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Stoke well the fires of Hell

Let us hope Old Nick has a few spares logs ready to keep things warm for Heinz Barth, one of those responsible for the Oradour sur Glane massacre.

Barth has died at the age of 86, having been at liberty for 10 years, despite being sentenced to life in 1983. Le Monde has more, although the paper's subs have misspelled the village's name in the headline.

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Blogger Tuscan Tony said... 9:32 am

Charming bunch, the Waffen SS. Near me, in Castelmartini, Tuscany, 23rd August 1944, some of their compatriots "wasted" 176 men, women and children, some less than a year old (!?!). Their names on the new memorial are in some cases the same families/names as my boys go to school with.

It is an extraordinarily great credit to the Italians that the Germans are neither actively nor passively reminded of the evil work of their grandparents, when they visiting this beautiful part of Italy as tourists.  



Anonymous nomad said... 1:26 pm

Mr C: This is off topic for this thread so you might want to move it, but it is connected to the exchanges over the weekend about credit card fraud. I have just received this from a friend and I think it could do with a much wider distribution. Of course you may not agree that this is the right place - in which case please feel free to delete it! The person in the third scenario was not me (thankfully!).


Be sure to read Scene 3. Quite interesting.



SCENE 1.
This is a new one.

People sure stay busy trying to cheat us, don't they?

A friend went to the local gym and placed his belongings in the locker. After the workout and a shower, he came out, saw the locker open, and thought to himself, "Funny, I thought I locked the locker". He dressed and just flipped the wallet to make sure all was in order. Everything looked okay - all cards were in place.

A few weeks later his credit card bill came - a whopping bill of $14,000!

He called the credit card company and started yelling at them, saying that he did not make the transactions. Customer care personnel verified that there was no mistake in the system and asked if his card had been stolen.

"No," he said, but then took out his wallet, pulled out the credit card, and yep - you guessed it - a switch had been made. An expired similar credit card from the same bank was in the wallet. The thief had broken into his locker at the gym and switched cards.

Verdict: The credit card issuer said since he did not report the card missing earlier, he would have to pay the amount owed to them. How much did he have to pay for items he did not buy?

$9,000! Why were there no calls made to verify the amount swiped?

Small amounts rarely trigger a "warning bell" with some credit card companies. It just so happens that all the small amounts added up to big one!


SCENE 2.

A man at a local restaurant paid for his meal with his credit card. The bill for the meal came, he signed it, and the waitress folded the receipt and passed the credit card along.

Usually, he would just take it and place it in his wallet or pocket. Funny enough, though, he actually took a look at the card and, lo and behold, it was the expired card of another person. He called the waitress and she looked perplexed. She took it back, apologized, and hurried back to the counter under the watchful eye of the man. All the waitress did while walking to the counter was wave the wrong expired card to the counter cashier, and the counter cashier immediately looked down and took out the real card. No exchange of words --- nothing! She took it and came back to the man with an apology.

Verdict: Make sure the credit cards in your wallet are yours. Check the name on the card every time you sign for something and/or the card is taken away for even a short period of time. Many people just take back the credit card without even looking at it, "assuming" that it has to be theirs.

FOR YOUR OWN SAKE, DEVELOP THE HABIT OF CHECKING YOUR CREDIT CARD EACH TIME IT IS RETURNED TO YOU AFTER A TRANSACTION!



SCENE 3:
Yesterday I went into a pizza restaurant to pick up an order that I had called in. I paid by using my Visa Debit Card which, of course, is linked directly to my checking account. The young man behind the counter took my card, swiped it, and then laid it on
the counter as he waited for the approval, which is pretty standard procedure. While he waited, he picked up his cell phone and started dialing. I noticed the phone because it is the same model I have, but nothing seemed out of the ordinary. Then I heard a click that sounded like my phone sounds when I take a picture.

He then gave me back my card but kept the phone in his hand as if he was still pressing buttons. Meanwhile, I'm thinking: I wonder what he is taking a picture of, oblivious to what was really going on. It then dawned on me: the only thing there was my card, so now I'm paying close attention to what he is doing. He set his phone on the counter, leaving it open.

About five seconds later, I heard the chime that tells you that the picture has been saved. Now I'm standing there struggling with the fact that this boy just took a picture of my card.

Yes, he played it off well, because had we not had the same kind of phone, I probably would never have known what happened.
Needless to say, I immediately canceled that card as I was walking out of the pizza parlour.

All I am saying is, be aware of your surroundings at all times.
Whenever you are using your credit card take caution and don't be
careless. Notice who is standing near you and what they are doing when you use your card.

Be aware of phones, because many have a camera phone these days.

When you are in a restaurant and the waiter/waitress brings your card and receipt for you to sign, make sure you scratch the number off. Some restaurants are using only the last four digits, but a lot of them are still putting the whole thing on there. Being a victim of credit card fraud is not fun. The truth is that they can get you even when you are careful, but don't make it easy for them.

FOR YOUR OWN SAKE, DEVELOP THE HABIT OF CHECKING YOUR CREDIT CARD EACH TIME IT IS RETURNED TO YOU AFTER A TRANSACTION!  



Blogger Guthrum said... 5:04 pm

Visited Oradour Sur Glane two years ago, my youngest son was shocked as the place was silent, you can still smell the burnt wood and its looks as if the atrocity happened yesterday.We all felt like intruders. This happened in a place that is only a few hours from our home in France, and is the direct result of a Nation that was not willing to defend its self before and after Sept 1939.  



Anonymous Verity said... 6:09 pm

This is also O/T and is a follow-up to Nomad's post.

When you get a new credit card, DO NOT SIGN ON THE BACK! Instead, write the words Photo ID Required.

This way, the shop assistant has to ask for a driver's licence or a passport to confirm that this is the legitimate owner of the card.

Second, even more O/T, does anyone know a libel lawyer I can bat over a quick question to? I think I have a case. The domain is England.  



Anonymous Anonymous said... 7:23 pm

Excuse me? Someone giving Verity the verbals?

Verity?!?!

Can I believe what I am reading??  



Blogger Croydonian said... 10:34 pm

TT - very true. Good for all concerned - visiting the sins of the fathers on the sons is odious in the extreme.

Nomad - Regulars like your good self have carte blanche to post on what they like, where the like. An illuminating set of tales, which have been committed to memory.

Guthrum - I have never been, or to any of the annihilation camps, but have spoken to a survivor of Auschwitz/Mauthausen.

Verity - I did defamation when studying law, and have a reasonable grasp of it still.  



Anonymous nomad said... 1:55 am

Mr C: Thank you. Much obliged. N  



Anonymous Verity said... 2:55 am

Gosh, Croydonian, how did I intuit that you had studied law?

Later.  



Anonymous toussant said... 3:01 pm

Wasn't it George Carman who said that with libel, even if you win, you lose?  



Blogger hatfield girl said... 4:56 pm

As the German army retreated up to the northern frontiers of Italy they lost their chain of command and, it was explained to me, became bands of men determined to get home, rather than an army; there was a civil war raging too as the Italians who loathed the fascist state fought village by village to oust the fascist governing structures and personnel. Then there were individual score-settlings going on. The chances of squadristi guiding German punishment squads to the homes and families of Italian political and social opponents were horribly high.
The condemnation by the Pope recently of the pretence that there were only winners and losers, not those who fought for the good and those who opposed them and lost was, I thought, a telling piece of political declaration by Benedict XVI. He condemned the spin of the former government in insisting there was no right and wrong side, and their refusal to have official attendance at memorial services; he said that all those directly involved are mostly dead now but it isn't an issue for relative values. Actually I was impressed as I read Osservatore Romano at the determined tone adopted.
TT is no more amazed than I am at the way that small communities have managed to patch together their disasters of 60 years ago and get on - though I doubt in private anyone has forgotten a single blow.  



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