AIRPOWER over AUSCHWITZ

Story by            Barbara Opall-Rome

Directed by    Ron Katzenelson

Produced by Barbara and Zvi Rome

Synopsis

Airpower over Auschwitz straddles a span of six decades to tell the tale of three distinct and not widely known military missions flown over the notorious death camp in Poland; two a tragic irony from World War 2, and one that promises to inspire generations to come.

 

It interweaves stories of the August and September, 1944 Allied attacks on the IG Farben facility mere miles from the killing complex with the “risen from the ashes” symbolism surrounding the Israel Air Force return to those same camps in September, 2003; nearly 60 years after US bombs hit Auschwitz by mistake!

 

The film focuses on a very narrow window of the war – from April to November, 1944 – when the Allies were flying thousands of sorties near Auschwitz, yet refused to use airpower to bomb the camps or the tracks transporting 10,000 Jews from Hungary to their deaths each day.

 

Airpower over Auschwitz follows the chain of correspondence during those critical months of 1944; identifying key figures - at specific moments in time - who obfuscated, misrepresented or merely failed to follow up on multiple requests - and even a directive by Churchill himself - to bomb the camps or the railways.

 

For the very first time, Airpower over Auschwitz brings a team of US airpower professionals together to examine why the US War Department deemed it “impracticable” to target the killing complex. Through a never done before war study, the film attempts to determine whether there could have been operationally viable options for bombing the main extermination center (Auschwitz 2/Birkenau) or the railways feeding the camp had such orders been given by the political echelon

 

In parallel, Airpower over Auschwitz recreates the drama of the Israeli flyover mission by way of unseen cockpit video, 3-D graphics and first-hand accounts by first-, second- and third-generation survivors, all airmen. It recounts Polish political obstacles and weather conditions that nearly scuttled the mission; and how, despite it all, the image of those Star of David-emblazoned F-15s emerging from the clouds in low-level fight over Auschwitz lives on as a tale of redemption with a message more powerful than 6 million verbal vows of “Never Again!” 

 

Objectives

Airpower Over Auschwitz aims to inspire; to provoke; and to make events come alive for many who otherwise wouldn’t know or care about this uniquely horrific chapter in human history.  

 

By focusing on robust Israeli air warriors, rather than frail civilian survivors, we expect to attract a broad and hopefully younger audience of aviation and war enthusiasts. To this end, the film features contemporary, upbeat original music (by a German composer, no less!) and dynamic, high-tech graphics, maps, flight paths and audio effects.

 

At the same time, the film’s never before attempted, retrospective simulation by the US Air Force Association’s Mitchell Institute of Aerospace Studies will provide added-value to seasoned students of the Holocaust and military history alike.

 

Through meticulous research, solid journalism and high-quality cinematic presentation, Airpower Over Auschwitz aims to prove that documentaries on the Holocaust can inform, educate and – above all – entertain.

 

Our goal is to secure agreement with a major distribution outlet such as Netflix, National Geographic, History Channel, Discovery or PBS, with secondary sales to one or more Israeli television networks for annual viewing on Holocaust Memorial Day. In parallel, we’ve already been approached by a Holocaust educational foundation interested in developing material for high school teachers to coincide with the projected debut in 2020, the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the camps.

 

BIOGRAPHIES

 
 
Do not hesitate to contact me to discuss or learn more about the project.
barbara@opall-rome.com
Tel: 202 262-1724
+972 54 804-0272

© 2019 by Barbara Opall-Rome

Design by Liat Perry