By J. Bellinger
The Good Old Days--Photograph
On page 55 in the book, "The Good Old Days" is a photograph with the caption: "Lithuania, 1941. Male and female Jews are made to dig a mass grave in a woodland clearing. In the foreground, Jews who have been shot." So runs the caption. I only wish to point out a few obvious facts:
1. It is impossible to tell whether the people in the photo are Jews.
2. It is impossible to tell whether they are digging a grave.
3. It is impossible to tell whether anyone has been shot, although there does appear to be a number of corpses. However, the bodies are scattered in a semi-circle of sorts and it is almost impossible to determine what might have happened to cause their deaths.
4. There are no German soldiers in the photo.
The Good Old Days --The "Jaeger Report"
The so-called Jaeger report may or may not be genuine, IMO. One would have to examine the post-war statements as well as the trial records pertaining to Karl Jaeger, the alleged author of the report. While much of the material seems damaging, it would be a mistake to rush to judgment based upon the scanty material the authors have presented for our inspection. There is much in the report that would seem contrived, or coincidental, such as the names of two alleged perpetrators of crimes against the Jew: Jaeger and Hamann.
Jaeger means "hunter" in German, and Hamann, of course was the Persian who wanted to exterminate the Jews in the book of Esther. Either this is a prophecy come true, or it was God’s way of exacting a terrible and sardonic punishment upon the innocent.
The authenticity of the report could only have been commented upon by one person--Jaeger himself, but also coincidentally, he committed "suicide" while in custody in 1959.
The Good Old Days -- Toegel, Kiebach, and Trill
The authors of "Good Old Days" reproduce in this section a number of brief statements attributed to 3 ex-Security Police officers. This I find to be as disturbing as the events described. The statements were obviously taken out of context, and there would be at least a dozen questions I would wish to direct to the 3 ex-policemen. Prima facie, the statements appear to be quite damaging, yet experience tells us that not everything is always as it seems....
Undoubtedly executions took place. My concern is to know the full particulars. With the exception of Trill mentioning the execution of 15 or 20 Jews, none of the other statements mention who was being shot and why.
( and that could make all the difference in the world. -jb)
The Good Old Days -- The Murder of 33, 771 Jews in the Babi Ravine
Babi-Yar figures predominantly in Holocaust exegesis. I was not convinced by the statement of the truck driver Hoefer. What is particularly incredible is his portrayal of the Jews going to their deaths like Lemmings. I get the impression that Hoefer’s eyes were deceiving him. He mentions how astounded he was that none of the Jews attempted to resist, and that all the victims were shot by two men. To me, this is contrary to human behaviour. The first instinct of a human being is for self-preservation. When combined with self-denial in the form of altruism, a human being would do anything to save his or her family from death. The idea that thousands of Russian Jews merely walked to their death without resistance would be an insult to their memory, were the story true. Fortunately for all, it appears that it wasn't. What Hoefer tries to tell us is that just 2 officers fired some 34,000 shots between them. Hoefer tells us that even though the Jews were all in close proximity to the alleged execution site, NONE of them heard any of the yelling, screaming, fighting, and/or shooting allegedly going on around the ravine. This is beyond belief to me.
The next two blurbs used by the authors to bolster their contentions, seem a bit more credible, yet they contradict each other.
Although this is not surprising, it also is not convincing.
The witness Kurt Werner states that executions were performed by 12 men divided into three groups, and not 2 men, as the first witness stated.
The witness Anton Heidborn simply mentions that Jews were shot and buried, while millions of dollars were confiscated from the deceased Jews and sent off to destinations unknown. This, then, is the motive--the same motive Stangl allegedly gave to Gita Sereny---robbery.
So, it wasn't race, or religion, simply armed robbery and murder.
Finally, a brief quoted excerpt in the book tells us that whenever the Nazis made an announcement that Jews were to be resettled, they all went running into their arms and graves by the tens of thousands. I would think this explanation to be a great insult to the intelligence of the Jewish people. Had thousands of years of persecution and wandering dimmed their senses so thoroughly that they were unable to distinguish any danger in reporting to the Nazis for resettlement?
I think not, especially in view of the fact that the ADL and similar organizations always raise the hue and cry of "Anti-Semitism" if someone incidentally happens to pass wind in the direction of a Jew..
It is one thing to be justifiably cautious, and other to be unjustifiably paranoid. I believe that the Jews did what any other normal person would have done in their situation--they ran, and ran, and ran, until their families were safely outside of the war zones, and there they fell into the waiting arms of Papa Stalin.
It is curious today that a parking lot now stands at the site of these alleged mass murders. Curiously, the Soviets were never able to come up with forensic evidence which proved that anywhere near 33,000 people were killed at the site. My own opinion is that some people were shot at Babi Yar, but their numbers probably amounted to 10% of the figure usually given. Thus, we would be looking at a casualty list of approximately 3,300 as opposed to 33,000.
Return to ARTICLES PAGE
Return to CONTENTS PAGE