Leader of youth group tour to Auschwitz-Brikenau arrested because kids sang Ani Maamin (I believe in the Messiah coming)arrested at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp on Friday because a tour group he is leading sang Ani Maamin (I believe in the coming of the Messiah).
I am leading a group of Bnei Akiva from Australia and South Africa.
As usual the group sings holy songs of prayer during the visit. This time the guards of the camp hounded us all the time, shouting at us not to sing. Even in the gas chamber of Aushwitz 1, the guard came up to me and shouted at me: "tell them immediately to shut up".
We then went to Birkenau. In a secluded part of the camp the boys spontaneously started singing "Ani Maamin". This was the song that prisoners sang on the way to be murdered there.
A guard drove after us with his car and demanded that they be silent. I told him that I don't have control over this as they are singing from their hearts. He then threatened to arrest me and called the police.
In my group were a few boys that their grandparents were prisoners or were murdered in Aushwitz. We cried a lot on that day when they shared their stories with us.
I was threatened with 24 hours imprisonment or paying a 1000 zloty fine (about $350). I opted to pay as it was 2 hours before Shabbat.Read the whole thing.
The Poles: Once anti-Semites, always anti-Semites.