As many in the world have recently been remembering the 75th anniversary of the D Day landings, over here we have been remembering other events.
The tiny village of Frayssinet-le-Gelat is where I buy my wonderful bread.
Today it's a very quiet spot, known only for being the birthplace of the man who invented the Jubilee Clip, and the barbaric German wartime slaughter of civilians; to whom we recently paid homage .
The Germans had suspected that the village was the hideout of several resistance fighters, and rather than search for them, decided simply to make an example of the villagers themselves. It was easier, and demonstrated their vile attitude towards basic humanity.
At 5 pm on the 21st May 1944 two divisions of the SS Das Reich, en route for Oradour-sur-Glane (see Wiki), arrived in the village from nearby Villefranche du Périgord. At 6.30 pm they were joined by another division arriving from Fumel.
They assembled everyone in the center of the village, where they proceeded to hang three women, and shoot 11 men. One imagines that they enjoyed watching the women suffer.
So as to not upset the Germans, the monument in memory of those who were murdered was recently changed to say 'Barbarie Nazie'
instead of 'Barbarie Allemande',
but I prefer to show it as it was originally intended.
The same German troops then moved on to Oradour-sur-Glane, where on the 10th June 1944 they slaughtered 642 villagers. amongst which were 350 women and children; again, all innocent civilians.
The men were all shot in the legs, to make them immobile, then doused with petrol and set alight. One witness discovered a baby that had been 'crucified'.
The Village of Oradour has been left exactly as it was after the atrocities were committed; totally burned-out and ruined.
As it says on the base of the monument 'Souvenez vous'
;.... we do; and have!
p.s. Today is also the 2nd anniversary of the Grenfell fire, where 72 people died. RIP all.
Such sadness and vile slaughter. We need to remember.ReplyDelete
There were so many atrocities that are hardly mentioned.Delete
Yes, so many atrocities, the perpetrators hiding behind the theory "just following orders" and suffering no retribution for their barbaric behaviour?ReplyDelete
No-one is ever guilty of their crimes; it's exactly the same with 99.9% of convicted criminals in our prisons.Delete
A memorial I shall always remember.ReplyDelete
When I go there on Sundays to buy bread, it seems unimaginable that such things took place not so long ago.Delete
I have visited oradour-sur-glane.ReplyDelete
It certainly made real to me, man's inhumanity to man. The place has a strange feel to it.
We had two brothers aged 19 and 25 killed in the great war. The first is buried in Bethune. The seconds name is etched on the louverval memorial as he was blown up in the battle for Verdun.
Lest we forget.
Tat's right Christina.... never forgotten; although some would be happier if it was.Delete
I went to Oradour many years ago and the sight of that village has never left me, particularly the doctor's calcinated car on the village square and the baby's pram in the middle of the church where the women were burned alive. Man's cruelty to man is unbelievable!ReplyDelete
It was a dreadful thing to do to your European neighbours. Unforgivable.Delete
So many unbelievable atrocities. So much horror. And your village is just one of so many, in France, in Greece.ReplyDelete
RIP to those thousands of innocent victims.
They were terrible times. I hope we never see them again.Delete
In Ukraine I saw many local remembrance memorials to atrocities carried out in living memory and tended with flowers and candles by relatives. The 4 million starved to death in 1932/33 and not allowed to feed from their own harvests was particularly poignant and a particularly wicked act.ReplyDelete
There are quite a few roadside memorials around here, where farmers were shot at the same time as the above incidents. They didn't care who they killed, or why.Delete
My grandfather's brother worked on a coaster and his job was to bring food produce from Lincolnshire to Tyneside. The boat had a crew of six. People standing on the beach witnessed a German plane fly low over the unarmed boat in broad daylight and drop a bomb on it. Just in time the six men on board dived into the sea and started swimming for the nearby beach. The plane turned and came back and flew low over the men and machine gunned them all. They were all killed. There is no monument to these innocent victims as far as anybody in my family is aware. It's just another forgotten incident.ReplyDelete
An uncle of mine was sunk somewhere between the UK and Russia, and most of his fellow sailors were shot in the water. My uncle was lucky and ended up in a German POW camp.Delete
And lucky he wasnt put on the train to Poland or even Austria. The film The Hill is based on Mauthausen.Delete
Those atrocious acts are just beyond our comprehension. I have no words that would help or change anything .... I am just thankful that I was born when I was and we must remember all of those who died. XXXXReplyDelete
It's even worse when you live right on the doorstep of where this all happened. Stories abound; and they're not nice.Delete
.R I P indeedReplyDelete
It is notable that within the EU history is being sanitised. WW2 was now perpetrated by the Nazis seemingly they weren't Germans after all. Their allies Italy etc weren't really involved. Nothing to see here move along, move along.....ReplyDelete
Barbarie Allemande is the truth and the memorial sign should never have been changed. It is outrageous and disrespectful to those who were murdered.ReplyDelete
I've been to Oradur twice and blogged about it too. It was one of the most moving and distressing places I have ever visited. The first time there were few visitors and I spent a lot of time just standing with tears in my eyes wondering just how low man could stoop. It seemed to me that it outdid the 'corporate inhumanity' of the Nazis because it was so personal.ReplyDelete