They trudged up the street, their women in a whispering knot behind them, and now there was mud on their shining shoes. They came to the tangle of bodies and then moved closer together. The living looked at the dead and the dead stared back at them and there was no sound on the hill. . . But this was not their guilt, the leading citizens of Ohrdruf explained. They had never shot a man, or used a club. Yes, they were of the same political faith as the executioners. They prospered from the work of these slaves. This camp was in their town but they had never come here before this. Therefore, the leading citizens say, they were blameless.
James Cannon, European Stars and Stripes staff writer, on the forced visit of local Germans to Ohrdruf, a sub-camp of Buchenwald, after its liberation by US troops in April 1945.
Printed on the flyleaf of Surviving Hitler: Corruption and Compromise in the Third Reich by Adam Lebor and Roger Boyes.
After a few days in a row of praying and sidewalk counseling outside the 46th Street abortion clinic and watching the surrounding traffic, businesses, schools, bicyclists, and even the day care center activities on the opposite corner go on apace -- seemingly oblivious to the destruction of human children going on inside this building -- I couldn't help but grieve over the parallels of our own society to that described in the above paragraph from the Lebor/Boyes book I had started reading a couple of days ago.
This camp was in their town but they had never come here before this. Therefore, the leading citizens say, they were blameless.