Six Million Germans / Nakam

Wow. Thanks to a Gerry Canavan link (, a story in an on-line edition of Slate ( and a quick search of You Tube, I found this ditty by Daniel Kahn and the Painted Bird. The song paints a quick portrait of a partisan band that got it into their heads to retaliate for the killing of six million Jews by killing six million Germans.

It’s hard to wrap around the idea of an organized effort to kill that many people. But, it happened. There’s plenty of proof that the Nazi regime was bent on eradicating the Jewish population under their control. Once that reality works its way into the brain cells, it’s no great leap to consider the revenge that genocide breeds.

While the song goes into detail, at first blush uplifting the work of the partisans, it carries a coda, so to speak, bringing the idea of vengeance into the modern day, and the ongoing consequences of intolerance.

Now can vengeance put upon the shelf
Be taken out later on someone else?
Be careful how you read this tale
Lest your own prejudice prevail
Look around the world today
And consider the role that vengeance plays
For History has its unpaid debts
And is it better if we forget?


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