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Hello! I’m Monika Schaefer. I was born and raised in Canada, first generation Canadian citizen of German heritage. My parents both came from Germany. They immigrated to Canada in 1951 and ‘52, respectively.
There was a bit of a disconnect between what I experienced in the home life and what I felt outside the home. I love the rich German traditions and culture that I grew up with and yet, I felt ashamed of my Germanness when I was at school, or outside with my friends. I learned very quickly to hide my heritage.
It started in the first week of school. Day one, I wore my beautiful little dirndl, a traditional German dress and on day two, children were taunting me:
‘Oh you forgot to take off your apron! Ha ha ha!’ as they were running away, or ‘Heil Hitler! Ha ha!’, again taunting me.
[Image] German women wearing dirndl. A dirndl is a type of traditional dress worn in Germany, especially Bavaria; Austria; and the South Tyrol, based on the traditional clothing of Alps peasants.
I didn’t exactly know the meaning of that, but I knew it was not friendly. They were being cruel. That was very clear to me.
I’m reminded, just now, of the plight of the indigenous peoples of North America. They were also made to be ashamed of their culture.
I would like to share with you now a deep regret that I have for something which I would like to apologize to my parents for, but cannot, because they are no longer alive.
Many years ago, I reproached my mother. You see I had been thoroughly indoctrinated, as we all were. The stories seemed to be all around us, in school, in television, in the very air, and the evilness of Adolf Hitler was as deep and diabolic as imaginable.
I said to her, to my mother:
Why didn’t you, your friends, your folk, your family, why didn’t you do something to stop these bad things from happening? Stop Hitler and stop these death camps? You should have done something! You must have known!
I was really upset, my reproach was bitter. She listened and she paused, and very quietly and in a sad tone of voice, she said:
We didn’t know about any of that. We just did not know. We did not hear about anything like that!
Well, now I know why she did not know. It is, because these things did not happen! It is only since the last couple of years, since about 2014, that I have begun to understand that this is the biggest and most pernicious and persistent lie in all of history!
Everything has been turned upside down on its head!
Yes, there were detention camps. Nobody denies that there were camps! And yes, the prisoners were kept against their will. Again, nobody denies that. But these were work camps. The prisoners of the camps were being kept as healthy and as well fed as was possible in those terrible war years. They needed to be kept healthy. How else could they perform the work? It was war, and so the camps were basically armaments factories.
And how much sense does it make, by the way, to have a hospital in a death camp?
There were no gas chambers there. The only gas that was used was to get rid of the lice! Lice carried typhus and typhus was a deadly and rampant disease. So they had to delouse the clothing to keep the people healthy. Now, why would they do that if the goal was to just exterminate the Jews? Makes no sense. That is the, “Six Million Lie”, as I now like to call it, in a nutshell.
There is so much more to learn about this, and this is all readily available now in 2016, thanks to the digital age, with, or without the “thought laws”.
Back to my family. What a relief it is for me to learn that my parents and grandparents were not part of a people that suddenly became monsters overnight!
The reproach which I directed at my mother, I wish I could apologize to her for this. I am, in effect, apologizing to her now, to her spirit. I would like to invite you to find out more by searching the following titles that had such a meaningful and healing influence on me.