„Daddy, what was that time like with the Crystal Night?“ „What did one say in the school?“ Engelbert asked back and looked at me.
„Hm, people would have gone there and burnt down the synagogues and destroyed the Jewish shops.“ „Yes,“ said Engelbert, taking a deep breath, „that’s true, but only halfway, mother, can you come? The child has a question.“ And then my grandma appeared, knitting in hand, sat down to us at the kitchen table. „What is it about?“ And the grandmother looked kindly, as only a grandmother can look. „The Crystal Night -“ „Oh stop it! So many lies, how to spread about it … “
And then she started to talk. As it was, in the crystal night. That the browns would have gathered in the village. „The whole Nazi scum“ That those who drove into the city, the synagogue flared. And the fire brigade had been forbidden to extinguish, they were only allowed to prevent flames crossing to „German houses“.
Old Balthazar would have let it run full that evening. He would have been the head of the voluntary fire brigade here in the village, he could not have said anything like that, not to extinguish such an order.
And then the Nazis would have come back from the city and would have disassembled the paper business and then the watchmaker’s shop. The shop windows would have broken them and stolen display. Only then set fire.
Then they would have ambushed the Johannes Rosen. Such a mess, that would have come from the first war and would have had only one leg. They would have beaten them together, days later it would have died.
„They beat him up. And then stated. Killing a defenseless, old man and then pretending to be heroic.“ My grandmother was still stunned, and it was over 50 years ago.
The grandfather would have wanted to take him to the hospital, but it was said that they do not treat Jews.
„Your grandfather then had a fight with the guard from the clinic and knocked his teeth out. I knew that one day the Nazis would pick him up. And they have that too “
Then granny cried.
None of the normal people from the village and town would have been there, at Kristallnacht. But the next day the newspaper said it had been „a spontaneous rage of the people.“
„But who of the simple people tells the fire department that they are not allowed to delete them? And who tells the doctor that he can not treat an old man if the man is a Jew? Can you tell me that?“
Somehow I believe my grandmother more than Guido Knopp or who else just the story is shaking.