Guide Isaacs Army: A Story of Courage and Survival in Nazi-Occupied Poland

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Editorial Reviews. From Booklist. Much has been made of supposed Jewish passivity in the Isaac's Army: A Story of Courage and Survival in Nazi-Occupied Poland - Kindle edition by Matthew Brzezinski. Download it once and read it on your.
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An excerpt from a dramatic new account of the young Jews behind the Warsaw Ghetto Underground

Please try again later. Add to Wish List failed. Asking the rival Zionists to share the report they had received from the Polish Boy Scouts was out of the question.


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Even the more impatient and impetuous Edelman, who, at the time, lived on the same street as Isaac and Zivia, never contemplated knocking on their clubhouse door to ask for help. Non-Jews were free to travel into the newly seized territories being incorporated into the General Government, so Bernard Goldstein reached out to a former trade union colleague, a man by the name of Runge, who had served as head of the Polish Federation of Labor before the war and was now active in the Polish Underground.

In the past, Edelman would have acted as a go- between for this sort of message. His job at the Jewish hospital gave him a coveted Ghetto exit pass so he could deliver contaminated blood samples to laboratories on the Aryan side. This made him an ideal courier for the Bund, despite his pronounced Semitic features. The disease had reached epidemic proportions by the fall of , spreading from the horrifically overcrowded refugee shelters to the rest of the Ghetto. Overwhelmed hospitals gave up on treating the ill and could only helplessly study the dead.

So with Edelman sidelined, the Bund had to find other ways of getting its message out. Leaving the Ghetto without a pass became infinitely more perilous on October 10, , when Warsaw district governor Ludwig Fisher announced that henceforth any Jew caught outside the walls would be summarily executed. The death penalty, Fisher added in a statement published in the New Warsaw Courier two days later, would also apply to any Gentile harboring or lending assistance to Jews.

Goldstein was hiding out in a safe house because the Gestapo had recently raided his apartment building on New Linden Avenue. While the two labor leaders talked, shots rang out from the nearby prison. Jews caught outside the Ghetto were being executed.

Isaac’s Army: A Story of Courage and Survival in Nazi-Occupied Poland | Foreign Affairs

The rumors of widespread atrocities in the east, Runge reported, were true. In Vilna, a special pogrom unit of Lithuanians called the Ipatingas, or the Elect, had been created by the Germans.


  1. Newsweek (27 May 2016).
  2. Brzezinski, Matthew [WorldCat Identities].
  3. Isaac's Army by Matthew Brzezinski: | condyridanicp.cf: Books.
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  5. Isaac's Army - Matthew Brzezinski - Google книги.
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  7. In other Lithuanian towns, the SS released violent criminals from jails and put them to work murdering Jews. At his feet lay about fifteen to twenty dead or dying people. Water flowed continuously from a hose washing blood away into the drainage gully. Just a few steps behind this man some twenty men, guarded by armed civilians, stood waiting for their cruel execution in silent submission.

    In response to a cursory wave the next man stepped forward silently and was beaten to death with the wooden club in the most bestial manner, each blow accompanied by enthusiastic shouts from the audience. Once the mound of Jewish bodies at his feet had reached fifty, the Death-dealer fetched an accordion, climbed to the top of the pile of corpses, and played the Lithuanian national anthem. Continue reading: Another, more lethal pogrom in Warsaw.

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    The wave of brutality was not confined to Lithuania. In the town of Radzilow, Germans incited Polish peasants to murder eight hundred Jewish inhabitants on the worn pretext that Jews had denounced Gentiles to the Soviet secret police. The Bund decided to form and begin training a member militia in the event that the Nazis tried to incite another, more lethal pogrom in Warsaw. Both Edelman and Berl Spiegel eagerly joined the fledgling self-defense organization. The money they raised helped thousands hide when the Ghetto was liquidated.

    Isaac’s Army: A Story of Courage and Survival in Nazi-Occupied Poland

    The documents they forged offered lifelines to families desperate to escape the horror of the Holocaust. And when the war was over, they helped found the state of Israel.

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