On 27th January 1945 – 70 years ago today – Soviet soldiers entered through the gates of Auschwitz Concentration Camp and discovered the largest mass murder in a single location in human history. The site had been evacuated by the Nazis just days before leaving behind around 7,000 starving prisoners, mostly Jews. Exact numbers are debated to this day but according to the Holocaust Memorial Museum, the German SS systematically killed at least 960,000 of over a million Jews deported to the camp. Other victims included approximately 74,000 Poles, 21,000 Roma, 15,000 Soviet prisoners of war and at least 10,000 from other nationalities. More people died at Auschwitz than at any other Nazi concentration camp.
We don’t normally get involved in politics here at Jammy Toast. However, today we couldn’t help but post the cover of Charlie Hebdo magazine seeing as the whole of the British press and television news wouldn’t. Hopefully, whoever is claiming responsibility for the killings will not put out a contract on a bunch of teddy bears! Well, here’s hoping anyway!
Razzi and I were a little early for one of our lessons today and so we parked around the corner out of sight so as not to rush the girl we were waiting for. Where we parked was amongst some new-build houses just off Scotland Road, not far from the Birkenhead Tunnel entrance. While we were waiting I happened to spot a plague on the wall over the road which was dedicated to the Memory of Parishioners of Holy Cross Church who had died during the blitz on Liverpool Docks in May 1941. Here at Jammy Toast, we always have an interest in local history and so Razzi and I decided to do a Google search to see what we could find. We were amazed…
There is a feeling of excitement around Jammy Toast as we get nearer to the World Cup. We are realists, we know we probably won’t win the competition but at the same time there is a feeling there somewhere that maybe we just could. We always seem to get knocked out of competitions by the skin of our teeth – either on penalties or by losing to the odd goal. Well what if this time we had just a touch of good luck for a change and we actually won the close games instead of losing or bottling out of a penalty. However, thinking back to the most important game of football we have ever played in it didn’t even matter if we won, drew or lost.
As is usual here at Jammy Toast, the bears held their two minutes of silence at 11am this morning to remember members of the British and Commonwealth Armed Forces who have died in all conflicts since the First World War. The bears feel it is their duty to remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice to keep our country safe from tyranny. This year is even more important than it used to be because, since the recent deaths of Florence Green and Claude Choules, there are now no people still living who fought in the First World War – but the bears will never forget!
Last night we settled down after tea to watch some telly and decided to watch a documentary about 9/11 and some of the people who died in the collapse of the towers. The programme took a look at some of the people who jumped from the towers rather than be burnt alive within. The official line on these people has always been that these people didn’t jump – because that would be considered suicide – but rather they were blown out of the buildings by fire or explosions. This is an understandable position because many religions consider suicide to be a sin and it also saves the relatives of those who had “fallen” from thinking their relative had suffered; maybe they had been killed in the explosion that threw them from the building.
The bears held a two minute silence as Big Ben struck eleven o’clock to remember members of the British and Commonwealth’s armed forces who have died during conflicts. The bears joined the Queen and the whole country in remembering those who have made the ultimate sacrifice to keep our country safe from tyranny. This year is special because Remembrance Sunday falls on 11th November itself, the date of the armistice which brought World War I to an end.
Treblinka II was a Nazi Extermination Camp built in German-occupied Poland during World War II near the village of Treblinka. The camp, which was constructed as part of Operation Reinhard, operated between 23rd July 1942 and 19th October 1943. During those dates, approximately 870,000 men, women and children were killed at the SS run death camp. This figure includes more than 800,000 Jews, as well as an undetermined number of Romanian Gypsies. The killing ended following a revolt, during which several German guards were killed, when 300 prisoners escaped. The camp was then quickly dismantled and a farmhouse was built in an attempt to try and hide the evidence of genocide. However, a few people survived.
The bears and I were angered today when we read in the paper that fearless and loyal army guard dogs that spend their days protecting our troops are destroyed. Eight hundred and seven of the military dogs have been destroyed by the army over the past decade despite many years of loyal service. Many were healthy but deemed too fierce to see out their days as pets.
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