Posted by Vita on July 31, 2000 at 21:13:40:
In Reply to: Re: For all those who ponder the castingof stones posted by Elaine on July 31, 2000 at 18:44:21:
I am not denying who started the II World War, I am not saying there should be no Allied Forces, neither am I going back to bringing up the tales of many others who began wars, from Alexander to Napoleon to Stalin; neither, for that matter, am I applauding Nazi ideology, or Communism, or Fascism, or what have you.
I am simply pointing out to human suffering in various forms, and reluctant soldiers forced into waging war, in every nation. But I am against SELECTIVE PUNISHMENT. Yesss!! to hailing fire and brimstone upon Hitler, absolutely yes, but if you neglect the same fire and brimstone upon Stalin, whose reign caused the murder of 20 million of his own people, or Caecaescu (spelling may not be quite accurate) the post-WW II Romanian despot, as bloody as any despot in history, or the murderous regime in Cambodia... you understand what I am saying, right, Ilse?
In fact, while I mourn every Albanian and Bosnian who met a horrible fate in the hands of the Serbs in the 1990s, right smack in the middle of civilized Europe, I know that the majority of those Serbs, while committing state-planned-and-sanctioned mass rape and mass murder, were not in control of their human faculties. FOR SURE, IF LEFT TO THEIR OWN DEVICES, THEY'D PREFER TO BEAT THEIR ALBANIAN OR BOSNIAN NEIGHBOR IN A CHESS GAME, RATHER THAN A CONCENTRATION CAMP.
I mentioned many things in my previous post, Ilse, not just Dresden, and I am surprised that you focused on it. Dresden is as big a tragedy as any tragedy anywhere else. And unfortunately, the demise of the Third Reich did not usher in an era of complete peace and civility in the world.
My parents, who witnessed the tragedy of Dresden, were NOT Germans, but they tried to help those victims just as they would try to help, any Dutch or Russian or Chinese victims.
The fact that other places were bombed, does not make it any less painful for those who died in Dresden, seared and scorched alive. WHEN YOU ARE BURNING ALIVE, THE SUFFERING IS THE SAME NO MATTER WHAT YOUR RACE CREED OR NATIONALITY.
Dresden was bombed with great vigor by the Allieds, no matter what the Nazi ideology, 99 percent of those who were buried or burned alive in Dresden, had NOT caused it. Germany started the war, yes, and Germany was brought to its knees by a huge collaborate force. Better said, Germany's movers and shakers, in collaboration with many other heads of state and politicians, and weapons-manufacturers and sellers, started the war, and the German PEOPLE were brought down to their knees. The atrocities committed by the invading forces, in particular, the Russian forces, were no less kinder and gentler than any Nazi atrocities. And the butchery in the Katin Forest, attributed to Germans, was revealed to be committed by Russians.
Ilse, the scent of plunder and rapine is hard to resist. When Constantinople was under siege by the Ottoman Army in 1453... who was on the front lines???? Were they all one hundred percent Turkish blood? And all of them Muslim? Well, the truth is... you KNOW who was camping in front of the walls like vultures, right? European riffraff, Christians, a lot of them from the Balkans, ready to pounce without any qualms whatsover, upon the last bastion of Christianity in that part of the world.
There are many historical, verifiable, correct accounts of how Jews were slaughtered in the hands of the Serbs (IInd World War) one account, so horrible, is in a slaugter house, when these poor people were herded like cattle upon moving belts and slaughtered with butcher knives.
Ilse, yes, the Dutch suffered. Yes, the Serbs suffered under Croats. Croats suffered under Serbs. The Russian people suffered under the yoke of their own despots. Yes, the Czhechs and the Austrians, and yes, the Italians under Mussolini, suffered, yes, yes, the English and the Irish (my husband has an old, still painful wound on his knee, from when he was a little boy, when he fell while running under a German bombing raid, IInd World War), and today, among his closest Irish friends and family, some carry the wounds they got from their own IRA, and some from the Protestan Black and Tan, and some from the British soldiers....
Dear Ilse, the enemy is US. And selective punishment of criminals, while condemning one and letting off the hook the other, can only breed more of the same.
: Dear Vita,
: : Though I have no doubts about Dresden being an absolute hell during that time, you must not forget that there were many places like it during WWII. And that the Germans could certainly hold their own when it came to bomb attacks on civilian areas. Famous examples are London and Coventry, but to bring it a little closer to my home, the city I call my home, Rotterdam, was heavily bombed on May 14 1940, which resulted in many casualties and the total destruction of our centuries old city center. My parents were children then, and living there. They witnessed it, and witnessed a lot more during the occupation that followed.
: : War is cruel, however this war was not started by the Allied, it was started by Germany. And the guy who started it, was put into power through a democratic election process, which shows he had quite some support for his policies. I am sure that the "little history" of the war is heartbreaking (but no more so in Germany, than in the rest of Europe), but I firmly believe that this was a war that needed to be fought. And a monstruous ideology that needed to be destroyed.
: : Me, I am just grateful for the sacrifices made by the Allied soldiers. I may be critical at times about American policies and attitudes, but that doesn't mean I have forgotten about that. I grew up in a free country because of those sacrifices.
: : Ilse
: Hi, Ilse!
: You know, the more we think on this, the more turns we find. Excellent points, Ilse ... I need to think about what you've said here, especially in regards to who started this war. I read Vita's account & yes, it illustrated very pointedly that war is cruel & causes reflection upon the great suffering by civilians in so many places.
: Quite honest reflections, Ilse. Thanks.
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