Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Rita Rosenzweig - March 24, 1983

Feelings About the Holocaust and Germany

How do you feel about talking about it now?

Well, I think um, it's, it's much--I think it's better. I think the first few times, especially after the movie um, I had terrible nightmares. You know, so I think now I'm--it's more, more, more relaxed when I'm talking about it. It doesn't bother me as much. I think I can talk about it without having nightmares. I think the last couple times but um, you know to tell you an example, I collect those dolls. And I, I called and she told me I have the German doll and I went to pick it up and I had terrible nightmare, just from the doll. I just wanted to throw the doll out, and I just kept telling myself, "Well it is a doll."And one thing that I have is that I um, will never go to Germany. I'll never set foot in Germany. And I know people say um, all Germans are not bad, but I don't know. I really feel that--it's very hard for me to understand that a whole nation coulda killed that many Jews and not knowing about it. I--you know, I can't swallow it. Not people that were uh, my parents' age and were soldiers. And there's some of them still living in Germany, and those concentration camp were run by a lot of people, and all of them were not arrested. So there's a lot of them around there, out there, and this is why I will not set foot in Germany. I couldn't because I can't stand German--the language itself. When I hear someone speaking German, I just--I mean, you know, I just cringe. I mean, I just--I have to telling myself, "Don't do anything,"you know, just keep cool. So this is one thing I will, will never, never do. Every I go back to Belgium because my husband wanted me to go once with my brother and I wouldn't go. I wouldn't even cross it. No way. So it, it's--I think that it stays with you. I don't care. We'll probably take it with us until we die. I don't think that--nobody will ever take--and we didn't go to concentration camp yet, we were just hiding. So it was really mentally that we suffered--these people suffered mentally and physically, you know, so I can imagine how they must feel. But I think as a child you have certain things that stays with you. I think that you never lose it. You know, even as, even as you grow up, there's just certain fears and certain hurts and certain things that will just uh, always remain there. I don't think nobody can take 'em away. It's there. I mean, you know, it's like a sickness. It's dormant and then it flares up and then it goes back down. You know, you--we still have days like--I know my husband a lot of times if he talks about his brothers, especially his brother, you know, tears come up, so you always have little memories. Yeah.

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