Tori's Reviews > Night

Night by Elie Wiesel
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Aug 03, 09

bookshelves: favorites, 2009, daughter-curriculum
Read in August, 2009

There is no other word for how this book made me feel: Angry. Or maybe there are other words...infuriated, mad, or just really pissed off! Even though I have read about the holocaust before, those books seem to have just said, "this happened and it was bad" type of things. There are not many books in heavy circulation that gives a lot of detail.
People that say this book is actually fiction should also get 25 lashes as Elie received. It's not fiction people!


Elie Wiesel's book makes me scared for humanity in general...that human beings could actually burn infants alive, kill people as their families were forced to watch and then place them in a mass grave, make starving men run 20 KM and then shoot them if they stopped to rest, and put 100 men in a cattle car and only have 12 walk out. It's disgusting. The people of Germany at that time that allowed this to happen under their noses disgust me. (I remember reading something saying that when the American soldiers liberated a camp, they made the people in the neighboring town help clear the bodies out just so those towns people could see what they turned a blind eye to for so long. Now that I read this, the people had to know what was happening. They saw the cattle cars roaming through the countryside and Wiesel talks about German workers throwing one piece of bread into the cattle car and men killing each other over it. How could humans be so cowardly and evil?)
Cowardice and general evil is what this book shows. I could understand how anyone could "lose God" while enduring what these people, (not only Jews) experienced.
After reading this book, I did a search on the internet to see if there were any known cases of one person....one single person in the German army that ever apologized for any of these atrocities. It didn't matter if they were a Captain or a private, I just wanted to read one story where the man said, "I apologize for my actions in this war and I am ashamed that I was involved." (Not including Germany's public apology..I want one person to step forward and tell the world that they may have been following orders, but he was a coward and deserved to lose everything he had.)
There was not one that I could find.
This disturbs me most of all. A lot of the high SS officers died very soon for their war crimes, but a lot of the low level ranked slipped away and had normal lives and families. (Even Josef Mengele died in a swimming pool in the late 1970s in South America in some freak drowning accident and lived long enough to have grandchildren. A man that tortured people alive to the point that he removed people's hearts and performed stomach surgeries without pain meds and injected stuff into children's eyes to see if he could change the color...the guy got to die in a pool where he was probably sitting a few minutes earlier with a cold beer on a raft and suntan oil on him while listing to Brazilian radio.)
Where is the justice in that?
Every so often, a book comes along that makes me doubt that humanity and justice exist. This is one of them.
Oh well. If they were not judged in this life, may God judge them in the next!
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