Saturday, October 20, 2007
[British bomber over Hamburg]
That’s a fair question, and I can offer one answer. He was about 30,000 feet over Hamburg, Germany.
Between July 27 and August 3, 1943 the appropriately named Operation Gomorrah was launched against Hamburg, Germany. During those days and nights 9,000 tons of bombs were dropped on Hamburg, killing about 50,000 Germans and leaving one million homeless. It was the heaviest aerial assault in history and the most devastating ever non-nuclear bombing.
Most of the victims died during a three hour firestorm early in the morning of July 28. The huge concentration of incendiary bombs created a tornado of fire, a huge outdoor blast furnace, containing winds of up to 240 km/h (150 mph) and reaching temperatures of 800 °C (1,500 °F). It caused asphalt on the streets to burst into flame, cooked people to death in air-raid shelters, sucked pedestrians off the sidewalks like leaves into a vacuum cleaner and incinerated some eight square miles (21 km²) of the city.
While Hamburg became a hell on earth, 465 miles away there was another hell on earth: Auschwitz. The concentration camp was in full gear at that moment, working Jews to death, gassing them and burning them. The Warsaw ghetto had been completely liquidated just three months earlier. The Holocaust was at its height. While Germans were busy burning Jews in Poland, the British and Americans were busy burning Germans in Germany. This was a modern day version of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Perhaps in the Hamburg firestorm there was a little payback for the Warsaw ghetto.
As the great rabbi, Hillel, once said (Pirkei Avot 2:7) when he a saw a human skull floating on the water “Because you drowned someone, you were drowned. And whoever drowned you, will be drowned as well.”
Every small child should be taught about examples like this of divine judgment. Everything has a consequence.
Posted by jewish philosopher at 10:41 PM