (or, as they like to call themselves, Persians).

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 10:46 pm 
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http://www.history.com/videos/arnold-ropeik-on-the-concentration-camps#arnold-ropeik-on-the-concentration-camps

The mosaic of the stones that build one's life.

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There are as many good things about civilization as bad. Perhaps more. And we would miss them. From toothbrushes to electric lights. From clean water to democracy. From bookstores to the kind of gentle, tolerant argumentation that never resorts to violence and allows for the slow changing of opinions...and the gradual and diverse evolving of everybody's minds.
The core of what we now know that it means to be civilized.
Alas, Babylon by Pat Frank (1959), Foreword by David Brin (June 2005)


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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Sun Apr 29, 2012 10:57 pm 
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While we all want nothing more than "Never again.", I don't believe we as a species are destined to reach that shore anytime in the next several generations (at the very least). I don't believe in "if" anymore.

www.youtube.com Video from : www.youtube.com

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 10:24 am 
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President Reagan recalls his near-death-camp experience:

Quote:
...the fantastic recollections of the late Ronald Reagan, whose veneration by Republicans was never diminished by his bizarre utterances. In November 1983, he told Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir during a White House visit that while serving in the U. S. Army film corps, his unit had shot footage of the Nazi concentration camps as they were liberated. He repeated the same tale to Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal and other witnesses. Reagan had indeed served in the Army and worked on morale-boosting movies for the War Department. But he had done so without ever leaving Hollywood for the entire duration of the war.
[-(

http://www.salon.com/2010/05/20/bushreagan/

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 12:18 pm 
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Shagnastie wrote:
President Reagan recalls his near-death-camp experience:

Quote:
...the fantastic recollections of the late Ronald Reagan, whose veneration by Republicans was never diminished by his bizarre utterances. In November 1983, he told Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir during a White House visit that while serving in the U. S. Army film corps, his unit had shot footage of the Nazi concentration camps as they were liberated. He repeated the same tale to Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal and other witnesses. Reagan had indeed served in the Army and worked on morale-boosting movies for the War Department. But he had done so without ever leaving Hollywood for the entire duration of the war.
[-(

http://www.salon.com/2010/05/20/bushreagan/



He didn't say HE shot the footage, he said "His Unit" which, if you consider the "Signal Corps" as his "unit," then he was quite honest and factual.


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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 12:21 pm 
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Slightly late, but on April 25, 1945, units of my dad's division, the 69th infantry, linked up with the Russian Army at the Elbe river in Germany.

According to my dad, the Russians were well supplied with Vodka.


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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:30 pm 
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Chilidog wrote:
Shagnastie wrote:
President Reagan recalls his near-death-camp experience:

Quote:
...the fantastic recollections of the late Ronald Reagan, whose veneration by Republicans was never diminished by his bizarre utterances. In November 1983, he told Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir during a White House visit that while serving in the U. S. Army film corps, his unit had shot footage of the Nazi concentration camps as they were liberated. He repeated the same tale to Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal and other witnesses. Reagan had indeed served in the Army and worked on morale-boosting movies for the War Department. But he had done so without ever leaving Hollywood for the entire duration of the war.
[-(

http://www.salon.com/2010/05/20/bushreagan/



He didn't say HE shot the footage, he said "His Unit" which, if you consider the "Signal Corps" as his "unit," then he was quite honest and factual.

I had hoped for that interpretation to be true, but Reagan is purported to have said that he was at Buchenwald:
Quote:
The degree to which Reagan is out of touch with reality was best demonstrated in his concentration camp story. This was not simply a slip of the tongue, a Bushian confusion of December with September. When the Premier of Israel visited Reagan at the White House, the President went on and on for three quarters of an hour explaining why he was pro-Jewish: it was because, being in the Signal Corps in World War II, he visited Buchenwald shortly after the Nazi defeat and helped to take films of that camp. Reagan repeated this story the following day to an Israeli ambassador. But the truth was 180-degrees different; Reagan was not in Europe; he never saw a concentration camp; he spent the entire war in the safety of Hollywood, making films for the armed forces…

There are only two ways to interpret the concentration camp story. Perhaps Reagan engaged in a bald-faced lie. But why? What would he have to gain? Especially after the lie was found out, as it soon would be. The only other way to explain this incident, and a far more plausible one, is that Ronnie lacks the capacity to distinguish fantasy from reality. He would, at least in retrospect, have liked to be filming at Buchenwald. Certainly, it made a better story than the facts. But what are we to call a man who cannot distinguish fantasy from reality?

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There are as many good things about civilization as bad. Perhaps more. And we would miss them. From toothbrushes to electric lights. From clean water to democracy. From bookstores to the kind of gentle, tolerant argumentation that never resorts to violence and allows for the slow changing of opinions...and the gradual and diverse evolving of everybody's minds.
The core of what we now know that it means to be civilized.
Alas, Babylon by Pat Frank (1959), Foreword by David Brin (June 2005)


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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2012 3:01 pm 
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I remember the coverage of both occasions. He clearly told his story from a first-person-I-was-there pov.

I also remember the general reaction being "Hey, so he's a little senile...give the old guy a break." ;)

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Tue Jul 02, 2013 4:14 pm 
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The father of Congressman Ed Royce (R-CA 39), one of the first GI's to enter Dachau in April 1945, was honored by the Simon Wiesenthal Center.
The Hill wrote:
The 91-year-old father of Rep. Ed Royce (R-Calif.) is the recipient of a big honor: an award from the Simon Wiesenthal Center for his work liberating one of Nazi Germany’s concentration camps.

The congressman was on hand Monday as his dad, Ed Royce Sr., accepted the Distinguished Service Award at the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles.

In 1945, members of then-Private First Class Royce’s Army unit were the first Americans to walk through the gates of the Dachau concentration camp. The camp was one of the first established by the Nazis in 1933.
<snipped>

“As my father, Edward D. Royce, wrote, ‘There was a room filled halfway to the ceiling with bodies and the room had four ovens for burning the bodies. There was an entire trainload — and hundreds of emaciated bodies — on a nearby rail spur … This was one day, at one camp, and there were many such camps scattered throughout Germany and Poland. So when I meet people who doubt the Holocaust, I show them the photos I took that day.’ ”
http://thehill.com/blogs/in-the-know/in ... ii-efforts

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 Post subject: April 29, 1945
PostPosted: Tue Jul 02, 2013 4:18 pm 
Our Holocaust Remembrance event in Newark's keynote speaker was a guy who had survived Dachau. He had his uniform and a whip like the one the Nazis used to beat him.

When he showed that to the audience (middle-school kids), there was a deathly hush in the room.


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