Mordechai Anielewicz was the leader of the Jewish Fighting Organization, which led the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. His character was engraved as a symbol of courage and sacrifice, to this day his image represents Jewish resistance during the Holocaust. Mordechai Anielewicz was born to a Polish-Jewish family of Abraham and Cyryl née Zaltman, in the town of Wyszków near Warsaw where they met during the reconstitution of sovereign Poland. Shortly after Mordechai's birth, his family moved to Warsaw. Mordechai had a brother and two sisters: Pinchas and Frida, he finished Tarbut elementary with Hebrew instructions in 1933, at the age of 14. Mordechai was a member of the Betar youth movement from 1933 until 1935, he completed the private Jewish Laor Gimnazjum. He switched over to the left-leaning Hashomer Hatzair. At the age of 18 he went to a pre-military Polish training camp. On September 7, 1939, a week after the German invasion of Poland, Anielewicz traveled with a group from Warsaw to the east of the country in the hopes that the Polish Army would slow down the German advance.
When the Soviet Red Army invaded and occupied Eastern Poland in accordance with the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, Anielewicz heard that Jewish refugees, other youth movement members and political groups had flocked to Wilno, under Soviet control. Anielewicz travelled to Wilno and attempted to convince his colleagues to send people back to other Polish occupied territories to continue the fight against the Germans, he attempted to cross the Romanian border in order to open a route for young Jews to get to the Mandate of Palestine, but was caught and thrown into the Soviet jail. He was released a short time and returned to Warsaw in January 1940 with his girlfriend, Mira Fuchrer. While there Anielewicz saw his father for the last time, pressed into forced labor. After returning to Warsaw, Anielewicz organized groups, seminars, secretly attended resistance groups in other cities, founded the underground newspaper Neged ha-zerem. At the beginning of April 1940, the construction of the Warsaw Ghetto began.
It stretched over an area of 3.4 km², a 3 m high wall with barbed wire was built around it. In mid-October, it was established, by mid-November the Germans had driven the Jews from the rest of Warsaw and its surroundings. An estimated 400,000 Jews, representing about 30% of all the city's population, were pushed into an area which took up 2.4% of the city's area. On top of extreme overcrowding, inadequate food supply and disease caused tens of thousands of deaths before deportation began. In October 1941, the German occupation administration in Poland issued a decree that every Jew, captured outside the ghetto without a valid permit, would be executed. After the first reports of the mass murder of the Jews spread at the end of 1941, Anielewicz began to organize defensive Jewish groups in the Warsaw Ghetto, his first attempt to join the Polish resistance, subject to the Polish exile government in London, ended in failure. In March 1942, Anielewicz was among the founders of the anti-fascist group.
It did not have a long duration and it was dissolved. In the summer of 1942, he visited the southwest region of Poland – annexed to Germany – attempting to organize armed resistance. At the same time German authorities launched an operation which aimed at the liquidation of Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto into extermination camps, it was announced that 6,000 Jews were to be dispatched each day, irrespective of gender or age, to leave for labor camps to the east in the resettlement program. The first one set off on July 22, 1942, the eve of the Jewish holiday of Tisha B'Av, the saddest day of Jewish history. By September 12, 1942, German authorities from the Warsaw Ghetto deported 300,000 Jews. A total of 265,000 of them went to Treblinka. More than 10,000 Jews were murdered by the Germans during deportations and 11,850 Jews were sent by authorities to forced labor camps. After the first wave of deportations in mid-September 1942 55 to 60 thousand Jews remained in the ghetto. In October 1942, the Jewish Marine Corps managed to establish contact with the Polish Home Army, able to smuggle a small amount of weapons and explosives into the ghetto.
Since the end of September 1942, the Jews started building fortified bunkers and shelters in the Warsaw Ghetto, there were 600 by January 1943. Each fighter had several hand grenades or Molotov cocktails. There was however a lack of ammunition and heavier weapons – only a few rifles, ground mines, one machine gun were available. On January 18, 1943, the Germans resumed deportation. Anielewicz, together with other members of ŻOB and ŻZW, decided to act. Twelve of them joined a group of evacuated Jews, attacked the German soldiers on the contracted signal. In the subsequent confusion, part of the deported Jews managed to escape. Most of the resistance in the attack died. Anielewicz, who commanded the operation, managed to escape; this first case of armed resistance was of great importance. Among other things, it led to the greater willingness of the Polish underground to provide weapons to the Jewish resistance. Not all weapons, came from underground groups; some of them ŻOB bought from arms dealers.
The beginning of the revolt was a prelude to the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising that began on April 19. Durin
Polish Scouting and Guiding Association
The Polish Scouting and Guiding Association is the coeducational Polish Scouting organization recognized by the World Organization of the Scout Movement and the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts. It was founded in 1918 and is the largest Scouting organization in Poland; the first ZHP was founded in 1916, the current one is the fourth organization with this name. It is a public benefit organization as defined by Polish law; the Polish Scout movement was started in 1910. The ideas of Scouting were implemented by Andrzej Małkowski and his wife Olga; the three main branches of Polish Scouting included the Strzelec paramilitary organization for boys, a sport and education society Sokół and the anti-alcoholic association Eleusis. However, it wasn't until the Partitions of Poland came to an end that the ZHP would be founded by the merging of existing groups. Soon after the merger in 1918, the ZHP members fought in all the conflicts Poland was engaged in around this time: Great Poland Uprising, Polish-Bolshevik War, Silesian Uprisings, Polish-Ukrainian War, much like their predecessors during the Siege of Mafeking.
All of the units joined together in 1918 and formed the ZHP, one of the founding members of the World Organization of the Scout Movement. Although many units retained their own traditions, a common law, common symbols and a common oath was introduced; the primary difference between most Scouting organizations and the Polish Harcerstwo was described by Andrzej Małkowski: Harcerstwo is Scouting plus independence. Before 1939 the ZHP was one of the largest social and educational associations in Poland with over 200,000 members. Among the "sponsors" of Polish Harcerstwo were all the presidents of Poland and several high-ranking officers, including general Józef Haller. After the invasion of Poland of 1939, the ZHP were branded criminals by Nazi Germany, who had executed many Scouts and Guides, along with other possible resistance leaders, but the ZHP carried on as a clandestine organization. In 1940, the Soviet Union executed most of the Boy Scouts held at Ostashkov prison; the wartime Scouts evolved into the paramilitary Szare Szeregi, cooperating with the Polish underground state and the Armia Krajowa resistance.
Older Scouts carried out sabotage, armed resistance, assassinations. The Girl Guides formed auxiliary units working as nurses and munition carriers. At the same time the youngest Scouts were involved in so-called small sabotage under the auspice of the Wawer organization, which included dropping leaflets or painting the kotwica sign on the walls. During Operation Tempest, during the Warsaw Uprising, the Scouts participated in the fighting, several Szare Szeregi units were some of the most effective in combat. In December 1944 the Polish Committee of National Liberation reformed the Scouting movement under the name of the pre-WWII Scouting organization, though with authorities loyal to the puppet government and an ethos in line with that of the Soviet Pioneer Movement, pressuring the organization to become a member thereof altogether disbanding in in that form in 1949; the organization was integrated into the Polish United Workers' Party, with most of its members now part of a new Soviet style, government-sponsored Pioneer organization - the Scouts of the Working Youth of Poland, which retained the original Polish Scouting movement's motto while adopting Pioneer traditions of Eastern Bloc countries, save for the uniform.
The only existing part of pre-war ZHP is the ZHP pgK, established to serve Polish Scouts outside their homeland. In 1956, after Stalin's and Bolesław Bierut's death, the Polish United Workers' Party youth movement ZMP OH was transformed and renamed to ZHP; however the new ZHP did not consider itself as a continuation of the pre-war ZHP, but as a new organization. After 1958 many pre-war instructors were removed from the new ZHP or marginalized and the original oath, educational content and methods were changed, but the most visible change was the transformation from the Pioneer salute back to the two-finger salute. Despite this, the Polish Scouting and Guiding Association became one of the few official organizations that retained some independence from the communist party; because of this, its growth was rapid, in 1980 it had more than three million active members. The Polish Scouts were engaged in a variety of duties, varying from helping in the fields of the most poor regions to organizing the visits of Pope John Paul II.
After the martial law was imposed in 1981 the ZHP was the only large social organization not to be banned. The "VIII ZHP Convention" supported the martial law. However, many of its high-ranking officials were interned because of their involvement in the Solidarność movement, as well as several Scoutmasters; the ZHP would be admitted in the 1980s as part of the Patriotic Movement for National Rebirth. In 1989 after the period of peaceful transformation began, many groups of instructors formed separate Scouting organizations; these moves were prompted by political disagreements with the character of ZHP. ZHR's founding will serve as an adequate ex
Tadeusz Pankiewicz, was a Polish Roman Catholic pharmacist, operating in the Kraków Ghetto during the Nazi German occupation of Poland. He was recognized as "Righteous Among the Nations" by Yad Vashem on February 10, 1983, for rescuing countless Jews from the Holocaust. Pankiewicz studied at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków. In 1933, he took over the proprietorship of the "Under the Eagle" pharmacy founded in 1910 by his father Jozef; the pharmacy was situated on Plac Zgody in Kraków's Podgórze district. Its prewar clientele included Jews. Under the German Nazi occupation of Poland during World War II, Podgórze district was closed off in March 1941 as a ghetto for local area Jewry. Within the walls of the Kraków Ghetto there were four prewar pharmacies owned by non-Jews. Pankiewicz was the only proprietor to decline the German offer of relocating to the gentile side of the city, he was given permission to continue operating his establishment as the only pharmacy in the Ghetto, reside on the premises.
His staff were given passage permits to exit the ghetto for work. The often-scarce medications and pharmaceutical products supplied to the ghetto's residents free of charge improved their quality of life. In effect, apart from health care considerations, they contributed to survival itself. In his published testimonies, Pankiewicz makes particular mention of hair dyes used by those disguising their identities and tranquilizers given to fretful children required to keep silent during Gestapo raids; the pharmacy became a meeting place for the ghetto's intelligentsia, a hub of underground activity. Pankiewicz and his staff, Irena Drozdzikowska, Helena Krywaniuk, Aurelia Danek, risked their lives to undertake numerous clandestine operations: smuggling food and information, offering shelter on the premises for Jews facing deportation to the camps. On February 10, 1983, Tadeusz Pankiewicz was awarded recognition as a "Righteous Among the Nations" for his wartime activities in rescuing Jews. In April of that year, he was present at the inauguration of the national heritage museum housed in the Apteka Pod Orłem building.
Tadeusz Pankiewicz is buried in Kraków's Rakowicki Cemetery. In April 1983, the "Pod Orlem" pharmacy, located at No.18 Plac Bohaterów Ghetta, opened its doors as the Museum of National Remembrance, featuring the history of Kraków Jewry with special focus on the ghetto period. In 2003, it became affiliated with the municipal Historical Museum of Kraków; the wartime activities of Pankiewicz and his staff are featured in an exhibition on the history of the Jewish ghetto in Kraków. The pharmacy was featured in Schindler's List; the film's director Steven Spielberg donated $40,000 for the building's preservation, for which he was honored by the city of Kraków with its prestigious "Patron of Culture" award for the year 2004. The Krakow Ghetto Pharmacy by Tadeusz Pankiewicz, translated from the Polish by Garry Malloy. Kraków: Wydawnictwo Literackie, 2013. ISBN 978-83-08-05114-6; the Cracow Ghetto Pharmacy. New York: Holocaust Library, 1987. ISBN 0-89604-086-0, 089604 0879; the book Apteka w Getcie Krakowskim is available in Hebrew with reprinted editions, published by Yad Vashem and translated from Polish by writer Miriam Akavia.
Wladyslaw Bartoszewski and Zofia Lewin, Righteous Among Nations: How Poles helped the Jews, 1939 - 1945. London: Earlscourt Publications, 1969, pp. 222–226. Includes first-person testimony by Pankiewicz. Wladyslaw Bartoszewski and Zofia Lewin, The Samaritans: Heroes of the Holocaust, ed. Alexander T. Jordan. N. Y.: Twayne Publishers, 1970, pp. 173–178. Sara Bender and Shmuel Krakowski, eds; the Encyclopedia of the Righteous Among the Nations: Rescuers of Jews during the Holocaust. Poland, Volume II. Jerusalem: Yad Vashem Publications, 2004, p. 579. The Eagle Pharmacy: History and Memory: A Collection of Essays Accompanying the Permanent Exhibition Tadeusz Pankiewicz's Pharmacy in the Krakow Ghetto by Jan Gryta, Muzeum Historyczne Miasta Krakowa, 2013. ISBN 9788375771213. Media related to Kraków Ghetto at Wikimedia Commons The "Under the Eagle" Pharmacy guidebook at Historical Museum of Kraków homepage. Tadeusz Pankiewicz – his activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
Social work is an academic discipline and profession that concerns itself with individuals, families and communities in an effort to enhance social functioning and overall well-being. Social functioning refers to the way in which people perform their social roles, the structural institutions that are provided to sustain them. Social work applies social sciences, such as sociology, political science, public health, community development and economics, to engage with client systems, conduct assessments, develop interventions to solve social and personal problems. Social work practice is divided into micro-work, which involves working directly with individuals or small groups. Social work developed in the 19th century, with roots in voluntary philanthropy and grassroots organizing. However, the act of responding to social needs have existed long before primarily from private charities, religious organizations; the effects of the Industrial Revolution and the Great Depression placed pressure on social work to become a more defined discipline.
Social work is a broad profession. Social work organizations offer the following definitions: “Social work is a practice-based profession and an academic discipline that promotes social change and development, social cohesion, the empowerment and liberation of people. Principles of social justice, human rights, collective responsibility and respect for diversities are central to social work. Underpinned by theories of social work, social sciences and indigenous knowledge, social work engages people and structures to address life challenges and enhance wellbeing." International Federation of Social Workers "Social work is a profession concerned with helping individuals, families and communities to enhance their individual and collective well-being. It aims to help people develop their skills and their ability to use their own resources and those of the community to resolve problems. Social work is concerned with individual and personal problems but with broader social issues such as poverty and domestic violence."
- Canadian Association of Social Workers Social work practice consists of the professional application of social work values and techniques to one or more of the following ends: helping people obtain tangible services. The practice of social work requires knowledge of human behavior; this may be helping to protect vulnerable people from harm or abuse or supporting people to live independently. Social workers support people, act as advocates and direct people to the services they may require. Social workers work in multi-disciplinary teams alongside health and education professionals." - British Association of Social Workers The practice and profession of social work has a modern and scientific origin, is considered to have developed out of three strands. The first was individual casework, a strategy pioneered by the Charity Organization Society in the mid-19th century, founded by Helen Bosanquet and Octavia Hill in London, England. Most historians identify COS as the pioneering organization of the social theory that led to the emergence of social work as a professional occupation.
COS had its main focus on individual casework. The second was social administration, which included various forms of poverty relief –'relief of paupers'. Statewide poverty relief could be said to have its roots in the English Poor Laws of the 17th century, but was first systematized through the efforts of the Charity Organization Society; the third consisted of social action – rather than engaging in the resolution of immediate individual requirements, the emphasis was placed on political action working through the community and the group to improve their social conditions and thereby alleviate poverty. This approach was developed by the Settlement House Movement; this was accompanied by a less defined movement. All had their most rapid growth during the nineteenth century, laid the foundation basis for modern social work, both in theory and in practice. Professional social work originated in 19th century England, had its roots in the social and economic upheaval wrought by the Industrial Revolution, in particular the societal struggle to deal with the resultant mass urban-based poverty and its related problems.
Because poverty was the main focus of early social work, it was intricately linked with the idea of charity work. Other important historical figures that shaped the growth of the social work profession are Jane Addams, who founded the Hull House in Chicago and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931. Social work is an interdisciplinary profession, meaning it draws from a number of areas, s
Wilhelm Adalbert Hosenfeld a school teacher, was a German Army officer who by the end of the Second World War had risen to the rank of Hauptmann. He helped to hide or rescue several Polish people, including Jews, in Nazi-occupied Poland, helped Polish-Jewish pianist and composer Władysław Szpilman to survive, hidden, in the ruins of Warsaw during the last months of 1944, an act, portrayed in the 2002 film The Pianist, he was taken prisoner by the Red Army and died in Soviet captivity in 1952. In October 2007, Hosenfeld was posthumously honoured by the president of Poland Lech Kaczyński with a Commander’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta. In June 2009, Hosenfeld was posthumously recognized in Yad Vashem as one of the Righteous Among the Nations. Hosenfeld was born into the family of a pious Roman Catholic schoolmaster living near Fulda, his family life had a Catholic character, Christian charitable work was emphasized during his education. He was influenced by the Catholic Action and Church-inspired social work, but by Prussian obedience, by German patriotism, during his marriage, by the increasing pacifism of his wife, Annemarie.
He was influenced by the Wandervogel movement and its adherents. From 1914, he saw active service in the First World War, after being wounded in 1917 received the Iron Cross Second Class. Hosenfeld was drafted into the Wehrmacht in August 1939 and was stationed in Poland from mid-September 1939 until his capture by the Soviet Army on 17 January 1945, his first destination was Pabianice, where he was involved in the building and running of a POW camp. Next, he was stationed in Węgrów in December 1939, where he remained until his battalion was moved another 30 km away to Jadów at the end of May 1940, he was transferred to Warsaw in July 1940, where he spent the rest of the war, for the most part attached to Wach-Bataillon 660, part of the Wach-Regiment Warschau in which he served as a staff officer and as the battalion sports officer. A member of the Nazi Party since 1935, as time passed Hosenfeld grew disillusioned with the party and its policies as he saw how Poles, Jews, were treated, he and several fellow German Army officers felt sympathy for all peoples of occupied Poland.
Ashamed of what some of their countrymen were doing, they offered help to those they could whenever possible. Hosenfeld befriended numerous Poles and made an effort to learn their language, he attended Mass, received Holy Communion, went to confession in Polish churches though this was forbidden. His actions on behalf of Poles began as early as autumn 1939, when against regulations he allowed Polish prisoners of war access to their families and pushed for the early release of at least one. During his time in Warsaw, Hosenfeld used his position to give refuge to people, regardless of their background, including at least one politically persecuted anti-Nazi ethnic German, who were in danger of persecution arrest by the Gestapo, sometimes by getting them the papers they needed and jobs at the sports stadium, under his oversight. Hosenfeld surrendered to the Soviets at Błonie, a small Polish city about 30 km west of Warsaw, with the men of a Wehrmacht company he was leading, he was sentenced to 25 years of hard labor for alleged war crimes, on account of his unit affiliation, was tortured by the Soviet secret services, as they believed Hosenfeld had been active in the German Abwehr or the Sicherheitsdienst.
In a 1946 letter to his wife in West Germany, Hosenfeld named the Jews whom he had saved and begged her to contact them and ask them to arrange his release. In 1950, Szpilman learned the name of the German officer. After much soul searching, Szpilman sought the intercession of a man whom he considered "a bastard", Jakub Berman, the head of the Polish secret police. Several days Berman paid a visit to the Szpilman's home and said that there was nothing he could do, he added, "If your German were still in Poland we could get him out. But our comrades in the Soviet Union won't let him go, they say your officer belonged to a detachment involved in spying – so there is nothing we can do about it as Poles, I am powerless". Szpilman never believed Berman's claims of powerlessness. In an interview with Wolf Biermann, Szpilman described Berman as "all powerful by the grace of Stalin," and lamented, "So I approached the worst rogue of the lot, it did no good." Hosenfeld died in a Soviet prison camp on 13 August 1952, shortly before 10:00 in the evening, from a rupture of the thoracic aorta sustained during torture.
Szpilman's son, Andrzej Szpilman, had long called for Yad Vashem to recognize Wilm Hosenfeld as a Righteous Among the Nations, non-Jews who risked their lives to rescue Jews. Along with him, the Szpilman family and thousands of others asked that Hosenfeld be honoured in this way for his acts of kindness throughout the war. In 2002, The Pianist, a film based on Szpilman's memoirs of the same name, portrayed Hosenfeld's rescue of Władysław Szpilman. Hosenfeld was played by Thomas Kretschmann. In October 2007, Hosenfeld was posthumously honoured by the president of Poland Lech Kaczyński with a Commander’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta. On 16 February 2009, Yad Vashem announced that Hosenfeld would be posthumously recognized as Righteous Among the Nations. On 19 June 2009, Israeli diplomats presented Hosenfeld's son, with the award, in Berlin. On December 4, 2011, a commemorative plaque in Polish and English was unveil
The Kovno ghetto was a ghetto established by Nazi Germany to hold the Lithuanian Jews of Kaunas during the Holocaust. At its peak, the Ghetto held 29,000 people, most of whom were sent to concentration and extermination camps, or were shot at the Ninth Fort. About 500 Jews escaped from work details and directly from the Ghetto, joined Soviet partisan forces in the distant forests of southeast Lithuania and Belarus; the Nazis established a civilian administration under SA Brigadefuhrer Hans Cramer to replace military rule in place from the invasion of Lithuania on June 22, 1941. The Lithuanian Provisional Government was disbanded by the Nazis after only a few weeks, but not before approval for the establishment of a ghetto under the supervision of Lithuanian military commandant of Kaunas Jurgis Bobelis, extensive laws enacted against Jews and the provision of auxiliary police to assist the Nazis in the genocide. Between July and August 15, 1941, the Germans concentrated Jews who survived the initial pogroms, some 29,000 people, in a ghetto established in Vilijampolė.
It was an area of small primitive houses and no running water, cleared of its Jewish population in pogroms by Lithuanian activists beginning on June 24. The ghetto had two parts, called the "small" and "large" ghetto, separated by Paneriai Street and connected by a small wooden bridge over the street; each ghetto was enclosed by barbed wire and guarded. Both were overcrowded, with each person allocated less than ten square feet of living space; the Germans and Lithuanians destroyed the small ghetto on October 4, 1941, killed all of its inhabitants at the Ninth Fort. The Germans continually reduced the ghetto's size, forcing Jews to relocate several times.. That same month, on October 29, 1941, the Germans staged what became known as the "Great Action." In a single day, they shot around 10,000 Jews at the Ninth Fort. The ghetto in Kovno provided forced labor for the German military. Jews were employed as forced laborers at various sites outside the ghetto in the construction of a military airbase in Aleksotas.
The Jewish council, headed by Dr. Elkhanan Elkes created workshops inside the ghetto for those women and elderly who could not participate in the labor brigades; these workshops employed 6,500 people. The council hoped; as an act of defiance an underground school was conducted in the Kovno Ghetto when such education was banned in 1942. A remarkable photo of one of the classes of that school features in the US Holocaust publication, "The Hidden History of the Kovno Ghetto". Identification of the teacher visible in that photo is given in a website that deals with the hidden school.. On March 27-28, 1944, some 1,600 children aged 12 or less, alongside many of their parents who attempted to intervene, elderly people aged 55 or more 2,500 in total, were rounded up and murdered in the Kinder Aktion. 40 Jewish Ghetto policemen who refused under torture to disclose hiding locations where murdered. During this time, police cars roamed the Ghetto streets and music was blared over loudspeakers to mute the terrified screams of families.
Reports of similar actions at other towns had reached the Ghetto prior to the round-up, some parents managed to smuggle their children to non-Jewish foster homes outside the Ghetto. However, the vast majority of Ghetto children where murdered. Few Jewish children survived by the time Kovno was liberated by the Russian forces on August 1, 1944. From 1942 births were not permitted in the ghetto and pregnant women faced death; however a number of babies of ages from about 9 months to 15 months were smuggled out of the Kovno Ghetto to willing Lithuanian foster mothers. The orchestra operated in the ghetto between November 1, 1942 and September 15, 1943, its leader and musical conductor was the famous pre-war Lithuanian musician Michael Hofmekler. The orchestra performed about 83 concerts, most of them were held in the building of the former Slobodka Yeshiva. In the autumn of 1943, the SS assumed control of the ghetto and converted it into the Kovno concentration camp. Wilhelm Göcke served as the camp's commandant.
The Jewish council's role was drastically curtailed. The Nazis dispersed more than 3,500 Jews to subcamps where strict discipline governed all aspects of daily life. On October 26, 1943, the SS deported more than 2,700 people from the main camp; the SS sent those deemed fit to work to Vaivara concentration camp in Estonia, deported surviving children and the elderly to Auschwitz. On July 8, 1944, the Germans evacuated the camp, deporting most of the remaining Jews to the Dachau concentration camp in Germany or to the Stutthof camp, near Danzig, on the Baltic coast. Three weeks before the Soviet army arrived in Kovno, the Germans razed the ghetto to the ground with grenades and dynamite; as many as 2,000 people were shot while trying to escape the burning ghetto. The Red Army occupied Kovno on August 1, 1944. Of Kovno's few Jewish survivors, 500 had survived in forests or in a single bunker which had escaped detection during the final liquidation. Throughout the years of hardship and horror, the Jewish community in Kovno documented its story in secret archives, diaries and photographs.
Many of these artifacts lay buried in the ground. Discovered after the war, these few written remnants of a once thriving community provide evidence of the Jewish community's defiance, oppression and death. George Kadish, for example, secretly
Ángel Sanz Briz
Ángel Sanz Briz was a Spanish diplomat who served under Francoist Spain during World War II. He saved the lives of some five thousand Hungarian Jews from deportation to Auschwitz. Sanz Briz is sometimes referred to as "the angel of Budapest". Sanz Briz was born on September 1910 in Zaragoza, he earned a degree in law at the Central University of Madrid, in 1933 entered the diplomatic School in Madrid. At the beginning of the Spanish Civil War he volunteered to join the Nationalist side of the struggle, serving as a truck driver in the Cuerpo de Ejército Marroquí, a unit of Francisco Franco's army created in 1937 and commanded by General Juan Yagüe. After completing his studies in Madrid, his first diplomatic posting was to Cairo, he was sent to Budapest in 1942. Between June and December 1944, he and his assistants issued fake Spanish papers to 5,200 Jews, saving them from deportation to concentration camps, he received authorization to provide papers to 200 Jews, continued to enlarge this amount until he reached 5,200.
In some cases, he acquired houses in Budapest at his own cost in order to provide shelter for the refugees, which made the difference between life and death for those Jews. He convinced the Hungarian authorities that Spain, under the dictator Miguel Primo de Rivera had given Spanish citizenship to descendants of Sephardic Jews expelled from Spain in 1492. Primo de Rivera had issued such a decree on December 20, 1924 but it had been cancelled in 1930, a fact the Hungarian authorities were not aware of. Sanz Briz dutifully informed the Spanish Foreign Ministry of his actions, which were neither forbidden nor encouraged by Madrid. In 1944, as the Red Army approached Budapest, he followed government orders to leave for Switzerland, he was replaced by the Italian Giorgio Perlasca, who pretended to be a Spanish consul and continued to issue Spanish visas and to patrol the safehouse system for Jews set up by Sanz Briz. After these events, Sanz Briz continued his diplomatic career: he was posted to San Francisco and Washington, D.
C. Ambassador to Lima, Bayonne, The Hague and China. In 1976 he was sent to Rome as Ambassador of Spain to the Holy See, where he died on June 11, 1980. Sanz Briz himself tells how he was able to save the lives of so many Jews, in Federico Ysart's book Los judíos en España, he is the subject of the 2011 Spanish television series El ángel de Budapest, based on Diego Carcedo’s book Un español frente al Holocausto. In 1942 he married Adela Quijano y Secades, with whom he had four children: Adela, Paloma, Ángeles, Juan Carlos. Sanz Briz died June 1980 in Rome. In 1991, he was recognized by the Holocaust Museum Yad Vashem of the State of Israel, who gave his family the title of Righteous Among the Nations. In 1994 the Government of Hungary gave him the Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Hungary. In 2015, a Budapest street was renamed as Angel Sanz Briz Avenue. Gilberto Bosques Saldívar The angel of Budapest - Angel Sanz Briz, by Salvo Haim Alhadeffas in the European Sephardic Institute Ángel Sanz Briz: International Raoul Wallenberg foundation Angel Sanz Briz