A reader from Poland objected to my writing that I have heard that the Poles were worse than the nazis y'ms:
"Ok, I'm Polish and as much as I love you rabbi you're wrong about the Poles.
During WW2 there was a severe punishment for even giving a piece of bread to a Jew. Not only was the person that helped a Jew killed but so was his Whole Family. And yet there were at least 400 families that had great hearts and even pregnant women that paid the highest price. 400 that we know of and many others forgotten because "Poles were worse than nazis"… Polish people were not angels but neither were French and others who packed their Jews on trains with no pity whatsoever. Why everybody picks on Poles constantly I can't comprehend. My grandfather was Jewish and many Jews survived because of bravery of Polish folks. Please, don't follow blindly anti Polish propaganda. G-d bless.
It is nice to think that you are right, but I heard that when survivors returned from the ghettos and camps to their homes in Poland the Poles who stole them killed the survivors. I, (thank G-d) was not there and can only go by what I have been told.
I asked an expert, Commander Aryeh Leib. Aryeh Leib is a holocaust survivor who went on to become a commander in the Israel armed forces. He lives in Florida and works all year long educating the public as to what happened during the Holocaust. This is his reply:
Shalom my dear friend Gutman:
There were good Poles, but most of them were happy to get rid of the Jews. As a matter of fact after the war when the owners came back to their houses or apartments, many were killed or most were chased away. I remember receiving them in Prague in 1945 & 1946
I knew one little Irena Sendler who saved single handed 2,500 children from the Warsaw Ghetto. I just honored her at our Holocaust gathering for her great work that she saved all those children. She saved their names in a jar, to give them back to their families after the war. You can see her name at "Yad Vashem."
Also Dudu Fisher's father was saved with 15 members of his family by a Polish family. His name is also at "Yad Vashem."
A total of 26,000 names are at "Vad Vashem." Rabbi Lau was just talking about them at our Washington Embassy.
I hope this gives you a better picture. Today we are received in Poland in Krakow, Auschwitz, Warsaw better than before.
I'm on my way to another "March of the Living" with the boys from the yeshiva Torat Shraga of Jerusalem, and after that back to Jerusalem.
Looking forward to seeing all of you at the Kotel.
Best Regards to all,
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