Author Topic: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...  (Read 10325 times)

Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« on: December 05, 2009, 10:32:43 am »
 Did you know that in the 1920's, there were 24,000 Blacks living in Germany ?  Neither did I.  Here's how it happened, and how many of them were eventually caught unawares by the events of the Holocaust.

 Like most West European nations, Germany established colonies in Africa in the late 1800's in what later became Togo , Cameroon , Namibia , and Tanzania .  German genetic experiments began there, most notably involving prisoners taken from the 1904 Heroro Massacre that left 60,000 Africans dead, following a 4-year revolt against German colonization.  After the shellacking Germany received in World War I,it was stripped of its African colonies in 1918.

 As a spoil of war, the French were allowed to occupy Germany in the Rhineland --a bitter piece of real estate that has gone back and forth between the two nations for centuries.  The French willfully deployed their own colonized African soldiers as the occupying force.  Germans viewed this as the final insult of World War I, and, soon thereafter, 92% of them voted in the Nazi party.

 Hundreds of the African Rhineland-based soldiers intermarried with German women and raised their children as Black Germans.  In Mein Kampf, Hitler wrote about his plans for these " Rhineland Bastards".

When he came to power, one of his first directives was aimed at these mixed-race children.  Underscoring Hitler's obsession with racial purity, by 1937, every identified mixed-race child in the Rhineland had been forcibly sterilized, in order to prevent further "race polluting", as Hitler termed it.

 Hans Hauck, a Black Holocaust survivor and a victim of Hitler's mandatory sterilization program, explained in the film "Hitler's Forgotten Victims" that, when he was forced to undergo sterilization as a teenager, he was given no anesthetic.  Once he received his sterilization certificate, he was "free to go", so long as he agreed to have no sexual relations whatsoever with Germans.

 Although most Black Germans attempted to escape their fatherland, heading for France where people like Josephine Baker were steadily aiding and supporting the French Underground, many still encountered problems elsewhere.  Nations shut their doors to Germans, including the Black ones.

 Some Black Germans were able to eke out a living during Hitler's reign of terror by performing in Vaudeville shows, but many Blacks, steadfast in their belief that they were German first, Black second, opted to remain in Germany .  Some fought with the Nazis (a few even became Lut waffe pilots)!  Unfortunately, many Black Germans were arrested, charged with treason, and shipped in cattle cars to concentration camps.  Often these trains were so packed with people and (equipped with no bathroom facilities or food), that, after the four-day journey, box car doors were opened to piles of the dead and dying.

 Once inside the concentration camps, Blacks were given the worst jobs conceivable.  Some Black American soldiers, who were captured and held as prisoners of war, recounted that, while they were being starved and forced into dangerous labor (violating the Geneva Convention), they were still better off than Black German concentration camp detainees, who were forced to do the unthinkable- - man the crematoriums and work in labs where genetic experiments were being conducted.  As a final sacrifice, these Blacks were killed every three months so that they would never be able to reveal the inner workings of the "Final Sol ution".

 In every story of Black oppression, no matter how we were enslaved, shackled, or beaten, we always found a way to survive and to rescue others.  As a case in point, consider Johnny Voste, a Belgian resistance fighter who was arrested in 1942 for alleged sabotage and then shipped to Dachau .  One of his jobs was stacking vitamin crates.

Risking his own life, he distributed hundreds of vitamins to camp detainees, which saved the lives of many who were starving, weak, and ill--conditions exacerbated by extreme vitamin deficiencies.  His motto was "No, you can't have my life; I will fight for it."

 According to Essex University 's Delroy Constantine- Simms, there were Black Germans who resisted Nazi Germany , such as Lari Gilges, who founded the Northwest Rann --an organization of entertainers that fought the Nazis in his home town of Dusseldorf --and who was murdered by the SS in 1933, the year that Hitler came into power.

 Little information remains about the numbers of Black Germans held in the camps or killed under the Nazi regime.  Some victims of the Nazi sterilization project and Black survivors of the Holocaust are still alive and telling their story in films such as "Black Survivors of the Nazi Holocaust", but they must also speak out for justice, not just history.

 Unlike Jews (in Israel and in Germany ), Black Germans receive no war reparations because their German citizenship was revoked (even though they were German-born) .  The only pension they get is from those of us who are willing to tell the world their stories and continue their battle for recognition and compensation.

 After the war, scores of Blacks who had somehow managed to survive the Nazi regime, were rounded up and tried as war criminals.  Talk about the final insult!  There are thousands of Black Holocaust stories, from the triangle trade, to slavery in America , to the gas oven s in Germany .

 We often shy away fr om hearing about our historical past because so much of it is painful; however, we are in this struggle together for rights, dignity, and, yes, reparations for wrongs done to us through the centuries.  We need to always remember so that we can take steps to ensure that these atrocities never happen again.

 For further information, read: Destined to Witness: Growing Up Black in Nazi Germany , by Hans J.  Massaquoi.

Offline jefferson L.O.B. sergeant

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #1 on: December 05, 2009, 03:49:37 pm »
This was truly a gift!

So much of history is hidden and twisted; that the phrase "Truth is stranger than fiction" comes to mind.

To bring a comicbook aspect to this.

The Germans obviously felt Black life was the most expendable and experimented on that population first.

What would be more feared in America circa the 1940's than an army of Black weapons working for the Axis?

Offline MKG

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2009, 12:53:48 pm »
Wow! Didn't know about this. Powerful indeed. The more i read history the more hateful i become. What to do with that hate is the question. Why they wanna burry this so no one knows about it? All these goddamn Nazi films and never a mention of this? Wow. >:(

Offline Princesa

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2010, 04:10:48 pm »
Mr Hudlin have you ever heard of Valaida Snow? I read a lot this summer ;)

Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2010, 04:29:30 pm »
Mr Hudlin have you ever heard of Valaida Snow? I read a lot this summer ;)
I have not.  Tell me more.

Offline Princesa

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2010, 08:26:10 am »
Mr Hudlin have you ever heard of Valaida Snow? I read a lot this summer ;)
I have not.  Tell me more.

Valaida Snow is a legend waiting to be discovered. She was a musical prodigy. From a musical family she played at least 8 instruments at world class level including the trumpet (Louis Armstrong called her the "second best in the world")sax, cello, bass and violin. She was also a tremendous singer, dancer, song writer and band leader. She played from time to time with Duke Ellington but declined a permanent spot in order to travel the world with her all female band. She had a morphine addiction and touring in Denmark was arrested by the Nazis and put in a concentration camp but after a year and a half was released in a prisoner exchange. She never really recovered and died hours after a show at the Apollo. She was called "the Queen of Jazz" by many. There is a fictionalized novel on her life called "Valaida" but I think she would make a tremendous movie and I wish someone (Bogle?) would do a good biography.

Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2010, 08:27:39 am »
Damn what a great story!!!!!

Offline jefferson L.O.B. sergeant

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2010, 01:57:35 pm »
Mr Hudlin have you ever heard of Valaida Snow? I read a lot this summer ;)
I have not.  Tell me more.

Valaida Snow is a legend waiting to be discovered. She was a musical prodigy. From a musical family she played at least 8 instruments at world class level including the trumpet (Louis Armstrong called her the "second best in the world")sax, cello, bass and violin. She was also a tremendous singer, dancer, song writer and band leader. She played from time to time with Duke Ellington but declined a permanent spot in order to travel the world with her all female band. She had a morphine addiction and touring in Denmark was arrested by the Nazis and put in a concentration camp but after a year and a half was released in a prisoner exchange. She never really recovered and died hours after a show at the Apollo. She was called "the Queen of Jazz" by many. There is a fictionalized novel on her life called "Valaida" but I think she would make a tremendous movie and I wish someone (Bogle?) would do a good biography.

It seems like Beyonce may have found her Oscar winning role here.

Offline Open palm

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2010, 02:44:45 pm »
That truly is sad. The Nazis also killed the thousands of African soldiers who fought for France during the early days of the war. They filmed them for their hateful propaganda then executed them en masse.
Do you prefer a hero who will confirm your deepest fears? Or a hero who will inspire faith in humanity and goodness?

Offline MKG

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2010, 03:45:38 pm »
Mr Hudlin have you ever heard of Valaida Snow? I read a lot this summer ;)
I have not.  Tell me more.

Valaida Snow is a legend waiting to be discovered. She was a musical prodigy. From a musical family she played at least 8 instruments at world class level including the trumpet (Louis Armstrong called her the "second best in the world")sax, cello, bass and violin. She was also a tremendous singer, dancer, song writer and band leader. She played from time to time with Duke Ellington but declined a permanent spot in order to travel the world with her all female band. She had a morphine addiction and touring in Denmark was arrested by the Nazis and put in a concentration camp but after a year and a half was released in a prisoner exchange. She never really recovered and died hours after a show at the Apollo. She was called "the Queen of Jazz" by many. There is a fictionalized novel on her life called "Valaida" but I think she would make a tremendous movie and I wish someone (Bogle?) would do a good biography.

It seems like Beyonce may have found her Oscar winning role here.

Lets get her for everthing! Hey, she can play Miles Davis after this.

Offline Princesa

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2010, 09:13:26 am »
Mr Hudlin have you ever heard of Valaida Snow? I read a lot this summer ;)
I have not.  Tell me more.

Valaida Snow is a legend waiting to be discovered. She was a musical prodigy. From a musical family she played at least 8 instruments at world class level including the trumpet (Louis Armstrong called her the "second best in the world")sax, cello, bass and violin. She was also a tremendous singer, dancer, song writer and band leader. She played from time to time with Duke Ellington but declined a permanent spot in order to travel the world with her all female band. She had a morphine addiction and touring in Denmark was arrested by the Nazis and put in a concentration camp but after a year and a half was released in a prisoner exchange. She never really recovered and died hours after a show at the Apollo. She was called "the Queen of Jazz" by many. There is a fictionalized novel on her life called "Valaida" but I think she would make a tremendous movie and I wish someone (Bogle?) would do a good biography.

It seems like Beyonce may have found her Oscar winning role here.

I'd love to see it on the big screen.

Offline URAEUS

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2010, 07:18:39 pm »
In Mein Kampf, Hitler wrote about his plans for these " Rhineland Bastards".

When he came to power, one of his first directives was aimed at these mixed-race children.  Underscoring Hitler's obsession with racial purity, by 1937, every identified mixed-race child in the Rhineland had been forcibly sterilized, in order to prevent further "race polluting", as Hitler termed it.


 
Quote
Some Black Germans were able to eke out a living during Hitler's reign of terror by performing in Vaudeville shows, but many Blacks, steadfast in their belief that they were German first, Black second, opted to remain in Germany .  Some fought with the Nazis (a few even became Lut waffe pilots)!  Unfortunately, many Black Germans were arrested, charged with treason, and shipped in cattle cars to concentration camps.  Often these trains were so packed with people and (equipped with no bathroom facilities or food), that, after the four-day journey, box car doors were opened to piles of the dead and dying.

 Once inside the concentration camps, Blacks were given the worst jobs conceivable.  Some Black American soldiers, who were captured and held as prisoners of war, recounted that, while they were being starved and forced into dangerous labor (violating the Geneva Convention), they were still better off than Black German concentration camp detainees, who were forced to do the unthinkable- - man the crematoriums and work in labs where genetic experiments were being conducted.  As a final sacrifice, these Blacks were killed every three months so that they would never be able to reveal the inner workings of the "Final Sol ution".


THANK YOU FOR THIS.

Offline URAEUS

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2010, 07:19:58 pm »
Mr Hudlin have you ever heard of Valaida Snow? I read a lot this summer ;)
I have not.  Tell me more.

Valaida Snow is a legend waiting to be discovered. She was a musical prodigy. From a musical family she played at least 8 instruments at world class level including the trumpet (Louis Armstrong called her the "second best in the world")sax, cello, bass and violin. She was also a tremendous singer, dancer, song writer and band leader. She played from time to time with Duke Ellington but declined a permanent spot in order to travel the world with her all female band. She had a morphine addiction and touring in Denmark was arrested by the Nazis and put in a concentration camp but after a year and a half was released in a prisoner exchange. She never really recovered and died hours after a show at the Apollo. She was called "the Queen of Jazz" by many. There is a fictionalized novel on her life called "Valaida" but I think she would make a tremendous movie and I wish someone (Bogle?) would do a good biography.

THANK YOU FOR THIS! I am going to research her immediately! So many ancestors waiting to be recognized and CELEBRATED!!!!!

Offline URAEUS

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #13 on: January 24, 2010, 07:27:11 pm »
Wow! Didn't know about this. Powerful indeed. The more i read history the more hateful i become. What to do with that hate is the question. Why they wanna burry this so no one knows about it? All these goddamn Nazi films and never a mention of this? Wow. >:(

Try to channel that hate into a love and worship of those ancestors who resisted the madness and the genocide. We are SO STRONG.... SO RESILLIENT.... our history is SECOND TO NONE!!!!!

I am proud to come from the stock of the survivors of the Middle Passage... the survivors of the Nazi ovens..... the survivors of the lynch mobs and attack dogs and forced sterilization and rape and genetic experiments.

They've thrown the whole kitchen sink at us..... yet we still stand.



Offline URAEUS

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Re: Black in Nazi Germany...from an email I was sent...
« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2010, 07:35:46 pm »
Mr Hudlin have you ever heard of Valaida Snow? I read a lot this summer ;)

I have not.  Tell me more.


Valaida Snow is a legend waiting to be discovered. She was a musical prodigy. From a musical family she played at least 8 instruments at world class level including the trumpet (Louis Armstrong called her the "second best in the world")sax, cello, bass and violin. She was also a tremendous singer, dancer, song writer and band leader. She played from time to time with Duke Ellington but declined a permanent spot in order to travel the world with her all female band. She had a morphine addiction and touring in Denmark was arrested by the Nazis and put in a concentration camp but after a year and a half was released in a prisoner exchange. She never really recovered and died hours after a show at the Apollo. She was called "the Queen of Jazz" by many. There is a fictionalized novel on her life called "Valaida" but I think she would make a tremendous movie and I wish someone (Bogle?) would do a good biography.


Just thought I'd share some of what I found on the incomparable Valaida Snow. Thanks again for the inspiration Princesa!   ;)







Valaida Snow (born June 2, 1905, Chattanooga, Tennessee; died May 30, 1956, New York City) was an African American jazz musician and entertainer. Raised in Cleveland City, Tennessee by a family devoted to music, she learned to play cello, bass, banjo, violin, mandolin, harp, accordion, clarinet, trumpet, and saxophone at professional levels by the time she was 15.





Excellent video of bio presented by Tim Reid (only 8 minutes), but WOWWWW what a woman!!!!! I'm disgusted I've never heard of her. She was at her peak around the time of the Nazi invasion... Josephine Baker tried to urge her to return to the U.S. to avoid the Nazis, but she didn't listen.... ended up spending 18 months as the only Black in a Nazi P.O.W. camp..... released on a prisoner exchange weighing only 65 pounds. (Good god.) A forgotten jewel.  :(
« Last Edit: January 24, 2010, 08:34:48 pm by URAEUS »