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Subject: Holocaust Almanac: Dachau - to remind them of the truth
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Archive/File: camps/dachau/dachau.003
Last-Modified: 1994/03/01

 Here's another perspective: From David H. Hackworth, the United States'
 military's most decorated living veteran, in his best-selling auto-
 biography, _About_Face_ (Hackworth is also a contributing editor with
 Newsweek magazine):

   "On one cold winter's day, I took Patty [his wife] to Dachau.  The
   horror of Hitler's vision was alive and well in this grim death
   camp: the barracks, the ovens, the electrified barbed-wire fences,
   remained intact.  A mound here held the bones of ten thousand Jews:
   the one over there,twelve thousand more. The place was a monument to
   the darkest side of man, and yet - despite the smoke and ash that
   rained down on their homes from camp incinerators, despite the
   sickly smell of burning flesh and hair, which surely carried with
   the slightest breeze as far, probably, as Munich - the villagers
   claimed they hadn't know. I couldn't square it, anymore than I
   could square the fact that not one of the laughing, backslapping,
   congenial comrades I met (in their beer-belly filled lederhosen and
   their jolly Bavarian green caps) had fought the Americans in the
   West. All assured me they'd been on the Eastern Front, fighting
   "the real enemy," the Russians. It was a story I heard in the
   cities, too.  In fifteen years the Germans had come a long way in
   their rewrite of history. But at least there's Dachau, I thought
   to myself, to remind them of the truth." (Hackworth, 343,344)

                              Work Cited

   Hackworth, Colonel (U.S.  Army, Ret.) David H., and Julie Sherman.
   About Face: The Odyssey of an American Warrior.  New York: Simon &
   Schuster, 1989.  ISBN 0-671-52692-8

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