The little Jewish girl who won the Nazi contest held by Joseph Goebbels to find the “perfect Aryan child”

By Jonathon Van Maren On May 17, 1934, a beautiful little girl was born to Jewish parents in Berlin. Jacob and Pauline Levinsons, both talented professional singers, called her Hessy, and they were tremendously proud of her—despite the fact that Jewish babies were not particularly welcome in Germany at the time. A year later, the…

Flowers at Auschwitz

By Jonathon Van Maren This week marks the 71st anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the sprawling Nazi death camp tucked into the Polish countryside near a nondescript village called Oświęcim. The very name now carries with it a weighty darkness, as if the millions of souls sent off in excruciating horror to eternity somehow…