What is it with American Clients and their Nazi Obsession?

I really like to help the victims of Nazi persecution. Or rather their descendants, considering that most people who survived that horror have passed away since. My main focus is on the restitution of German citizenship to those whose ancestors were once stripped of it by the Nazis. (Sometimes, it even happens that I get into a random taxi in Bolivia, and as the driver recounts his family history, I can tell him that he is eligible for a German passport.)

But then, there is another group of clients, and I am sure it’s coincidence that thus far, they have all been American: People who want to be victims of Nazi persecution.

These cases have nothing to do with the Nazis, they are not even political in any way. It’s usually a child custody dispute or some tax stuff. Little things. Nothing to get agitated about.

Yet, that particular type of client wants to turn their mundane dispute into a personal fight against evil, as if they were single-handedly storming the beaches of Sicily, Salerno and Normandy and killing every single Nazi on the way to Berlin. (Where they would then complain about the absence of the Berlin Wall and a McDonald’s.) Or maybe they have watched too many movies and not enough news and believe that Germany is still ruled by the Nazis.

For example, there was this one lady, from Florida, but living in Munich, who was late with paying her bill. Very late. Despite repeated reminders. When she realized that I wouldn’t yield, she finally paid and sent this e-mail:

Andreas, I paid today. 

I told you I was in bad shape. Very bad shape in this Nazi nightmare.

To which I replied, with – for a lawyer – astonishing conciseness:

1- Thank you very much for the payment!

2- I recommend a short trip to Dachau and a visit to the exhibition there before making Nazi comparisons. It’s belittling to the real victims.

That advice was free. Because I am a nice guy, and I give people the chance to reflect on what they wrote. But always, really always, those people keep digging the hole they put themselves into.

Her reply:

If you knew my husband’s tactics I don’t think you would make that comment. Less than putting me in a gas chamber which is almost my wish at this point is that it all is humiliated me beaten me taking my kids away called me a whore and a slut in front of my kids to me there’s nothing worse than this and it’s an appalling behavior of abuse of power. But I guess it’s always the victim said allow themselves someway to be a little old so in the end it’s always the victim fault.

Oh, he also threw out my nine-year-old father and my mother out of the house that I used to own in Florida that I was stupid have to sign over to him that he will sell it in the company and I end up with nothing kids no home no life. After working for him for so many years. And too stupid to take care of myself.

By the way my family history is of partial Jewish descent the last name was like who fled to America rest of the family was annihilated by the German Nazis. I never held resentment which is why I was able to live in Germany and excepted as a tragedy of war . My experience has proven different and if I could to my life over again I would’ve skipped the German part. I was so understanding forgiving and in disbelief of cruel behavior that I even had children here. Anyway , A systematic premeditated intent to destroy the life of another person was just calling to spade a spade

To which I replied nothing, because as only a foreign speaker of English, the grammar had become too complex for me. Sorry.

As you may have figured out from the above excerpts, these kind of people have more problems than inappropriate historical comparisons. In fact, it is just one of many red flags, which by now I have learned to detect early on, giving me the opportunity to gracefully decline any request to get involved in their personal battles and tribulations.

Or take this guy, who has been fighting to spend time with his children for years, which must suck big-time. However, child custody cases are severely contested in many jurisdictions around the world, and I am not sure the Gestapo comparison is appropriate.

I want a lawyer to find out if there are any restraining orders or anything else against me. I can’t imagine what anything else could mean, but lying and ignoring the law have not prevented German officials from acting badly. One of my other lawyers tells some horror stories from her 10 years of court cases to finally get one man his son.

Maybe not the same lawyer because this requires a bit of courage: I also want a lawyer to be around if the police act illegally with me like they did 5 years ago. (The Goettingen police arrested me on false charges, refused to let me talk to a lawyer, only let me out of jail after they confirmed they had nothing to arrest me on but told me if they saw me again they would keep me in jail regardless of the law). So I want a lawyer around who won’t meekly ignore illegal actions by the police, if there is any chance I meet with my kids. I may get some extra help (e.g. PhD psychologist) as observers so if the police do one of their Gestapo tactics again, others are present. This will remind them of how much trouble they will be in if the police act badly.

This may sound extreme, but after my experiences in Germany (also included judges clearly lying, in writing) tell me the law isn’t that important so I need to take extra measures to prevent that from impacting me.

Just to put things into perspective: The Gestapo was the Nazi’s secret police and played a key role in the suppression of any opposition and in the Holocaust. It was an instrument of terror.

Now, I am not saying that contemporary German police are all nice people. Quite the contrary, there is the problem of racial profiling, and each time I return to Germany from abroad, I really wonder why my country has one of the unfriendliest border police forces in the world. – But still, that’s very far from the Gestapo. I mean, in all of last year, there were 8 people shot dead by the police in Germany. (In the USA, it takes the police only three days to kill as many people. Or twelve days if adjusted per capita.)

If you are ever in Germany and interested in the Gestapo, their former headquarters in Cologne have been turned into a museum.

Oh, you remember the “part of my family was of Jewish descent” from above? This is of course topped by “I have Jewish friends”, which is another warning sign, reminding me of people who “can’t be racist, because I have black friends / have been to Africa / like Puff Diddy”.

Let’s take this example:

Hi Andreas,

I just discovered your website and think you took a great decision by closing your office and travel! I feel that you are the kind of Lawyer we could have hired, you seem loyal, honest and knowledgeable.

Here is the situation and I need your total honesty.

Our story: In 2012 (USA), (10 years ago!!!) we purchased a cell phone to our daughter and put her on the phone family plan and she started sending nasty pictures (pictures taken when she was on vacation in Hawaii 2 weeks with her friend. We were not with her on vacation! So being nice parents and buying her a trip in Hawaii was a big mistake that destroyed our lives) to her “friends” on line and when she was caught at her return, my husband smashed her phone in pieces and cut Internet access to protect her and deleted everything to protect her (because kids go to prison for that matter in America) and he was not aware she hid a pic on an Apple Ipad. The daughter blackmailed her father, furious that he destroyed the phone and said that she would make up a story if she did not get what she asked for. My husband refused and she reported false allegations to the police.

The Law Enforcement were not happy because the nasty pictures were destroyed and the police is mad at my husband for destroying the data because they could have caught her “friends” with her nasty pictures so the Law enforcement retaliated and gave my husband a false conviction, he was held for 5 years without trial (with false added allegations), tortured, included water boarding and in extreme psychological torture. By the way, our daughter of 12 years old was kidnapped by FBI and put for adoption because I did not want to collaborate and did not want to lie to get her back.

So because of that ONE picture that he did not take and that picture was found on the Ipad that he was not aware of, he was put on the Megan List (a cruel list that does not make sense where about 1 million people (included children from 5 years old are labeled absurdly Sex Offenders and are on that list that violates their human rights) have their lives destroyed and family members and friends are harassed by the police.

As soon as a person is on the registry in USA (Megan list/Sex Offenders list) his/her life is basically over.

They are labeled harshly Sex Offenders (in USA, you do not need to commit a sex crime to be on that list, if someone is caught to pee outside, two teenagers in love, mooning, touching a shoulder, sexting, sending pics, and even a five year old hugging a teacher…  will end on the Sex Offenders Registry and basically it had been proven that life on the Megan registry is very parallel to the Dark History of Germany (branded passport, you cannot go to the park, library, live where you want…, people are on a Public List on Internet with their pictures and address and are murdered, commit suicide….

We moved at the end of 2021 to Germany to try to get a life and the American government with the help of the German Law Enforcement and vigilantes stalk us, snitch on her, report our location daily, telling neighbors, Doctors not to deal with us, shops refuse services…..

Basically we are treated like Jewish people were, sadly. Could you believe that?

A Holocaust Survivor man has his grand-son on the Megan List and mentioned the parallel with the Holocaust and said “no, not again!”.

We hired a Lawyer in Nuremberg, Germany where we live and after reading on your Blog how to hire a good Lawyer, I realized he was not a good fit because he portrayed exactly the “Lawyer” not to hire. He was not loyal, barely talkative, the authorities told him not to work with us anymore.

We consider ourself good and educated people and we did nothing wrong in USA or anywhere else. We would like to file for international human rights violation and against harassment.

We know that we will never get a loyal Lawyer so we would like to file a petition against the police, against USA too by ourself. Would you be able to help us? To tell us where to go to file or file for us, the form to use…We are from USA and we do not speak German enough to do so. Of course, we will pay you to do everything for us fast.

Is it something you could do? We have also other law suit we would like to do too.

We do not want to waste money with another Lawyer who will not help us.

Again, in my reply, I offered the chance to walk away from the unfounded comparison:

I am aware of Megan’s Law and its completely over-bearing consequences, although, based on my understanding of the law and of German history, I would not compare it to racial and anti-semitic persecution of whole groups of people.

I am also not quite sure what you want to achieve. There is nothing that a German lawyer or a German court could do to change a US federal or state law or indeed influence any US federal or state government action. Neither country is subject to the jurisdiction of the other country.

There is no international human rights court. (There is a European one, but it only deals with acts by member states of the Council of Europe.)

A different matter would be specific acts of harassment taking place in Germany.

And as always, the person did not take the clue, instead doubling down:

As I mentioned a Holocaust survivor compared the Megan Law himself with the dark History of Germany because his son is on the Megan List and that link does prove it,

followed by the link to a YouTube video.

I realized that they were generally more the YouTube-watching rather than the e-mail-reading folks, because what they wrote next sure sounded as if they hadn’t properly read my e-mail.

We want to abolish the Megan List in an International court because it is a violation of Human rights based on the “Universal Declaration of Human Rights” and the Lawyer we had did say that it is also an International matter because the Megan List also exists in other countries.

By now, one of my standard replies is:

This is not how the law works.

As the couple live in Nuremberg, they would actually have two memorial sites in their neighborhood: the Nazi party rally grounds and the site of the Nuremberg Trials.

But this time, I didn’t even recommend a visit, because the people sounded like they would just bother the poor museum staff. And as a general rule, historians are not any more interested in watching your YouTube links than lawyers are.

By the way, whenever I had a court case in Nuremberg, I tried to cheer up my client: “Hey, you gonna get divorced in the same courthouse where they hanged the Nazis!” It never worked.

When I return to practice as an attorney, I only want clients with a sense of history, please. Or at least with a sense of humor.

Links:

About Andreas Moser

Travelling the world and writing about it. I have degrees in law and philosophy, but I'd much rather be a writer, a spy or a hobo.
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35 Responses to What is it with American Clients and their Nazi Obsession?

  1. I couldn’t correspond with people that use such horrible grammar. Their views aren’t that great either.
    I have a good sense of history and humor, but don’t need a lawyer, so I’ll just ask for more cat photos, please. 😁

    • But nobody will take me serious as a hot-shot lawyer if I post cat photos all the time. :-)

      After reading e-mails from thousands of people, I can say with certainty: Bad grammar is a sign of deeper problems.
      That doesn’t mean that grammar nazis (haha) can’t be complicated people too, but bad grammar is a huge red flag, which usually sends the e-mail straight into the bin.

    • Come to think of it, I should put together a list of red flags, to warn all the lawyer rookies out there.

      But then, they probably have to learn the lessons themselves:
      https://andreasmoser.blog/2017/06/26/lawyer-experience/

  2. dnrteuer says:

    My sincere apologies for my countrymen/women. We have a real problem with stupidity, and a poor education system. We also have rapidly growing, generalized hatred stoked by greedy,power hungry politicians and funded by a massive imbalance of wealth. The media here don’t seem to understand their role in promulgating the spread of the infection. Racist and hateful ideas are packaged using memes and catchy marketing. The media reinforce them by repetition in their reporting, and eventually the memes become part of the common daily word use. They don’t see that word use takes on meaning by subtle manipulation, or that it is embraced by the emotional processing parts of the brain with exceptional ease. Those who create the memes understand it and they also understand how to work it into the common mind and parlance.

    I think it is interesting that the terms Nazi and Gestapo, etc., divorced from their historical context, have been used here as place holders for myriad forms of hatred and monikers for anyone who is at odds with one’s preferred notion of what is right. The creation of ‘alternative facts’ has been knitted into th whole ‘Nazi’ trope. No one here seems to appreciate how much the process is really reflective of Stalin’s masterful creation of false truth, methods of control, and methods for silencing those who did not echo the lies. The extreme right here use cult psychology to control and shape the public mind and seem to place a canon-fodder value on the lives of their acolytes. It reminds me of Stalin’s belief that captured soldiers were a disgrace, should not be rescued, and should die rather than be defeated. trump, in fact, directly espoused this sentiment when talking about Senator McCain’s experience as a POW.

    Anyways, I’m sorry to hear that you get these crazed Americans lobbing such offensive garbage at you, especially as they seek to elicit your help.

    Thanks for posting this piece, Donnah

    ps: A good Currywurst is, indeed, a very good repast. Almost as good as a pair of Weißwurst!

    • Although I am from Bavaria, I really can’t stomach Weißwurst, I have to admit.
      I am definitely in the Currywurst camp.

      And no need to apologize! These are after all very few examples among hundreds of e-mails I receive. And most people are terribly nice. (There is actually another country that provides the most complicated clients, but I won’t name it publicly. People can guess if they want to.)

      I should also say that there have been plenty of people in Germany making silly Nazi/Holocaust comparisons, especially when they were protesting against Covid-19-related mask mandates (they compared them to the yellow star), against curfews (comparing themselves to Anne Frank) and about compulsory vaccination (comparing the Health Minister to Dr Mengele).
      It’s sad if it wasn’t so funny when people meet for a protest, with the police protecting them, the TV cameras there, and then they say – into the TV camera – that they are living in a dictatorship and aren’t allow to say what they want.

      It’s good that you bring up Stalin, because that’s the other extreme sometimes used. For example, I am a bit of a socialist myself, meaning that I think the state/the people instead of corporations of the nobility should control a country’s natural resources, including land and real estate. And immediately people say (and maybe really believe) that I want the Gulag. :/

      But I never thought of the Stalin-POW-Trump-McCain similarities, thank you for bringing that to my attention!

  3. Karen Lee Price Luda says:

    Wow. I am embarassed to the max by the communications you received from other Americans. The grammar was painful, but the ignorance was worse. I wish for you that your future encounters with Americans will be more literate and thoughtful.

    • Oh, these are really the rare exceptions and should not be generalized at all.

      And then, at the other end of the spectrum, are kind people like you.
      Thank you very much for the massive book delivery! I was really delighted by the political library that you put together – and even more so by some of your annotations, especially the “M’F’er!” in the book about Trump’s handling of the administration. :-)

  4. Americans have a strange obsession with Nazism. Some hold it as the ultimate evil – if you pedantically correct people’s speech, you’re a “grammar Nazi”. Others hold it as an ideal – the so-called new-Nazis (who have NO clue what the Nazis did) screaming about immigrants and Jews. We don’t read, we don’t research, and we sure as bloody heck don’t learn the full story anymore. I’ve given up correcting people’s ignorance of history. The grammar, similarly, is a reflection of our educational laziness – not just in schools, but at home as well.

    And on that depressing note, how are you? I know I’ve been quiet for a while – I’ve had a variety of personal pains in the butt going on. The latest is the state of Ohio is trying to take away my painkillers for my constant headaches – for my own good, of course! What’s the old saying – the two things found throughout the universe are hydrogen and stupidity?

    Anyway, all my best to you and yours, and a Froliche Weinachten (I think that’s right – been a while since I’ve had to use German). And when the world gets you down, remember that 108 years ago this evening, the spirit of Christmas brought World War 1 to a halt, so there’s always hope! Talk to you soon!

    • Hello John,
      so wonderful to read from you – I’ve been wondering about you for many years!!

      British and German soldiers stopping the fighting for a day to or two to keep shooting at each other thereafter, that sounds like Christmas for many families. ;-)

      (I always get away for Christmas, this time to Belgium, where I am house-sitting in a small village in Wallonie.)

    • Yes, the Christmas Truce may have only been a few hours of peace across years of horrendous war (and numerous wars before and after). Still, one moment of hope is better than none – and too often forgotten in this increasingly ignorant and bitter world.

      Oh, I so envy your ability to see such wonderful areas. I can’t afford to get back to my beloved Chicago (yes, especially in a deep freeze, it’s a beautiful city, especially at Christmas), and even a 2-hour trip to the nearest “major” city of Columbus is beyond financial and logistical capability. But there is hope – in a few years, I’ll be so darned ancient, the government will finally start paying ME, instead of vice versa. Perhaps then … a moment of hope. ;)

      I’ll try to be around a bit more. I’m limiting my blog haunting. but you’re one I will definitely come back to. (Jeez, what a truly lousy Christmas present, no? :D )

      Best Wishes!

    • The last years, I’ve also only been able to travel because I do house-sitting, meaning that I take care of people’s villas and cats while they are on holiday.
      So, I am basically living out of a backpack, which after a few years is getting somewhat tiring, I have to admit. I’ve started looking for affordable apartments and am ready to settle down – for a few years at least.
      I’ve seen and experienced so much, I need some quiet time to write everything down. Speaking of World War I, for example, as we did, I went to Ypres and the area three years ago, and I still haven’t found the time to write about it. :/

    • Well, World War 2 is my strong suit, but I’d be glad to give you whatever help I could, including proofreading. Did you go to the medieval city gate and hear them play “Last Post”? That’s something I would love to witness first hand. There’s a fairly accurate film about WW1 called “The Wipers Times”. While the main story is a bit weak (though supposedly true), the”set” stuff – costumes, secondary character behaviour, and so on – are pretty spot-on. It obviously focuses on the Brits, but I’d recommend it as one of the better efforts. “1917” is also fairly technically accurate. Suggestions for you on a long train ride. :)

      And who knows, if you get the desire to see somewhere (mostly) naturally unspoiled and cold, maybe I could get you to fly to Alaska and visit the islands the Japanese invaded in WW2. I try to carry forward little-known campaigns like the Aleutians (only North American territories fought over in WW2), Gallipoli (little known outside ANZAC circles) and my pet project, Dieppe from WW2. I met some vets from the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry (who participated) when visiting Hamilton in Ontario, and they were so impressed a Yank drove “all the way” from Chicago to see them, they took ME out to lunch! I love Canadians, they’re like Americans but with manners, common sense, and an appreciation for their history.

      Whoops, sorry, I’m babbling again. Anything I can help you with, just drop me a … note? … and I’ll do what I can.

      Hope you’re having a Merry (and warm) Christmas! (It’s 8 degrees Fahrenheit here as of this post, a heat wave compared to yesterday!) Until anon.

    • Oh yes, I did get to see the “Last Post” on several evenings. Quite impressive, especially that the locals stop the traffic through one of the main gates to the city for about 30 minutes every evening.

      On a long train ride, I prefer books, though. Or talking to fellow passengers, because it makes for better stories. (See my Canada-by-train trilogy.)

      I am so behind with my writing, I will probably have to stop publishing English translations of my long articles, sadly. :-(
      But I just can’t write everything twice, and I do write much better and more creative in German, of course. So, it may be that from next year on, I will restrict my English blog to photos and refer those interested in the stories to my German blog. People use online translations anyway, whether I like it or not. (I don’t, but I admit that it’s better than nothing.)

      As to Alaska, of course I would love to go, but it’s pretty far and expensive. Due to very limited funds, I am more into exploring Europe now, where I can hitchhike everywhere. (When I was house-sitting in Canada, I met a guy who drove a 6×6 truck to Alaska and I could have joined him. But I had promised to watch someone’s house and cat, and I am a very responsible guy. So, no Alaska for me, although that would have been a wonderful story, I am sure.)

    • Brí says:

      I’m positively riveted to this exchange and my jaw just dropped when you said you write BETTER in German!? Sweet sassy molassy now I need to learn German! 😂

    • Well, German is my mother tongue, so it shouldn’t be hard to write better in it. ;-)

      The other thing is that I have a much greater vocabulary in German, so there is far less repetition and more wordplay.
      And then, German does allow for some creative linguistics, which would sound awkward or stilted in English – at least if I attempted it.

      Just two examples:
      – Endless compound nouns like “Panamakanalrandsandstrandananassaftbar”. I tried to come up with the longest word that only has the vowel “a”. It means something like “a bar on the sandy beach on the shore of the Panama Canal which is serving pineapple juice”. But in German, you can put all of that into one word, thus having an indefinite potential for creating neologisms.
      – Very convoluted syntax. While this is theoretically also possible in English, the use of relative clauses, gerund and all these other tricks sounds more natural in German. Although I do take it to the extreme once a year, when we celebrate the “Day of the Convoluted Sentence” on 25th of February.
      This article, for example, consists of ONE grammatical sentence, but with 2180 words: https://andreas-moser.blog/2022/02/25/februar-1922-schachtelsatz/

    • Brí says:

      You just schooled me in my own language – and I taught high school English for a while! So funny. I didn’t realize German had that ability, but saw it frequently when we lived in Hungary. An entire sentence in just one long tongue twister of a word! I would love to hear some of this pronounced. I’m a bit of a nerd for accents and colloquialisms. Have you heard of Erik Singer (dialect coach)? I’m fascinated by his work! I’ll have to keep an eye out for Day of the Convoluted Sentence! ‘Tis indeed a day for everything … now where is my “day of the fireside book binge” when I need it?

    • Oh yes, Hungarian also has those compound nouns!
      That’s why the words look/sound scary at first, but once you learned all the little words, I guess it gets easier.

      I myself never ventured into learning Hungarian, because I am terrified of languages where pronunciation is so important to differentiate one word from the other.
      But the couple for whom I house/cat sat in Hungary was from the UK. And the wife had learned Hungarian quite well. I was mighty impressed.

      I have not heard of that dialect coach, but then, I am happy enough if I can remember the vocabulary in a foreign language. English is exception, that came really easy to me. But ever since, any language I learn just displaces the last one. :-(

      I learned Spanish to an okay level (with a Bolivian accent, I hope), and now I am even afraid of going to Italy, for fear of mixing Italian (which I used to speak a bit, but is dormant now) with Spanish, confusing everybody, sounding stupid and ultimately being worse off in both languages.
      Which is a shame, because there are so many beautiful and interesting places in Italy. Well, I have to stick to the north of Italy then, where I can speak German.

      Although, when I was in Switzerland, I really had trouble understanding some German speakers. I understood maybe 50% and even that only because of the context of our interaction.
      Belgian German on the other hand is superb. Very clear, very close to writing. They could all be news presenters. (Which was my dream job as a child, but I have a Bavarian accent. :-( )

    • Brí says:

      I’m stuck on “I don’t dare travel to Italy for fear they won’t understand me” 🤣 You have to bring that bar down a smidge … if I spoke all the languages of the places I went I would be quite limited! Kudos for your efforts though, I appreciate a linguist! I always said if I had a superpower it would be to speak any language and communicate with anyone (even animals) 😂

    • Sorry to tell you this, but I’ll be one of those using translators – my German was sketchy at best, and that was 25 years ago. But I’ll still try to be there for you. I’ll call it a New Year’s resolution – and I HATE those! :D

      By the by, you’re a piker. (Hope that translates – you lack commitment). Just ONE cat? For shame – we’re up to over a dozen, and that counts two fatalities this year (not a good year). Plus the flock outside, which is sadly down to about a half-dozen, following a mystery disease that decimated the area’s cat population. I figure it this way – cats spend most of their time sleeping, and most of the rest eating or cleaning themselves, so with a minimum of 7, you stand an excellent chance of having a cat who’s awake, fed, clean, and ready for attention. Great theory – maybe it’ll be reality one day….

      I have to tell you, you’ve made a lousy few days a whole lot better, just chatting. Thank you, my friend, and I look forward to a lot more soon – even if it is through a translation program.

      Enjoy!

    • Oh, I also had outside cats to take care of when I was house-sitting in Spain:
      https://andreasmoser.blog/2018/10/21/venta-micena-day-28-30/

      But for cats in the house, four have been my maximum, on my most recent house-sitting assignment in Hungary: https://andreasmoser.blog/2022/11/05/lepseny/. That was doable, because two of them were so old that they were basically sleeping the whole time.

    • Old cats are great. We had one, abandoned (which is common here) who we took to the vet and were told he had less than 72 hours to live. We had to put him down late last year – more than EIGHT years later! He had such a great attitude – he did what he wanted, when he wanted, but unlike most cats, he didn’t care what the other cats did. He was just so …. chill. And he had an ability to make YOU feel bad if he inconvenienced you. We’ve got two who are pushing 10, and one – our first cat ever – who is about 15. She’s still pretty feisty, unlike one of the guys who just sleeps in. The other, our last black cat, us lively as ever, talking to us all the time, meowing in a conversational style. One bad thing with old cats, though – you know the end is near. The trick I’ve learned is to keep at least one kitten in the rotation, to help with any passings of the older crew. The outside colony provides the youngsters, as well – we neuter all we can, but up until this year, there were more feral cats than we (us and two other households in the neighborhood) could handle. It’s an additional financial stress, but beyond the joy of caring for animals, we have zero problems with rodents (despite being in farm country) and the birds have stopped ripping up the eves on the garage and shed for nesting purposes. Contrary to what the press says, we still have plenty of birds, they just stay off the ground and away from buildings – a perfect situation.

      I’m gonna sign off for a bit – I have a real head cracker of a migraine going. But feel free to keep chatting, I’ll get back to you, sooner or later. (You should know by now you can’t shut me up! ;) )

    • With some of the cats, though, they do CAUSE rodent problems by bringing mice and rats into the house. :/

    • I assume you mean dead. Our inside cats stay inside, and the outside ones stay outside – except for rare occasions, like our “Old Man 2.0” who was actually shared with the other two cat-caring households, or when one of the “feral” cats gets very friendly, and comes in and out in usually as a precursor to becoming a replacement for a loss. Sure, each cat has it’s own personality, but there is a certain emotional buffer when the number of cats doesn’t seem to change – losing one of 8-12 isn’t as noticeable as losing one of one. Sounds a bit callous, but it actually serves to care for more cats, as the inevitable increase in ferals keeps the outside colony fairly regular in size. This spring will be an odd one – after the losses this fall and winter, we’ll not only be down to less than 6 regulars, but two of our old timers, both of them shared among the 3 households, have also passed. Spring’s gonna be a sad time in 2023, without our two old friends out on the back porch. :(

      Add to that, our dog is sick, not sure what with. I’m afraid he’s going to die in the next few days, putting a very sad end to a rotten couple weeks’ time. I’d just go out and get another dog, but I’m not sure the wife would be up to it. She’s really close to the dog, and we’re both collecting enough aches and pains (in addition to my cursed headaches) that I’m afraid she won’t want to replace him. I love the cats – some far more than others – but I’m a dog person, and I really don’t want to spend my time alone without a canine companion.

      Jeez, aren’t you sick of me whining? Lord knows I am! :D

    • No problem, I will be offline most of the day. :P
      (On the way to Braine-l’Alleud, probably better known as the village next to Waterloo, where once, some battle – allegedly an important one – took place.)

    • Hey, I know of that place. That’s where ABBA first got together to write that song that won Eurovision and made them famous. Now if I could only remember the name of that song ….. ;)

    • These Eurovision songs have a habit of creeping into my articles about history, like the Moldovan train song into my article about the Kingdom of Romania:
      https://andreasmoser.blog/2022/11/04/greater-romania/

    • Meatballs, pickles, and vodka on a train ride?!? (Urp!) Good lord, I’m seasick and I’m 100’s of miles from the sea! Then again, I guess when in Rome – or Romania …… :D

      I’ve always been annoyed at the lack of mention of Romania in WW2. Yes, there is the over-riding shadow of Nazism and all its’ evils, but the Romanian soldier fought well, though let down by out-of-date or insufficient gear – they had a decent tank and fighter plane, but always in too few numbers, muck like the Italian and French armies (though by 1942, the Italian soldier left a LOT to be desired).

      I’ve always had a soft spot for the Romanians (as i have with many underdogs), but really liked them when, several years ago, there was a rash of coalition fatalities in Iraq and Afghanistan. I sent condolences to Ministries of Defence around the world. I got two non-form-letter responses, one from the Australian Minister himself who showed my Email to a family, and the other from a Colonel in the Romanian MOD, who – through halting English, NOT a computer translation as I had used – wrote me back with sincere and heartfelt gratitude that I had taken the time to write them! Sadly, I lost both emails to a hard drive crash.

      Speaking of military things, while you’re in France, you should look for militaria to resell. I understand WW2-era rifles are really good items – never used, dropped only once ….;) :D

  5. Waterloo is in Belgium, though, not in France. :P

    And I wouldn’t say anybody “fought well” when they attacked another country and killed the civilian population there.
    On the Romanian military in World War II, see chapters 27, 37 and 47 of my report from Odessa, for example:

    A Walk around Odessa

    • Okay, I typed a long response and my bloody laptop ate the thing. (Sigh.) In brief – my bad on Waterloo, consider it a Public Service Announcement to not blog while high on painkillers. To the Romanians, most of what I’ve read dealt with Stalingrad and after, and my own focus of small-unit tactical actions on the battlefield caused me to miss the higher-level political activities – my bad, I need to read your stuff and get better educated.

      The rest was me babbling about my old computer and Star Trek stuff – use your imagination, I think you know me well enough to fill in the blanks.

      And on that note (E-flat above middle C), enough inanity and insomnia, back to bed. Until anon…

    • To be fair, a lot of French people thought and think that Waterloo should be French.

  6. Ana Alves says:

    Hi Andreas,

    Goodness me, is she a real descent of Nazi victims like for real?
    Most victims have now died and we only have those who were babies at the time and their descendants.
    From my interactions and knowledge real victims and the descendants of those victims don’t talk much about it unless it’s for an interview or a project and they don’t want to make those events their identity, they have other things to offer.
    This woman really does make the real victims look bad with her scaremongering.
    Also I have heard stories of fake Nazi victims so beware of those.

    • I really didn’t believe her for a second.
      Some people make this claim up, others really believe it, but without any reason to.
      In Germany, if you ask people what their grandparents did under the Nazis, almost everyone has a family story of resistance fighters. Which can’t be true for so many people.

      I have also had clients whose ancestors left Germany in the 1950s and who insist that Grandpa fled from Hitler.
      Or people who insist that their ancestors fled from country X in 1912, when country X did not even exist in 1912.
      So, I personally don’t give much credence to family history – even if the family in question deeply believes in it.

    • Ana Alves says:

      What????
      I didn’t know it was that extreme, when I said beware of the fake victims I thought there were only a few cases that I heard in the media.
      When I was in my teens I used to read and research these cases before the internet and that involved finding physical connections so I know how sensitive this can be.
      I did this for personal interest and it also helped me in some history lessons and my teacher said how you are very active.
      The people I met never sold stories to the media at least not that I am aware of.
      I have known and worked with people who are German descent and many German or Prussian families left in the late 1890’s for countries like Portugal, USA, GB, Paraguay, other South American countries and the list goes on … these people don’t really say much about Nazism nor dealt anti semitism for those who are Jewish because they weren’t there, I also went around places in Portugal where German people live and again some people couldn’t say much about the WWII because they had left before that time or were born in Portugal.
      I guess I wasn’t fooled or maybe I caught them on the spot.
      I am going to start researching again.

      My family for example doesn’t have any impressive histories from the Salazar regime they will only tell you it was a crap time and we are in a better place now.
      Some people do but we don’t.

    • At least they admit that it’s better now.
      Not like those who still vote Salazar as the best Portuguese of the 20th century.

      In this context, I wholeheartedly recommend Aljube Museum to anyone interested!
      I visited it on my last visit to Lisboa and was very impressed. See chapter 14 in this article: https://andreasmoser.blog/2022/01/12/lisbon/

      My family doesn’t have any impressive history either. In fact, when I want to research beyond my grandparents, the paper trail gets muddy, because on most birth certificates, it says “father unknown”. That’s the kind of family I am from.
      Oh, and of course we also have people who emigrated, like almost every European family: https://andreasmoser.blog/2022/07/27/june-1922-vogl/

    • Ana Alves says:

      Oh no problem they were no less of person just because they had a “unknown father” listed.

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