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ALEXANDER KIMEL - HOLOCAUST UNDERSTANDING & PREVENTION

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HEROES OF THE HOLOCAUST

WRITTEN by ALEXANDER KIMEL

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We, Holocaust Survivors are so busy telling our stories, that we forgot about the real Heroes of the Holocaust. People who, in the midst of bestiality, when each individual fought for a piece of bread or a day of life, retained the spark of humanity. They recorded history, organized resistance, or willingly sacrificed their lives for the sake of others. Their stories should not be forgotten:

Arthur Zygelboym.

A Jewish representative to the Polish Council, who in May of 1943 committed suicide, writing: "By my death I wish to make my final protest against the passivity in which the world is looking on and permitting the extermination of the Jewish people."

Dr. Janush Korczak

Voluntarily accompanied children of his orphanage to the death camp. "In contrast to the apathetic huddled masses who were herded into the freight cars, all the children were lined up four in a row. Korczak at the head, eyes forward, holding a child with each end, led the procession."

Emmanuel Ringelblum

A promising historian, returned from Geneva to the Warsaw Ghetto to collect and preserve day-by day chronicle of the slaughter. He organized the Oneg Shabat Group, a group that collected and preserved detailed accounts of all atrocities. The buried documents were saved to tell the world the story. In 1944 Ringelblum was killed in Warsaw.

Haim Kaplan

Died in the Warsaw Ghetto, writing his Diary - Scrolls of Agony, to the last moments of his life. It is an extraordinary record of the Nazi occupation and of the destruction of the Jewish Community. It is narrative of the martyrdom of the Polish Jewry, full of visionary warmth.

"The whole nation is sinking in a sea of horror and cruelty. . . I do not know if anyone else is recording the daily events. . .Anyone who keeps such a record endangers his life, but this doesn't alarm me. I sense within me the magnitude of this hour and my responsibility to it. I have an inner awareness that I am fulfilling a national obligation."

Kaplan Dairy, January 1942.

Primo Levy

A "Italian citizen of Jewish race" that survived Auschwitz and wrote several books about his experiences. Harrowing stories of systematic cruelty, miraculous survivals, remarkable for their simplicity, restraint, compassion - a lasting testament to the indestructible human spirit.

Laura Margolis

Submitted by Ernest G. Heppner.

Laura Margolis, came in 1940 to Shanghai, China representing the American Joint Distribution Committee. She extensively helped the Jewish refugees and was arrested by the Japanese secret police. Soon, she was released and continued her efforts in helping the starving 4000 European refugees. After the outbreak of the Pacific War, when Shanghai was occupied by the Japanese, she was interned. She faked illness to be returned to a Shanghai hospital from where she continued her rescue efforts. Presently she lives in an old age home near Boston, all but forgotten by the world. Laura Margolis deserves to be recognized and remembered.

David Szmulewski

Submitted by Walter Plywaski.

David Szmulewski, voluntarily went to Auschwitz, to provide documentation of the the atrocities. In September of 1944 Szmulewski, escaped from Auschwitz with the negatives of the naked Hungarian Jewish women and the pit-burning of "overproduced" corpses. The photos were delivered to the Polish Government in London. Unfortunately, no action was taken by the Allied Command.

Maksymiljan Jozef Plywacki

Submitted by Walter Plywaski.

An inmate of a concentration camp in Riedelhof, entering the final stage of physical and emotional beakdown (the Musulmann stage), he provoked his own death by cursing the SS-man and calling him a shit-dog. He refused to accept the fate of a Musulmann, choosing to be beaten to death. Maksymiljan Jozef Plywacki, died the death of Hero.

Arthur Zygelboym, Dr. Janush Korczak, Emmanuel Ringelblum, Haim Kaplan, Mordecai Anielewicz, Hanah Shenesh, Maksymiljan Plywacki, David Szmulewski, Primo Levy, and many others, are the real Heroes of the Holocaust-"Giborrei Hashoah" and deserve to be rememberd by future generations.

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