Holocaust survivor Edward Mosberg in Kraków March 2019 Talking about Poles helping Jews during Holocaust and about Polish-Israelirelations. He also speaks about israeli minister Israel Katz and his outrageous words about Poland. Also explains the history of nazi collaborators.
I just read this very moving, tragic and excellent book about the Polish Jewish doctor Dolek Guensberg (1908-1990) in General Stanisław Maczek First Polish Armored Division. A large part of the book is about the war on the Western front. But first how the father of the author of the book, Miriam Guensberg’s father, Dolek Guensberg and other Poles fought against the Nazi Germans and Austrians of the Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS in September 1939 in Poland (where Dolek was a army doctor), then how he and his Polish comrades fled to Romania, went from Romania to France, how they fought in France (even harder then the French), how they continued to fight as Partisans, how they made their way to England via Spain, and how they moved from England to Scotland to the Polish army training facilities. How they were trained. How they went to France and landed in Normandy in June 1944, how they fought themselves through France, Belgium and the Netherlands to Germany. How Dolek Guensberg found his Dutch wife and great love, how he had to part from her to go on to the North of the Netherlands and Germany. How many heavily wounded and dying Polish soldiers he saw and tried to help with all limited means he had. Dolek Guensberg learned a great deal during that war treating so many heavily wounded Polish soldiers, but he was also double traumatized, by lozing dear friends of the First Polish Armored Division, but also losing his parents in Poland in Nowy Targ where they were killed during the holocaust by German Nazi units. First his parents had to carry killed other jews to mass graves and after that they were shot themselves. The trauma of this pain and suffering was carried through his life in Post-War Netherlands. But Dolek Guensberg loved his wife and found comfort in contacts with Polish fellow veterans for the rest of his life. His daughter honoured both her father and his Polish comrades of the First Polish Armored Division, and his parents and her grandparents who were murdered in Nowy Targ.
An excellent book I have to say. A great way to honour your father and the Polish veterans who did not only liberated the Dutch city Breda in the province of North-Brabant and the town of Axel in the province of Zeeland, but also many other French, Belgian and other Dutch cities, towns, villages and hamlets from the German and Austrian Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS occupiers and enemies.
Miriam Guensberg wrote the book 'Hero without Fatherland. My father: Polish, Jewish and liberator'.
In Held without a country, the life of the Polish Jew Dolek Guensberg is sketched, who fought as a doctor in the First Polish Armored Division of General Stanisław Maczek . During the liberation of the southern Netherlands he meets his great love. After the war he built a new life with her in Twente and became one of the first Dutch anesthesiologists.
He rarely spoke about the Holocaust and the war. Miriam Guensberg, who wrote several novels about her Polish-Jewish background, this time delves into the eventful past of her father as a biographer. She searches in letters and documents and travels to his native village of Nowy Targ. There she makes horrible discoveries about the fate of her family. She also highlights the uncomprehended (denied) role of the Polish liberators and the tragedy of their homeland sacrificed to Stalin.
The Polish liberation army in which Dolek Guensberg served as army physician, has not only liberated the southern Netherlands, but also large parts of the northern Netherlands.
She searches in letters and documents and travels to his native village of Nowy Targ. There she makes horrible discoveries about the fate of her family.
Your post aroused my interest in the history of Nowy Targ Jews. There was a ghetto with 2200 Jews from Nowy Targ and nearby villages. Most of these people perished, only a few survived. Some who survived the war were killed by anti-communist underground, so called cursed soldiers. Tragic events, no wonder she was shocked. partyzanciakpodhale.pl/zydzi-terror-okupanta/56-zydzi/81-zagada-ydow-nowotarskich
One of the most tragic events was when the daughter (the writer) went to Nowy Targ herself to investigate the fate of her granparents and the parents of Dolek. In the chapter ‘Letter to my grandparents’ she writes about the Holocaust that took place there. She didn’t mentioned the cursed soldiers, because her grandparents were killed by the Einsatzcommando killing squads in August 1942.
The trauma of Dolek is that he left Poland 🇵🇱 in September 1939 and never saw his parents nor his beloved fatherland again.
He mourned both his killed jewish parents and his mostly Roman Catholic comrades in arms that fell in battle in France 🇫🇷, Belgium 🇧🇪, the Netherlands 🇳🇱 and propably Germany 🇩🇪 too. The case of the cursed soldiers was after the killing of Doleks parents in Nowy Targ.
Up to the period between the two world wars, the Jews of Nowy Targ enjoyed good relations with their neighbors. Antisemitic incidents were few, and were met with staunch resistance on the part of public opinion. About the middle 1930's the situation deteriorated. The Nowy-Targ newspaper, Gazetta Podhalenska, preached economic isolation of the Jews, and the Endek incitement threatened the community. Fortunately, for the moment the city authorities resisted its inroads, until finally the Germans attacked Poland and overran the region.
ANTISEMITISM IN NOWY TARG
The year 1938, when I made my aliya, was the last I spent with my family in Nowy-Targ, and I remember it as the year when Polish antisemitism became organized. The Endeks sallied forth on Sundays from the churches and held meetings in their overcrowded club - opposite our home. They strung banners with antisemitic slogans across the streets, taunted Jewish passersby and pelted them with snowballs. They even studied Yiddish to "learn the enemy's language". They published black lists of Poles who bought in Jewish shops, and helped Poles open shops to compete with the Jews. They also set up picket lines in front of the Jewish stores.
The Holocaust in Nowy Targ
The Jewish cemetery of Nowy-Targ was situated outside the town, on the way to the village of Grinkov. At one time it abounded with the headstones on the graves of great rabbis and community leaders, as well as the simple folk. During the Holocaust, this cemetery witnessed the tragic end of Nowy-Targ Jewry. In August 1942, following the last roundup, the town's remaining several hundred Jews were taken there and shot. Among those people were Dolek Guensberg’s parents and thus Miriam Guensberg’s granparents. Their bodies were thrown into a common grave. The Nazis and their helpers among the local populace uprooted all the stones, which the peasants in the area later used for building purposes. Today the cemetery is a neglected, forgotten marker of the past.
Drunk on genocide: how the Nazis celebrated murdering Jews
It was noon in early 1942 as Johann Grüner approached the ‘German House’ in the Polish town of Nowy Targ for lunch. As a mid-level Nazi bureaucrat in occupied Poland, he enjoyed the privileges of power and the opportunity for career advancement that came with duty in the East. The German House, a mix of cultural centre, restaurant and pub, was one of the privileges enjoyed by the occupiers. As he entered the building, he could hear a boisterous celebration within. At the front door, a clearly inebriated Gestapo official passed by, a beer coaster with the number 1,000 written in red pinned to his blouse. Addressing Grüner, the policeman drunkenly bragged: ‘Man, today I am celebrating my 1,000th execution!’
At first glance, the incident at the German House might appear to be a grotesque aberration involving a single depraved Nazi killer. However, such ‘celebrations’ were widespread in the occupied Eastern territories as members of the notorious Schutzstaffel (SS) and the German police routinely engaged in celebratory rituals after mass killings. In fact, among the perpetrators of genocide, heavy drinking was common at the killing sites, in pubs and on bases throughout Poland and the Soviet Union. In another horrific example, a group of policemen charged with the cremation of some 800 Jewish corpses used the occasion to tap a keg. In this case, one of the men, named Müller, had the ‘honour’ of setting fire to ‘his Jews’ as he and his colleagues sat around the fire drinking beer. In a similar case, a Jewish woman recalled the aftermath of a killing operation at Przemyśl in Poland: ‘I smelled the odour of burning bodies and saw a group of Gestapo men who sat by the fire, singing and drinking.’ For these Gestapo men, ‘victory celebrations’ proved to be the order of the day, and followed every killing action or ‘liberation from the Jews’.