I Saw The Walking Dead: A Black Sergeant Remembers Buchenwald
The American soldiers who liberated the Buchenwald Nazi concentration camp had powerful reactions to what they saw, often shaped by their own backgrounds. Leon Bass was a nineteen-year-old African-American sergeant serving in a segregated army unit when he encountered the "walking dead" of Buchenwald. Like many others, he tried to repress his memories of the horrors that he saw there and "never talked about it all." But in the 1960s, while involved in the Civil Rights movement and teaching, he met a Holocaust survivor and felt moved to declare to his students that "I was there, I saw." In this interview, he links the oppression of the Jews and other Nazi victims with the segregation and discrimination faced by African Americans.
9, 10, 11, 12, Higher education
United States History
History Matters: The U.S. Survey Course on the Web