Thursday, 20 July 2017

Sombre Kate and William pay their respects at Berlin's Holocaust Memorial and meet Auschwitz survivor, 96, who recalls the 'terrible' stench of the crematorium

HOW WONDERFUL: The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrived in Berlin today as they continued their royal tour of Europe
 The couple visited the German Holocaust Memorial honouring the six million Jewish victims
They toured the information centre and walked through the memorial, made up from concrete blocks. William and Kate also spent time speaking to Holocaust survivor Leon Schwarzbaum at the centre.

"That's me at four years old with my family and my mother and father, all dead. Killed at Auschwitz,"' he said

Mr Schwarzbaum, who was born in Hamburg but emigrated to Poland before the war. William and Kate asked him numerous questions about his time at Auschwitz.
He showed them pictures of the bunks crammed into each hut. Kate asked him: 'How many people slept in each bunk?'
'Six, six, and six, he replied, pointing to a row of three bunks.'
He told the couple about the smell of burning bodies pervading the camp from the crematorium. 'This was the chimney,' he said, showing them a picture. 'You could smell the chimney throughout the whole camp. It was a terrible smell.'
The frail survivor, who was liberated by American troops while on a death march near Berlin, lived in the US after the war but returned to settle in Berlin. He said it had taken him a long time to begin to talk about his dreadful experiences but he had started giving talks about 10 years ago in an effort to educate young people.
'I didn't speak for a long time after the war, he said. 'Ten years ago. Very late.'
'That's a very brave thing to do,' Kate told him. 'Did it feel good to talk about your experience?' the duchess asked him.
'I see that young people want to know what was done at that time,' he said.
William asked him about his thoughts on the Nazis now after all these years. He replied: 'They destroyed my life. I wanted to study but I couldn't study because the universities had been closed and the schools had closed. They took my jewellery and everything, my family.'

For those of you who compare Auschwitz to Gaza need mental help.

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