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tv   Close up - Surviving the Holocaust - Uncovering Secret Hideouts  Deutsche Welle  January 26, 2022 8:30am-9:01am CET

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ah, the jewish cemetery in warsaw has more than $200000.00 grades and it's ceo, vo places that research and natalia ramos is looking to uncover historic high doubts concealed under grave stones. secret hiding places that helped to save many lives during the holocaust. ah, off the invading holland in 1939 and occupying warsaw, the nazis began forcing jews into one neighbourhood which became known as the warsaw ghetto. most of the half 1000000 people said they had died of starvation or disease. all were murdered in forced labor and death camps. but a few managed to escape by going into hiding. natalia rama is looking to uncover
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the hide outs. they used war. so give me this gleam that this is the last chance, and of course we have an antidote hiding places are full of erosion. so this is the last moment. this is the re, the last month. the thing from this architectural perspective, how we can preserve them, how we can really dig and try to history. and apartment block now stands on the sides of the form, a great synagogue that was blown up by s. s. god's directly opposite is the jewish historical institute. this building survived, although damage to the floor caused by fire, testifies to the devastation wrought by the nazis. the institute holds the largest collection of documents relating to jewish history and poland. they include eye witness testimony from the predominantly jewish towns, cold settle for natalia ro make. it's a treasure trove. the lay source which we had here. they
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are pink as catalogue books book, sir rose by the people who saw by colo house in the small towns. so then we can find not only testimony how the shuttle looks like, like the emerald oregon tissue, but also testimony. for example, how do people hide and where natalia romania is, an architect and a political scientist. her research here shows her where to get started in her search for hiding places. it's only beginning because we know like for example, where was the place in which village, but then we need to approach. i need to approach that next steps to go there. speak with the local people and not only worked with that, jo, she's sorry guys to judy but also with the other institution. so it's always like a story. listen to, sorry. it was this research that directed her to the jewish cemetery in warsaw. ok, po voss straight. natalia is meeting with
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a specialist for 3 days. scanning. the 2 of them planned to examine the hide out beneath the grave stones. first we need to know the scale and also may be there was a kind of secret, say, stairs to the other small hiding place. so that we, the 1st step i would like to have like exact measurements because i would love to build to the free d model and not only free the model, but also to make a cost from $1.00 wall. it's a high tech approach to history. that's very revealing. a 3 d lays. the scanner is used to survey the entire area surrounding the bunker. it's accurate to within $100.00 of a millimeter. the aim is to use digital technology to 1st document the hide out in its current state. the initial results reveal a hastily built chamber beneath the grave stones,
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constructed at a time when jews were bain to ported daily from the warsaw ghetto to the trib link, a extermination camp ah. with the help of anthropologist alexandra yon was, they found one of the survivors in israel. opera, hom commie, was 14. when he hid here. in my view, this experience of like being with ad there's was very important. he didn't say that and like can directly. but when he was describing the that process of hiding in different places, also here, he always mentioned to other people who were with the him. so i think that was like that the core of the experience of like also being with others. believe natalia roommate studies video recordings of interviews conducted ways up go home kami, where nearly 80 years after his ordeal,
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he talks about what he experienced. ah, he identifies the bunker at the cemetery as one of the high downs that he used describing it. exactly. the entrance was made up of jewish gravestones or massive art that could be pushed aside. ah, the wolves were read forced with bricks that were originally intended for a most de leon, for jewish soldiers killed in the 1st world war. railway tracks formed the roof, which the massive ot or grey stones then rested on. they conceived the hide out. but what was it like inside the bunker that are hm. academy said that was of course quite carl, take during the holocaust. so some people jump inside and they use few months. a vault. he even remember exact to the name in the city name written in the month of all and they try to pull on and off. of course it's really heavy. so that was not
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easy for women and girls hiding there. and they were days. they were like, he said 30 people inside. ah, the very idea seems shocking that bunker is so small that there's hardly enough room for the scanning equipment. how could 30 people survive here? daily food rations in the warsaw ghetto amounted to just 180 full calories. according to michelle ash cowski from the cultural heritage foundation, that's less than a 100 grams of bread. ah, it's not known how many of those who used to hide out actually survived elsewhere. there were other even more unlikely. high doubts natalia romika is on her way to southeast and poland, where 2 jewish brothers are said to have survived the holocaust. by hiding inside
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a tree that was at least the story that she stumbled on during her research. in the grounds of the mansion in the vishnu over region, there are oak trees that have stood here for centuries. the mention itself has been turned into a cultural centre. the director takes us through the exhibition he's especially proud of an old $100.00 snotty bill. it shows a tree affectionately named yoseph that's located in the grounds. and that's exactly what brought natalia ramos here. the trunk of the 650 year old tree is where the he, me brothers, i said to have taken refuge once again, natalia turns to modern technology to unlock the secrets of the past. this time,
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her aim is to peer inside the old oak tree to see if it could indeed have been used as a hide out. you're using site specific equipment. not only this one, but also like a special a camera to find any traces. all for the moment where the 2 brothers follow, he me were hiding. he displayed for a few years. the sense of anticipation is huge, as she joins the tray specialist to get a look so that she gets her 1st glimpse inside the trunk. they continue their ascent. joseph is 30 meters toll at its widest point. the trunk is nearly 7 meters. horizontal plane passes right through the middle of the hollow trunk. clearly the work of humans,
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the higher they go, the more evidence they find that the tree could indeed have been used as a hide out another plank. it can't be a coincidence. we so at least 5 shelves, wooden shelves for wooden shove and one metal. and probably that a semi broad there is that still we have this se archival research is ongoing. they use as a says as alteration point to fight to just like to observe the situation. and from the holes, we have like 1234. so, and it's incredible that the, this survive the war, additional drawing footage helps to document one of the most incredible hyde outs used during the nazi occupation. it would appear that this majestic looking tree helped to save lives. a bosco's camera
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could help to turn up more evidence to support the legend of the hey, me, brothers. this is elena jenkins at the woo woo. because the tree is living and constantly changing the openings in the trunk that would have once provided access to the inside have grown over. in some areas, the bosco camera will allow the researcher to get a detailed look inside. the images show that the tray has been to medically adapted in side o'clock this some close to a federal them will shown to this one shows an ion screw. natalia is now convinced that the story of the he, me brothers is true. although she found no proof of the existence of any one under that name in the archives they survived the whole oak house. one of them probably was here in a fifty's late fifty's her. and than that name, in my opinion,
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that was not he me, maybe honey beach may be other name. and then we will prove this and maybe the families still lived somewhere in israel on states. it's a, it's a long story, but silly clothes in clothes living inside a tree was a desperate measure necessitated by a desperate situation. it's very hard to imagine our like, you know, like methodology, you know, of the surviving every day. it's like a and the p ecology the leaving the treats out of our i think, m imagination. so it's, we should also use their different tools to, to, to, to think about it this time. ah, you tools bring to life the horrors of that time and make them accessible for new generation. natalia roommate wants to reflect on that and as come to po kenya, palace for some time out. the palace belongs to
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the child to risky family who are well known polish aristocrats. the child to risky have always been great art collectors, art and architecture interest, the researcher because they can help us relate to events of the past. under the company's time, this place was totally destroyed and was a part of the hospital for the family. ne tucked at his key like 56 years ago, start to renovate this place. and they estoppel an art station which supposed to be and the will be that one of the best arts foundation working with a young artist in the future in this castile like during the holocaust. and during the 2nd law will everything was destroyed by the nazi so and is also very tragical story. but the like real tragic story was in a ghetto, here in pen kenya, which is her. yeah. change everything like almost all juice from this area were
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killed. the german occupies annihilated the jewish community. even the gravestones at the local jewish cemetery were plundered. the cemetery was destroyed, very hardly destroyed during the holocaust time. and the 14th and the nausea also took so much a vote. summative out to the, to, to build a new part of the gestapo. a place like a offices in a nearby to class or in a, in the arrows was who? yeah, it said in the neighboring town of years of, of natalia ro make has come across another war time. hide out nuns at a local monastery. i said to have had a secret door leading to a basement where they hid jewish children from the nazis. and here it is. hidden behind a normal door, the secret door was disguised as
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a storage rack. it still looks just as it did 80 years ago with the rack could just be flipped open, providing access to the basement, hide out the nuns, provided the jewish children with food, allowing them to survive the holocaust to day they catholic nonce, teachers, school children, my question is if the children are aware they're inside of their cluster is dis, secret days and the place it's actually going to the seller and probably know so oh, so one of my goal will be to, to protect this place and to renovate. but oh, so to find the idea how to make a cost again, the same, how was in a jewish them entry and the in a joseph oak tree, but oh, so here are next stop is the city of livid said near the german border before the
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2nd world war, it was part of germany and known as glides. the city is famous of being the starting point of the wall as, as gods staged and attack here, which hitler then used as a pretext to invade poland. oh, for the regions lodged jewish community, it was to spell disaster to day. oh, that remains of jewish life. he is a few buildings like the former jewish mortuary day at kindly asked me to read, designed his place and there was a big issue how we can change the place. although there are no jews in live, it's anymore. so we thought with their new function like how we can implicate a new spirit for children, dis, multi cultural school for a pencil as young jewish museum. whereas know the history is actually and not visible anymore. making what was lost visible again is the aim of the exhibition
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put together by natalia ramos, and carolina. you coven, cole, an expert on poland, jewish history. the exhibition highlights jewish influence on society. ready one of the inventors of navia cream came from here, for example, and many of the men fought and died for germany during the 1st world war. we should remember that to we are living in the ruins of fed jewish architecture. actually as a ghost our he dexter. mostly. it's actually that we have a ghost of memory. ah, ah, natalia roommate and caroline, a jak of ankle drive further east. the heading to the mining town of she menu of a sketch shalysea where there came to research another extraordinary story of jews managing to hide from the nazis.
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yolanda kobylinski segan. nick is descended from a polish mining family that hid jews in their home. in so doing they put their own lives at risk. but she says stories of such heroism was swept under the carpet off to the war. at various points, the government actively cultivated anti semitism, so there was a need to be cautious. the common is tisha propaganda. ominous propaganda probably had a lot to do with why people didn't talk about it any more. my gosh, broken hobbin, and felt reluctant to share their experiences. and stories is why i came crashing her. natalia ro make is fighting to remove the silence that still surrounds poland . jewish history, and to publicize the stories of jews in hiding. oh, this is the house where the kobylinski family gave refuge to jews, the 2 researches of visiting yard vega, coby, let's go who experienced that time as a child. she invites the research as into her bedroom. this used to be the kitchen,
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she says, and during the war they would often sit there together. okay. yeah. but underneath the kitchen was an underground hiding place for 10 to 15. people built by yet. vegas father in law, a pure tra could be let's correct finish. okay, hello. a trap door led to the chamber with the help of neighbors, they kept their jewish guests supplied with food. that too was dangerous. as not all polish neighbors could necessarily be trusted. with these i, aero, those people who are like her for a money or for i different sources they will selling basically juice. yeah. and they will like a and of course in a, in a polish she still graphy. it's like still temper and of course we should talk about it, but the family of how many of the called the lead. so they were, they were heroes. a representative of the family was honored by the state of israel as righteous among the nations. a tied who used to distinguish non jews who
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risk their lives to protect the jews during the holocaust. but yet vega could be, let's says, the family has received almost no recognition in poland. so she's came to support natalie's work to that. they are a lot of hiding places that nobody's taking care of. of course we are talking about the people or so metals how that opposed where really brave it's fine. but i think we need also to show the other site back to warsaw quoted without the support of international organizations. natalia romika couldn't continue her work. germany's get a hankle foundation is among those funding her research. as is, the talbot sent a foundation for the renewal of jewish life in poland. people this centers holly said, lieberman says, commemorating the old jewish hyde outs is key. the question is, in a world like ours, in a continent of europe, where there are so many hiding places and killing places and saving places,
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how do you create morals which really speak to people to day? give people the honor who created them for those who saved those in these hiding places. a creative approach is needed the basement refuge in a copy. let's carm, has long since been incorporated into the house and no longer exists. so natalia romika, who's also an architect plans to create a model of the house, bringing to light the refuge that was hidden for so long and telling the life saving stories that it enabled. next we visit the neighboring town of bench in up until the holocaust, its jewish community numbered 20000 people. pure tra, yoko vanco is committed to safeguarding the last remaining traces of jewish life. here, together with others, he set up
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a small foundation. in this apartment block, the group has managed to rescue a former jewish prayer room. the original frescoes are still largely intact. the place had been due to undergo major innovations. had the work gone ahead, the very last trace of jewish life invention would have disappeared. but the foundations intervention changed all that mom, if i am with her, natalia is now working with them to preserve this last piece of living history from benjamin's jewish past. good will that we believe that soon. this is part of important part of benji in his theory. this is important part of polish history. in that pre we're benzene della about 80 such places. and in, in, in the, in the,
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in the area had to be hundreds such places in poland. there, there was thousands of such places and almost everything was destroyed with people during the war. together there working to challenge the culture of denial, refusing to let the past be forgotten any longer. give him the foundation has produced a map showing sites that highlight benjamin's jewish history that natalia wants to know if any war time hiding places may have survived in the town and was p. o 3 jak of vanco believes there's unlikely to be anything in the town center. for one simple reason. a all the population was re settled till to the ghetto. a which was that the poorest and neighborhood avenging mostly before it was before the bigoted became ghetto. it will so, and they brought off a polish workers, very poor fella kind and part of the city sent from the can they go so going to
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have a so the 2 of them head to the former ghetto in benzine, beginning in may 1942 jews were deported from here to outfits. ah po, to remembers hearing one story from a polish woman whose family was allowed to continue living in this house. while more and more jews were being re settled in the neighbourhood. she was just a small child at the time for both she was sink and these jewish people going in and out to their barn family barn, which was sending over there and taking some box full of something from the barn. and she was asking her mother what these people are taking from our barn. and her mother told her, do not ask this question. this is dangerous, this, this is not none of our business. let me bear not to ask. and later on she that she
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understood that these people were constructing a shelter a hiding place under the barn. the barn has long since disappeared through yucca vanco think it probably stood where the garage is today. a few old bricks in the hedge could have been part of it, but with so little to go on, it's impossible to know. one thing is certain. in august 942, the germans began deporting people from here on mass. the whole area was searched every house, and all the people were deported. those who are who were not cooperating, were, were killed on the spot, and is dest. his hiding place was discovered by germans during the act. soon one of the 2 entrances was through the oven and one of the german
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soldiers i accidentally pushed her that one of the tails of the oven. it, it fell down and, and some, some voice from dancers was kurt. and that's what, that's how they with his cart, then a watcher and gas was palms into the, into the in did his hiding place. and all the people were, were murdered. a brutal and tragic ending natalia is determined to try to locate the hide out. probably will be possible to the out in gara dark to try the traces. and the colors could also show us where it was exactly to hiding place. with creative ideas, natalia romika, those around her are seeking new ways of making the past accessible. even for those who don't want to hear about the holocaust, yet vega could be, let's get, needs know convincing. i instead natalia's here to show her the model of her home with the basement hide out but they plan to
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exhibit this model to the public and tell the stories of those who survived. thanks to the hideout, talked i caught up with one up to 30. people squeezed into the bunker twice as many as it was designed for a but here downstairs was they had very little air and whenever they heard an unfamiliar voice at the door, they were gripped with fear. the seller had they been discovered. would they be betrayed? ah, natalia romika says the high dance are the architecture of survival. her role is to bring them to life. whether it's a 650 year old oak tree, the ground beneath the barn and bench in or an underground bunker at the wall. so jewish cemetery concealed under the grave stones.
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ah, natalia romika has come here with a colleague to produce a silicon mold of one of the walls. and the walls provide a protection from the docks threats posed by the world outside. she says, no. and threats to freedom and human rights still exists today, right here in europe. so natalia romika is an interested in creating monuments that simply look back to the past. instead using her imagination, she wants to illustrate the parallels between the past and the present day. they will be like an open book says of the memory and together with the archive. a research day will show us not only the fear, the tragedy of the hollow cows, but also this architectural tools that they used during the time. and the specific her narration that we know only from there down deep down the
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mold of the wall doesn't just symbolized the horrors. natalia romika says it is also a testament to courage results fullness and she a determination to survive and the altruistic actions of a few taken at great cost, no risk ah, eco, india. how can a country's economy grow in harmony with its people and the environment? when there are doers will look at the bigger picture, india, a country that faces many challenges and whose people are striving to create a sustainable future clever projects from europe and india. eco india. in 30 minutes on d w. o. oh
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