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Schindler`s life after the war was a long series of failures. He tried without success to be a film producer and was deprived of his nationality immediately after the war. Threats from former Nazis meant that he felt insecure in post-war Germany, and he applied for an entry permit to the United States. This was refused as he had been a member of the Nazi party.


Emilie and Oscar Schindler

After this he fled to Buenos Aires in Argentina with his wife Emilie, his mistress and a dozen Schindler Jews. He settled down in 1949 as a farmer, supported financially by the Jewish organization Joint and thankful Jews, who never forgot him.

But Oscar Schindler met with no success, and in 1957 he became bankrupt and travelled back alone to Europe. He never saw Emilie again ...

Oscar Schindler settled down in at little apartment Am Hauptbahn Nr. 4 in Frankfurt Am Main in West Germany and tried - again with help from the Jewish organization - to establish a cement factory. This was not a success either, and it went bankrupt in 1961. In 1962, after Oscar Schindler was honored by Israel as a Righteous Gentile, his business partner in Germany canceled the partnership saying, ' ... now it is clear that you are a friend of Jews and I will not work together with you any more ...'

And his life was totally dependent on gifts and money from the Jews he saved. His close colleague and friend Poldek Pfefferberg encouraged every single Schindler Jew to donate one day`s pay a year. Another friend Moshe Beijski - also a Schindler Jew - who later became a high court judge in Israel, could lovingly recount how if you sent Schindler 3,000 dollars, he would have spent the money in two to three weeks. And would ring up after that and say that he didn`t have a cent.

Schindler`s clear indictment of German war criminals in the trials after the war nourished the hatred that many in Germany felt for him. He was persecuted, he was sworn at on the streets, and stones were thrown at him.

It was said that he was their bad conscience - the conscience of all those who had known something but done nothing.


Oscar Schindler

Schindler boxed the ears of a factory worker who called him a "Jew kisser", but achieved nothing other than being dragged into court on a count of violence, where the judge gave him a lecture on jurisprudence.

In a letter to one of his Jews, Schindler wrote, "I would have taken my own life, if it would not have given them so much satisfaction ...."

Oscar Schindler was honoured and revered everywhere by his Jews. In Jerusalem a floor of the The Harry S. Truman  Research Institute for the Advancement of Peace was dedicated to Schindler in the beginning of the 1970s for his efforts.

Oscar Schindler died of liver failure in Frankfurt on the 9th of October, 1974, at an age of 66. From 1939 to the day he died he was such in love with his Jewish people, that he wanted to be buried in Jerusalem. Poldek Pfefferberg asked him shortly before he died, why he wanted to be buried here. He answered :"My children are here ....."

In faithful acquiescence with his wishes, his earthly remains were taken to Israel, where his lead coffin was carried through the streets of Jerusalem.

Schindler - to be honest not one of the most devout sons of the church - was buried in the Catholic churchyard on Mount Zion in Jerusalem, in the presence of hundreds of weeping Schindler Jews.

He was mourned on four continents ...

 

 



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Louis Bülow - Privacy  ©2011-13
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