Letter received June 29th 2005


"Accusing Poles of Nazism is of course nonsense, as Nazis were members of the Nazi party, which only existed in Germany. In interwar Poland there were neither Nazis nor Fascists, albeit the latter had a related grouping in Poland: the Endeks.


Between the years 1939 and 1941, as a 6-8 year old child, I lived in Soviet occupied Lwow. I went to a Polish school together with Catholic Poles. I myself considered myself Polish of Jewish faith, and I have no recollection of any persecution from my teachers or fellow students.


In the summer of 1941 German occupants instigated Ukrainian nationalists to pogroms, however Germans and Ukrainian nationalists under German command did the systematic murders of several thousands of Jews. The final annihilation of about 150.000 Jews of Lwow and about 1.5 million Jews in the entire Ukraine (including the so called Western Ukraine) was a crime entirely ascribed to the Germans. In all occupied countries Germans instigated and found collaborators, yet had the Germans not been present such collaboration had not existed.

It is common knowledge that Poles in Little Poland and Volynia themselves were harassed by Ukrainian militia during the German occupation.


Some Germans and their supporters willingly ascribe their crimes to others, as to share responsibility and guilt. In the summer of 1941 Poles did not take part in pogroms in Lwow and eastern Little Poland, but were themselves victims.


Unfortunately, in the Podlasie region some Poles did participate in pogroms, such as in Jedwabne and Radziwilow. Yet it is important to point out that had the Germans not urged these people it would not have happened.

My family was renting an apartment from two Polish catholic women, a mother and her daughter. During the "Petliura Day" two Ukrainian militiamen forced their way into our home and dragged away my parents. Our landladies took care of me, an eight-year-old child, all day and encouraged me. My father returned at night, covered in blood - but alive. My mother was murdered by the Germans."


Adam Aptowicz, Israel