Day 3: Lancut, Tarnow- children’s forest mass graves, cemeteries, Kivrei Tzadikim: Rav Elimelech of Lezajsk, Izhbitser Rebbe, the Megaleh Amukot , and the beit knesset of the Rama.
We the gifted and blessed Jewish people have a mark, a non erasable mark that represents who we are and by who we are hated. The Nazi’s aren't the only ones who caused our lives to crumble and ache.
Today we learned that 500 innocent (random) German citizens were invited to become German police and erase more Jewish people from the face of the Earth. They were not forced, they were not convinced, only invited and happily accepted the invitation. 12 out of 500 German citizens declined this offer even though there was a great reward of additional weapons and ammunition.
A doctor was brought to demonstrate and teach where and how to shoot, to kill. The German police men used the Jewish people as target practice from morning until the sun was visible no more. At the end of the day 1,800 tender Jewish souls were sent back from this world to Shamayim. It was discovered that throughout the whole Holocaust there were 42,500 mass graves, concentration camps, and extermination camps.
In the cold midst of the Poland forest of Zbilitovska Gora one of the strongest of the strong, hated of all hated, there was a true stone cold statement that was explicitly expressed and presented with no shame. The Nazi’s separated children form their parents. The children’s stomaches churned with butterflies, their hearts deep in a river of fear. The Nazi’s started to beat the children with the butt of their rifle until the poor children’s hearts could not stand for this suffering any more, their bodies unable to move from the unbearable pain. Some let out screams, while some laid on the ground motionless. They stuffed the children of all ages including babies into potato sacks. But this was not enough in the eyes of the Nazi’s, so they tossed grenades to endure the death of all the children in the potato sacks. The parents were forced to witness their children’s death and the death of 800 children left in a forest. This massacre possessed the result of the death of 800 children, there was no shame nor hesitation in the souls of the murderers, the Nazis.
During these never-ending nightmares we can say that the devil has walked the Earth, but there were also a number of unexplained miracles which took place.
In Galitzia over 3,000 Jews inhabited this town before the Holocaust, between 1941 and 1942 Nazi’s forced the Jews to dig up the body of Rav Noam Elimelech out of the ground. The Jewish people with courage refused. Furious, the Nazi’s threatened them with the welcoming of death. As the body was exposed, the Jews saw that his body was intact. His flesh was fresh, and skin refreshed. The Nazi’s ravaged in fear fled and ran away. The Jewish people were left alone in peace.
After the mass graves we visited a huge empty field in Plaszow where Nathan Silberberg spoke about his dearly departed grandfather, Rav Shlomo Silberberg Z”tl. He spoke about how his grandfather lost his entire family in the Holocaust except for his brother, whom he survived with and eventually moved to America to start a new life. With his ending statement about his grandfather, he broke down into tears full of memories of his loving grandfather.
Shortly after Plaszow, we went to kosher delight restaurant to have dinner and discuss the breakdown of the coming day.
We then concluded the day settling in the beautiful city of Krakow.
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