Tuesday, January 27, 2015

This Is Gavriella

This is Gavriella. She was 12 years old when the Nazis invaded her small village and took her to Auschwitz. Her mother begged her to go with her older sisters, understanding that if the child stayed with her, the Nazis would kill her. Gavriella didn't want to leave her side but finally was persuaded. As she walked across to her sisters, a Nazi guard - may his memory forever be cursed, made the child return to her mother's side. She and her mother were gassed to death.

For all her life, my mother-in-law remembered and mourned her young sister's death and that of her mother, father, two brothers, grandparents.. On this International Holocaust Memorial Day, a survey was released stating that over 80% of the Germans want to put the Holocaust "behind them."

The word that comes to mind is not one that I can write here. We will NEVER put this behind us. We will, and do, pass this to our children and they will pass it to their children. What you "forget," you are destined to relive. There will never be another Holocaust - not because you in Europe and Germany deem it so, not because you have learned how wrong it is to hate another...there will never be another Holocaust against the Jewish people because WE will not allow it. You appear to be little different than you were 70 years ago. Oh yes, you'll march in the streets and join hands in sympathy and condemn anti-Semitism, but when they murder and beat Jews in your midst, you do not take action...but we will. .

Our promise to Gavriella who was murdered, and my baby granddaughter who is named Michal Gavriella...

Our promise to Benyamin Elimelech, who was murdered with his wife shortly after their wedding, and to my son who was named after him...

Our promise to Shmuel who fell in the forest and died, too weak and sick to go on, and to my son who was named after him...

Our promise to Chaim Eliezer, who was murdered by the Nazis, and to my beloved husband who was named after him...

My promise to my great grandmother and two great aunts that were murdered in Auschwitz...and to more than six million others...

We will not forget. We will not "put this behind us" and we sure as hell won't let the Germans put it behind them either.

The nation...the people...of Israel live.

May God watch over little Gavriella for all eternity - she will live on, God willing, in the generations and generations to come.


Henya said...

Thank you.
We live, and have children. We refuse to become extinct. And while Europe celebrates death we will celebrate life.
We survive!

Tony Veldkamp said...

Paula i really enjoy your blog, I lived close to the transition camp Westerbork in the Netherlands .
I know what happened to the jews is for real.
May God bless you and the nation of Israel.
I love your stories Paula.
Tony Veldkamp

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