Archive for January, 2012

When did Elie Wiesel arrive at Auschwitz? Could he have received the number A-7713?

Thursday, January 19th, 2012

By Carolyn Yeager
copyright 2012 carolyn yeager

Fact is–it’s a deliberately confusing story with two distinct versions. Originally,  he was too late to be assigned that number; in a newer rewrite,  he was right on time. Which would you believe?

Above: Hungarian transport arriving at Auschwitz-Birkenau in 1944. Notice the casual atmosphere, the inmate-workers in striped clothing (not wielding clubs), the non-threatening guards spotted here and there (without snarling dogs), and the crematorium chimney in the distance — which is not belching smoke and fire. 

UPDATE: (Jan. 30) It’s worth taking a closer look at the female deportees in the background who are accepting the arrival process in quite a different manner than what we always hear in the official stories of the Hungarian Jews. And from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, I might add, which is a big pusher of the Hungarian Jewish “extermination.”  These women don’t look too much the worse for wear from their trip. Three of them are smiling, two are also waving to someone they know, perhaps the person in the lower left questioning the officer. How can they be so cheerful, you might ask? A good question.

______________________________

 

At the very end of my recent article The Truth About Night, I wrote:

My challenge: I welcome any native Polish Yiddish speaker/reader who is also fluent in English to prove me wrong about what I have written above by providing an honest, accurate translation of Un di Velt Hot Gesvign [And The World Remained Silent] into English so it can be compared with Night. Why hasn’t this already been done? It’s natural to be suspicious of what is kept hidden. Let’s put everything on the table so that the questions I have raised can be cleared up.

Though I had no real hope of that, I was most happily surprised when a gifted linguist using the name “Kladderadatsch” appeared on the Codoh Forum with a professional translation of a  section from the Yiddish book. You can go to that thread (begin on page 4 of “Is This the End of Elie Wiesel?”) to see all the translations he has posted there so far.  I have copied his last post/translation/analysis as the main element of this article, but first I want to give a short introductory comment.

When retranslating Night for its 2006 publication, Marion Wiesel (working with Elie and whoever else) made numerous changes in the wording of the original translation. An important, but hard-to-notice change was her rearrangement of the wording for the deportation dates of the Wiesel family. She connived to move their arrival date at Auschwtiz back two whole weeks. By doing so, she made it possible for young Eliezer to be given the registration number A-7713 on May 24, 1944, the day it was given out according to the transport records published by Randolph Braham1 and available at the Memorial Museum of Auschwitz-Birkenau. (More on Braham further down)

In the original LaNuit/Night published in 1958/60, and in Un di velt hot geshvign, published in 1956, the Wiesel family arrived at Auschwitz 3 days after  their departure on June 3, 1944, making it approximately June 6th, well after the registration numbers A-7712 and 7713 had already been assigned. Therefore, as the story was originally written, the going-on-15-year-old Eliezer Wiesel could not have been registered with that number.

The analysis by ‘Kladderadatsch’ posted on Friday, Jan. 13:

Dates.

According to Mattogno, citing microfilm records from the Auschwitz museum (“Liste der Judentransporte, Museum of Auschwitz-Birkenau, microfilm no. 727/27,” Mattogno’s footnote 15), the Auschwitz registration number A-7713 was assigned on May 24, 1944. In his article, Mattogno makes the case that this means Elie Wiesel could not have been assigned A-7713 because he would have arrived at Auschwitz after that date:

Elie Wiesel does not specify the date of his deportation to Auschwitz. His narrative starts, though, with reference to a specific date: “On the Saturday before Pentecost [“Shavuòth” in the Italian edition], in the spring sunshine, people strolled, carefree and unheeding, through the swarming streets.” (p.22-23). In 1944, this festival fell on 28 May 1944 [14], a Sunday. The day in question was thus 27 May. The first transport of Jews left Sighet on the following day, hence, on 28 May. “Then, at last, at one o’clock in the afternoon, came the signal to leave” (p.27). Elie Wiesel then speaks of “Monday” (p. 29), the dawn (p.29), the day after tomorrow (p. 29) saying, at the end, “Saturday, the day of rest, was chosen for our expulsion” (p. 33) He then speaks about the traditional Friday evening meal and goes on to say: «The following morning, we marched to the station […]» (p. 33, which means that the trip to Auschwitz began on Saturday, 3 June 1944.

The duration of the trip is not given, but transports from Hungary usually took three or four days to reach Auschwitz-Birkenau. Elie Wiesel spent the night at Birkenau and was moved to Auschwitz the following day where he was given the number A-7713, which was tattooed on his arm (p. 54). Yet, according to him, “it was a beautiful April day” (p. 51).

This schedule is pure invention. If he did leave Sighet on 3 June 1944 he could not have arrived at Auschwitz in April. Moreover, the ID number A-7713 was given out on 24 May, the day on which 2,000 Hungarian Jews were assigned the numbers A-5729 through A-7728 [15]. According to Randolph L. Braham, a Jewish transport left Máramarossziget on 20 May 1944.[16] Allowing four days for the journey, this was the transport of Lázár Wiesel who was assigned the ID number A-7713 precisely on 24 May 1944. But apparently, Elie Wiesel was unaware of all these things.

[15] Liste der Judentransporte, Museum of Auschwitz-Birkenau, microfilm no. 727/27.
[16] R.L. Braham, A Magyar Holocaust. Gondolat Budapest-Blackburn International Inc.,Wilmington, 1988, p. 514.

That seems pretty conclusive.

On the other hand, however, Carolyn Yeager’s article about the various Wiesel signatures makes the case that Wiesel must have been deported from Sighet on May 20, 1944:

In the “revised and updated” new translation of 2006, Wiesel gives his family’s date of deportation to the “small ghetto” as May 17, 1944. I arrive at this date because Wiesel writes that it was “some two weeks before Shavuot” (Shavuot fell on May 28 in 1944) that the deportation order was announced to his family and neighbors. [Remember, Sighet had 90,000 residents, at least one-third of them Jews, while Wiesel makes it sound like he lived in a little village.] Departures were to take place “street by street” starting the next day. That would be May 15. But the Wiesel family was scheduled to leave in the 3rd group, which left two days later, on May 17. After being marched to the “small ghetto,” they stayed there “a few days.” On a “Saturday,” they boarded trains.5 The 20th of May, 1944 was a Saturday.

If Mattogno is correct that “transports from Hungary usually took three or four days to reach Auschwitz-Birkenau,” which seems probable, and if Wiesel’s transport departed on May 20, then it’s entirely possible for him to have arrived on May 23, spent the night at Birkenau, and then been marched over to Auschwitz on May 24 to get his prisoner number, A-7713 . . . exactly like Wiesel has always said.2

Now I’m pretty sure Carolyn wasn’t looking to prove that Wiesel’s claim to number A-7713 is legitimate (her focus in the article is actually on discrepancies in various arrest dates in the later Buchenwald paperwork), but if her reconstruction of the deportation’s timing is correct, that’s what she’s done.

So who’s right, Mattogno or Yeager?

Both, probably. The problem, of course, is that Wiesel is a moving target. Mattogno is using the original edition of “Night,” as translated by Stella Rodway. And sure enough, in that version it says “On the Saturday before Pentecost . . . ” But the “revised and updated” 2006 translation, which Carolyn quotes in her article, says “Some two weeks before Shavuot.” Since Pentecost and Shavuot are the same thing (Rodway just uses the more familiar term for non-Jewish readers, “Pentecost” being the name of a Christian holiday as well), that means that we have two possibilities:

1) Saturday before Pentecost/Shavuot,

2) an unspecified date “some two weeks before.”

As Mattogno and Yeager both note, Shavuot was on May 28 in 1944 (it’s easy to check), a Sunday. So counting backwards, “the Saturday before Pentecost” (May 28) gives May 27, and “two weeks before” gives May 14. In one case, the dates make it impossible for Elie Wiesel to have been assigned A-7713, in the other, they line up perfectly.

 

Above Left: Original Night, 1960,  paperback. Right: Marion Wiesel’s 2006 new translation, recommended by Oprah Winfrey.

So here’s a situation where determining what the original text really says is important. Someone reading Mattogno’s article and then checking the most recent “revised and updated” edition of “Night” might just conclude that he’s dishonest–the text there doesn’t say “the Saturday before,” it says “some two weeks before.” Sheesh. And someone reading Carolyn’s article, with Mattogno’s in mind, might conclude that while she may start from the “correct” premises (again, according to the “revised and updated” version!), she really just shoots herself in the foot by proving that Wiesel left Sighet on May 20, exactly the right date for him to be on the transport recorded by Randolph Braham and to arrive in Auschwitz on May 24 to receive prisoner number A-7713. Is Mattogno lying? Can Carolyn not shoot straight?

Or could it just be that Wiesel is covering his tracks, sowing confusion among revisionists along the way?

“Un di Velt hot Geshwign,” p. 22:

Un azoy zenen teg farlofn, teg velkhe hobn aruntergerisn bleter fun kalendar un undz dernentert tsu yenem shwartsn shbth. Vos vet oyf eybik farbleybn in meyn zkhrwn, afilu ven ikh vel zeyn farmshpt tsu lebn bizn letstn tog fun ale teg, oyf der doziker tsby”wthdiker velt.

Geshen iz dos Shbth far Shbw”wth.

A friling-zun hot oysgegosn ir likht un varemkeyt iber der gorer velt un oykh iber geto. . . .

And so the days raced by, days which ripped away pages from the calendar and brought us nearer to that black Saturday [lit, black Sabbath]. Which will remain forever in my memory, even if I were condemned to live to the very last day of days on this deceiving world.

It happened Saturday [Sabbath] before Shavuot.

The springtime sun had spread its light and warmth over the whole world, and even over the ghetto. . . .

(Notice how he says he’ll never forget “that black Saturday” even if he was “condemned to live to the very last day of days.” I guess he might still mix the date up, though, right?)

Anyway, case closed? Well, there’s one last possibility. Jewish holidays are counted from the evening of the day before, and so maybe the Yiddish text is including Saturday, May 27 as part of Shavuot, thus making “Saturday before Shavuot” one week earlier, or May 20. But of course that still doesn’t fix the problem, since that date is just the starting point for the deportation process for the Jewish community: the Wiesel family isn’t relocated to the small ghetto until three days later, and not actually shipped out from Sighet until after several more. Which would mean, of course, that Elie Wiesel could not have been on the transport that left Sighet on May 20, and could not have arrived at Auschwitz by May 24 to receive prisoner number A-7713.

And somebody must have pointed that out to our friend Elie. So the whole thing gets wound backwards by two whole weeks. The text is quietly changed . . . and no one is supposed to notice.

Oh, and by the way, the original really does say “it was a beautiful April day”:

A sheyner April-tog iz es geven. A frilings-rich in der luft.

It was a beautiful April day. A scent of spring in the air.

“Un di Velt,” p. 83

Quietly changed, in 2006, to “It was a beautiful day in May.”

Do you suppose Elie reads Carlo Mattogno?

–end of post

Who is Randolph Braham and how credible is he?

Mattogno writes:Moreover, the ID number A-7713 was given out on 24 May, the day on which 2,000 Hungarian Jews were assigned the numbers A-5729 through A-7728 [15]. According to Randolph L. Braham, a Jewish transport left Máramarossziget on 20 May 1944.[16] Allowing four days (or three-cy) for the journey, this was the transport of Lázár Wiesel who was assigned the ID number A-7713 precisely on 24 May 1944. But apparently, Elie Wiesel was unaware of all these things.”

[15] Liste der Judentransporte, Museum of Auschwitz-Birkenau, microfilm no. 727/27.
[16] R.L. Braham, A Magyar Holocaust. Gondolat Budapest-Blackburn International Inc., Wilmington, 1988, p. 514.

Braham is a Jewish Hungarian historian whose magnum opus, according to Arthur Butz,  is his two-volume work The Politics of Genocide: The Holocaust in Hungary. Braham has written more on this subject than anyone else. The official story is that the entire Hungarian deportation program was carried out between May 15 and July 9, 1944. It started in Ruthenia (Carpatho-Ukraine, annexed from Slovakia) and northern Transylvania (annexed from Romania). The second location is where Sighet is found. A hundred thousand Jews remained in the hands of the Hungarians to be employed in labor battalions (in other words, were not deported).

The USHMM says this about him: Randolph L. Braham is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Political Science and Director, Rosenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies, Graduate Center of the City University of New York, and Member, Academic Committee of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council. Publication of his two-volume work The Destruction of Hungarian Jewry: A Documentary Account (1963) distinguished Dr. Braham as a pioneer scholar in Holocaust Studies. He is coeditor (with Scott Miller) of The Nazis’ Last Victims: The Holocaust in Hungary (Wayne State University Press, published in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, 1998) as well as author and editor of more than three dozen other works on the Holocaust in central and eastern Europe.

If Elie Wiesel is not prisoner #A-7713, then who is he and where was he between the spring of 1944 and the spring of 1945?

According to all available evidence, Elie Wiesel has falsely placed himself in the concentration camps Auschwitz I, II, III and Buchenwald by assuming the identity documents of Lazar Wiesel, born Sept. 4, 1913, as his own. This cannot be glossed over as a bureaucratic error because there are too many documents involved. Kenneth Waltzer, a professor of German history and Judaic Studies who has written about Elie Wiesel, has put forth this very explanation on this website and at Scrapbookpages Blog (although not on his own websites), but we haven’t heard a word from him in many months. He becomes quieter all the time.

It has been long remarked that Elie Wiesel’s book Night is fiction and does not accurately portray the camps wherein he claims to have been detained. This fictional story is based on a 245-page Yiddish book Un di velt hot geshvign (And the world remained silent), published in 1956 by a Yiddish publishing house in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Night, just 100 pages long, is a condensation of that book. The origins of Un di velt are not known at this time, but Elie Wiesel Cons The World will begin writing comparisons of the original and 2006 versions of Night – comparing them also with as much of  the true original Un di velt as we can get hold of. It’s still a very interesting journey we’re on, but the end cannot be far away.

Endnotes:

1. Randolph L. Braham, The Politics of Genocide: The Holocaust in Hungary, two vols. (Boulder, Colorado: East European Monographs, 1993 [revised edition]).

2.  In the original Night, it is actually the 2nd day after arrival that Wiesel writes he was tattooed. I will go into that in an upcoming article.

Nikolaus Grüner shows his tattoo. Where’s Elie’s?

Sunday, January 8th, 2012

By Carolyn Yeager

In this video,  Nikolaus or Miklos (Michael) Grüner is being interviewed by the Modesto (Calif.) Bee while the photographer films him pointing out the tattoo on his left arm.  This is shown in the very beginning of the video; right after that we see  the famous “Buchenwald Liberation” photograph we’ve become so familiar with, and 16-year-old Grüner is in the lower left hand corner. Is Elie in the photo? No.

In 2008, Grüner traveled to California from his home in Sweden. While there, this very important bit of video was produced but has not been given the attention it deserves. I wonder why. Notice I didn’t form that as a question since I think the answer is apparent:  If Grüner has a tattoo, why doesn’t Wiesel?

According to Elie Wiesel, he and his family were deported to Auschwitz in the same time period that Grüner and his family were–in May/June of 1944. They both tell a similar story of arrival at Auschwitz-Birkenau, the men being separated from the women whom they never saw again. After a period of adjustment, they were transferred to Monowitz-Buna where they lived and worked until January 1945, when both say they were transferred to Buchenwald. They also both say in their respective books that they were given a tattoo on their left forearm while at Birkenau – Wiesel the number A-7713 and Grüner A-11104.

Gruner’s tattoo looks like a real tattoo to me. It looks very similar to the one in this picture at right of Sam Rosenzweig’s arm, which I have posted previously and is the best example of an Auschwitz tattoo I have found. According to George Rosenthal, writing for the Jewish Virtual Library, and accepted by the USHMM, Sam’s tattoo represents the “regular” series of numbers used at Auschwitz from 1940, while the “A” series was first issued  in May 1944.

So we have evidence from Grüner and the photograph above of what Elie Wiesel should have on his arm, but doesn’t. There is no point in “Wiesel Believers” continuing to make excuses or look for reasons why their hero Elie won’t come clean about his bare arms. We know he has no tattoo where it is supposed to be … or anyplace! Just look at the top of this website. Or the photo belowfrom the 1996 documentary film “Elie Wiesel Goes Home.” We see his left arm in bright sunlight; clearly there is nothing on it. In the film we can see his right arm too, many times, which also has nothing on it. What more is there to be said? It’s a slam-dunk, and there is nary a word coming from the Wiesel camp about it. Isn’t it about time? Yes, but nothing happens unless people demand it.

Remember, on March 25, 2010 at the  University of Dayton, a student asked Wiesel if he still has his concentration camp number and if it serves as a reminder of those terrible experiences.  “I don’t need that to remember, I think about my past every day,” he responded. “But I still have it on my arm – A7713.

Robert A Brown, President of Boston University (Wiesel’s employer) wrote to me on Sept. 27, 2010, after receiving all this evidence,  “I have no doubt that he is a survivor of the Holocaust and …  a man of integrity and would not stoop to fabrication.

What do you think?

 

Ten Questions for “Elie Wiesel Believers”

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012

By Carolyn Yeager

10 “tricky” questions for  those who believe Elie Wiesel was in Auschwitz and Buchenwald camps and that he wrote Un di velt hot geshvign (And the world remained silent) based on that experience.

On the CODOH Forum Friedrich Paul Berg started an interesting thread on Dec. 30 with the title “Ten Trick Questions for “Holocaust Survivors.”   Berg writes that his questions

are not really tricky at all. They are simply the kinds of normal and reasonable questions that defense attorneys should always ask prosecution witnesses. However, we have all been so thoroughly programmed with holocaust propaganda that hardly anyone ever dares to ask the right questions.

Berg is quite right and it gave me the idea to create my own questions for those (even some revisionists) who insist that Elie Wiesel has to be the author of the Yiddish book published in 1956 in Argentina, and that I am oh so wrong in trying to prove otherwise.

Above is an image of Elie Wiesel in 1954, age 25-going-on-26, when he says he wrote Un di velt … attached to some kind of entry card issued by the Yugoslavian embassy in Paris.

So here are the questions I would like those ‘believers’ to answer. As Friedrich Paul Berg would say, they are normal and reasonable questions that attorneys should ask witnesses in court. Try your hand at answering them and send your answers to [email protected] or write them in a comment below. (Serious answers only, please)

1.  Exactly when did Elie Wiesel write Un di velt hot geshvign? [not the year only, but the month(s), day(s)]

2.  Exactly where was Elie Wiesel when he wrote Un di velt hot geshvign?

3.  How many pages was the original draft of Un di velt hot geshvign?

4.  How many pages was the finished, published book?

5.  Who edited the book from the original draft?

6.  Why didn’t Elie Wiesel make a carbon copy of his manuscript when he typed it? (This was the common practice at the time.)

7.  Why didn’t Elie Wiesel tell Francois Mauriac during their meeting in May 1955 that he had already written his ‘testimony’ of being in the camps the year before?

8.  Why did Elie Wiesel lie to Francois Mauriac and continue to lie to him?

9.  Why has Un di velt hot geshvign never been translated into English or French, since it is the original source work of Night, which has sold an estimated 10 million copies worldwide?

10. Who holds the copyright on Un di velt hot geshvign?

 

 

 

This website makes use of some non-original copyrighted material. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information Click Here