The Art of Tetman Callis

Some of the stories and poems may be inappropriate for persons under 16

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Blood and family

September 16th, 2016 · No Comments

“Lieutenant Dorothy Beavers was one of a U.S. Army medical team dispatched to Ebensee. ‘Nothing had prepared us for the camps,’ she said. To their amazement, many of the inmates spoke English. These were highly educated Hungarian Jewish girls, reduced by lice and starvation to the last waystation before death. . . . As the nurses gently bathed them and treated their hurts, Dorothy Beavers was astonished to hear them describing pre-war trips to London, visits to the British Museum. ‘We discussed Shakespeare, Dante, Beethoven—and the food we’d prepare for the Jewish holidays.’ The nurse spent six weeks at Ebensee, administering plasma to men and women at the last extremities of life, carefully weaning them on to a liquid diet. ‘It was the greatest shock of my life, to see hay ladders jammed with bodies. It got to us all. After two weeks, we were just sitting around, staring into space.’ Medical teams began to arrive at the camp, to take away their own nationals. An Italian doctor turned up one day and asked: ‘Any Italians here?’ ‘Yeah, one guy,’ came back the answer, ‘but he’s dying.’ ‘If he is going to die,’ said the doctor passionately, ‘he is going to die with us.’ ” – Max Hastings, Armageddon

Tags: Max Hastings · The Second World War

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