Tag Archives: Anne Frank

The Anne Frank Controversy

May 1942 photo for passport
Anne Frank House, Amsterdam.
Public Domain via Wikipedia Commons

Yeah, Anne Frank had white privilege. Bad things happen to people with white privilege also, but don’t tell the whites that.” (Twitter posting)

Anne Frank, whose diary has become required reading in many schools, was a victim of the Holocaust. Except for Holocaust deniers, this is an unescapable truth. The fact that Nazi Germany was antisemitic is undeniable either. The Nazi’s devised the Nuremberg Laws that codified their antisemitism by denying Jews (considered a race by them and identified by family line) German citizenship. Yet now there are those on the Internet (and elsewhere) that try to posit the notion that what happened was not racism but rather a case of white superiority.

The proponents of this argue that since Jews are not a minority the Nazi’s did not practice racism but white superiority. It was simply one white group trying to dominate another and race had nothing to do with it. Whoopi Goldberg repeated this as well on The View and was put on leave because of the angry response to her claim. Jews, in this view of things, do not qualify as being members of a minority. One poster of this view quipped they were too white to hide their faces.

Antisemites are pleased with this because the posters of this thinking on social media are helping to continue to downplay what happened to the Jews, especially when those promoting it are African American. Antisemites love to point out to African Americans (and there are antisemitic African Americans as well) that Jews helped enslave their ancestors, used racial laws to keep them suppressed, had businesses that took advantage of them, and other nefarious things as well. So, this new tactic of trying to deny Jews being victims of racism is just a newer way to diminish what happened to them in the Holocaust.

It is a form of racial superiority but in a twisted way. Only certain groups, non-white ones, can suffer racism. Jews being white and being classified as a race by the Nazi’s does not count. It was just one group vying for power over the other. And since Anne Frank was born with “white privilege” her status as a victim of a horror is lessened. Thus, everyone equally born with white privilege as well. The mass murder of millions of humans is thus diminished and loses importance in this mindset. And what a dangerous one it is. For you can see the obvious extension of this already being played out. World War II then was just war between white people fighting out who would be in control of Europe.

Of course, those who advance this do have a problem with Japan, since they sought to establish their own rival empire in Asia and toss out the colonial powers. Turns out they had very definite ideas of who was superior and who was not as well. People who had thought the Japanese would liberate them from colonial oppression found themselves in the same position as before, just now it was the Japanese running things. Turns out other non-white peoples have notions of racial superiority as well. The argument of World War II being between two white powers seeking superiority over the others echoes what the Marxists said about World War I as between capitalist powers just being retooled for a new audience.

“Selection” of Hungarian Jews on the ramp at Auschwitz II-Birkenau in German-occupied Poland, around May 1944. Jews were sent either to work or to the gas chamber. The photograph is part of the collection known as the Auschwitz Album.
Public Domain via Wikimedia Commo

The woke culture, in doing this, is helping antisemitism. Nazis and the adherents of their racial policies viewed Jews not only as a separate race but believed them sub-human. Through relentless depictions in every media available to them and in schools, Germans were taught to treat the Jews no better than rodents. That is why it was so easy for a German soldier to grab an innocent baby, bash it against a wall to stop it from crying, and hand it back to the mother. Once you dehumanize, it is all too easy to treat them in the most vicious way possible without remorse. Which is what many Germans did and were happy to shove Jews into trains, into the gas chambers, and ultimately into the ovens as well. They were rodents and unfit to live.

The attempt to diminish what happened to Anne Frank and all the Jews killed in the Holocaust to make yourself a bigger victim is despicable. People who peddle this nonsense should be loudly and publicly mocked as a form of antisemitism.


Remembering History: Anne Frank’s Family Takes Refuge (6 Jul 1942)

May 1942 photo for passport
Anne Frank House, Amsterdam.
Public Domain via Wikipedia Commons

After receiving word that they would be deported to a Nazi work camp, Ann Frank and her family take refuge in A Secret Annex of an Amsterdam warehouse. Her family was from Germany and fled in 1933 to Holland to escape Nazi persecution. The Netherlands declared its neutrality but that did not stop the Germans from invading on 10 May 1940. After the bombing of Rotterdam, its military forces surrendered, and its government and royal family fled to London Germany would occupy the country until the German surrender in May 1945.

The initial phase of the occupation was mild and often called the “velvet glove” where Germans under Arthur Seyss-Inquart did not impose the harsher rules of occupation found in other countries. The economy was doing well, and repression of the Jewish population was light. Starting in June 1941, that changed as Germany started demanding more from the occupied territories which lowered the standard of living. Repression of Jews began now in earnest as many were now deported to extermination camps.

Otto Frank had come to Amsterdam from Germany in 1933 with his wife Edith and their two daughters Margot and Anne. He worked for Opetka, which sold pectin and spices for jam production. A second company he started, Pectacon, sold wholesale spices, pickling salts, and herbs for sausage production. As things got more tense with Germany, he tried, unsuccessfully to move his business to Britain. When the occupation came and German laws about making businesses Aryan, he transferred ownership to his employees to keep it out of German hands. He unsuccessfully sought to emigrate to the United States.

Otto approached his bookkeeper, Miep Gies, to see if she could help hide his family. He also asked other employees to assist as well in bringing food to them in the secret annex hidden behind on a movable bookshelf. Another family, Van Pels would join them later as would Fritz Pfeffer making 8 people in total hiding in the Secret Annex.

For the next two years Ann would record in her diary her thoughts, humor, insight, and what was going on inside the annex. There were a lot of disagreements between the various people living together and Anne records how her father acted as a peacemaker. For two years they kept quiet during the day as people worked below and Nazi patrols were out on the streets. It all came to an end on 4 August 1944 when Dutch police officers with a member of the SS in charge raided the Secret Annex and arrested them all. Two employees were also arrested. They were all sent to Auschwitz, including the two men who had helped them. When Otto got off the train in Auschwitz, it was the last time he saw his wife and children. He would learn after the war his wife died in Auschwitz. Both Margo and Ann were moved to the Bergen-Belson concentration camp in Germany, where they both perished of typhus.

Otto would be the only one to survive and returning to Amsterdam he was given Anne’s diary by Miep Gies. After reading it, he was advised by others who had read it to have it published. It took a while, but it was first published in 1947 and into English in 1952. It has since then been translated into 70 languages and became a best seller and acclaimed movie. The diary stands as a testament to the six million Jews whose lives were taken by the Holocaust.


Remembering History: Anne Frank Family Goes Into Hiding (6 Jul 1942)

Anne Frank – 1940
Photographer Unknown
Public Domain (United States/Netherlands)
Wikimedia Commons

Although neutral, Germany invaded the Netherlands (Holland) in May 1940. Although resistance was very strong, the bombing of Rotterdam by the German Luftwaffe had left its city center in ashes. Although the army wanted to resist, without enough artillery and air support to stop the bombers, the Netherlands surrendered on 14 May 1940. It would remain occupied until 1945.

As would become the norm in countries where Germany invaded, strict rules about Jews were immediately imposed. Jews were dismissed from government held jobs, forbidden from visiting public places, and other restrictions were imposed as well. Deportation of Jews began in 1941 sending many to the Mauthausen-Gusen concentration camp. Dutch people opposed the action and organized a two-day strike in February 1941. It did nothing to stop the deportations and by this time every Jew had to wear the Star of David badges on their clothing. There were many atrocities committed against the Jews but one of the worst was the forced eviction of Jews from the Jewish psychiatric institution Het Apeldoornse Bosch. Disabled and mentally ill jews were sent to Auschwitz to be killed.

On 6 July 1942, fearing deportation to a Nazi concentration camp, Otto Frank decided to take his family into hiding along with the Van Pels family. They would later be joined by Fritz Pfeffer. Otto Frank had left Germany when Hitler came into power and settled in the Netherlands selling first pectin and later spices. He had hoped to set up a business in Great Britain, but the plans never came to be. When the Germans invaded and new rules forbade Jewish ownership of companies, he was helped by his employees to keep his business out of German control. Now faced with likely deportation, they decided to go into hiding.

The place that was chose was a Secret Annex above the warehouse of the company he owned. Access was through a bookcase that covered the door. They had to be very quiet in the early morning when workers arrived so as to not attract attention. Usually, some helpers who assisted them came up to join them for lunch (the workers left at this time for their lunches). Johannes Kleiman, Victor Kugler and Bep Voskuijl came up frequently as did Jan Gies. Miep Gies stayed below to keep an eye on things. They were able to learn what was going on through them and listening to a radio. During this time, Anne Frank began writing her diary recording her life and her thoughts about having to hide during this time.

They were able to hide out successfully for two years but on 4 August 1944, the Gestapo discovered the Secret Annex and arrested them along with two Christian helpers. All who hid in the Secret Annex were deported. Only Otto Frank would survive and return home. He would discover the diary written by his daughter, which was published and shared with the world. It would be made into several movies and documentaries.

Lingering questions remain as to whether or not they were betrayed or whether the Gestapo got lucky that day. It is likely that someone, perhaps a known Dutch collaborator, passed on information that Jews were hiding out in the warehouse. It is also possible the raid that occurred had nothing to do with Jews but looking for other things but unfortunately resulted in the discovery of the Secret Annex.


Anne Frank House
Holland.com-Invasion and Occupation During World War II