Tomorrow night is the 75th anniversary of the so-called "Kristallnacht" pogroms in Germany and Austria, a wave of violence against synagogues and Jewish-owned businesses and mass incarceration of tens of thousands of Jewish men.
Regular readers here might recall that I've spent a good deal of time over recent years digging around to learn what I can about one of those tens of thousands, my great-uncle Leopold Muller.
In the last few weeks that search took a bitter turn. I write about it in this little essay at Tablet Magazine, and link to it here to commemorate this 75th anniversary of a night of terror.
Here's the essay's opening paragraph:
This is a story of my own foolishness. I got scammed on the Internet. I lost some money—not a fortune, but enough to sting a little. I didn’t offer assistance to a deposed Nigerian government minister or try to collect winnings from a lottery I never entered. I went looking for a movie of my great-uncle Leopold being marched to his death by the Nazis, and someone in Germany took advantage of me.
By the way, friends and family have urged me to pursue the wrongdoer. I am still reflecting on whether I wish to do so.