Friday, May 22, 2015

Quote of the Day — Capt. David B. Wilsey (WWII-era, exact date unknown)

We're coming up on Memorial Day weekend, so in addition to the sales and barbeques (which have become almost grotesquely ubiquitous, given the day's significance), it's fitting to quote an American hero, Capt. David B. Wilsey, who among other accomplishments and distinguished acts, assisted in the liberation of the Dachau concentration camp (freed 70 years ago last month) and the post-liberation medical care of its internees.

Capt. Wilsey's back-story has recently come to light, by way of his children, who discovered a box of letters to his wife, written during his service in the European theater of World War II (warning: graphic images). The detailed recollections illustrate the startling devolution of a man forced to witness first-hand the atrocities perpetrated by the Nazi regime on the helpless Jewish population. He came back a changed man; the trauma and memories haunted him until the day he died in 1996.

Only someone who has personally witnessed such depravity can pen this stark a statement:
Truth and totalitarianism just cannot coexist. One of the two has to die. For several hundred millions, totalitarianism did not die — so truth had to.
Such profound clarity of thought is rare, indeed. I'll repeat the warning about graphic images, but encourage you all to read the full account.

May God grant you the peace and rest you deserve, Capt. Wilsey.

The rest of you, stay safe.

(Hat tip: Claire Wolfe, writing at The Zelman Partisans)

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