Members of the Jewish police were not the only ones who served the Germans; some Jews acted

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164 Sara Kraus-Kolkowicz, Dziewczynka z ulicy Miłej: Albo świadectwo czasu Holokaustu (Lublin: Agencja Wydawniczo-Handlowa AD, 1995), especially 36–37, 70. See also Gutman and Bender, The Encyclopedia of the Righteous Among the Nations, vol. 5: Poland, Part 2, 573.

165 Stanisław Siekierski, ed., Żyli wśród nas…: Wspomnienia Polaków i Żydów nadesłane na konkurs pamięci polsko-żydowskiej o nagrodę imienia Dawida Ben Guriona (Płońsk: Zarząd Miasta Płońsk, Miejskie Centrum Kultury w Płońsku, and Towarzystwo Miłośników Ziemi Płońskiej, 2001), 118.

166 Rachel Shtibel, The Violin (Montreal: The Concordia University Chair in Canadian Jewish Studies and The Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies, 2002), chapter 27.

167 Account of Dworja Frymet in Grynberg and Kotowska, Życie i zagłada Żydów polskich 1939–1945, 608.

168 Account of Debora Intertur (née Frymet), Internet: .

169 Bogner, At the Mercy of Strangers, 265. The girl was eventually removed from the home and taken to a Jewish children’s home.

170 See, for example, Wroński and Zwolakowa, Polacy Żydzi 1939–1945, 307 (Radzymin, Jadów), 329 (Jedlicz).

171 Bruno Shatyn, A Private War: Surviving in Poland on False Papers, 1941–1945 (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1985), xx, 48–49.

172 Ibid., 186.

173 Diane Armstrong, Mosaic: A Chronicle of Five Generations (Milsons Point, News South Wales: Random House, 1998), 287, 576–81.

174 Ibid., 311.

175 Bednarczyk, Życie codzienne warszawskiego getta, 308.

176 Ibid., 309.

177 Shiye Goldberg (Shie Chehever), The Undefeated (Tel Aviv: H. Leivick Publishing House, 1985), 166.

178 Rosa Lehmann, Symbiosis and Ambivalence: Poles and Jews in a Small Galician Town (New York and Oxford: Berghahn Books, 2001), 119.

179 Musiał, Lata w ukryciu, vol. 2, 329.

180 Iwo Cyprian Pogonowski, “Przykra prawda historyczna,” Nasz Dziennik, February 3, 2005.

181 Assimilationists and converts were generally loathed in the ghettos. In his chronicle of the Warsaw ghetto Emanuel Ringelblum notes that Jewish nationalists were delighted that the Jews were finally separated from the Poles, albeit in ghettos, seeing in this the beginnings of a separate Jewish state on Polish territory. Hatred towards Polish Christians grew in the ghetto because it was believed that they were responsible for the economic restrictions and other hardships that befell the Jews. Moreover, many Jews embarked on a battle against the use of the Polish language in the ghetto, especially in Jewish agencies and education, and were opposed to Jewish converts occupying positions of authority. See Emanuel Ringelblum, Kronika getta warszawskiego: Wrzesień 1939–styczeń 1943 (Warsaw: Czytelnik, 1983), 118, 214–15, 531ff. Some Jewish nationalists simply did not permit the use of the Polish language in their homes. See Antoni Marianowicz, Życie surowo wzbronione (Warsaw: Czytelnik, 1995), 46; Antoni Marianowicz, Life Strictly Forbidden (London: Vallentine Mitchell, 2004). That author also attests to the fact that converts were generally detested (p. 47), and to the pro-German attitudes of some Jews in the ghetto (pp. 66–67, 190). A Jewish memoir describes how children who did not speak Yiddish, which was a German-based language, were ostracized by Yiddish-speaking children in the Warsaw ghetto: they were disparaged as “Poles” and “converts” and were even pelted with rocks. See Małgorzata-Maria Acher, Niewłaściwa twarz: Wspomnienia ocalałej z warszawskiego getta (Częstochowa: Święty Paweł, 2001), 48. A Jewish woman who turned to a bearded Jew in Polish, since she did not speak Yiddish, recalled his hostile reaction: “I think he understood me, but he got very angry that I did not speak Yiddish, so he spat at me, “Du solst starben zwischem goyim!” I did not understand exactly what he said, so I went back to my apartment and repeated it to my mother. “What does ‘Du solst starben zwischem goyim’ mean?” She said, “Who cursed you like this?” She explained to me that he had said, “May you die amongst the goyim!” He said this because if you do not speak Yiddish, you were an outcast.” See Goldberg, Running Through Fire, 39. Rabbi Huberband lamented that he a group of Hassids in the ghetto who were “as drunk as goys.” See Huberband, Kiddush Hashem, 131.

According to one source, there were fewer than 1,600 Christian converts in the Warsaw ghetto; according to other sorces, there may have been as many as 2,000 or even 5,000. See, respectively, Yisrael Gutman, The Jews of Warsaw, 1939–1943: Ghetto, Underground, Revolt (Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press, 1982), 59; Barbara Engelking and Jacek Leociak, The Warsaw Ghetto: A Guide to the Perished City (New Haven, Connecticut, and London: Yale University Press, 2009), 652—translated from the Polish: Barbara Engelking and Jacek Leociak, Getto warszawskie: Przewodnik po nieistniejącym mieście (Warsaw: IFiS PAN, 2001), which was followed by a second revised and expanded edition (Warsaw: Stowarzyszenie Centrum Badań nad Zagładą Żydów, 2013); Peter F. Dembowski, Christians in the Warsaw Ghetto: An Epitaph for the Unremembered (Notre Dame Indiana: Notre Dame University, 2005), 66–68. Rabbi Chaim Aron Kaplan expressed tremendous rancor toward Jewish converts, to whom he attributed the vilest of motives, and rejoiced at their misfortune: “I shall, however, have revenge on our ‘converts.’ I will laugh aloud at the sight of their tragedy. … Conversion brought them but small deliverance. … This is the first time in my life that a feeling of vengeance has given me pleasure.” See Abraham I. Katsh, ed., Scroll of Agony: The Warsaw Diary of Chaim A. Kaplan (New York: Macmillan; London: Collier-Macmillan, 1965), 78–79, 250 (Kaplan suggests that Jewish informers may have been behind their betrayal to the Germans). Traditionally, Jews viewed converts as particularly virulent “enemies of Israel.” See Dembowski, Christians in the Warsaw Ghetto, 101. Even Jewish atheists openly declared their disdain toward converts. See Grace Caporino and Dianne Isaacs, “Testimonies from the ‘Aryan’ Side: ‘Jewish Catholics’ in the Warsaw Ghetto,” in John K. Roth and Elisabeth Maxwell, eds., Remembering for the Future: The Holocaust in an Age of Genocide (Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire and New York: Palgrave, 2001), vol. 1, 194. As many accounts confirm, the general sentiment toward Jewish converts to Christianity living inside the ghetto was one of hostility and loathing. The Orthodox members of the Jewish council attempted to deny Christian Jews the rights and help given to Jews in the ghetto. See Dembowski, Christians in the Warsaw Ghetto, 70. They were detested for everything: their betrayal of Judaism, their use of the Polish language, their education and social and economic status, their alleged air of superiority and anti-Semitism, and even the assistance they received from Caritas, a Catholic relief organization. Soon malicious, but false, stories spread that they had taken over the senior positions in the ghetto administration and controlled the Jewish police force. See Havi Ben-Sasson,”Christians in the Ghetto: All Saints’ Church, Birth of the Holy Virgin Mary Church, and the Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto,” in Yad Vashem Studies, vol. 31 (2003): 153–73. This was so even though, according to one prominent researcher, many if not most of the converts were opportunistic and continued to consider themselves Jews, few of them sustained any connection with their new religion, and “virtually all continued to donate to Jewish religious charities.” See Joseph Marcus, Social and Political History of the Jews in Poland, 1919–1939 (Berlin, New York, Amsterdam: Mouton, 1983), 78. See also Dembowski, Christians in the Warsaw Ghetto, 93; Marian Małowist, “Assimilationists and Neophytes at the Time of War-Operations and in the Closed Jewish Ghetto,” in Joseph Kermish, ed., To Live With Honor and Die With Honor!…: Selected Documents from the Warsaw Ghetto Underground Archives “O.S.” [“Oneg Shabbath”] (Jerusalem: Yad Vashem, 1986), 619–34. (The memoir of Halina Gorcewicz, whose father ostensibly converted to Catholicism when he married her mother, illustrates that even Jews who had fully assimilated linguistically and culturally maintained a strong tribal-like attachment to fellow Jews—perhaps an embodiment of the lingering notion of the oneness of “the chosen people” they had inherited from Judaism. See Halina Gorcewicz’s memoir, Why, Oh God, Why?, posted online at:
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