A new treblinka

Sunday i was in Treblinka. Since our departure is approaching fast i felt the urge to visit the main spots i haven’t checked out yet of my to-visit-list. I took the bus to Malkinia Gorna, 100 km east of Warsaw,  and walked the 9 km to the Monument site. That’s a typical rural area with lot of plantations and a village every now and then (and a road under construction since time immemorial). Anna doesn’t want to go to WWII termination camps for she fear she would bit hit too hard from the tragedy. She says they have been repeated this dark part of last century over and over and she cannot cope with it anymore. On my side i want to experience these places as i know them only from books and cinema. I took the day off for that and i was open for going deep into myself and into this sad story. I didn’t. Treblinka is a monument place on the former site of the camp. Once closing the activity at the end of  1943 the camp was completely dismantled and  the area was ploughed, cover with soil and trees were planted over. The Nazi took care on deleting any proof of the act. Already in choosing the area – middle of nowhere,  hidden in the heart of a forest – they showed that the all thing was conceived to last short, be fatal, and leave no traces. You must be insane to plan such a project. But then again this happens when a part of the society is downgraded to animal condition. Then gassing a person is not much different than smashing a mosquito. But i couldn’t feel it. When i was there i did not empathise with the victims (nearly 1 million). Maybe because my emotional side is quite atrophied or maybe because the Nazi did a good job in covering up and the forest, with the chirping of the birds, butterflies and flowers, strawberries and blueberries made it look like a paradise rather than a coursed site. Maybe this is the message itself the monument area is meant to impress inside one’s mind: in front of the monument it is written in several languages “never again”. Like it is saying, let us remember what happened, but things can be different.

(Andrea)

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