Supplement to My Life in the Third Reich
- Nightmares and Consequences
World War Two True Story by Gisela Cooper
I have to give more information.
The following I have only heard a while ago.
Until the beginning of 1938, I enjoyed the Hitler Youth very much. We lived in a wood, isolated from the small village near Hamburg.
My brother Dieter was eight years younger than myself, and with no-one to play with, I felt bored and could not wait to belong to the Hitler Youth.
Living so remote and being only eleven years of age, all the nasty happenings in Germany escaped me and my family.
Only a few months ago, I had asked Dieter how they treated him in the Hitler Youth. He had to join in 1939, after we moved from the region of Hamburg to Leipzig. He told me that he was grilled to tell whether he had Jewish grandparents, and his head and body structure were measured.
And then he told me an amazing story that my mother’s mom was an Italian Jew. (She had died in 1932.)
My parents have kept this secret from me, but I knew grandmother was Italian. My mother told Dieter not to say anything about it to anyone. He was lucky that the Nazis believed him. One can only imagine what would have happened to us, if they had known it. It helped that we were not known in Leipzig and the truth did not emerge.
When the Americans were on their way towards Leipzig, the SS gave Dieter, who was now 13 years old, a basuka and told him to fire it at the Americans, no sooner they came over a small bridge. Then the SS run away, leaving Dieter and his friend in a foxhole in a playground. As soon as the SS were gone, both boys left the basukas behind and went home. Dieter got rid of his uniform, and went into the garden, when a GI peeped through some bushes at him and ask if there were any German troops nearby. The American seemed relieved that all had gone.
The soldier approached the house, because our landlady had put a white flag on the roof. We were indeed lucky that the SS did not come to our road. Seeing the white flag, they would have shot everyone in the house.
This happened when I was very ill in bed. I had just returned from a Labour Camp. I was unaware of all this.
©1999 Gisela Cooper - All Rights Reserved