Scrapbookpages Blog

September 26, 2015

The one and only war crime that was not committed by the Germans

Filed under: Germany, Holocaust, World War II — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 9:19 am

The following quote is from a news article which you can read in full here.

It is hardly possible to exaggerate the guilt of the Nazi regime, but not all of the wartime crimes committed in eastern Europe can be laid at its door.

The above quote is a reference to a crime, in which German Waffen SS soldiers were wrongly blamed. This was the massacre that took place in the Polish town of Jedwabne on July 10, 1941 during the German invasion of the Soviet Union. Sixteen hundred Jews in the town were viciously murdered by the Polish residents, two weeks after the German soldiers had left.

Innocent men, women and children in the town were forced into a barn and then burned alive. The perpetrators claimed that they had been ordered by the Germans to commit this crime, but a trial in 1949 proved that this was a lie.

Map shows location of Jedwabne

Map shows location of Jedwabne

The news story continues with this quote:

Begin quote

The younger men [in Jedwabne] were clubbed to death. Older people, and mothers with children, were driven into a barn that was set alight, burning them to death. When the Soviet Union regained control of the area an investigation into the massacre was ordered and a memorial was erected, announcing that 1,600 Jews had been killed there by the German Gestapo.

It wasn’t until 2000 that this version of events was challenged publicly by the Polish-American historian Jan Tomasz Gross in his book Neighbours. “One day, in July 1941,” Gross wrote, “half of the population of a small east European town murdered the other half.” The killers, in other words, were not the German invaders, but the Polish inhabitants of Jedwabne.

End quote

I wrote this previous blog post about the Jews in Poland:  https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2012/05/22/the-long-road-from-the-shetetls-of-eastern-europe-to-the-good-life-in-america-and-the-uk-via-auschwitz/

Martin Zaidenstadt, who claims to be a Holocaust survivor, was born in 1911 in Jedwabne. Zaidenstadt would be 104 years old if he is still alive. I wrote about him on this page of my websiter:

http://www.scrapbookpages.com/DachauScrapbook/DachauSurvivor.html

6 Comments »

  1. The Soviets couldn’t commit war crimes because they were on the winning side. The absurdity is enough to drive anyone insane.

    Comment by fnn — September 26, 2015 @ 1:54 pm

    • The Soviets committed many war crimes, among them the massacre of of the Polish officers at Katyn (actually these killings occurred at many sites but we know it best from the site the Germans discovered) and the mass rape of German Women during their invasion of Germany.
      The Western allies also committed war crimes, including the killing of German POW’s and their own rape of German women (on a much smaller scale than the Soviets).
      Do you feel better that I’ve brought it up?

      Comment by HCW — September 26, 2015 @ 2:07 pm

  2. The same thing happened in the Baltic states.
    And the Ukraine.

    Comment by HCW — September 26, 2015 @ 1:12 pm

  3. There had been also mass shootings done by Hungarian troops, pogroms in Rumenia done by the Iron Guard members, actions by the Croatian Ustasha, etc. etc.

    Comment by Wolf MURNELSTEIN — September 26, 2015 @ 11:51 am

    • Hungarian troops…Iron Guard members…Croatian Ustasha

      I think also just plain ordinary citizens/civilians took part in such pogroms against Jews — they weren’t really organized or sanctioned — they were more or less spontaneous.

      So Wolf, what can be concluded about all of that? Perhaps that not only the Germans did not like Jews? But that throughout much of Europe Jews were strongly disliked, even hated with what one could call a murderous passion? Why??

      Comment by eah — September 27, 2015 @ 12:16 pm

      • Why don’t you just tell us what you think instead of beating around the bush?

        Comment by HCW — September 27, 2015 @ 12:51 pm


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