[October 20, 2021] Early yesterday afternoon, I received a call from a friend named David. He is the son of an Auschwitz Concentration Camp survivor. It’s his dad’s story I want to tell today. The stories of Jews leading up to and during WWII give us lessons about powerful governments. His dad’s story, in particular, in the halls of Nazi slave labor, is legendary
David had called me to say he purchased several copies of my recent book (found on Amazon here) and that he found my book to have a “story on every page” and an enjoyable read. Several years ago, David and a group of friends had cobbled together a group of like-minded folks to honor those “women and men killed in 9/11 and those who served.” The monument was built north of Houston, Texas and has become a popular place to honor our fallen heroes.
Our conversation drifted to his parents and how they met in occupied Germany after the war. His dad, Gorsch, had been freed from the Auschwitz Camp. From his dad, he told the story of how working in German factories, he would sabotage the Nazi war effort. Gorsch was a man of considerable talent even at 17 when he was sent to the concentration camps.
The Nazis took the youngest, strongest, and most intelligent of the Jews and put them to work. The rest, they killed, especially the very old and children. The extermination program was extended to other “undesirables” in German society and our world learned a great deal about what happened much later. This story is only one of the millions like it.
When sent to a factory to build bombs for the German Luftwaffe (their Nazi Air Force), Gorsch was put on the floor to install fuses. This is a dangerous job because the fuse is the ignitor that causes the bomb to explode with devastating effects. Wanting to help weaken German military effectiveness, he would do what he could.
At the risk of his own life, Gorsch installed all the bomb fuses backward, making every bomb a dud. When used, the bombs would not explode. “Every bomb was a dud.” Quoting his dad, “I made sure I did my part.” Just imagine a 17-year-old kid taking it upon himself, without encouragement or direction, to sabotage the Nazi war machine at the risk of his life.
The more we learn about those Jews and others that the Nazis thought were the “ Der Untermensch” (Nazi term for non-Aryan “inferior people”), the better off we all are. Today, we read about Americans that are “deplorables” living in “flyover country.” We would best take a lesson from David’s dad and not regard ourselves as superior to others, despite what our political class tells us today.
Please read my newest book, “Our Longest Year in Iraq,” at Amazon (link here).