A shabby brick factory in the Czech Republic village of Brnenec where Oscar Schindler (1908-1974) saved the lives of 1,200 Jews by providing them with work while spending his fortune bribing Nazi officials is to become a historical monument. Czech writer Jaroslav Novak, founder of the Shoah and Oskar Schindler Memorial Endowment Memorial Foundation, said that he plans to turn the building into a museum by 2019.
“This is the only Nazi concentration camp in the Czech Republic that is still standing in its original building,” Novak told the Guardian paper. “You cannot allow it and the whole history of Schindler to disappear. I have been fighting for this for twenty years. But people are just not interested in it.”
A Cracow factory where Schindler employed Jews before moving them to Brnenec already functions as a museum.
Not all Czechs are happy with Novak’s idea because despite saving Jews, Schindler, who grew up in the Czech province of Moravia, worked for Nazi intelligence after 1936 and joined the Nazi party in 1939. Some Czechs regard him as a traitor because of this.