Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Holocaust Continues...

It's way past midnight and yet no signs of sleep. Here's why...

I agree watching war documentaries may not be the most ideal way to spend a weekend! But the German visitors at home had left me curious. During their stay here we discussed a bit about the Nazi Rule and how they found it shocking that I'd read Mein Kampf (purely due to an interest in World History. I had to clarify).

"Have you seen documentaries based on the Holocaust or the Third Reich?", I asked Mum. "Well not really, unless you consider war based movies like the Schindler's List or The Pianist", she responded. And I thought the only reassurance with those movies was the fact that it was all enactment. 

But today there was no Adrien Brody and there was no enactment. I was witnessing history unfold itself. These were the real victims. For an hour and a half on the clock I watched humanity being butchered. The Nazi extermination camps, euthanasia in gas chambers, man slaughter, human experiments on the disabled. Oh, it was all too much to take in. Unsure of whether I would be able to hit normalcy through the week, I decided to make a switch to a lighter genre.

In the 'animal abuse documentaries' section, a documentary titled 'Supermarket Secrets' caught my eye. I'd always wondered how supermarkets had changed things in terms of public health, quality of products, consumer buying patterns etc. And interestingly this one focussed on behind-the-scenes of livestock rearing and large scale factory farming of animals before they make it to supermarkets. Well, probably this was not the 'lighter genre' I was looking for. 

The revelations were disturbing and shocking. Factory farming of animals, abnormally sped up growth of chickens (142 days reduced to 45), crippled & diseased ducks with no water to swim, unhygienic mechanized dairies where cows were milked to the very last drop and pushed to slaughterhouses once they were mere lumps of fat. I have always had a special adulation towards cows. Their calm appeal and the striking innocence in their eyes is so endearing. Should we not be grateful to them for providing us with the single most important source of nourishment (milk of course!) for us since childhood? It's almost as though we owe something back to them. If not that, least of all a brutal death. I find it devastating and unimaginable to think of an animal as harmless and 'holy' as a cow being butchered. 

By the end of it all, I began to draw a hopeless parallel between the two documentaries and somehow it started to make complete sense. 

A German Lieutenant interviewed in the war documentary said : "They (the Jews) were always very quiet. They never screamed or squealed in pain." Are they not what the chickens, cows and ducks are today & this is the holocaust that continues...

Adolf Hitler once said "The Jews are undoubtedly a race, but they are not human". Ironically that is how I feel about the human race today. 

References : Documentaries - Hitler's Holocaust (1-6) and The Secret of Supermarkets (1 & 2) can be found on

- N

P.S - The author of this post does not honk at cows blocking her way on a busy street in India. Dear suffering animals - for some of us you are more than just finger lickin' good!