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On finding a neglected memorial to a forgotten war …


The bugle’s long faded call took with it all promise of eternal memory.
Names carved in stone often lasted not much longer than the generation
that composed them, causes became historical and worse, academic,
families adopted new priorities and the dead faded into unrecognised
faces staring from indistinct sepia cards.
Perhaps it was for the best: the solutions to conflicts were invariably the
result of pragmatism and essentially found in the present with an eye to
the future.
The fallen remained beyond all wanting; such is the nature of lives and
of deaths.


Please read …


The St. Louis

On May 13, 1939, the ocean liner, St. Louis, sailed from Hamburg, Germany, for Havana, Cuba. The Third Reich allowed more than 900 Jews aboard. We are counting now. When souls become quotas, numbers matter. The number was 937, most of them were German Jews. They carried what they thought were valid permits that guaranteed them temporary stay in the United States until proper visas could be granted.

The quotas…
The quotas!
The United States quotas were full.
The souls aboard the St. Louis had no clue.

The German-Austrian immigration quota for the United States allowed only 27,370 souls annually. The wait list for entry stretched for years, pages filled with longing names numbered. When souls become numbers filling quotas, what has humanity left to do but count? So we counted them. Number one got in. Number 27,371 did not. She received a free train…

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