Lidice is still alive! /Lidice jsou stale nazivu!Czech town Lidice is alive all over the world | Czechmatediary
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Lidice is still alive! /Lidice jsou stale nazivu!

Lidice children memorialI was searching for some YoTube videos about Czech and Slovak moms and ended up looking at the World War II videos, specifically the town of Lidice. So here we go, from Czech moms to Lidice. Its history is, indeed, is incredibly tragic:

CZ: Pokousela jsem se na YouTube najit video o ceskych a slovenskych maminkach, ale skoncila jsem se divat na videa z druhe svetove valky a to hlavne na filmy o Lidicich. Historie tohoto mestecka je opravdu neuveritelne smutna:

LIDICE is a village in the Czech Republic which is built on the site of a previous village of the same name. As a part of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, it was destroyed under the direct orders of Heinrich Himmler in reprisal for the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich (the Nazi deputy protector of Bohemia and Moravia) by a couple of Czech guys during World War II. On June 10, 1942, all 192 men over 16 years of age from the village were shot on the spot (including my Czech friend’s grandfather!) by the Germans forces. The rest of the people were sent to Nazi concentration camps where many women and almost all the children were killed.

Here is a wonderful YouTube introduction of the village of Lidice:

So, what exactly happened? “All men of the village were rounded up and taken to the farmstead of the Horák family on the edge of the village. Mattresses were taken from neighbouring houses where they were stood up against the wall of the Horáks’ barn. Shooting of the men commenced at about 7 a.m. At first the men shot in groups of five, but Böhme thought the executions were proceeding too slowly and ordered that ten men be shot at a time. The dead were left lying where they fell and the newly brought out soon-to-be victims had to first walk past them and stand in front of them. The firing squad always took two steps back and the scene of horror repeated itself. The men were not blindfolded and were taken to the place of execution without bonds. This spectacle continued until the afternoon hours when there were 173 dead bodies lying in the Horák farm orchard.”

“All the women and children of the village were taken first to Lidice village school. They were then taken to the nearby town of Kladno where they were detained in the grammar school for three days. The children were then forcibly separated from their mothers. 184 women of Lidice were loaded on trucks on June 12, 1942, driven to Kladno railway station and forced into a special passenger train guarded by a large escort. In the morning of June 14, 1942 the train halted in the railway siding where it was met by several dozen armed women warders with dogs. Under constant shouting and verbal abuse, the Lidice women had reached their destination at the concentration camp at Ravensbrück. On their arrival the Lidice women were first isolated in a special block. The women were involved in leather processing, road building, textile and ammunition factories. At the ammunition factory the slightest offense was punishable by standing and starving for many hours, or immersed in ice-cold water. Lack of hygiene, epidemics and contagious diseases spread and took most of the women. Some went mad and others were murdered.”

“Eighty-eight Lidice children were transported to the area of the former textile factory in Gneisenaustreet of Łódź. Their arrival was announced by a telegram from Horst Böhme’s Prague office which ended with, the children are only bringing what they wear. No special care is desirable. The care was minimal. The children were not fed sufficiently and a few babies cared for by the older girls were constantly crying with hunger. The children slept on plain floors and covered themselves with coats if they had any brought from home. They suffered from a lack of hygiene and from illnesses. Under commands from the camp management, no medical care was given to the children. Shortly after their arrival in Łódź, officials from the Central Race and Settlement branch chose seven children at random for Germanisation.”

“In late June Adolf Eichmann ordered the massacre of the remainder of the children. On July 1, 1942 the Lidice children were allowed to write postcards to their relatives. On July 2, 1942 all of the remaining 81 Lidice children were handed over to the Łódź Gestapo office, who in turn had them transported to the extermination camp at Chełmno 70 kilometers away, where they were gassed to death in Magirus gas vans. It is almost certain[citation needed] they were killed on the day of their arrival. Out of the 105 Lidice children, 82 died in Chełmno, six died in the German Lebensborn orphanages and 17 returned back home.”

Soon after the village was massacred, many towns in different countries were named after it (such as San Jerónimo-Lídice in Mexico City, Barrio Lídice and its hospital in Caracas, Venezuela, Lídice de Capira in Panama, and towns in Brazil), so that the world would remember Hitler’s horrendous crime. A neighborhood in Crest Hill, Illinois, was renamed from Stern Park to Lidice.  A square in the English city of Coventry, itself devastated during World War II, is named after Lidice. An alley in downtown Santiago, Chile is named after the town of Lidice. Lidice also became a woman’s name in various countries.

Here is yet another great historical YouTube video of the origings of the town of Lidice in Illinois (watch the first 2 minutes) – it almost brought tears into my eyes:

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lidice

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34 comments… add one
  • Vlastimil May 23, 2009, 8:50 am

    I cannot help it: it is quite funny in a very sad way.
    You were searching for happy moms faces and ended here…

  • Vlastimil May 23, 2009, 8:59 am

    It is a very sad story, and villages like these were hundreds in Poland, Belorussia, Ukraine and Russia…
    And the repraisals don’t end here….Everybody knows how childdren and women were massacred in Dresden, Berlin and other cities by American, British and Soviet army … In several instances Polish survivors of massacres commited by Germans, after the WWII, massacred hundreds of Jewish concetration camps survivors upon their return from the hell…

    It shows one thing: People are worse than animals. Maybe the Earth would be better off without them.

  • Tanja May 23, 2009, 11:33 am

    I am not sure if I believe that the American and the British army massacred women and children as the Russians did…..can you give us an example (source)? I would be interested in that.

    And I agree with you, people can be worse than animals because they are sinful creatures acting upon their free will.

  • B J King May 23, 2009, 4:22 pm

    The Americans and British did not massacre any women and children. Women and children were killed during the war from the bombs trying to stop insane people from really massacring men,women and children in the consentration camps just because they were Jewish. Vlastimil,you need to look up the word massacre. To needlessly or cruelly slaughter in large numbers of people or animals. The bombs were not dropped to intentionally kill women and children.They were dropped so you could walk freely and speak freely about anything you desire. I am an American and very proud to be so.Relatives in my family gave their lives for other peoples freedom.

  • Vlastimil May 24, 2009, 11:05 am

    Every and each bombing is a massacre….Be it Iraq, Japan, Vietnam, Germany, Russia, Great Britain… Bombing of Dresden was a shameful and senseless massacre… And yes, Russians (Soviets) massacred people long before WWII…

  • Vlastimil May 24, 2009, 11:24 am

    B J King,
    WWII was not a war against Jews. It was terrible what happened to Jews, but they were not the only victims of Hitler’s terror.
    WWII was a dirty BUSINESS…Yes, a business…
    For example, W. Churchill new, that bombing of Coventry is coming .. look in Wikiepdia for Coventry.
    But because of a strategical reason, he let poeple of Coventry to be massacred.
    Stalin knew, what is happening to Jews in Europe under Hitler rule. He was happy about that and he said: “Let Hitler take care of Europe, when he is done, we will take care of him..” Apparently Hitler was much smarter than that ….
    And at the same tome there were groups of BOTH sides being happy about the war and making tons of money on poeple’s suffering.
    I know the meaning of word massacre: for example “needless slaughtering of people” in Dresden….Why not to poison rivers to kill some criminals….? It would not be intentional to have killed children and women…
    I don’t want to diminish heroism of soldiers on BOTH sides of the WWII conflict… They served their countries well and they did what they felt was right to do.

  • Sarka May 24, 2009, 10:21 pm

    Vlastimil,

    there are mean people in the world – we cannot just all get along, unfortunately. Therefore war is sometimes necessary to defend one’s freedom (Americans have done it number of times, as BJ King says above). Each war has its casualties, which is unfortunate but that’s what happens. One has to defend the greater good.

  • Vlastimil May 24, 2009, 10:36 pm

    Sarka,
    I agree with you completely. When an affirmative action will need to be taken to defend freedom in America, I will volunteer by the best means I will be able to …

  • Europeo May 25, 2009, 2:07 am

    Vlastimil,
    I cannot put on the same plane the massacre ordered by Hitler and the “massacre” made by Americans.
    I is simply insane.
    The point is that not only the result is important but also the intention.
    What is really terrible about the massacre made by Hitler is that the people were massacred with the target just to massacre them.
    The Americans killed some civils, that’s true, but their target was not to massacre them.
    Do you get to the point?
    If you just consider the result then you miss a very important point.

  • Europeo May 25, 2009, 2:10 am

    In fact, also legally, there is a big difference if someone kills someone else intentionally or unintentionally.
    What really matter is the intention.

  • Vlastimil May 25, 2009, 11:47 am

    Lidice massacre was a terrible crime against humanity. I hope all the people guilty of that crime were punished. History of WWII is very fascinating, it is my hobby to study it …. The more you know about WWII, the more you realize, how dirty this war was…. There are many stories of human suffering I could write about, but I understand the suffering of people of Lidice and by not continuing this discussion, I would like to show them my respect and compassion

  • keef May 25, 2009, 10:36 pm

    Vlastimil,

    It appears you do not understand the context in which many of these bombings took place.

    What is entirely different then was the concept of ‘total war’ -it truly was a battle and struggle for the existence of entire nations. After the invention of modern nukes, wars are a much more strategic and hegemonic. It is hard for us to imagine the possibility of actually being taken over by another nation which is what we (and others)were facing in WWII.
    Do you understand that France was invaded and TAKEN OVER by Germany? These nations were facing complete domination and raping of their freedoms.
    Do you consider the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki needless massacres? They were horrific yes, as war is, but the alternatives were far worse. I recommend you watch this video if you think they were unnecessary as I suspect you might. Forgive my suspicions if you do not.
    http://www.pjtv.com/?cmd=video&video-id=1808
    All bombings are not massacres Vlastimil, especially in a day and age when a nation’s survival was at stake.

  • Vlastimil May 25, 2009, 11:49 pm

    keef,

    I saw the video and gave it a “thumb up”.
    I liked it. I admit that not everything is possible to understand using your heart…Sometimes very cold calculations are necessary to be made in order to make our hearts happy and free.
    Hopefully the WWII will not happen again and all nations will learn to live together without behaving as animals. I understand, that’s why we need a strong defense to make sure all those massacres never happen again….

  • keef May 26, 2009, 1:30 am

    Vlastimil,

    I’m glad you watched that video and even more pleased you liked it. The evidence is pretty irrefutable. I am sure the decision was not an easy one for Truman as any decision to wage an act of war which you know will cause civilian casualties must never be.
    I don’t think a WWII is possible anymore because of nukes. If there is a WWIII it would basically be the end for all of us. And I agree, we need to have a strong defense so the rogue nutcase like Iran or North Korea cannot make a suicidal move that threatens all of us….

  • MaryLena Anderegg August 3, 2009, 7:10 pm

    As a young child, I lived in an area of East European (mostly Jewish) persons who had come from refugee camps. Most had been interned in concentration camps and, as a young preschooler, I asked my mother when we would get our numbers. I heard from my neighbors stories similar to this one, albeit fewer in number. Nevertheless, only humankind is capable of such cruelty.
    I was profoundly impacted by my interaction with those Jewish neighbors. I owe them a deep debt for teaching me about gratitude. They also taught me the truth of the adage “All that is necessary for evil to flourish is for good men to remain silent.” It is extraordinary that in my adult years, I have had dear friends who were German or Austrian and others who were Japanese.

  • marcus September 9, 2009, 7:49 am

    Hi,

    thanks for the post. My family and I recently moved to the Czech Repulic in April. I was scouring the web looking for Czech/English news to help me learn Czech and found your site some time back. We actually live here in Lidice, on the street named 10 Června 1942. We’re amazed at the kindness of the people who live in this village and equally amazed at the horrible history that took place here!

    Just thought I say hello!

    thanks,
    Marcus

  • Tanja September 9, 2009, 9:58 pm

    Hi Marcus!

    How interesting! May I ask why did you moved specifically to Lidice? How is your quest for perfecting the Czech language going 😉

  • Stanislav May 30, 2011, 7:52 am

    Nacisti se chovali hrozně a vůbec nechápu jak se z některých Čechů můžou dnes stát neonacisti a vyznavači Hitlera . PS zdravím Ameriku a díky za pomoc ve válce a částečné osvobození ČR.

  • Ben August 24, 2011, 3:43 pm

    We just (Aug 24th 2011) saw a new 2011 Czech movie called Lidice. It has yet to be distributed in the US. It was produced by Petr Nikolaev , IF the story of Lidice interest you, this is the movie to see. The producer commented (he appeared at the showing) that the story was perverted by the communists. THey claimed the town was a heroic communist town destroyed by the Germans. Only now, after the Czechs realized they were living with a lie, they were able to study the truth and make a movie. I highly recommend it when it gets to your area.

  • Ben August 24, 2011, 3:45 pm

    Here is a link to info about the movie http://www.czub.cz/en/lidice.aspx

  • Tanja August 25, 2011, 10:27 am

    Hi Ben, funny that you should mention the movie because my Czech friends and I were talking about it just yesterday! I wonder if it will be available on Netflix with English subtitles. That would be awesome.

  • susan January 9, 2012, 12:35 pm

    We inherited an artwork of pressed flowers that belonged to my husband’s Grandparents who had lived in Vienna before the war. I know nothing about how they acquired it.

    The inscription underneath the flowers reads;

    “These flowers were picked from a field where once stood a village.” Lidice, Czechoslovakia

    This has hung in my home for years today was the first time I ever did an internet search on Lidice. Thank you to everyone who contributed information to this site. Today, I learned about Lidice for the first time.

  • Tanja January 9, 2012, 9:27 pm

    Hi Susan!

    What a special piece of art you have!
    Yes, the story of Lidice is one of the darkest ones in the the history of the Czech Republic/Czechoslovakia. My friend’s grandpa died there even she does not like to talk about it. I guess the sadness is inherited for many generations.

  • lajes August 28, 2012, 5:15 am

    i watched a movie this am on twc starring john carradine..these nazis’ enjoyed inflicting pain on the helpless and destroying the fighters…i say never again, never again, but no sooner do i say this and in africa the two tribes hutu and tusties (spelled incorrectly) go at each other…the hutu were supported by the president of rwanda, who himself made special announcements that the tusties were going to steal the hutu wife, take the hutu kids, and kill these people…what madness prompted this president to make such announcement and then the hutu started killing the other tribe, over one million killed…should i ever make to lidice i will fall to my knees and ask forgiveness for those that perpetrated this ….i thank god that i did not live in europe in the 30 and 40s’…. thanks to those that will not let the world forget, forget, and we doomed to commit it again…this president of united states will not support israel when chips down, he will say afterwards that i did not realize iran had the bomb…..i’m not jewish but i would fight and continue to fight for israel right to exists….the presidency of the united states is lacking one thing in the president office…..a man…

  • james hender January 22, 2013, 7:26 am

    I’ve just learnt about the tale of Lidice, incredibly sad and cruel. The people there were innocent and just murdered as scapegoats for Hitler’s rage over Heydrich.
    Maybe the assasination wouldnt have happened if the Allies knew the grim outcome but I guess he was an important and ruthless man, and the Allies needed some results in the first years of the war, they were taking a hammering up to that point.
    It was a dark time in not too distant History, thank God the Nazis lost in the end.

  • Tereza February 15, 2013, 12:37 am

    Dobrý den, mám jeden dotaz, je pravda, že se Lidice a Coventry staly sesterskými mĕsty? A pokud ano, co to obnáší? S pozdravem Tereza 🙂

  • Tanja February 15, 2013, 3:39 pm

    Dobry den Terezo, to jsem o Lidicich neslysela. Tady jsem Vam nasla, co to obnasi byt sesterskym mestem:
    http://cs.wikipedia.org/wiki/Partnerská_města

    Velmi zajimave!

  • Susan May 16, 2013, 8:51 pm

    My uncles all fought the Nazi’s, in one theater or another. One parachuted in on D-Day and lived to tell. NO Americans massacred anyone, except the enemy Fascists they were fighting on the battlefield…but nearly every home in America was touched or lost a family member to fight a war we had nothing to do with. We had to create a bomb to end it. It was not a responsability we wanted or needed.

  • sarah nadin July 22, 2013, 9:38 am

    Hello!
    I am an artist who is working on a sculpture in Stoke-on-Trent, an everlasting momnet to those who lost their lives and those who helped rebuild the village; the miners of North Staffordshire, England. On 6th June 1942 the miners of North Staffordshire, promised to donate one days pay, per week, till the end of the war to help rebuild Lidice. By 1945 they had raised £32,000.00. The equivalent of £1 million in todays money.

    We are looking for people who live in Lidice (and beyond) to help us spread the news about the sculpture and help Czech people get involved. The sculpture is entirely made up of 1000’s of ‘miners tags’, each one has a code which is unique to the individual who helps to spread the story of Lidice and how the miners raised the money to rebuild the village. ITS FREE TOO! All you have to do is visit… http://www.unearthed2013.co.uk.

    We only have a couple of weeks left to collect the codes… do it today, it will last forever! Thankyou

  • sarah nadin July 22, 2013, 9:39 am

    Hello Marcus too… it would be great if you got in touch!

    Hope to hear from you,
    Sarah

  • Silver June 12, 2015, 12:24 pm

    Oh, yes, Saint America. It is now a proven fact that Allied forces (including Americans) committed crimes just as the Soviet troops did. Killing civilians, raping women… yes, the numbers so far are much lower than for the Soviets but honestly, you’re looking for halos in the wrong place. I am not saying we would have been better off without the American troops but please, they were soldiers fighting in one hell of a war, not saints!

  • Charlotte A. Brendel April 25, 2016, 9:51 am

    It wasn’t a “couple of Czech” guys that assassinated Reinhardt Heydrich. One was Czech (Jan Kubis) and one was Slovak (Jozef Gabcik). Gabcik was trained and chosen for the mission along with Karel Svoboda. During a trial run, Svoboda was head injured and Gabcik needed a new partner in this highly secret mission “Anthropoid”. His friend Jan Kubis and he had gone through paratrooper school together and Kubis was anxious for a secret mission. So they trained further to accomplish the mission. From the book, “Lidice Remembered Around the World.” by Toni Brendel.

  • Charlotte A. Brendel July 17, 2017, 3:28 pm

    The city named Lidice in Illinois, is no more. It is now named Crest Hill, Illinois, after undergoing a name change.
    There are only two monuments to the memory of the little village in Czechoslovakia. One is in Crest Hill, Illinois, the other is in Phillips, Wisconsin, USA. The one in Crest Hill got a great deal of publicity at the time and it was the first in the USA. The one in Phillips, WI, was designed by a Czech commercial artist, Vaclav Hajny, from the Chicago area who spent summers in Phillips. It took time to design and build the monument as it is laced with symbolism and is not a “store bought” memorial stone. It is now on the National Register of Historic Monuments and also the State of Wisconsin Register. We’re proud to have it in Sokol Park, Phillips, Wisconsin, USA.

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