Skip to comments.Was the Holocaust Inevitable? ( Patrick J. Buchanan )
Posted on 06/20/2008 8:12:50 AM PDT by kellynla
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What is the argument behind your inept sarcasm, exactly?
That the Soviet genocide of Ukrainians in the 1930s justifies the Nazi genocide of Jews in the 1940s?
Could your moral compass be that askew?
Lets use your “moral compass” then.
Not pretending to be a scholar of fifty year old vendettas, let me recap what little I know about Mr. Demjanjuk. After spending his adult life in Cleveland he was determined to be a killer called Ivan the Terrible. He was stripped of his US citizenship and sent to Israel where he was positively identified as the notorios beast and sentenced to death. At the 11th hour the highest court in the land determined that he was in fact not the person for whoms crimes he had been convicted.
Now You say, who the hell cares, he was defineitly (and this time there is no reasonable doubt of course) a Ukranian who collaborated with the Germans a prison guard etc. Remember now, the folks down there in the Ukraine were just coming off the greatest politically motivated mass murder the world has ever witnessed. The fellows who perpetrated this abomination were allied or at least at peace with every other major power on earth. If you were one of the Ukranians lucky enough to still be alive, wronged, would you not revenge? I believe Demjanuk is now what 90? He has spent the last what, twenty years in jails coutrooms and death row? He has not a pound of flesch left.
I thought we were sure, SURE, that he was Ivan the Terrible.
There were Slavs who did collaborate. They were ‘taken care of’ by the anti-collaborationist movements and post-war govermnets. If only Israel would have followed that example and extradited the Communist war criminal Solomon Morel to Poland.
To off-set collaborators, the Poles -specifically - also:
Were the first to fight Hitler.
Belong to the only country that did not have a collaborationist government.
Was the only country where is was a capital crime to give aid to Jews.
Formed the first organized group to help save the Jews - the Zegota.
Sent a soldier - Jan Karski - into the Ghetto (2x) to bring word to the West about what he had seen with his own eyes. He had an audience in 1943 w/ Pres. Roosevelt and Supreme Court Justice Morgenthau
That’s a more balanced view; perhaps you didn’t know it?
The Poles were the first to fight Hitler because Poland was the first country that Hitler attempted to conquer. The Poles did not make a decision to fight Germany; rather, they attempted a last stand. This was over in a few weeks.
Poland didn’t have a collaboration government because the Germans didn’t give it one. Poland was part of “Greater Germany.” Had the Germans wanted a Polish puppet state, they would have made one. This had nothing to do with the desires of Poles.
There were more capital crimes for non-Jews in Poland generally than in occupied Western Europe or Scandinavia. Poland was under martial law. The Germans didn’t have a lot of sentimental feelings about the Poles, whom they regarded as slaves, beneath contempt, etc. That is why the occupation of Poland was particularly harsh.
The Polish Jews weren’t so afraid when the Germans came because they thought the Poles were much more dangerous to them than the Germans.
Most of the Jews (a few hundred) who escaped the Sobibor uprising were then murdered by Polish partisans. There were many other incidents like that.
As I said before, the people who actually worked the concentration camps and ghettos were mostly not German. In Poland, much of the Holocaust staff was naturally made up of Poles.
A large number of Jewish survivors who returned in 1945 and 1946 after the war was over were then murdered by Poles.
So no, I don’t think your views are so balanced.
That's going too far. Some Jews had good memories of Imperial Germany or of German treatment in the First World War. Those who were more informed about Hitler took a different view.
It was also the case that blackmailers and informants could identify Jews who the Germans couldn't find. But it's simply not the case that most Jews would think Poland more dangerous than the Third Reich.
As I said before, the people who actually worked the concentration camps and ghettos were mostly not German. In Poland, much of the Holocaust staff was naturally made up of Poles.
What do you mean by "Holocaust staff" anyway? There were German troops and police. There were Polish prisoners and police who participated. There were prisoners from other countries in the camps. There were also Jewish prisoners and police.
Collaborators played a role in virtually every occupied country. Jewish collaborators played an important role in Eastern Europe. But the Germans were the ones with the weapons and the power.
I just heard that the Nazi’s and the Communists were not true enemies. Now THAT is a NEWSFLASH!
Obviously Jews throughout Europe underestimated what the Germans would do.
Prewar Poland was an extremely anti-Semitic country. During the Nazi occupation, Poles participated rather enthusiastically in the murder of Jews, for instance the Jewabne massacre and a lot of others like it. Polish collaboration is one major reason that only about 50,000 of the prewar Jewish population of 3 million survived.
Jews thought of Poles as being more anti-Semitic than Germans because of the long history of pogroms and other routine violence.
By Holocaust staff, I meant guards, who in fact were usually Ukrainians. So I shouldn’t have said that. When Poles participated in the Holocaust, it was usually outside of the camps.
I know that there were also various instances of Poles risking their lives to help Jews.
Back in the early 1930's communist and Nazis both used competing street gangs to attack liberals and true German nationalists.
I'll continue with yours - it's interesting how your rhetorical choices (both of form and content) illustrate your ideological intentions.
Not pretending to be a scholar of fifty year old vendettas,
And so it begins. "Vendetta" - as if the sytematized slaughter of millions of innocents, and the justice required for such an atrocity, were a feud between two urban crime families like the "Castellamarese War."
let me recap what little I know about Mr. Demjanjuk.
Ah, he's "Mr." Demjanjuk - deserving of respectful address.
After spending his adult life in Cleveland
He was a child before he arrived in Cleveland? His adult life was spent there? Because he was over 40 years of age when he arrived in Cleveland and over 30 years of age when he arrived in America.
he was determined to be a killer called Ivan the Terrible. He was stripped of his US citizenship
The Justice Department did not "determine" him to be Ivan "The Terrible" Marchenko. They accurately determined that he lied extensively on his application for US citizenship and therefore obtained that citizenship fraudulently.
He was then stripped of his citizenship and when israel requested extradition of the criminal alien, the US complied.
and sent to Israel where he was positively identified as the notorios beast and sentenced to death.
He was found to be Marchenko in an Israeli Court - which, like French, Italian, Spanish, Swedish and other court systems - does not conduct its deliberations with a presumption of innocence, but a presumption of neither innocence or guilt.
At the 11th hour the highest court in the land determined that he was in fact not the person for whoms crimes he had been convicted.
He had more than a decade's worth of appeals left when new evidence was introduced that he was a different SS-trained camp guard than Ivan Marchenko. Although it was established as a fact during his trial that he was a concentration camp guard - he admitted in open court that he had been tattooed with a tattoo that the Nazis used only for identifying non-Nordic concentration camp guards - he was set free, because Israel like the USA does not permit a man to be tried twice for the same crimes.
Now You say, who the hell cares, he was defineitly (and this time there is no reasonable doubt of course) a Ukranian who collaborated with the Germans a prison guard etc.
No, what I say is that he should be held accountable for the crimes he committed.
There can be no doubt that he was a concentration camp guard at Sobibor because records which had been unavailable before 1993 are now available to prosecutors, and because Demjanjuk himself admitted in court that he bore a Nazi SS camp tattoo which he had inexpertly removed in order to conceal his status.
Remember now, the folks down there in the Ukraine were just coming off the greatest politically motivated mass murder the world has ever witnessed.
So you are arguing that because Russians starved Ukrainians, Ukrainians were justified in murdering Jews. Fascinating.
The fellows who perpetrated this abomination were allied or at least at peace with every other major power on earth.
What relevance has that to the question of Ivan Demjanjuk's crimes? Your argument is that if someone somewhere does something evil and manages to get away with it, then anyone should feel entitled to do something evil and get a free pass. Again, fascinating.
If you were one of the Ukranians lucky enough to still be alive, wronged, would you not revenge?
Now your choice of words becomes interesting again, using "revenge" as a non-modified verb in the style of Shakespeare - more specifically as in Shakespeare's Merchant Of Venice and even more specifically from the famous soliloquy therein of Shylock, the grasping, greedy and bloodthirsty Jewish stereotype character.
Is this just a coincidence? We'll see in a moment.
That's the style of the question, but what's the rhetorical content?
You are arguing that Ivan Demjanjuk should be allowed to murder other people for fun and pay because other people did that around him when he was a teenager. He has no personal accountability for his actions - in fact his actions were laudable revenge.
Again, fascinating moral perspective.
I believe Demjanuk is now what 90?
So what is the proper statute of limitations on cold blooded murder of women and children?
You are arguing that once someone lives a certain number of years they are no longer responsible for their actions. Again, fascinating moral perspective.
He has spent the last what, twenty years in jails coutrooms and death row?
Rightfully so. He is an accomplice to the murder of thousands of people. He has spent 20 years of sitting around in air conditioned prison cells and courtrooms with family visits, three square meals a day, free medical care, plenty of leisure time for reading, listening to music, watching TV, etc. His innocent victims - who did not have the luxury of individual rooms, or AC, or family time, or leisure, or medical care or even one decent meal a day - have not spent twenty years in boring earthly environs. They have spent the last 65 years dead.
Ivan Demjanjuk has never and can never pay the full price of his crimes. Justice demands that he should pay as much as he can.
He has not a pound of flesch left.
So, it was not a coincidence. We are back to the words of Shylock, a stock character to inhabit the wet dreams of every anti-Semite. And here, interestingly, nkycincinnatikid - usually a good speller - misspells the word "flesh" as "flesch". Or does he misspell? Is it not a variant of the Yiddish "fleisch"?
So we have a lot of easily exploded special pleading for a murderer couched in belittling and codedly anti-Semitic rhetoric.
I hope your hero Pat Buchanan is reading this thread, for your sake. He may have just found his new personal assistant.
No, we were sure that he had lied on his citizenship application and we were sure that he had been a concentration camp guard.
And we were absolutely correct.
We also suspected that he was Ivan Marchenko and therefore allowed him to be extradited to stand trial to determine if he was.
I agree with you. This column by Buchanan is ridiculous. He is distorting history to try and reform the image of Hitler and the Nazis.
I don’t know and I really don’t care. Hitler and the Nazi Party initiated the holocaust and plunged the world into the costliest war history.
Buchanan has lost his mind.
There was always (often violent and deadly) anti-semitism among the peasantry, and the intra-war situation was perilous for the Jewish population in Poland. Nevertheless, one must look at the history of Jews in Poland over a longer period than 20 years. Again, why else would such a large concentration of "hated" people live in a place like Poland? Why wasn't there a Nazi-allied puppet government a la Croatia and Vichy (I don't care what Laval defenders say, that was a puppet government), and why were the only sizeable fascist movement in Poland (the Phalange) actually persecuted by the Nazis?
If it makes you feel any better, 3.5 million Polish gentiles died from 1939-1945.
Of course it doesn’t “make me feel better” that Poles also died in large numbers during the war. But several individuals here seem to be arguing that: (1) the Poles were not particularly anti-Semitic and have a relatively honorable record with regard to the German occupation; (2) the treatment of Polish Catholics is similar to the fate of Polish Jews. Both of those claims are clearly untrue. The latter is borderline denial.
The tolerance of some medieval kings is irrelevant to this discussion. In many European countries, royalty protected Jews from commoners because Jewish taxation was such important sources of crown revenue.
Also, the Jagiello were not exactly Polish. Except for its last members, the Jagiello dynasty spoke Lithuanian and thought of itself as culturally Lithuanian, while ruling Poland.
Three million is what was left after a substantial exodus. Those Jews who didn’t leave before it was too late, because of their various ties to the country and to Polish culture, were very sorry.
As I said before, there wasn’t a Nazi puppet government because the Nazis didn’t allow the Poles to self-govern. If they had, there would have been a German-controlled puppet government.
The Nazis persecuted all Polish political organizations because they considered all Polish politics subversive. The General Government was ruled entirely by the German military.
While they killed millions of Poles, Germans were not attempting to annihilate them. Their intentions were eventual enslavement and exile for the majority of Poles, not death to all of them. Operation Tannenberg was directed against the intellegentsia and the politically active, not against the general Polish populace. The Nazis did not commit genocide against Poles as they did against Jews.
Poland has a long history of major anti-Jewish pogroms.
Jews were expelled from England and France before much of the area that is now Poland was Christianized.
It isn't proper to resign one's commission as soon as one's brothers-in-arms are about to enter into battle - in order to join their enemy.
We forget today that the concept of loyalty to the country as a whole was one that didnt come into being until post-war, and even that evolved over time. Ones loyalty was to that of their home state.
False. The concept of loyalty to the country as a whole was present from the very beginning, and was an essential attitude for the pursuit of the War Of Independence in the first place. It was not until the pernicious notion of oxymoronic "states' rights" became an artificial political ideology following the nullification crisis that this idea took root.
There was always local pride and an insistence on local prerogative, but the concept of the state before the union did not take shape until the drawing of hard sectional lines from 1820 onward.
My main point was what I said to the other fella, Lee alone couldnt have stopped the Civil War had he accepted Lincolns offer.
He could have ended it quite quickly and relatively bloodlessly.
A general of his skill and impetuousness provided with McClellan's vast resources would have taken Richmond in the fall of 1861. The close of hostilities in the east would have crippled the western Confederacy.
If he had turned against Virginia, he wouldve been considered the biggest traitor to the South, bar none, and his name wouldve been forever associated with the likes of Benedict Arnold.
George Thomas, a Virginia regular army officer who remained loyal to the Union, defeated the South's last great army in the West - the Army of the Tennessee commanded by archetypal Rebel John Bell Hood.
Thomas basically destroyed Hood's command and paved the path Sherman took to the sea.
Thomas was not and is not reviled in Virginia, not even among the scattered deadenders still living there, and he certainly is not likened to Benedict Arnold.
He knew that and thats why he did what he did.
In other words, concern for his reputation was paramount.
More than a few men whom wouldve preferred a different course of action were forced to have to choose sides.
Some, like Thomas, made the morally right decision. Some, like Lee, made the morally wrong one.
Moral superiority was not a province exclusive to the North as both sides had their fair share of wrong-headedness.
The cause of war was the question whether or not slavery should be extended to the federal territories. There is only one moral answer to that question and the GOP was in the right.
The North, too, had demogogues, such as Massachusetts Charles Sumner.
The cowardly assault on Sumner - whose only crime was speaking words that the cowards involved didn't like - illustrates the difference between the two sections' rhetoric at that point.
Unfortunately, in two diametrically opposed viewpoints, war is the only solution to reach its ultimate settlement.
A solution to the issue had been proposed. One side was willing to compromise, to sacrifice part of what it wanted in order to reach an accomodation.
One side wasn't and took a calculatedly belligerent stance.
Forgive me, Mr. Wideawake, sir, I just remembered who you are and I already previously stated I would NOT redebate the Civil War in this thread. I should not have bothered engaging you in discussion in the first place, especially upon recalling your hyper-demogoguery and laughably revisionist and morally dubious historical stances in this and many other threads. You remind me exactly of the types of elitist, arrogant, and ungentlemenly hard-liners that pushed border-state Southern Unionist moderates completely and absolutely into the secessionist camp and why there could never be a peaceful settlement.
Probably, but that has more to do with human nature than with anything else. Tyrannies and genocides find collaborators where deprivation is great enough. That the Nazis found collaborators happened in France, Austria, the Netherlands, and the rest of occupied Europe indicates that this wasn't an East European phenomenon.
The Nazis persecuted all Polish political organizations because they considered all Polish politics subversive. The General Government was ruled entirely by the German military.
Maybe this doesn't have the significance some people attribute to it, but it's not wholly without meaning either. The fact that the Germans relied so much on outsiders to do their work in Poland shouldn't simply be ignored or attributed entirely to German, rather than also Polish unwillingness.
During the Nazi occupation, Poles participated rather enthusiastically in the murder of Jews, for instance the Jewabne massacre and a lot of others like it. Polish collaboration is one major reason that only about 50,000 of the prewar Jewish population of 3 million survived.
Clearly there were incidents like that, but I don't know that you can take Jedwabne as a representative event. Saying there was "enthusiastic participation" or "rather enthusiastic participation" based on events that involved only a small part of the population is going too far.
Also, that collaboration was one reason for the low survival rate doesn't mean it was the only reason. Harboring Jews wasn't punishable by death in the West, and even a country as hospitable to Jews as Holland had quite a low survival rate.
It's harder to hide 3 million people than a smaller number, especially if many people need to keep the secret to save someone and only one person has to reveal it to send someone to their death.
That there was anti-Jewish feeling in Poland is hard to deny, but survival rates may not have been that much higher even had relations been better.
It does not say anything significant about Poles or Poland that they had no puppet government, since it was not their decision in any way.
I don’t believe I have said anything to suggest that collaboration was an Eastern European or Polish phenomenon. That is certainly not true, nor is it what I believe.
The Germans knew that the Poles hated them, a hatred intensified by very harsh treatment. However, to a substantial extent, the Poles also hated Jews.
Of course collaboration wasn’t the only reason for the low survival rate of Polish Jews. They endured the Holocaust from 1939 to 1945, longer than most other countries. Poland was governed directly by the German military.
I am also not saying that the Poles could have prevented what happened. There is no way one can know that.
There are too many incidents of Poles killing Jews during (and after) the Holocaust to count. It wasn’t a few isolated incidents. Jedwabne is only the best known.
Regrettable, but largely peaceful political conflict over resources and opportunities or simple separation between groups tended to get painted as hatred because of what happened during the war. I'm not saying everything was fine before, but conflicts that might have been peacefully resolved or superceded are seen in a different light because of the German intervention.
Moreover, Eastern Europe saw a more general war of nationalities -- not just betweem Germans and Jews, or Germans and Poles, or Poles and Jews. There was widespread warfare and killing between Poles and Ukranians and I believe Russians and Ukranians, as well as between different Russian factions, competing Polish groups (which had varying attitudes towards Jews), and conflicting Ukranian movements.
In the East, the Holocaust took place in an enviroment where warfare between different groups was general. Things never went so far in Western Europe (in spite of fighting between collaborators and the resistance in various countries).
In some contexts I think it is fair to generalize about groups “hating” each other... Palestinians & Israelis... the Sinhalese & the Tamils... N. Irish Catholics & Protestants. And so on.
A pogrom isn’t exactly what you would call a political conflict.
The Holocaust against Jews (and Gypsies) was quite distinct from whatever wars between Eastern European nationalities or nations that you are referring to.
I don’t see what point you are trying to make.
That's not entirely fair, since the war and the Germans changed the environment radically, but you do find people taking political conflicts before the war as a prelude to the Holocaust, rather than something that under other circumstances would have resolved over time.
I was also pointing out that violence against Jewish escapees who took up with partisans was often a result of political conflict between various factions, rather than ethnic violence.
I don't think you can draw quite as emphatic a line as you'd like. A guerrilla outfit that did kill Jews might have other victims as well, and many of them also quite as innocent.
Violence against Jews by partisans and other Poles wasn’t their main agenda, but nor was it “political” in nature. It was the result of an antipathy against Jews in Poland that originated long before the 1939 invasion. I never suggested that guerrillas or partisans didn’t have non-Jewish victims.
If I had lived during the civil war I’d have moved out west to chill.
In other words, you can't defend your position - you can only make unbelievably tedious personal comments.
Your measure is taken. See you around.
You would have to have moved out to California or Oregon (or Nevada, if you were a masochist). Even AZ and NM were targeted.
You have a problem with reading ? I already told you I will not redebate the Civil War in this thread. I will also certainly not engage in any discussion with a willfully ignorant and deceitful bigot who harbors a pathological hatred for the South -- in any discussion thread. Have a nice day.
They did the statehood thing during the war, that's a little too involved.
I was thinking Oregon.
For many of the soldiers the Civil War in Oregon was a monotonous, numbing assignment. In their monthly post returns, officers recorded desertions, suicides, and bouts in the brig because of drunkenness and misbehavior. The Indians were quiet on the Siletz and Grand Ronde reservations. The rain was predictable and depressing. "Nothing transpired of importance," recorded Royal A. Bensell, a soldier at Fort Yamhill. Too many days brought that refrain in his Civil War diary.
Nevada being admitted as a state (let alone territory) at the time it was was a bit dubious as its population was so incredibly low and prone to massive (as a percentage) fluctuations. It had only about 6,900 people at the time it was made a territory (!) in 1861 (although the Dakota Territory, also organized the same year, had about the same amount, a little less even).
When folks started flooding into the Bonanza Country (around Virginia City), Lincoln & Congress jumped the gun with admitting it as a state in ‘64. Besides the obvious intention of adding a Republican state (and 3 EV’s to Lincoln’s column), there was also the presumption it would have spectacular growth in the mining areas and that Virginia City in particular would become a large metropolis. For the first 15 years, it looked like it would... that was until the big bust came along and Virginia City was effectively looted for its wealth which was then sent down to San Francisco. Virginia City became a near ghost town (which it still is today) and in many other areas of the state other boom and bust towns sprang up, but between 1880 and 1890, NV’s population (after growing at 600% between 1860-70 and 50% between 1870-80) plummeted by nearly 25%. The state pols then embraced economic radicalism, becoming Free Silverites (and they, in turn, became Democrats after 1900 — indeed, only 5 Republicans were elected Governor from 1890 up until 1978).
Not until 1910 did the state recover its previous losses (and had a more stable population center at Reno — Las Vegas was little better than a hamlet and didn’t take off until the 1950s), but not until 1940 did the state even reach 100,000 and remained the least populous state until Alaska was admitted in 1959.
Anyway, yes, Nevada was certainly not the most ideal place to relocate to during the 1860s. The heat, the rowdy and dangerous primitive mining towns... Just getting out there could get you killed, between the Indians and unscrupulous land speculators giving you fictitious maps to get you where you were going. This was scarcely less than 15 years after the Donner Party came through, barely getting out of the area into California.
As for Oregon, it, too, was very isolated, although not nearly as hot as NV (although there are sections in the SE part of the state that are no different, but those areas then, and today, have almost no one living there). If you weren’t mining or trying to farmstead there was little to do but drink (or if you were lucky to be near a settlement such as Virginia City, you could go whoring with women that would make the ugliest FReeper “Guilty !” hag look like Adriana Lima or Miranda Kerr).
Those were definitely hardy types in those days that could just pull up stakes either alone or with family and move into a dangerous and largely unsettled territory to spread civilization. Hard to believe we’re descended from these folks, they’d be embarrassed at how good we have it these days and the things we routinely complain about... nothing like what they had to endure without a big coddling Socialist nanny-state government.
Ex 32:77 Then the LORD said to Moses, "Go down, because your people, whom you brought up out of Egypt, have become corrupt.
Ex 32:3535 And the LORD struck the people with a plague because of what they did with the calf Aaron had made.
You are, of course, wrong. The US and Israeli governments prosecuted this fellow as Ivan the Terrible, one of the most notorious guards in WWII. When the catastrofe of executing the wrong individual was averted, we then decided that Demaniuk was in fact someone else. So, having sent him to Israel to be executed, we were SURE that he was Ivan then decided he was someone else.
Now, he was no Solomon Morel who is now resident in Israel. Poland has been trying to extradite that war criminal for crimes against humanity. Morel was a member of the secret police who ran a concentration camp in Stalinist times. I don’t agree, but the Israeli arguement is that the statute of limitations on war crimes has run out (and Morel is in bad health), and it’s time to stop prosecuting these people.
Wow, so wrong.
Poland was not first attacked, but first to fight. You forget Austria and Czechoslovakia. The only country to fight from the first to last day of the war. You might think that meant they didn’t agree w/ the Nazi ideology, since they were not in an alliance with them (like Italy or Romania)
Poland was split, and the General Government was not incorporated into the Reich as was Western Poland, known as Wartegau. It did not have a puppet government, but rather was administered directly by the Nazis through their Gen. Hans Frank. So we see Poland was not an ally of the Nazis, and uniquely had no occupation governement. Again, clearly the Poles were enemies of the Nazis.
Poland had the only (exile) government bureau specifically set up to help the Jews (Zegota). It was a capital crime to help the Jews (if the Poles spent the war just persecuting Jews, why need that sort of law?). The largest number of “Righteous of the Gentiles’ in Israel are Polish.
Poland was the largest fighting force in the war after the USSR, USA and UK. Over six million Polish citizens died in the war. 20% of the pilots in the Battle of Britain were Polish. The German code (Enigma) was broken by Poles and given the the British even before the War began.
The Polish (exile) government sent an eye-witness to meet w/ President Roosevelt and Supreme Court Justice Morgenthau to ring the bell among the Allies. Morgenthau famously said he couldn’t believe Karski’s report. The Polish Ambassador told him the young officer was telling his eye-witness report. Morgenthau replied what he meant is that he just couldn’t comprehend the magnitude of what he just heard.
The Jewish community threw itself into the defense following September 1; check the Katyn list. Not sure why you think the Jews weren’t concerned over the Germans; I think you are confused with Jewish support for the Soviets. Read Jan T. Gross’ book “Revolution from Abroad” which has a section “A Friendly Reception” about how Jews (among other non-Polish minorities) greeted the Soviets w/ kisses, parades and bread and salt.
So yes, some Poles did collaborate w/ the Nazis; true of every society in every war. Poland’s balance is heavily positive, with over six million Polish citizens killed, 90+ percent of Warsaw and 60+ percent of Poznan destroyed among other catastrophic war losses.
You lack a balanced understanding of the post-war period. Unfortunatley, Jewish support and collaboration with the Soviets extended to the post-war period. The (Communist) Interior Minister Berman himself agreed that the leadership of the security services were almost all Jewish. His brother Albert was saved from the Ghetto by Zegota. He repaid them by arresting members of Zegota b/c they were organized by the London government.
Berman himself in an interview with Teresa Toranska (in the book “Them”) notes the extent of the collaboration, saying that there was a large concentration of Jews in certain institutions, a necesary evil ‘because the Polish intelligentsia was boycotting us’ (the Communists). Doesn’t that define collaboration?
In the same book, Stefan Staszewski (a high-ranking commuists whose parents died in Treblinka) said that following Stalin’s death and the reorganization of the party “the Jews were one group (in the party) which didn’t feel threatened at all” Roman Werfel, high ranking party figure and grandson of a rabbi, told Toranska “I can see now that there were too many Jews in the Secret Service”
The moral? Collaboration happens, sadly. No community is defined solely by its collaborators.
Hitler technically didn’t invade Austria. There was a Nazi coup in Austria shortly before the Anschluss. The Anschluss wasn’t unpopular in Austria. Not exactly a similar situation.
You are right about Czechoslavakia. They were invaded in the spring of 1939 and were not organized enough to resist, whether they would have or not. I overlooked that.
I have been saying all along that Poland was administered directly by the Nazis. Not because the Poles made some kind of decision against a collaboration government, but because the Nazis did not want Poland to be an independent polity of any kind. I don’t see how this says anything about the Poles, whose collective opinion was not taken into consideration.
Poland suffered immensely under the Nazis. I certainly do not deny that. But why would that suggest that Poland as a country was braver or more noble than any other? Because of Poland’s brief resistance in 1939 and its resistance movement under the occupation? Every Nazi-occupied country had individuals who sacrificed themselves to oppose Nazi rule. Zegota saved several thousand Jews out of several million murdered from Poland, but that doesn’t change the fact that many more Jews were not helped or were killed by their Polish neighbors during the same period. It is a very sad and mixed legacy, not a remarkably glorious one.
Every country with a substantial Jewish population has had Jewish patriots. Poland was no exception. At the same time, Poland had a long history of brutal anti-Semitism and Jewish anxiety.
One reason that some Jews were hopeful about Soviet rule is that the Soviets promised to abolish anti-Semitic policies, religion being excluded from socialism.
I am dubious that Poland’s postwar Communist security apparatus could have actually been dominated by Jews, since there was only a very small remaining Jewish population in to draw from, while Poland is a country with one of Europe’s largest populations. For that reason alone, it is absurd to blame Jews as a group for Poland’s decades under communism.
Some Jews naturally would have been grateful to the U.S.S.R. for rescuing them from the Holocaust. Collectively, the Russians clearly did much more for them at that time than the Poles did and therefore had a better claim to Jewish loyalty.
Of course I’m right and you are not. Your anti-Polonism stinks.
Poland was administered by the Germans b/c the extermination of Jews and Poles was the point. As I’m sure you know, more Polish Christian than Polish Jews were exterminated by the Germans. What’s more, the Poles would not collaborate (sadly, as my last post pointed out, the Jews collaborated with the Soviets. Comment?)
Poland’s ‘brief’ resistance was followed by having the fourth largest Allied armed force. 20% of the pilots in the Battle of Britain were Polish. It was You, YOURSELF, who said that the Poles collaborated with the Nazis!
Zegota did what it could. They even went to the President of the USA! Not enough for you!
You can doubt what you want; I guess that makes you feel better. Deal with the quotes of the Jews who ran the place and how they see it. Your opinion is — apparently — uninformed.
The Jewish community had many who collaborated with the Soviets. Gross documented it. No surprise that Poles found it a problem Wouldn’t you? You can’t believe that Jews dominated the security aparatus, even though the Jews who did talked about it freely? What’s wrong with you? You can’t deal with those who were there? You know more than the actors themsevles? Read Toranska’s book.
Poland’s Minister of the Interior was Jakub Berman, and the troika who ran the coutnry were Minc, Berman and Beirut. Kasman was in charge of propaganda. Chajn ran the SD, a Communist affiliated party. I already noted Werfel. We can argue opinion, not facts.
I appreciate your post, but it’s weak. You can’t ignore the facts (from their own mouths) that I laid out. You should give up, really, unles you can marshall facts.
Poland’s balance is quite positive. As I said, collaborators existed on all sides. Entire communities can’t be defined by the collaborationist minority.
Who’s blaming Communism on the Jews? I was simply responding the your note that some (a minority)of Poles helpled the Nazis. Guess what? Some Jews (a minority) helped the Soviets. Collaboration happens in all wars. Sadly.
I’m not sure about even your comment “poland’s brutal anti-semitism” That’s an urban myth. Let’s talk facts. Poland ceased to exits in the 18th century. Until then, it was a haven for Jews. Duh, that’s why so many Jews went there.
So let’s get to FACTS. What is the nature of your ‘brutal(hehe)” antisemitism. If you can’t give CONCRETE examples, then it’s anti-polonomism
And if you don’t reply w/ CONCRETE examples, then you are lablelling yourself a BIGOT.
Look, your lack of facts are obvious to all readers. You can’t sustain a thread w/ the lack of any solid info.
So don’t worry that you can’t respond; you will just look even weaker when you try w/o facts. No harm in just letting our thread go, and we’ll leave it at that.
First of all, it is nonsense that Poland has gone in and out of existence. As a cultural nation Poland existed under Austrian, Prussian and Russian control just as it existed under the Third Reich. It is certainly not true that many Poles of the nineteenth century would agree with you that Poland just stopped in 1795 (the Commonwealth in fact having lasted through most of the 18th c.)
I am not guilty of “anti-polononism” [sic].
A few relevant results of an easy and simple, very non-comprehensive internet search for your basic knowledge:
Who is labeling himself a bigot?
I'm actually not at all - but you'll keep making this claim until the cows come home.
You say that Ivan Demjanjuk "was no Solomon Morel."
Both are criminals who did horrendously evil things. Demjanjuk's crimes are absolutely comparable to Morel's - and worse in terms of sheer numbers.
The failure of Israel's government to render justice in this matter is no excuse for Demjanjuk to evade justice.
Two wrongs do not make a right.
I have already said that the casualties of Polish Christians and Jews cannot be compared in absolute #s. Jews were nearly wiped out. Poles in Poland remain plentiful. The Nazis did not try to exterminate Poles; they wanted to enslave and eventually expel the bulk of their population to Siberia.
Like other European countries occupied by the Nazis, Poland had both collaboration and resistance.
Some Polish forces that escaped their defeat continued the fight. No one denies that.
The heroism of Zegota and other “righteous Gentiles” does not make everyone else a saint.
Many Jews who survived owed their lives to the Soviets.
While there were some Jewish officials in Soviet Poland, it is ridiculous to blame Poland’s Soviet era on Jews, which is what you do seem to imply. The Polish masses lived with Communism and provided the great bulk of its leadership for 45 years.
I don’t see how the souls of 3 million POlish Jews weigh mor than 3 million Polish Christians. Clearly, the Jewish community - in the US, Argentina, the USSR, England, etc- was never threatened with extermination. And yes, the Nazis tried to exterminate both peoples. If you want to argue that a Jewish life is worth more than a Christian life, OK.
Poles collaborated with the Nazis. And (some) Jews collaborated with the Soviets. I’m not implying it; I quoted the people who were there. Ignore them, OK.
The heroism of Zegota, the righetous, the millions killed, the millions exiled, the fourth largetst allied army, the first to fight doesn’t make everyone a saint. But it counts (except to you, apparently).
The mass of Communist leadership in 1945 - 1968 was Jewish. Read the book. But I’ve defined collaboration — when the Poles wouldn’t support the Soviets, they found people who would.
Can’t you deal with these facts, and not your urban myths?
Solomon Morel is being denied extraditoin by Israel
We extradited Demaniuk.
That’s a difference.
Obviously, the Nazis could not kill Jews in countries they did not occupy. However, they did attempt to eliminate all Jews in the countries they did occupy in Europe. If they counquered the countries you named, there would be very few Jews left today. They were not trying to kill all Poles. If you were a Polish Catholic in Poland, you would have stood an excellent chance of living through the war. Polish Jews stood an excellent chance of being murdered. It is absurd to claim, as you do, that the two experiences are equivalent.
Jews who “collaborated” with the Soviets had an excellent reason to do so: the Soviets saved their lives. The Soviets liberated Poland from Nazi rule. Communism is oppressive everywhere, but someone living in safety in 2008 does not have the right to criticize Jews who survived the Holocaust in Poland and who were grateful for the arrival of the Soviets, which saved them from certain death. As we have seen, many Poles continued to murder Jews after the war was over, which is why most of the surviving Jews left anyway by 1948. There were a few prominent Polish Jewish Communist leaders like Berman and Minc, but you seem to think that this means that the Jewish community was ruling and victimizing Poland. That is ridiculous antisemitic conspiracy thought. There was barely any Jewish community. Most of those people were dead; most of the few who were not had fled. Jews were an extremely tiny fraction of the population. The Soviet Union forced Communism on Poland. If no Poles supported or tolerated the Soviets, what do you think would have happened? The Hungarians revolted in 1956; the Czechs had the Prague Spring in 1968; the Poles did not make real trouble for Moscow until Solidarity.
I do not deny that Zegota was heroic, but that is not the larger picture. We have gone over how meaningless it is that you keep saying that Poland was the first to fight, since it was not a fight that Poland started or ended. Some Poles who escaped volunteered, but after 1939 the “Polish war effort” is a historical footnote or part of other countries’ war efforts, just as with every other country that was quickly occupied by blitzkrieg. The U.S. and Russia stopped the Nazis. Poland was mowed down by the Nazis.
You are the one who can’t deal with facts because they interfere with your heroic, romanticized conception of Poland. Unfortunately, all sources indicate that Poland during the war and after was more black and gray than white.
I didn't say the cases weren't different.
What I said is that Morel's evasion of justice does not justify any evasion of justice on Demjanjuk's part.
Demjanjuk is not an injured party - he is a murdering dirtbag who has had it far too good for far too long.
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