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May 25, 2015 / 7 Sivan, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘Holocaust’

Gurlitt Museum Admits Picasso Painting Was Stolen from Jews

Sunday, November 30th, 2014

The Swiss museum that was given Nazi-era art has already admitted that at least one of is expensive pieces of art was stolen from Jews.

As reported here last week, Cornelius Gurlitt, whose father dealt with art in the Nazi era, left his collection of art to the Kunstmuseum Bern in Switzerland, which agreed with Germany and the state of Bavaria last week that it would take possession of the works in the Gurlitt collection, except for those that are suspected of having been looted.

The museum published the list of its “Salzburg collection” on Thursday and later admitted that the “Paris Kathedrale” probably is the Picasso work of art from 1902 and which was stolen from Jews by the Nazis.

“We ourselves recognized that this is looted art,” museum director Matthias Frehner said on Friday. He promised that “we will do our utmost to arrange for a swift restitution.”

Some 1,400 works were confiscated from Gurlitt’s Munich home in 2012 in the course of an investigation for tax evasion. Other works were subsequently found in Gurlitt’s second home in Salzburg, Austria.

Greg Schneider, executive vice president of the Claims Conference, told The New York Times, ” Just a little bit of hunting and pecking, and things immediately surfaced. This underscores the necessity for the research, and it shows us why the transparency is so important.”

Who Gave $1 Million for Museum That May Deal with Nazi-Looted Art?

Friday, November 28th, 2014

An anonymous donor has given more than $1 million to help a Swiss museum take care of a bequest of hundreds of artworks, which may include Nazi-looted art.

The donation will help the Kunstmuseum Bern, or Bern Museum of Fine Arts, to house the collection of the late German art collector Cornelius Gurlitt of about 1,000 artworks, the French news agency AFP reported Thursday. The donor asked to remain anonymous.

The museum on Monday formally agreed to accept the collection but said that it would work with German officials to ensure that all looted art in the collection is returned to its owners or their heirs. Gurlitt named the museum his sole heir before his death in May.

The collection reportedly is worth about $1.26 billion. The museum said it had no prior relationship with Gurlitt.

A German task force will continue to investigate the provenance of the artworks to determine which pieces were looted and to discover their rightful owners. Pieces for which no owners can be identified will be displayed in Germany in order to try to find the owners or heirs, according to the museum.

Some 1,400 works were confiscated from Gurlitt’s Munich home in 2012 in the course of an investigation for tax evasion. Other works were subsequently found in Gurlitt’s second home in Salzburg, Austria.

Gurlitt’s father, Hildebrand, was an art dealer on assignment to the Nazis. When Hildebrand Gurlitt died in 1956, his son inherited the collection, which includes works by Picasso, Durer, Renoir, Toulouse-Lautrec, Beckmann and Matisse.

In April, Gurlitt signed an agreement with the state of Bavaria and the German federal government in which the provenance of all works would be researched, paving the way for the return of the paintings to the heirs of the rightful owners.

The work of the task force in searching for possible rightful owners continued after Gurlitt’s death.

The museum is set to publish this week a list of all the artworks in the collection, the first time such a comprehensive list will be available, according to AFP.

NBA’ Danny Green Post ‘LOL’ Selfie at Berlin Holocaust Memorial

Friday, October 10th, 2014

San Antonio Spurs guard Danny Green posted on Twitter a selfie at the Berlin Holocaust memorial along with the caption “LOL” [laughing out loud] in the tweet, “You know I had to do it one time lol #Holocaust.”

That was the funniest line since someone said that America has gotten past its racist past by choosing a black president to clean up the mess.

After Green laughed all by himself at his selfie, he started reading the complaints and quickly deleted the picture and posted apologies in four tweets:

“Yes, mistakes do happen,”

“I want to sincerely apologize for the insensitivity of my post!

“I have great respect n understanding for this country’s history n wanted to continue chronicling my experience in Berlin.

“But showed poor judgement…sorry once again.”

Poor judgment?

Did he really even judge at all? Did he even consider the insensitivity of laughing at the Holocaust memorial for 6 million Jews gassed and butchered by the Nazis?

Would it have been “poor judgment” if some white basketball player took a selfie at a memorial for Martin Luther King with a caption “LOL My dream came true. He’s dead.”?

Green later changed the caption to read, “A lot of history here, more than you could imagine…very sad/tragic things happened #holocaust #berlin.”

Indeed, sad and tragic things are happening today. People like Danny Green are LOL at memories of the Holocaust.

Birzeit U. Kicks Out Haaretz Left-Winger Amira Hass for Being Jewish

Sunday, September 28th, 2014

The Birzeit University near Ramallah threw out Haaretz’s left-wing journalist Amira Hass from a conference on “occupied Palestine” because she is Jewish.

The daughter of two Holocaust survivors, she has become over the past few years the most pro-Palestinian Authority journalist in Israel, has lived in Gaza and Ramallah and has written in Haaretz that Arab rock-throwing is a “birthright and duty of anyone subject to foreign rule.”

Her credentials as an enemy of a Jewish presence in Judea and Samaria are impeccable except for the fact that she is Jewish.

That is why the organizers of the conference on “Alternatives to Neo-Liberal Development in the Occupied Palestinian Territories – Critical Perspectives” told her she could not cover the event.

The organizers were The German Rosa Luxemburg Foundation and The Center for Development Studies (CDS) at Birzeit University.

Hass wrote in Haaretz on Sunday, “During the first presentation on Tuesday, two lecturers from the CDS approached me within ten minutes of each other, asking me to step outside…. ‘Am I not allowed to be here?’ I asked, half-kidding, but one of the lecturers answered that there was a problem.

“When I registered at the entrance of the conference I wrote next to my name the institution I belong to, Haaretz. For the past two decades, the lecturer said, there has been a law at Birzeit stipulating that Israelis (Jewish Israelis, that is) are not allowed on the university grounds. The students manning the conference registration desk saw that I had written ‘Haaretz,’ realized I was an Israeli, and ran to tell the university authorities. The security department in turn went to the conference organizers, the lecturer said. She and her colleagues were afraid, she told me, that students would break into the conference hall in protest over my presence.”

Hass added that she did not see anyone protesting, but a rumor spread that students had attacked her. Rumors often become self-fulfilling expectations, and one faculty member whom Hass said has known for 40 years “walked past and said, ‘This is for your own protection.’”

Her ouster was a classic example of a non-Arab leftist, in this case a Jew, embracing an Arab or Islamic cause only to get stabbed in the back.

Most leftists eventually see the light or simply are brainwashed so much that they forever blame the Zionists and the West for their fate.

Hass’ article included a hint of some enlightenment. When realizing she had to leave, “I was at that moment reminded of the image that Israelis commonly have of Palestinians: irrational hotheads,” she wrote.

But before coming to her senses completely, she comforted herself by hearing the protests by her colleagues and supporters in the Rosa Foundation who said they would not have agreed to allow the conference to take place at Birzeit without her being allowed to attend.

“In the past twenty years, I have entered Birzeit University dozens of times, and have been an audience member at various academic conferences there,” Hass wrote. “I have also interviewed faculty members both on and off campus. A year ago, an economics lecturer refused an interview, telling me, “It’s not personal. But you know what the rules are.”

It is nothing personal?

Wake up, Amira, you are Jewish. You were kicked out not because you are a journalist and not because you are from Haaretz. You were kicked out because you are a Jew, like it or not.

To your credit, your remain Jewish.

But you don’t take it personally that you are now allowed to do your job, which you think is to promote the Palestinian Authority campaign against Israel, because you are Jewish?

New Traces of Life Found in Theresienstadt

Sunday, September 21st, 2014

Nearly 70 years after the fall of the Nazis and the end of World War II, small bits of evidence have been found that life — and art — managed to flourish among those who were marked for the dance with death in Theresienstadt.

Initial documentation of the finds, which were discovered throughout modern Terezin in the Czech Republic, have just become available online at www.ghettospuren.de . Very shortly, an English language version will be posted as well, according to the European Jewish Press website (EJP).

“Material evidence and traces” was initiated in May 2012, said Uta Fischer, a city planner based in Berlin, is the manager of the project. For the past two years, the relics from the past have been meticulously collected by Fischer “before it is too late.”

Conservators Prof. Thomas Danzl and Karol Bayer, photo journalist Roland Wildberg and building researcher Jiri Smutny are also involved in the project, which is being financed by the Kulturstiftung des Bundes, the German Federal Cultural Foundation and other institutions in Germany and Czech Republic.

“O bug, why dances thou on me all night. . . “ the words written on to the walls of an attic by an unknown prisoner who sarcastically pens his complaint about the vermin of ghetto life. A doodled illustration of the offending creature accompanies the work on the wall, along with a number of small animal scenes that seem to be painted for a child’s eyes in another attic.

Elsewhere in Terezin, members of the ghetto police also left their mark on a sandstone arch.

But renovations, vandalism and erosion are erasing these bits of evidence that other lives once passed through here, Fischer warns. She says it is urgent to document these hidden treasures now, before they disappear.

The Theresienstadt concentration camp was a massive prison for Jews who were shipped there by rail car from half of Europe. Tens of thousands, including children, died in the old fortress; some of malnutrition and disease, some simply murdered outright. More than 150,000 Jews were held prisoner there for months – and in some cases years – before they were sent to the death camps in occupied Poland.

Help Search for ‘Jolli’ Gottesman, Twin Survivor of Mengele Experiments

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

Have you seen Menachem Bodner’s twin brother? He once was called Jeno, or Jolli, Gottesman and he’s out there somewhere. Bodner feels it.

Sixty-eight years after the Holocaust survivor left the Auschwitz laboratory of Dr. Josef Mengele in 1945, Bodner – who back then was Elias Gottesmann – has launched a search to find his long-lost twin brother, whose name was Jeno.

Age four when they was liberated from Mengele’s lab, the two were somehow separated. Bodner, who is now age 74, has no memory of the horrible medical experiments he most certainly endured. Only a sense of paralyzing fear remains, plus a few scattered memories of his family’s life before the war in a small town east of Mukacs, Hungary. Now the area is Ukraine.

Bodner says that throughout his life he’s felt a deep connection with his twin—and is positive he’s still alive and out there. But where?

A professional genealogist in Israel, Ayana KimRon, tracked down the boys’ information in a record of twins “identified as having been liberated at Auschwitz or from a subcamp” put together by the “Candles” organization.

Their Holocaust numbers were: A-7733, Gottesmann, Elias, 4 A-7734, Gottesmann, Jeno, 4

Elias Bodner today is Menachem Bodner, a retired Israeli tax service employee living in Rishon Lezion. The genealogist meanwhile has found in the course of her search for Bodner’s twin brother nearly 70 other extended family members in Israel and the U.S.

Meanwhile, with KimRon’s help Bodner is still searching, because he feels his brother is still alive. This past March, the genealogist created a Facebook page to broaden the search still further, The Daily Beast reported. She called the page “A7734.”

To date it has seen more than 50,000 “likes” and well over 23,000 “shares.” Bodner and KimRon are hoping that the global reach of the billion-plus users on Facebook will help him find his brother.

“I never lost hope,” Bodner says.

Sobibor Death Camp Gas Chambers Uncovered

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

The location of the gas chambers at the notorious Sobibor death camp has been revealed, Yad Vashem announced Wednesday.

On October 14, 1943 some 600 prisoners rose up in revolt and escaped from the camp. Most were recaptured or murdered, but 100 to 120 managed to survive. Of those, 60 made it through to the end of the war, when Allied Forces arrived to free the captives.

But a quarter of a million Jews were murdered at the death camp in Poland, where the Nazis worked hard to cover up their evil crime. After the uprising, the Nazis bulldozed the site and planted evergreen trees to conceal the mass graves.

Now, an archaeological dig has uncovered the truth nevertheless.

Dr. David Silberklang, a senior researcher at the Yad Vashem International Institute for Holocaust research said, “The discovery of the exact location of the gas chambers at the Sobibior Camp is a discovery of the utmost importance in Holocaust research.”

He said it was important to understand that “there are no remains from any Jews who worked in the area of the gas chambers, and therefore these findings are the only thing left from those who were murdered.” Silberklang said “a small window has been open into their daily suffering.”

Personal effects of the victims who lived and died in the tragedy have been found near the gas chambers. Among the items uncovered were jewelry – including wedding rings – and perfumes, medicine and utensils.

Archaeologist Yoram Haimi added that “we found near the gas chambers wedding rings with the inscription in Hebrew, ‘Harei at mekudeshet li” (Behold, thou art consecrated unto me.”)

Silberklang said that for the first time the excavation taking place at the site would enable researchers would be able to better understand the murder process in the camp and what the Jews went through before their deaths.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/sobibor-death-camp-gas-chambers-uncovered/2014/09/17/

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