Though it tries to deny: a historical perspective on Poland’s Holocaust guilt

Poland has been in the news lately, denying that it was responsible for the Holocaust.
Some years ago, my wife, Deanna, and I took a trip to Central Europe, which included a trip to Auschwitz.
As we walked from room to room, we gaped at the stacks of prisoners’ shoes, eyeglasses, and other personal items that were displayed.
Photographs of victims were hung on the walls. We saw the ovens, yet at no time did the Polish guide use the word “Jew” to describe the victims.
As she was about to leave us, I had to ask, “Weren’t these Jews that were killed?” “They were Polish…Some were Polish Jews. Many were Polish political prisoners,” she brushed us off.
In reality, we know that almost all the victims were Jewish.
We also know that the Polish government’s officials and citizens were complicit in the roundup, capture and transport of local Jewish inhabitants in order to gain favor with their Nazi invaders.
Many tens of thousands of Polish citizens collaborated with the Nazis, burning a barn-full of 1,500 Jews in Jedwabne, spying on and betraying hiding places of others in order to be rewarded by the Nazis.
Even after the Holocaust camps’ liberation, when some Jews attempted to return home, many were attacked, causing some to migrate to Israel.
Yes, many Poles were involved in the attacks and the killings of Jews, but there were also Poles who hid and rescued Jews at the risk of their own lives.
Yad Vashem in Israel has memorialized those Polish Gentiles for their attempts to save Polish Jews.
This past summer, while President Trump was in Europe, he had an opportunity to try to dissuade the Polish president from pushing for a new law that makes it illegal to blame Poland for any aspect of the Holocaust, but he failed to do so.
Poland’s Holocaust Denial Law threatens three years in prison for anyone accusing Poland of being responsible for the Holocaust.

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  1. Roger Foster

    “We also know that the Polish government’s officials and citizens were complicit in the roundup.” You are obviously unaware that there was no Polish Government there at the time. The Polish government was dissolved by the Germans and Soviets in September of 1939. There was a Polish government-in-exile based in London. Do you have a shred of evidence that any Polish government sent officials to round up Jews? Your lack of knowledge makes one conclude that most of what you wrote is bunkum.

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