Saturday, 28 October 2017

Polish were victims and executioners

Poland is a country that enjoys a sympathy among the public who knows history, divided three times between its neighbors over the last centuries, the cruelty they suffered at the hands of the Germans and their quest for independence along the centuries.
However if something has taught WWII is that not everything is white or black and gray tones predominate in all stories.

Surprisingly the anti-Semitism of the Poles was at least as strong as that of the Germans, perhaps greater, because the Germans wanted to steal the possessions of the Jews, it´s one of the causes of the Holocaust if not the greater, but the Poles being poorer that the Germans wanted to steal those goods, apartments, jewels, money they supposed Jews had, even more that the Germans, although many of these were as poor, or more, as the Polish. Unfortunately the Catholic Church made a devil´s work about it too.


 One of the most sinister aspects of anti-Semitism among the Poles is that even in the midst of the struggle against the Germans, for example in the Warsaw uprising, they murdered Jews as soon as possible and, sadly, murdered also many of the few Jewish survivors returning from the camps. concentration to their old apartments, now occupied by Poles.Even more sad is the current (2017) refusal of the Poles to acknowledge their crimes, something that Germans at least have done, and like the Turks with the Armenian genocide, they threaten to imprisonment those who make them public.

We are going to present various testimonies of the victims of the Poles.

KittyHart.Moxon ( Young Polish Jewish woman, Lublin Ghetto

"I got caught many times going out foraging for food and mostly I was denounced and caught by the Poles. You see Germans didn't, couldn't really, identify the Jews; unfortunately the Poles would identify the Jews for the Germans. So when I foraged for food on the 'Aryan' side and bartered goods that my father would give me- perhaps he still had some jewellery that I had to sell- it was the Poles who would say, 'Ah, here is a Jew! Oh quickly, there is a patrol, we'd better hand her in.' And very often I was handed over to a patrol, beaten up and thrown backinto the ghetto without having brought anything back; or even taken to the German headquarters somewhere to scrub floors."

Forgotten Voices ( Lyn Smith ) Page 115.

The ease of recognizing Jews by the Poles is due to the difference of Jewish population in Poland compared to Germany, in Poland there were 3,000,000 Jews out of a total population of 34,000,000 and in Germany 550,000 Jews out of 79,000,000 in 1939) including Austria and Bohemia-Moravia, ie 8.82% versus 0.69%.

Jews in Poland

A relate of  the thirteen-year-old Icchak Soneson :

Gilbert, Martin. The Holocaust (p. 759). RosettaBooks.

     "By the end of October 1944 the Red Army had driven the Germans from eastern Poland and from most of Hungary. In the recently liberated areas, the surviving Jews emerged from their hiding places and returned to their homes. The thirteen-year-old Icchak Soneson had returned with his parents and his younger sister to the village of Ejszyszki. In 1941, Ejszyszki had been the home of two thousand Jews. Only thirty had survived the massacres of the war. ‘We kept together,’ Soneson later recalled, ‘we took a few flats in neighbouring houses. We did our best to rebuild our lives.’ But on October 20 disaster struck. Polish Home Army men, known as ‘White Poles’ attacked the Jewish houses. Soneson’s mother and baby brother were killed, as well as two Soviet soldiers."


Jews in Germany

 Joseph Feigenbaum said :

     "‘Do not imagine’, another survivor, Joseph Feigenbaum, wrote to a friend in the West from the recently liberated town of Biala Podlaska on October 30, ‘that the handful of Polish Jews who survived the massacres have been spared thanks to their cleverness or material resources. No! Death simply did not like them and left them in this vale of woe, so that they may go on struggling with dark and gloomy life while they are bereft, and broken in body and spirit.’"

Gilbert, Martin. The Holocaust (p. 759). RosettaBooks. 

Several Polish crimes after the war :

    The survivors did not expect to be understood. But they did expect to be allowed to live in peace. It was not to be: on August 20 anti-Jewish riots broke out in Cracow, followed by further riots in Sosnowiec on October 25 and in Lublin on November 19. Within seven months of the end of the war in Europe, and after a year in which no German soldier was on Polish soil, 350 Jews had been murdered in Poland.12 Thousands more faced danger when they returned to their home towns and villages. On September 1, Yaakov Waldman, who had escaped the Chelmno deportation from Uniejow on 20 July 1942, was killed in nearby Turek.13 In October 1945 eight Jews were killed in Boleslawiec by one of several Polish underground groups still engaged in killing Jews.14 In December 1945 eleven Jews were killed by Poles in the village of Kosow-Lacki, less than six miles from the former death camp at Treblinka.15 In February 1946, nine months after the Allied victory in Europe, four Jewish delegates to a Jewish communal convention in Cracow were murdered on the train from Lodz. The Polish government offered to give them a state funeral, as victims of anti-Communist forces, albeit Poles. Zerah Warhaftig, one of the main organizers of the convention, refused. ‘I said they died as Jews, not in the fight for Communism.
 On 1 February 1946 the Manchester Guardian published a full report of the situation of the Jews still in Poland. The four headlines to the report read: 


Since the beginning of 1945, the newspaper reported, 353 Jews had been murdered by Polish thugs. ‘Unfortunately,’ it added, ‘anti-Semitism is still prevalent in spite of the Government efforts to counteract it.’ As a result of the war, this anti-Semitism, ‘always present in Polish society’, had been ‘greatly aggravated by German propaganda’. Since the end of the war, ritual murder accusations had been made against Jews in Cracow and Rzeszow. In Radom, a hospital for Jewish orphans had been attacked. In Lublin, two Jews, already wounded by thugs while on a bus, had been tracked down to the local hospital and murdered there, in their hospital beds.
 On 5 February 1946, four Jews were killed in Parczew, the forests of which had been the scene of so much Jewish suffering and heroism scarcely two years earlier. Six weeks later, on March 19, one of only two survivors of the death camp at Belzec, Chaim Hirszman, gave evidence in Lublin of what he had witnessed in the death camp. He was asked to return on the following day to complete his evidence. But on his way home he was murdered, because he was a Jew.
    Five days before Hirszman’s murder, the British Ambassador in Poland, Victor Cavendish Bentinck, reported from Warsaw that food supplies belonging to the Chief Rabbi’s Emergency Council had been allowed to proceed in a car flying the Union Jack. Yet even with this protection, the car had been stopped ‘and four Polish Jews, one of whom was a woman, travelling in it, were taken out and shot by the roadside for being Jews’. The Ambassador added that anyone with a Jewish appearance was in ‘danger’, and on March 28 the Foreign Office learned that a group of Jewish leaders travelling from Cracow to Lodz had been seized, tortured and murdered.
 On Easter Sunday, April 21, five Jews were driving along the main road towards the southern Polish town of Nowy Targ. All five were survivors of Auschwitz, Buchenwald and Mauthausen. The oldest, Benjamin Rose, was thirty-five. Leon Lindenberger was twenty-five. Ludwig Hertz, Henrych Unterbruck, and the only girl among them, Ruth Joachimsman, were twenty-two. 
Kielce July 1946

  As the five Jews approached the outskirts of Nowy Targ, their car was flagged down at what appeared to be a police check-point. The five Jews were ordered out of the car and shot. Their killers had been members of the former underground forces of the Polish Home Army. The five bodies were stripped of their clothing and left naked on the highway.
   The Nowy Targ murders caused consternation among the Jews of Cracow, the nearest Jewish community of any size, a community of survivors. On April 24, at the public funeral organised by the Jewish community in Cracow, five thousand Jews were present, one of whom, Joseph Tenenbaum, later wrote: ‘and there I witnessed something that lashed me with an iron rod. Windows opened, and guffaws poured out from the windows, balconies and porches. Gibes, scabrous and cynical, rained on the marching mourners. “Look, Jas, where did they come from, the Jews? The devil, I never knew so many of them were left alive.”’ 
  Six days after the funeral of the five who had been murdered at Nowy Targ, another seven Jews were murdered at almost the same spot. The oldest, Bela Gold, was forty-three. The youngest, Salomon Dornberg, was eighteen. Their funeral too was held in Cracow, on the evening of May 2, almost a year since the end of the war.
  That same May, Eliahu Lipszowicz, a former deputy to the partisan leader Dr Yehezkiel Atlas, and in 1944 an officer in the Red Army, was murdered by an anti-Semitic Pole at Legnica in Silesia.At Biala Podlaska, in June, two Jews were murdered: of the six thousand Jews in the town in 1939, only three hundred had survived the war. After the killings, those who remained decided to leave Poland altogether.
   No Polish town was free from such incidents. In Piotrkow, a Jewess, Miss Usherowitz, sold her father’s apartment to a Pole for six hundred zlotys, the equivalent of about five American dollars. That same day she was murdered, together with a friend Mrs Rolnik,
and a young man, Mr Maltz, with whom she shared her apartment.

Whether for money or out of hatred, the murder of Jews continued. 

The climax of these post-war killings came on 4 July 1946. Three days earlier, an eight-year-old Polish boy from Kielce, Henryk Blaszczyk, disappeared from his home. Two days later he returned, claiming that he had been kept in a cellar by two Jews who had wanted to kill him, and that only a miracle had enabled him to escape. In fact, he had been to the home of a family friend in a nearby village. The friend had taught him what to say after his return. 

Some places of killing of Jews by Poles after WWII.

  On July 4 a crowd of Poles, aroused by rumours of Jews abducting Christian children for ritual purposes, attacked the building of the Jewish Committee in Kielce. Almost all the Jews who were inside the building, including the Chairman of the Committee, Dr Seweryn Kahane, were shot, stoned to death, or killed with axes and blunt instruments. Elsewhere in Kielce, Jews were murdered in their homes, or dragged into the streets and killed by the mob.
  Forty-two Jews were killed in Kielce that day. Two, Duczka and Adas Fisz, were children. Four, Bajla Gerntner, Rachel Zander, Fania Szumacher and Naftali Teitelbaum, were teenagers on their way to Palestine. Three, Izak Prajs, Abraham Wajntraub and Captain Wajnreb, were officers in the Polish army. Seven could not be named. One of those whose name was unknown was a survivor of Birkenau, a fact disclosed by the tattoo number on his arm, B 2969. The Jews of Kielce published the names of the dead in the one surviving Polish—Jewish newspaper, in a black border. The name of the Jew who had been in Birkenau was never found. The numbers B 2903 to B 3449 had been given to those Jews in a train from Radom on 2 August 1944 who had been ‘selected’ for the barracks. Radom and Kielce are only fifty miles apart. 

Following the Kielce ‘pogrom’, one hundred thousand Polish Jews, more than half the survivors, fled from Poland, seeking new homes in Palestine, Western Europe, Britain and the United States, Latin America and Australia.

Gilbert, Martin. The Holocaust (pp. 818-819). RosettaBooks. 

 After these accounts, it is possible that the Poles do not seem as "victims" as before.

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