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Nelly Leoni Sachs 1938 - Source Wikipedia

Eva and George Klein 1979 - Courtesy  Wikipedia


In the middle of our medical studies earlier that year at the University of Budapest (located in our native city), George was unexpectedly invited to join a Jewish student group preparing to visit some universities in Sweden, which had been neutral during World War I.


Eight days before departure, George met Eva; we fell in love, but George had to leave. We promised each other we would reunite in Sweden. In Stockholm, he found a haven in the Cell Research Department of the Karolinska Institute, which was led by one of the pioneers of modern cell chemistry, Tørbjörn Caspersson. Eva was still in Budapest, where the situation under the Communist regime was becoming worse day by day.


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Kurt Tucholsky (1890 – 1935) Foto: Wikipedia


Show us the sun slowly

Lead us step by step from star to star

Gently let us learn how to live again.

Or else a bird’s song

Or the filling of a bucket at the well

Could break open our pain so lightly sealed

And wash us away.


- Chorus of the Saved

"Her lyrics combine lean simplicity with imagery variously tender, searing, or mystical."


Nelly Leonie Sachs was a German poet and dramatist. Sachs wrote poems mainly for her own entertainment, until the advent of Nazism darkened her work and forced her to flee to Sweden.


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When the issue of Ingvar Kamprad’s fascist involvement became public in the 1990s, he pleaded for forgiveness, saying it had been an error of youth. “I was only a boy!” It is true that he was only 17 but it was a quite a conscious decision. It is not an error of youth in my view.


Kamprad’s political involvement in the Nazi Party was one of the few pieces of information I had when I started writing this book. I knew that Otto and Ingvar had become friends as young men. I needed to know what that relationship meant.


How was it possible that Ingvar became friends with the Jewish boy Otto while he at the same time was involved with the Nazi Youth movement? When Ingvar and Otto met, Otto’s parents had already died in Theresienstadt. From the beginning I wanted this relationship to be the focus of the book.


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Otto Ullman - Courtesy Elizabeth Åsbrink



E M I G R A N T  T U C H O L S K Y

4. APRIL, 1936 av Ragnar Vold



En emigrant er død, en av de mange. For et øyeblikk minnes man en fremragende skribent en begavet og inspirerende forkjemper for humanitetens sak. Man husker hans glade latter og hans evne til å gjøre det ryddig og romslig omkring seg. Og så glemmes han vel snart. Han var jo “bare en emigrant”.


Kurt Tucholsky var egentlig ingen kamphingst, men en bunt vibrerende nerver, et følsomt sinn som gremmet seg dødsyk over barbariets triumph. Giftflasken gav ham en lett død, men Molok fikk sitt offer som meningen var. En av de mange.











"Christmas 1948.

We were 23-year-old medical students in Sweden, still trying to understand the consequences of some momentous decisions, made during the

previous year."

Når engang den jerntids historie skal skrives, vil beretningene om tragiske emigranstskjebner fylle mange svarte sider.


Kanskje vil våre etterkommere undre seg mest over hvor likegyldig den siviliserte verden betraktet emigrantene. Hvor avstumpet menneskene var! vil de si.


Les hele artikkelen her



"I chose as title of the book And The Trees in Wienerwald Are Still Standing because the Wienerwald, a beautiful wooden, recreational area aroundVienna, was where the Ullmann family spent their Sunday picnics, played soccer and enjoyed each others’ company.


The title of my book refers to the fact that the trees are still there but the people who sat in their shadow are gone, leaving a void empty space."


 Elizabeth Åsbrink















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