Did Amon Goeth save more Jews than Oskar Schindler? | Scrapbookpages Blog
Stern's relationship with Schindler contributes greatly to Schindler's decision to Goeth exhibits a true hatred for the Jews, at times shooting them randomly from. Bringing the big screen to life with description and analysis of Amon Goeth ( Ralph Fiennes) in Schindler's List. I had seen the film Schindler's List, in which Ralph Fiennes plays my he was playing a man called Goeth but I had not made the connection.
Although most accounts of Schindler reflect the authors' biases and not necessarily the entire truth, Schindler did heroically engage in rescuing Jews. The myth of Schindler emerged with the embellished narratives of his life but the historically accurate account of Schindler dissipates the notion of Schindler's account being mythic.
Ultimately, the mythic legend of Schindler is effectively the historically accurate account of Schindler packaged in authors' embellishment and hyperbole. Commentators on Oskar Schindler and his List back to top Prior to the publication of Thomas Keneally's Schindler's List, the novel that depicts Schindler as heroic, no biographies or books about Schindler existed.
Steinhouse concedes that his initial motivation for interviewing Schindler was due to his skepticism of the "Good German" that everyone spoke of. Upon hearing from colleague James Rice that a German had saved 1, lives, Steinhouse recalls thinking that he "was convinced that they had never held a gun in their lives. Steinhouse definitely entered the interview with cynicism and doubt.Amon Goeth sells Helen Hirsch
Steinhouse recalls his disbelief when he learned of Schindler's List. I must say I worked harder as a young journalist on that Schindler story than I ever did, before or since, to research a story…Eventually my acceptance of the story got up to sixty or seventy percent. Because there was virtually nothing that didn't fit, from wherever I got it — from French-Jewish organizations and other organizations…even from some then still-secret American-Jewish wartime dossiers.
Steinhouse's initial skepticism goes a long way towards validating his ultimate conclusions about the authenticity of the story behind Schindler's List. Although Keneally and Spielberg can be criticized for their artistic license in their respective accounts of Schindler, the came criticisms cannot be used towards Steinhouse because Steinhouse's accounts and conclusions are all based on his interactions with Oskar Schindler and, unlike Spielberg and Keneally, Steinhouse was not forced to turn to his imagination to construct the version of events because he had the factual evidence and testimony to establish the story for him.
Since Steinhouse wrote his Schindler article, which largely corroborates Keneally's and Spielberg's accounts, long before and other published material about Schindler, Steinhouse's perception was untainted — he objectively ascertained the historical accuracy of Schindler and his List.
Keneally initially utilized the account of one List survivor, Leopold Pfefferberg, to ascertain the historically accurate version of Schindler and his List and then interviewed fifty List survivors to authenticate the facts. Aware of probable biases in the stories of List survivors, given that they owe their lives to Schindler, Keneally also utilized documentary and testimonial information supplied by Emilie Schindler, Schindler's wartime associates, and postwar friends.
In his introduction, Keneally emphasizes "most exchanges and conversations, and all events, are based on the detailed recollections of the Schindlerjuden Schindler Jewsof Schindler himself, and of other witnesses to Oskar's acts of outrageous rescue. Although Thomas Keneally purports to "avoid all fiction, since fiction would debase the record, and to distinguish between reality and the myths which are likely to attach themselves to a man of Oskar's stature," Keneally shows bias in his consideration of Schindler's List to be a "pragmatic triumph of good over evil, a triumph in eminently measurable, statistical, unsubtle terms.
Keneally misses his own point: Keneally's assertion of a factual account of Schindler discounts any possibility of inherent partialities in Schindler's List and assumes that Keneally's account is the only account. In spite of his biases, Thomas Keneally, although praising of Schindler, does not outrageously and unrealistically portray and glorify Schindler.
While Keneally acknowledges Schindler's kindness and humanity towards his Jewish workers, he does not represent Schindler as a man concerned only with rescuing and mentions Schindler's financial gains from his factories. Far more than Emilie Schindler's testimony and Thomas Keneally's novel, Schindler's List contributed the most to the formulation of the heroic myth of Oskar Schindler in popular culture.
It was only after Spielberg's Schindler's List that the heroic myth of Schindler was firmly concretized and became commonly known worldwide. In Schindler's List, Spielberg depicts Schindler as an altruistic businessman with nothing but good intentions. Schindler's List reflects the feel-good idea that "the individual can make a difference, and Schindler does. Ultimately, Spielberg exalted Schindler to the status of a saint. Although Oskar Schindler was a short, stocky man and had an unimpressive physique, Spielberg cast Scottish actor Liam Neeson for the part of Schindler.
Neeson has a tall, commanding figure. In the scene after Schindler brings the women back from Auschwitz, he walks among the haggard group as they shuffle up to his factory. Schindler's figure contrasts with the short women and in most scenes, Schindler towers over the other people, especially SS guards.
The effect is one of importance; Schindler's large frame implies his importance, influence, and, most importantly, his distinction, which is one of heroism. Steven Spielberg's film, Schindler's List, reflects his personal spiritual growth, which motivated Spielberg to make the film. It is unclear whether Spielberg sacredly reconnected to his Jewish heritage and spirituality because of Schindler's List or whether Spielberg chose to direct Schindler's List because of his newly discovered spirituality.
Since Spielberg made Schindler's List only after and because of the publishing of Keneally's Schindler's List, it could be argued that the myth of Schindler ultimately came to light because of Keneally.
Emilie Schindler unquestionably yearned for more from her husband than she received. A chronic womanizer, Schindler undoubtedly cast Emilie on the sidelines during their marriage: During twenty-nine years of marriage to Schindler, Emilie always felt that she lived in his shadow.
K. Graf, "Oskar Schindler, The Man and the Myth" ()
Therefore, her declarations should be regarded as at least subjective and at most forgone conclusions. In spite of Emilie Schindler's declaration that "the sake of truth" provided her motivation for writing Where Light and Shadow Meet, her declaration of hate towards Oskar Schindler promises a biased rendering of events. In the preface of her memoir, Emilie contends, "Oskar Schindler was bathed in all the light that history accorded him, and I feel that is not entirely fair…[because] he was not a hero.
Emilie Schindler's narrative of her life with Oskar reflects her predisposition and preconceptions. Interestingly, Emilie includes twenty photographs in her novel and, in doing so, she exposes not only her predispositions about Oskar Schindler but also her passionate desire to disparage him.
Over half of the photographs display Schindler partying and drinking with his comrades — it is noteworthy that Emilie is absent from these jovial pictures. The caption to a picture that shows Schindler gleefully hovering over five smiling and engaged women is: On the left, his lover Gisa, who followed him to Argentina.
Although it would be most convenient and straightforward to omit Emilie Schindler's thorny testimony, it would also be problematic because Emilie, in spite of her unwillingness to "portray Oskar as a hero" contributes to the myth of Oskar Schindler as much as Steven Spielberg does.
Emilie Schindler witnessed a plethora of Schindler's undertakings and exploits, as well as contemporary Third Reich circumstances that both she and Oskar were subjected to and forced to react to. The latter fact adds one more reason to trust that the only method to approach Emilie Schindler's testimonies and accounts is with the understanding that her ulterior motives are central. Oskar Schindler — The Man Behind the List back to top Despite his heroic deeds, few myths refute Schindler's questionable character, although many soften his blatant debauchery and hedonism.
Schindler lived life to the fullest and Keneally notes "wherever he was, whether it was a bar or a prison, Oskar Schindler was the dominant figure in any landscape. Schindler possessed many degenerate and self-indulgent characteristics — it is difficult to conclude whether Schindler's rescuing occurred because of or in spite of these faults. Regardless, an author or biographer lacks the capability to create the widely accepted mythic hero: Although Schindler's drinking and womanizing make him any less of a hero, the depictions of these characteristics in accounts of Schindler reflect a sordid fusion of truth and biases.
My Nazi grandfather, Amon Goeth, would have shot me
Schindler's already excessive drinking escalated as he increased his involvement with Nazi officials. Keneally underscores Schindler's alcohol consumption. Some of the time he drank for the pure glow of it, at other times with associates, bureaucrats, SS men for more palpable results. As his affiliations with Nazi officials flourished, Schindler's drinking escalated so rapidly that Emilie Schindler feared that her husband was becoming an alcoholic, just like his father.
Drinking was not Schindler's only vice — women commanded Schindler's affection easily. Schindler also kept a long-term relationship with his Polish secretary. Keneally mentions "that to all his women [Schindler] was a well-mannered and generous lover. Much to Emilie's chagrin, Schindler spent almost every night of the week drinking with and entertaining local SS and Wehrmacht officials. In doing so, Herbert Steinhouse notes that Schindler was "cultivating influential friends and strengthening his position wherever possible.
Everyone appeared to have knowledge of Schindler's rescuing activities. Herbert Steinhouse recalls an incident when a Krakow Commandant that Schindler had pushed down some stairs said, "Oskar, you tried to kill me.
And don't think you can get away. We all know who you are. You're a Jew-lover, and you'll go to Auschwitz just as fast as your Jews. Schindler's relationship with Goeth, although useful for his rescuing endeavors, resulted in various predicaments. Goeth even sent Schindler to jail once for falsely accusing Schindler of stowing boxes of stolen jewelry and weapons. In Schindler's List, Schindler declares, "I'm protected by powerful friends, you should know that" when the Auschwitz Kommandant threatens to have Schindler arrested.
Oskar set [the factory's] tone. The tone was one of fragile permanence. There were no dogs.
My Nazi grandfather, Amon Goeth, would have shot me - BBC News
There were no beatings. The soup and bread were better and more plentiful than in Plaszow — about 2, calories a day…no one died of overwork, beatings, or hunger in Emalia. Under the business's Compensation Fund, I am entitled to file damage claims for such deaths. If you shoot without thinking, you go to prison and I get paid. That's how it works. So, there will be no summary executions here.
There will be no interference of any kind with production. In hopes of ensuring that, guards will no longer be allowed on the factory floor without my authorization. For your cooperation, you have my gratitude. In this scene, Spielberg underscores Schindler's cleverness at manipulating the situation to protect the Jews while simultaneously protecting his reputation. Schindler's gift of beer functions as a bribe. The latter scene reveals the mythic Schindler who has the ability to deceive practically anyone for the purpose of preventing suffering, harm, or deaths of Jews.
Spielberg underscores Schindler's cunning ability to manipulate Nazis in an exchange between Schindler and Goeth.
After witnessing Goeth shoot a Jew, Schindler, recognizing Goeth's love of power, tells Goeth that the most powerful thing that one can do is to forgive. Anyone, says Schindler, can kill a Jew. But the most powerful man forgives him because then the forgiver holds the power of life and death.
Like a hypnotized man, Goeth goes from Jew to Jew, saying, "I forgive you. Amon Goeth's own actions validate Spielberg's depiction of Schindler's ability to delude Goeth.
At his war trials, Goeth considered calling Schindler as a character witness because Schindler had convincingly presented himself as a trusted friend to Goeth during the years Schindler needed his support to save Jews.
In an interview with Herbert Steinhouse, Isaac Stern recalls Schindler warning, "I hear there will be a raid on all remaining Jewish property tomorrow.
An air of quasi-security grew in the factory. Schindler actively worked to save Jews who worked in his factories. Schindler falsified his records and documented senior citizens as being as much as twenty-five years younger.
Schindler also falsified the occupations of his workers, listing white-collared workers as skilled laborers in trades that were essential to the production of war materials.
This seemingly simple action of falsifying logbooks saved countless lives because extermination commissions routinely examined factory logbooks to divide the most valuable workers from the least valuable. Schindler's List back to top Schindler clearly cared about the fate of his Jewish factory workers.
During a particularly difficult time, Emilie noticed Schindler's "very depressed state of mind" and "assumed that his unusual grief had to do with the course the war was taking. In addition to furnishing the Nazis with large sums of money, fine jewels, and overpriced cognac, Schindler also indulged in abundant black-market luxuries to give as bribery under the pretense of gifts.
As the circumstances of the Jewish people worsened, Schindler was forced to bestow upon the Nazis ever mounting sums of money and increasingly lavish gifts in order to keep his Jewish workers.
However, Schindler soon exhausted his opportunities for bribing Amon Goeth with booze for the purposes of keeping his Jewish workers from being transferred to Auschwitz. Schindler saw the munitions factory in Brunnlitz as an "ideal place" to relocate his Jewish workers to avoid their seemingly inevitable transfer to Auschwitz.
The situation is becoming more and more unbearable. Goeth has decided to close the Plaschow [sic] camp and send all the prisoners, including our workers, to Auschwitz. I've talked to him several times, but I haven't been able to change his mind, no matter how hard I tried.
The important thing is finding a way to move our people to some other place in order to go on working. I've been offered a munitions factory in Brunnlitz, which seems to be an ideal place. But I don't know what else to do to persuade him to authorize the transfer.
I have offered him diamonds, jewelry, money, vodka, cigarettes, caviar…I just can't think of anything else.
Maybe I'll get him a couple of beautiful women to cheer him up…perhaps this will work. Another problem that worries me is the list of people we are to submit to him. I don't really know the men, their families; I barely know the names of a few who come to our office when something is needed.
So Amon Goeth, whose name is synonymous with evil for a whole generation of Americans, was actually working with the Jews to become rich during World War II. However, it is doubtful that Goeth was stealing food from the Plaszow camp when there was a jewelry factory there as well as a furniture factory and a custom tailor shop.
Pemper told author David Crowe that: When Goeth realized that he was being investigated by Dr. Morgen, he sought permission from Wilhelm Koppe in the central office in Oranienburg to execute Wilek Chilowicz, who could have testified against him. Based on this report, Koppe sent a secret letter to Goeth giving him the authority to carry out the execution of Chilowicz and several other OD men. The execution took place on August 13, ; Goeth was arrested exactly a month later and charged by Dr.
Morgen with corruption and brutality, including the murder of Wilek Chilowicz and several others. The office in Oranienburg did not have the authority to give an execution order; an execution could only be authorized by the Gestapo in Berlin. Oskar Schindler had a lot in common with Amon Goeth, including the fact that both were Catholic and both were arrested by the Nazis for engaging in black market activities.
Both were out to get rich from the war-time economy in Poland. Schindler was an ethnic German living in what is now the state of Moravia in the Czech Republic. His trial took place between August 27, and September 5, His crime was that he had taken part in the activities of these two criminal organizations.
Goeth was also charged with the following crime: