Schindler´s List

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In September 1939, German forces had defeated Polish armies within 2 weeks. Destruction began immediately and it was merciless. Jews, rich and poor, all had to registrate family members and move into bigger cities. More than 10,000 Jews came to Cracow daily.
After 2 years, (1941), in March, the Natzies put all Jews in one place, a ghetto where they were randomly beaten and humiliated, even killed. Jewish property and businesses were destroyed.
The Ghetto was not big. Around 12 people had to share 1 room.

The fast talking, womanising, the money hungry Oscar Schindler, went to the Jewish council to find Itzhak Stern.
Itzhak Stern was a very clever businessman. He had been in the industry before and knew how everything worked. Schindler wanted to open a factory that made pots and pans for the army. He wanted Stern to work with him, to run the company for him and Schindler would only own it. Stern accepted the offer.
What they only needed now were workers.

“BLAUSCHEIN” was a ‘blue card’ that was given to Jews who were engineers, polishers, all industry people etc.
If you didn’t get a Blauschein, you weren’t needed. Either you were old and helpless or a musician or a teacher etc.
None of those talents were needed in a factory, but many pretended to be skilful and needed. I believe 70 % of Schindlers employees were probably musicians.

The factory was going well. Better and better for very month that went.
It was named D.E.F. (Deutsche Emailwaren fabrik).

30,000 Jews, from Ghetto B, were put on a train, sent to Plaszow. Plaszow was a working camp in Poland.
The commandant in charge there was the despicable and evil, Amon Goeth. He would pass his mornings by using his high – powered, scoped rifle to shoot at children playing in the camp. Amon would often use his rifle as an “attention – grabber” so people would work harder.

There had been a Jewish Cracow for six centuries. Amon Goeth had been told to empty the Ghetto, completely. Those 600 years, was on this day, only a roomer. This day had put terror in the Jews eyes. Blauschein or not, they all, even Schindler employees, had to be sent away to Plaszow, but nobody really knew what to expect from there. Most were so terrified that they hid in their rooms, under beds, in closets, under stairs, and some even hid in the sewers.
The Natzies knew that many were hiding. They used doctor stethoscopes to listen through walls and from underground too. Unfortunately most people were found, and were killed, immediately.
The 13th of March 1943 was a day they all remembered, even for Schindler. His factory was shut down.

As the Jews arrived at Plaszow, they were put to work. Many thought they were safe.

Schindler wanted his workers back. He leaves Cracow to visit some SS officers in Plaszow. Schindler explains to Amon what he wants. “They’re mine!” he demanded.
Amon would agree to give Schindler some workers, but only if Stern would stay and work for him.
Schindler had no choice than to take the workers back. Now he had to run the factory by himself.



An early morning in the end of April, the Natzies had do separate the healthy from the sick to make room for the Hungarians coming. Doctors were brought to Plaszow. Men and women had to run around in a circle naked, and the doctors would sit and judge by only looking, who was healthy and who wasn’t.
Women would cut themselves to cover their faces with blood. The blood would make their white and pale faces pinkish.
They all had to “look alive.”
The healthy would put their clothes back on and return to the barracks. The sick were headed for the train that stood parked at the station. The train was full of people and they could barely breathe.
Schindler gave hope by spraying into the windows of the trains. He would even go to the factory to get a 200 m. hoarse to reach the last cart. The SS officers and commandants were now becoming very suspicious.


It was 1944 and the war was reaching its end. Goeth had been told to dig up the Jewish bodies of those who were killed in Plaszow and the Cracow ghetto. Then they put them all in a pile and set it on fire.
“The pile of the dead” was high, and smoke rose high up in the air. Ashes would fall over Plaszow that looked like snow. But would it snow in April? In this case, it was snowing human remains.
What would the Natzies do with the rest of the people? Within a month, they were all going to be sent to Auschwitz.

Schindler had all money in the world. He could fill up more than 5 big suitcases with only money. Schindler acted fast and did something that no one else did. He bought 1,300 Jews from Amon before they were sent to Auschwitz.

Schindler listed names and Stern would type them all. This list was life. Around it, there was death. It was Schindlers list. These, 1,300 Jews, were now Schindler Jews. They all split up on two trains, men & women, which would take them to Brunnlitz.
The men’s train left Plaszow first. Then came the women’s. But there had been a mistake. The women had accidentally been sent to Auschwitz.

The train arrived at the station. There were two major houses. One was marked cloakroom and the other one, valuables. The women had to undress and then their hair was shortly cut.
Then they were headed down for a long corridor. There were ‘stars of David’ on the doors and signs that would say “Bath & Inhalation room.”
The SS would send them all in. They were in luck this time, for they could have been killed. But they survived, to their own surprise. After weeks, Schindler came top Auschwitz. There was only one train that ever left Auschwitz full of people. That was Schindlers train with his Schindler Jews.

They finally arrived in Brunnlitz, weak, hungry, frostbitten, less than human.
Schindler owned a factory in Brunnlitz were ...

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Inactive member [2005-02-03]   Schindler´s List
Mimers Brunn [Online]. https://mimersbrunn.se/article?id=3362 [2019-01-17]

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