دوشنبه بیست و دوم می 1944کتاب: آن فرانک: خاطرات یک دختر جوان / فصل 77
دوشنبه بیست و دوم می 1944
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MONDAY, MAY 22,1944
On May 20, Father lost his bet and had to give five jars of yogurt to Mrs. van Daan: the invasion still hasn’t begun. I can safely say that all of Amsterdam, all of Holland, in fact the entire western coast of Europe, all the way down to Spain, are talking about the invasion day and night, debating, making bets and hoping.
The suspense is rising to fever pitch; by no means has everyone we think of as “good” Dutch people kept their faith in the English, not everyone thinks the English bluff is a masterful strategical move. Oh no, people want deeds-great, heroic deeds.
No one can see farther than the end of their nose, no one gives a thought to the fact that the British are fighting for their own country and their own people; everyone thinks it’s England’s duty to save Holland, as quickly as possible. What obligations do the English have toward us? What have the Dutch done to deserve the generous help they so clearly expect? Oh no, the Dutch are very much mistaken.
The English, despite their bluff, are certainly no more to blame for the war than all the other countries, large and small, that are now occupied by the Germans. The British are not about to offer their excuses; true, they were sleeping during the years Germany was rearming itself, but all the other countries, especially those bordering on Germany, were asleep too. England and the rest of the world have discovered that burying your head in the sand doesn’t work, and now each of them, especially England, is having to pay a heavy price for its ostrich policy.
No country sacrifices its men without reason, and certainly not in the interests of another, and England is no exception. The invasion, liberation and freedom will come someday; yet England, not the occupied territories, will choose the moment.
To our great sorrow and dismay, we’ve heard that many people have changed their attitude toward us Jews. We’ve been told that anti-Semitism has cropped up in circles where once it would have been unthinkable. This fact has affected us all very, very deeply. The reason for the hatred is understandable, maybe even human, but that doesn’t make it right. According to the Christians, the Jews are blabbing their secrets to the Germans, denouncing their helpers and causing them to suffer the dreadful fate and punishments that have already been meted out to so many. All of this is true.
But as with everything, they should look at the matter from both sides: would Christians act any differently if they were in our place? Could anyone, regardless of whether they’re Jews or Christians, remain silent in the face of German pressure? Everyone knows it’s practically impossible, so why do they ask the impossible of the Jews? It’s being said in underground circles that the German Jews who immigrated to Holland before the war and have now been sent to Poland shouldn’t be allowed to return here. They were granted the right to asylum in Holland, but once Hitler is gone, they should go back to Germany.
When you hear that, you begin to wonder why we’re fighting this long and difficult war. We’re always being told that we’re fighting for freedom, truth and justice! The war isn’t even over, and already there’s dissension and Jews are regarded as lesser beings. Oh, it’s sad, very sad that the old adage has been confirmed for the umpteenth time: “What one Christian does is his own responsiblity, what one Jew does reflects on all Jews.”
To be honest, I can’t understand how the Dutch, a nation of good, honest, upright people, can sit in judgment on us the way they do. On us-the most oppressed, unfortunate and pitiable people in all the world.
I have only one hope: that this anti-Semitism is just a passing thing, that the Dutch will show their true colors, that they’ll never waver from what they know in their hearts to be just, for this is unjust!
And if they ever carry out this terrible threat, the meager handful of Jews still left in Holland will have to go. We too will have to shoulder our bundles and move on, away from this beautiful country, which once so kindly took us in and now turns its back on us.
I love Holland. Once I hoped it would become a fatherland to me, since I had lost my own. And I hope so still!
Yours, Anne M. Frank
THURSDAY, MAY 25, 1944
Bep’s engaged! The news isn’t much of a surprise, though none of us are particularly pleased. Bertus may be a nice, steady, athletic young man, but Bep doesn’t love him, and to me that’s enough reason to advise her against marrying him.
Bep’s trying to get ahead in the world, and Bertus is pulling her back; he’s a laborer, without any interests or any desire to make something of himself, and I don’t think that’ll make Bep happy. I can understand Bep’s wanting to put an end to her indecision; four weeks ago she decided to write him off, but then she felt even worse. So she wrote him a letter, and now she’s engaged. There are several factors involved in this engagement. First, Bep’s sick father, who likes Bertus very much. Second, she’s the oldest of the Voskuijl girls and her mother teases her about being an old maid. Third, she’s just turned twenty-four, and that matters a great deal to Bep.
Mother said it would have been better if Bep had simply had an affair with Bertus. I don’t know, I feel sorry for Bep and can understand her loneliness. In any case, they can get married only after the war, since Bertus is in hiding, or at any rate has gone underground. Besides, they don’t have a penny to their name and nothing in the way of a hope chest. What a sorry prospect for Bep, for whom we all wish the best. I only hope Bertus improves under her influence, or that Bep finds another man, one who knows how to appreciate her!
Yours, Anne M. Frank
THE SAME DAY
There’s something happening every day. This morning Mr. van Hoeven was arrested. He was hiding two Jews in his house. It’s a heavy blow for us, not only because those poor Jews are once again balancing on the edge of an abyss, but also because it’s terrible for Mr. van Hoeven.
The world’s been turned upside down. The most decent people are being sent to concentration camps, prisons and lonely cells, while the lowest of the low rule over young and old, rich and poor. One gets caught for black marketeering, another for hiding Jews or other un- fortunate souls. Unless you’re a Nazi, you don’t know what’s going to happen to you from one day to the next. Mr. van Hoeven is a great loss to us too.
Bep can’t possibly lug such huge amounts of potatoes all the way here, nor should she have to, so our only choice is to eat fewer of them. I’ll tell you what we have in mind, but it’s certainly not going to make life here any more agreeable. Mother says we’ll skip breakfast, eat hot cereal and bread for lunch and fried potatoes for dinner and, if possible, vegetables or lettuce once or twice a week. That’s all there is. We’re going to be hungry, but nothing’s worse than being caught.
Yours, Anne M. Frank
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