April 19, 2011 by Marcin.Wilczek
Today marks one of the more somber anniversaries in Polish history, one which is on the one hand inspiring, and on the other heartbreaking, especially when one takes into account the events it celebrates and the historic period they took part in.
Any historically-oriented reader will already know the event mentioned in the opening paragraph – the uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto. This short, and probably clumsy, text is an homage and a bow to those who fell during the tragic events in Warsaw and a hushed cry for them not needing to happen again.
As we all know by now, the uprising in the Warsaw ghetto began on April 19th, 1943, and lasted till May 18th, which may not seem like a long time. But given the circumstances under which it happened, even such a long time was a success in its own right. The Jewish resistance fighters who initiated the uprising were not only short on supplies, they had almost nothing but gut to fight the Nazis with. And fought they did, although for many of them (13’000 killed in the ghetto itself and another 50’000 sent to Nazi concentration camps), this fight proved to be the end.
And yet had they not picked up the scarce arms available, the end would probably have come anyway. It is truly difficult for a person like myself, living in the comfort of peace and more-or-less equality to judge their motives and actions. Yet, I cannot help but feel respect and homage to a group that in the face of imminent death chose not to give up and show the downtrodden inhabitants of a Nazi-occupied Europe that freedom, even for a moment can be worth the ultimate sacrifice. You, the mistreated and persecuted prisoners of the ghetto, were, and are an inspiration not only to the resistance fighters of World War II, but also to us today.
!אני מצדיע לך