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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 5, 2004 / 18 Menachem-Av, 5764

Lessons from the other Warsaw Uprising

By Jonathan Tobin

A year after the Jews perished, their neighbors stood alone as others watched them die too


http://www.jewishworldreview.com | This month marks the 60th anniversary of the other Warsaw uprising. Though it is little remembered outside of Poland, the lessons of this terrible battle are worth remembering for a number of reasons in a world where collective action against evil still seems to be a difficult.


I am not referring to the Warsaw ghetto uprising.

The Warsaw 1944 Uprising monument on the day of its unveiling

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That battle, which began on Passover in 1943, was long over when 16 months later their Polish neighbors rose against the German occupiers on Aug. 1, 1944.


In 1943, after a month of hopeless and honorable heroism, the last stand of the doomed and pitifully outnumbered and outgunned Jewish fighters had ended in the complete destruction of the ghetto. Other than a precious few who escaped to safety, all of the fighters and the Jews they sought in vain to protect were either killed or transported to the death camps.


Over a year later, it was the Poles turn to fight a valiant, but ultimately doomed battle. In August 1944, with the tide of the Second World War already turned decisively against Adolf Hitler, the Soviet Union's Red Army had expelled the Germans from their own borders and were advancing from the East on the Polish capital.


With the Germans seemingly on their heels, the Polish government in exile in London ordered the Polish resistance, called the Home Army, to rise and expel their German occupiers, much as the French did that same month when U.S. troops neared Paris.


But unlike the French — whose August uprising was facilitated by an American offensive designed to save them from a German counterattack and the planned destruction of the City of Lights — the Poles waited for help in vain.

A NATION IS SACRIFICED AGAIN
Soviet dictator Josef Stalin had already won the tacit agreement of the British and the Americans to communist hegemony over Eastern Europe, and had no interest in letting the Poles have a hand in their own liberation as the Americans generously allowed the French. Not for the first time, Poland was being sacrificed by great power politics.


So instead of continuing the Red Army's offensive in Poland, he ordered his troops to halt, and literally watch from the eastern bank of the Vistula River as the Germans regrouped and exacted their revenge on the Poles. Stalin also refused the British and Americans, who belatedly thought to aid the doomed Poles, the use of his airbases for supply drops.



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Despite a heroic resistance that lasted 63 days, the Poles, joined by Jews who came out of hiding, were overwhelmed by the German forces that, like the Nazi attack on the Jews a year earlier, included many non-German collaborators. More than 100,000 Poles died, many of whom were, like so many of their Jewish neighbors, murdered by the Nazis in cold blood.


After the last Polish patriots were killed or forced to surrender, the Germans forced all the remaining inhabitants to leave — and then leveled the city. The following January, the Soviets finally moved forward and "liberated" Warsaw. Stalin installed a compliant government of Polish Communists. True Polish independence would have to wait until the collapse of the Soviet Union nearly half a century later.


In the years since, as the Jewish world honored the memory of the ghetto fighters and their struggle, Poles nursed their grudges in bitter silence. Under Communist rule, the memory of the August uprising was ignored. It is only now, as a truly independent Poland honors the heroes of 1944, that the story is being told elsewhere.


For Jews, this other Warsaw uprising has always been remembered with bitter irony.


Though many non-Jewish Poles and some in the Home Army sought to assist the doomed Jewish revolt in 1943, the Jewish fighters and the tens of thousands of helpless civilians they sought to protect ultimately were left to fight and die alone, without aid from the Allies or local partisans.


Polish Jews had suffered official anti-Semitism before 1939 during the country's brief period of independence. They would encounter it again after the war, when some Poles viewed the pitiful few Jews who were able to return to their homes with hate.


But as much as it is necessary for the Poles to come to terms with their own record of anti-Semitism, the story of the events of August 1944 should not be told with anything but respect for the Poles who fought and died with honor for their country.


Yet there is more to be gleaned from this sad tale than adding another chapter to the volumes of Nazi atrocity and Soviet perfidy. The history of the martyrdom of Poland bears special significance for the world today.


Today, the Jews are again under attack, both by a Palestinian war of terrorism and a propaganda war of anti-Semitism, whereby the State of Israel — the place where the survivors of the Shoah found refuge in their ancient homeland — is deligitimized.

LESSONS FOR TODAY
At the same time, the rest of the civilized world is also involved in a war, one against fundamentalist Islamic terrorists who seek to destroy Western freedoms.


But like some in the Europe of the 1930s and 1940s, there are many in the West who would like to pretend that the struggle of the Jews for survival is not one related to their own. Though the terrorists have killed thousands in New York and Madrid — and plot who-knows-what sort of mayhem for the future — many, especially in Europe, think the Jews of Israel are expendable.


So rather than join with the Israelis in a common fight against an Islamic movement that has taken up the cudgels that the Nazis laid down in 1945, they stand aside and seek to hamstring the Jews' efforts to defend themselves. They even condemn a defensive fence that seeks to deter suicide bombers, and have the gall to compare it to the ghetto walls that once encircled Jews. They forget that the same killers who today seek the death of the Jews will someday, if they get the chance, come for them, too.


The memory of both the Jewish and the non-Jewish victims of 1943 and 1944 should serve as a reminder that there is no substitute for collective action against a collective threat.


The war on Islamic terror, like the war against Nazism, cannot be divided between a Jewish war and a non-Jewish conflict.


As Europe learned 60 years ago, the monster will not be satisfied with only Jewish blood.

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JWR contributor Judy Lash Balint is a Jerusalem based independent journalist and author of "Jerusalem Diaries: In Tense Times" (Click HERE to purchase. Sales help fund JWR.) Comment by clicking here.

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JWR contributor Jonathan S. Tobin is executive editor of the Philadelphia Jewish Exponent. Let him know what you think by clicking here.

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