Belarus workers move bones from Jewish cemetery to dump
Venezuela President Hugo Chavez to left of Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko
Belarus is bulldozing yet another Jewish cemetery saying it has no choice but to consign the bones to city dumps.
In Gomel, Belarus, worker Mikhail Gubets said he stopped counting the Jewish skulls after the first 100.
The callous indifference today of Belarussians toward their Jewish heritage is similar today to how it was when Belarus was a Soviet republic. Belarussian indifference reflects how Belarussians treated Jews in countless pogroms, and during the years when locals helped the Nazis.
Belarus authorities are proud to have built four sports stadiums on top of Jewish cemeteries.
Authorities ruled construction may continue because the Jews have been dead for more than 50 years. That’s the first time I heard there’s a statue of limitations on cemeteries. After 50 years you can bulldoze them, at least when the dead people are all Jews.
Igor Poluyan, the city official responsible for building sports facilities, says he doesn’t understand the problem. Apparently he’s not too bright.
History professor, Yevgeny Malikov, put aside two marble gravestones, and said many other gravestones are piled near a trash bin or have already been carried away. He did not say who took them where or what they will be used for. Apparently no one knows, nor cares. He added, bones are being carried away by dogs.
Jews lived in Gomel in the 16th century and in the 19th century Jews comprised more than half of the population. Jews throughout this region used to comprise the majority of occupants. At the beginning of the 20th century, Gomel’s Jews defended their 26 synagogues during a series of pogroms. However, the Czar sent in his troops and we know what happened.
By the time the Nazis arrived, most of Gomel’s 40,000 Jews had fled. The
4,000 who remained were rounded up and shot in November 1941. Today, Gomel is a city of 500,000 people. Hardly any are Jewish. This pattern was repeated throughout the region which was once known as the Pale of Jewish Settlement. The Pale was created by “Catherine the Great” when she acquisitioned this piece of property. It is an area that’s larger than Texas.
Jews lived there before the Christians. Jews settled there when it was dense forest. Local princes invited Jews to the region knowing the Jews were industrious, would create an economy and infrastructure, and then the local landlords could collect rents and taxes and draft Jewish boys into their armies.
Oleg Korzhuyev, 38, who lives on Karl Marx Street at the edge of the site, said the workers are happy whenever they find a gold tooth. That’s cause for a real celebration.
Another city, Grodno, experienced a similar problem while reconstructing a stadium built on a Jewish cemetery. Where to stick the Jewish bones? They did like the Nazis did. Threw them in a ravine and covered them up like rubbish.
Jewish graves haven’t been treated much better in neighboring Ukraine.
The Ukraine’s chief rabbi, Yakov Blaikh, said they didn’t respect people while they were alive and they don’t respect them when they are dead.
Amazingly, the Jewish community in Vinnyntsa recently stopped construction of an apartment building on a pre-World War II Jewish cemetery. But for how long?
Ukrainian authorities seem more human than those in Belarus. The Ukranians apologized, they said they did not realize the construction on top of a cemetery would affect the cemetery.
Regarding Jewish-related issues, Belarus remains one of the least responsive countries in the region, according to Efraim Zuroff, director of the Israeli Simon Wiesenthal Center.
“The government is simply erasing Jewish history from the face of this land,” said Yakov Basin, vice president of the Belarusian Jewish Council.
Before World War II, after 50 years of pogroms and a mass exodus of Jews, 1 million Jews still remained in Belarus. Afterall, it was illegal for Jews to leave. Its amazing as many got out as did. Of those still living there, 800,000 Jews were murdered during the Holocaust. Today, Belarus is a country of 10 million people, only 27,000 of them are Jews. And this is how the non-Jews act. They actively work to wipe all memory of Jewishness from the land. My grandfather came from Belarus. Both his parents came from Belarus. As did most of their siblings and families. And what happened to my cousins who didn’t go to America and Israel? They were murdered.
Belarus’ president, Alexander Lukashenko has done as much as possible to denigrate Jewish culture. In a radio broadcast in October 2007 he said Jews turned everywhere they live into a pigsty.
Lukashenko said, “You know how Jews treat the place where they live. Look at Israel; I was there.” Lukashenko is full of shit. Anyone who has been to Israel knows what a wondrous place it is. Beautiful and miraculous, except of course for the places where some Arabs treat their neighbors and neighborhoods the same way they treat Jews. Thank goodness, many Israeli Arabs appreciate their good fortune and enjoy the perquisites of living in a Jewish State. They know they have rights they’d never have in a neighboring Arab country.
All Lukashenko needs to do is visit any Jewish neighborhood anywhere in the world and he will see how full of shit he is. Try New York’s Upper West Side for starters. I think it’s safe to say he can to any Jewish neighborhood anywhere in the world and he will find Jews don’t bulldoze Christian cemeteries. Jews don’t dump Muslim bones in ravines or landfills. Jews are respectful of history. Jews respect people. And Jews have no problem pointing out when someone like President Alexander Lukashenko is full of shit.