paratroopers, their faces blackened so they couldn't be seen in the dark, landed as
well. The French coast was bombarded with 5,500 tons of bombs during the night, and
then, at six in the morning, the first landing craft came ashore. Today there were
20,000 airplanes in action. The German coastal batteries were destroyed even before
the landing; a small bridgehead has already been formed. Everything's going well,
despite the bad weather. The army and the people are "one will and one hope."
FRIDAY, JUNE 9, 1944
Great news of the invasion! The Allies have taken Bayeux, a village on the coast of
France, and are now fighting for Caen. They're clearly intending to cut off the
peninsula where Cherbourg is located. Every evening the war correspondents report on
the difficulties, the courage and the fighting spirit of the army. To get their stories,
they pull off the most amazing feats. A few of the wounded who are already back in
England also spoke on the radio. Despite the miserable weather, the planes are flying
dthgently back and forth. We heard over the BBC that Churchill wanted to land along
with the troops on D Day, but Eisenhower and the other generals managed to talk him
out of it. Just imagine, so much courage for such an old man he must be at least
The excitement here has died down somewhat; still, we're all hoping that the war will
finally be over by the end of the year. It's about time! Mrs. van Daan's constant
griping is unbearable; now that she can no longer drive us crazy with the invasion, she
moans and groans all day about the bad weather. If only we could plunk her down in
the loft in a bucket of cold water!
Everyone in the Annex except Mr. van Daan and Peter has read the Hunaarian
Rhapsody trilogy, a biography of the composer, piano virtuoso and child prodigy Franz
Liszt. It's very interesting, though in my opinion there's a bit too much emphasis on
women; Liszt was not only the greatest and most famous pianist of his time, he was
also the biggest womanizer, even at the age of seventy. He had an affair with
Countess Marie d' Agoult, Princess Carolyne Sayn- Wittgenstein, the dancer Lola
Montez, the pianist Agnes Kingworth, the pianist Sophie Menter, the Circassian
princess Olga Janina, Baroness Olga Meyen- dorff, actress Lilla what's-her-name,
etc., etc., and there's no end to it. Those parts of the book dealing with music and the
other arts are much more interesting. Some of the people mentioned are Schumann,
Clara Wieck, Hector Berlioz, Johannes Brahms, Beethoven, Joachim, Richard Wagner,
Hans von Bulow, Anton Rubinstein, Frederic Chopin, Victor Hugo, Honore de Balzac,
Hiller, Hummel, Czerny, Rossini, Cherubini, Paganini, Mendels- sohn, etc., etc.
Liszt appears to have been a decent man, very generous and modest, though
exceptionally vain. He helped others, put art above all else, was extremely fond of
cognac and women, couldn't bear the sight of tears, was a gentleman, couldn't refuse
anyone a favor, wasn't interested in money and cared about religious freedom and the
Yours, Anne M. Frank
314 ANNE FRANK
TUESDAY, JUNE 13, 1944
Another birthday has gone by, so I'm now fifteen. I received quite a few gifts:
Springer's five-volume art history book, a set of underwear, two belts, a handkerchief,
two jars of yogurt, a jar of jam, two honey cookies (small), a botany book from
Father and Mother, a gold bracelet from Margot, a sticker album from the van Daans,
Biomalt and sweet peas from Dussel, candy from Miep, candy and notebooks from Bep,
and the high point: the book Maria Theresa and three slices of full-cream cheese
from Mr. Kugler. Peter gave me a lovely bouquet of peonies; the poor boy had put a
lot of effort into finding a present, but nothing quite worked out.
The invasion is still going splendidly, in spite of the miserable weather -- pouring
rains, gale winds and high seas.
Yesterday Churchill, Smuts, Eisenhower and Arnold visited the French villages that the
British have captured and liberated. Churchill was on a torpedo boat that shelled the
coast. Uke many men, he doesn't seem to know what fear is -- an enviable trait!
From our position here in Fort Annex, it's difficult to gauge the mood of the Dutch.
No doubt many people are glad the idle (!) British have finally rolled up their sleeves
and gotten down to work. Those who keep claim- ing they don't want to be occupied
by the British don't realize how unfair they're being. Their line of reasoning boils
down to this: England must fight, struggle and sacri- fice its sons to liberate Holland
and the other occupied countries. After that the British shouldn't remain in Hol- land:
they should offer their most abject apologies to all the occupied countries, restore the
Dutch East Indies to its rightful owner and then return, weakened and impoverished, to
England. What a bunch of idiots. And yet, as I've already said, many Dutch people can
be counted among their ranks. What would have become of Holland and its neighbors if
England had signed a peace treaty with Germany, as it's had ample opportunity to do?
Holland would have become German, and that would have been the end of that!
All those Dutch people who still look down on the British, scoff at England and its
government of old fogies, call the English cowards, yet hate the Germans, should be
given a good shaking, the way you'd plump up a pillow. Maybe that would straighten
out their jumbled brains!
Wishes, thoughts, accusations and reproaches are swirling around in my head. I'm not
really as conceited as many people think; I know my various faults and shortcomings
better than anyone else, but there's one difference: I also know that I want to change,
will change and already have changed greatly!
Why is it, I often ask myself, that everyone still thinks I'm so pushy and such a
know-it-all? Am I really so arrogant? Am I the one who's so arrogant, or are they?
It sounds crazy, I know, but I'm not going to cross out that last sentence, because it's
not as crazy as it seems. Mrs. van Daan and Dussel, my two chief accusers, are
known to be totally unintelligent and, not to put too fine a point on it, just plain
"stupid"! Stupid people usually can't bear it when others do something better than they
do; the best examples of this are those two dummies, Mrs. van Daan and Dussel. Mrs.
van D. thinks I'm stupid because I don't suffer so much from this ailment as she does,
she thinks I'm pushy because she's even pushier, she thinks my dresses are too short
because hers are even shorter, and she thinks I'm such a know-it-all because she
talks twice as much as I do about topics she knows nothing about. The same goes for
Dussel. But one of my favorite sayings is "Where there's smoke there's fire," and I
readily admit I'm a know-it-all.
What's so difficult about my personality is that I scold and curse myself much more
than anyone else does; if Mother adds her advice, the pile of sermons becomes so
thick that I despair of ever getting through them. Then I talk back and start
contradicting everyone until the old famthar Anne refrain inevitably crops up again:
"No one understands me!"
This phrase is part of me, and as unlikely as it may seem, there's a kernel of truth in
it. Sometimes I'm so deeply buried under self-reproaches that I long for a word of
comfort to help me dig myself out again. If only I had someone who took my feelings
seriously. Alas, I haven't yet found that person, so the search must go on.
I know you're wondering about Peter, aren't you, Kit? It's true, Peter loves me, not as
a girlfriend, but as a friend. His affection grows day by day, but some mysterious
force is holding us back, and I don't know what it is.
Sometimes I think my terrible longing for him was overexaggerated. But that's not
true, because if I'm unable to go to his room for a day or two, I long for him as
desperately as I ever did. Peter is kind and good, and yet I can't deny that he's
disappointed me in many ways. I especially don't care for his dislike of religion, his
table conversations and various things of that nature. Still, I'm firmly convinced that
we'll stick to our agreement never to quarrel. Peter is peace-loving, tolerant and
extremely easygoing. He lets me say a lot of things to him that he'd never accept
from his mother. He's making a determined effort to remove the blots from his
copybook and keep his affairs in order. Yet why does he hide his innermost self and
never allow me access? Of course, he's much more closed than I am, but I know from
experience (even though I'm constantly being accused of knowing all there is to know
in theory, but not in practice) that in time, even the most uncommunicative types will
long as much, or even more, for someone to confide in.
Peter and I have both spent our contemplative years in the Annex. We often discuss
the future, the past and the present, but as I've already told you, I miss the real
thing, and yet I know it exists!
Is it because I haven't been outdoors for so long that I've become so smitten with
nature? I remember a time when a magnificent blue sky, chirping birds, moonlight and
budding blossoms wouldn't have captivated me. Things have changed since I came
here. One night during the Pentecost holiday, for instance, when it was so hot, I
struggled to keep my eyes open until eleven-thirty so I could get a good look at the
moon, all on my own for once. Alas, my sacrifice was in vain, since there was too
much glare and I couldn't risk opening a window. An- other time, several months ago,
I happened to be upstairs one night when the window was open. I didn't go back down
until it had to be closed again. The dark, rainy evening, the wind, the racing clouds,
had me spellbound; it was the first time in a year and a half that I'd seen the night
face-to-face. After that evening my longing to see it again was even greater than my
fear of burglars, a dark rat-infested house or robberies. I went downstairs all by
myself and looked out the windows in the kitchen and private office. Many people
think nature is beautiful, many people sleep from time to time under the starry sky,
and many people in hospitals and prisons long for the day when they'll be free to
enjoy what nature has to offer. But few are as isolated and cut off as we are from
dle joys of nature, which can be shared by rich and poor alike.
It's not just my imagination -- looking at dle sky, dle clouds, dle moon and dle stars
really does make me feel calm and hopeful. It's much better medicine than valerian or
bromide. Nature makes me feel humble and ready to face every blow with courage!
As luck would have it, I'm only able -- except for a few rare occasions-to view
nature through dusty curtains tacked over dirt-caked windows; it takes dle pleasure
out of looking. Nature is dle one thing for which dlere is no substitute!
One of dle many questions that have often bodlered me is why women have been, and
still are, thought to be so inferior to men. It's easy to say it's unfair, but that's not
enough for me; I'd really like to know the reason for this great injustice!
Men presumably dominated women from the very beginning because of their greater
physical strength; it's men who earn a living, beget children and do as they please. . .
Until recently, women silently went along willi this, which was stupid, since the longer
it's kept up, the more deeply entrenched it becomes. Fortunately, education, work and
progress have opened women's eyes. In many countries they've been granted equal
rights; many people, mainly women, but also men, now realize how wrong it was to
tolerate this state of affairs for so long. Modern women want the right to be
But that's not all. Women should be respected as well! Generally speaking, men are
held in great esteem in all parts ofthe world, so why shouldn't women have their
share? Soldiers and war heroes are honored and commemorated, explorers are granted
immortal fame, martyrs are revered, but how many people look upon women too as
In the book Soldiers on the Home Front I was greatly struck by the fact that in
childbirth alone, women commonly suffer more pain, illness and misery than any war
hero ever does. And what's her reward for enduring all that pain? She gets pushed
aside when she's disfigured by birth, her children soon leave, her beauty is gone.
Women, who struggle and suffer pain to ensure the con- tinuation of the human race,
make much tougher and more courageous soldiers than all those big-mouthed
freedom-fighting heroes put together!
I don't mean to imply that women should stop having children; on the contrary, nature
intended them to, and that's the way it should be. What I condemn are our system of
values and the men who don't acknowledge how great, difficult, but ultimately beautiful
women's share in society is.
I agree completely with Paul de Kruif, the author of this book, when he says that men
must learn that birth is no longer thought of as inevitable and unavoidable in those
parts of the world we consider civthzed. It's easy for men to talk -- they don't and
never will have to bear the woes that women do!
I believe that in the course of the next century the notion that it's a woman's duty to
have children will change and make way for the respect and admiration of all women,
who bear their burdens without complaint or a lot of pompous words!
Yours, Anne M. Frank
FRIDAY, JUNE 16, 1944
New problems: Mrs. van D. is at her wit's end. She's talking about getting shot, being
thrown in prison, being hanged and suicide. She's jealous that Peter confides in me and
not in her, offended that Dussel doesn't re- spond sufficiently to her flirtations and
afraid her husband's going to squander all the fur-coat money on to- bacco. She
quarrels, curses, cries, feels sorry for herself, laughs and starts allover again.
What on earth can you do with such a silly, sniveling specimen of humanity? Nobody
takes her seriously, she has no strength of character, she complains to one and all,
and you should see how she walks around: von hinten Lyzeum, yon vorne Museum.*
[Acts like a schoolgirl, looks like a frump.] Even worse, Peter's becoming insolent,
Mr. van Daan irritable and Mother cynical. Yes, everyone's in quite a state! There's
only one rule you need to remember: laugh at everything and forget everybody else! It
sounds egotistical, but it's actually the only cure for those suffering from self-pity.
Mr. Kugler's supposed to spend four weeks in Alkmaar on a work detail. He's trying
to get out of it with a doctor's certificate and a letter from Opekta. Mr. Kleiman's
hoping his stomach will be operated on soon. Starting at eleven last night, all private
phones were cut off.
Yours, Anne M. Frank
FRIDAY, JUNE 23, 1944
Nothing special going on here. The British have begun their all-out attack on
Cherbourg. According to Pim and Mr. van Oaan, we're sure to be liberated before
October 10. The Russians are taking part in the cam- paign; yesterday they started
their offensive near Vitebsk, exactly three years to the day that the Germans invaded
Bep's spirits have sunk lower than ever. We're nearly out of potatoes; from now on,
we're going to count them out for each person, then everyone can do what they want
with them. Starting Monday, Miep's taking a week of vacation. Mr. Kleiman's doctors
haven't found anything on the X rays. He's torn between having an operation and
letting matters take their course.
Yours, Anne M. Frank
TUESDAY, JUNE 27, 1944
My dearest Kitty,
The mood has changed, everything's going enormously well. Cherbourg, Vitebsk and
Zhlobin fell today. They're sure to have captured lots of men and equipment. Five
German generals were killed near Cherbourg and two taken captive. Now that they've
got a harbor, the British can bring whatever they want on shore. The whole Cotentin
Peninsula has been captured just three weeks after the invasion! What a feat!
In the three weeks since D Day there hasn't been a day without rain and storms,
neither here nor in France, but this bad luck hasn't kept the British and the Americans
from displaying their might. And how! Of course, the Germans have launched their
wonder weapon, but a little firecracker like that won't hardly make a dent, except
maybe minor damage in England and screaming headlines in the Kraut newspapers.
Anyway, when they realize in "Krautland" that the Bolsheviks really are getting closer,
they'll be shaking in their boots.
All German women who aren't working for the military are being evacuated, together
with their children, from the coastal regions to the provinces of Groningen, Friesland
and Gelderland. Mussert* [* The leader of the Dutch National Socialist (Nazi) Party]
has announced that if the invasion reaches Holland, he'll enlist. Is that fat pig planning
to fight? He could have done that in Russia long before now. Finland turned down a
peace offer some time ago, and now the negotiations have been broken off again.
Those numbskulls, they'll be sorry!
How far do you think we'll be on July 27?
Yours, Anne M. Frank
FRIDAY, JUNE 30, 1944
Bad weather from one at a stretch to the thirty June* [Anne's English.] Don't I say
that well? Oh yes, I already know a little English; just to prove it I'm reading An
Ideal Husband with the help of a dictionary! War's going wonderfully: Bobruysk,
Mogilev and Orsha have fallen, lots of prisoners.
Everything's all right here. Spirits are improving, our superoptimists are triumphant,
the van Daans are doing disappearing acts with the sugar, Bep' s changed her hair, and
Miep has a week off. That's the latest news!
I've been having really ghastly root-canal work done on one of my front teeth. It's
been terribly painful. It was so bad Dussel thought I was going to faint, and I nearly
did. Mrs. van D. promptly got a toothache as well!
Yours, Anne M. Frank
P.S. We've heard from Basel that Bernd* [Cousin Bernhard (Buddy) Elias]. played the
part of the innkeeper in Minna von Barnhelm. He has "artistic leanings," says Mother.
THURSDAY, JULY 6, 1944
My blood runs cold when Peter talks about becoming a criminal or a speculator; of
course, he's joking, but I still have the feeling he's afraid of his own weakness.
Margot and Peter are always saying to me, "If I had your spunk and your strength, if
I had your drive and unflagging energy, could. . .
Is it really such an admirable trait not to let myself be influenced by others? Am I
right in following my own conscience?
To be honest, I can't imagine how anyone could say "I'm weak" and then stay that
way. If you know that about yourself, why not fight it, why not develop your
character? Their answer has always been: "Because it's much easier not to!" This
reply leaves me feeling rather discouraged. Easy? Does that mean a life of deceit and
laziness is easy too? Oh no, that can't be true. It can't be true that people are so
readily tempted by ease. . . and money. I've given a lot of thought to what my answer
should be, to how I should get Peter to believe in himself and, most of all, to change
himself for the better. I don't know whether I'm on the right track.
I've often imagined how nice it would be if someone were to confide everything to
me. But now that it's reached that point, I realize how difficult it is to put yourself in
someope else's shoes and find the right answer. Especially since "easy" and "money"
are new and com- pletely alien concepts to me.
Peter's beginning to lean on me and I don't want that, not under any circumstances.
It's hard enough standing on your own two feet, but when you also have to remain
true to your character and soul, it's harder still.
I've been drifting around at sea, have spent days searching for an effective antidote to
that terrible word "easy." How can I make it clear to him that, while it may seem
easy and wonderful, it will drag him down to the depths, to a place where he'll no
longer find friends, support or beauty, so far down that he may never rise to the
We're all alive, but we don't know why or what for; we're all searching for happiness;
we're all leading lives that are different and yet the same. We three have been raised
in good famthes, we have the opportunity to get an education and make something of
ourselves. We have many reasons to hope for great happiness, but. . . we have to
earn it. And that's something you can't achieve by taking the easy way out. Earning
happiness means doing good and working, not speculating and being lazy. Laziness may
look inviting, but only work gives you true satisfaction.
I can't understand people who don't like to work, but that isn't Peter's problem either.
He just doesn't have a goal, plus he thinks he's too stupid and inferior to ever achieve
anything. Poor boy, he's never known how it feels to make someone else happy, and
I'm afraid I can't teach him. He isn't religious, scoffs at Jesus Christ and takes the
Lord's name in vain, and though I'm not Orthodox either, it hurts me every time to
see him so lonely, so scornful, so wretched.
People who are religious should be glad, since not everyone is blessed with the ability
to believe in a higher order. You don't even have to live in fear of eternal punishment;
the concepts of purgatory, heaven and hell are difficult for many people to accept, yet
religion itself, any religion, keeps a person on the right path. Not the fear of God, but
upholding your own sense of honor and obeying your own conscience. How noble and
good everyone could be if, at the end of each day, they were to review their own
behavior and weigh up the rights and wrongs. They would automatically try to do
better at the start of each new day and, after a while, would certainly accomplish a
great deal. Everyone is welcome to this prescription; it costs nothing and is definitely
useful. Those who don't know will have to find out by experience that "a quiet
conscience gives you strength!"
Yours, Anne M. Frank
SATURDAY, JULY 8, 1944
Mr. Broks was in Beverwijk and managed to get hold of strawberries at the produce
auction. They arrived here dusty and full of sand, but in large quantities. No less than
twenty-four crates for the office and us. That very same evening we canned the first
six jars and made eight jars of jam. The next morning Miep started making jam for
At twelve-thirty the outside door was locked, crates were lugged into the kitchen,
with Peter, Father and Mr. van Daan stumbling up the stairs. Anne got hot water from
the water heater, Margot"",went for a bucket, all hands on deck! With a funny feeling
in my stomach, I entered the overcrowded office kitchen. Miep, Bep, Mr. Kleiman, Jan,
Father, Peter: the Annex contingent and the Supply Corps all mixed up together, and
that in the middle of the day! Curtains and windows open, loud voices, banging doors
-- I was trembling with excitement. I kept thinking, "Are we really in hiding?" This
must be how it feels when you can finally go out into the world again. The pan was
full, so I dashed upstairs, where the rest of the family was hulling strawberries around
the kitchen table. At least that's what they were supposed to be doing, but more was
going into their mouths than into the buckets. They were bound to need another
bucket soon. Peter went back downstairs, but then the doorbell rang twice. Leaving the
bucket where it was, Peter raced upstairs and shut the bookcase behind him. We sat
kicking our heels impatiently; the strawberries were waiting to be rinsed, but we stuck
to the house rule: "No running water when strangers are downstairs -- they might
hear the drains."
Jan came up at one to tell us it had been the mail- man. Peter hurried downstairs
again. Ding-dong. . . the doorbell, about-face. I listened to hear if anyone was
coming, standing first at the bookcase, then at the top of the stairs. Finally Peter and
I leaned over the banister, straining our ears like a couple of burglars to hear the
sounds from downstairs. No unfamthar voices. Peter tip- toed halfway down the stairs
and called out, "Bep!"
Once more: "Bep!" His voice was drowned out by the racket in the kitchen. So he ran
down to the kitchen while I nervously kept watch from above. "Go upstairs at once,
Peter, the accountant's here, you've got to leave!" It was Mr. Kugler's voice. Sighing,
Peter came upstairs and closed the bookcase.
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