on 24 November 2010
This book is essential reading for anybody seriously interested in this period of history. The author goes into detail regarding the part played by the minorities in German atrocities. Tragically some members of the Jewish community are examined and are found to have played a significant role in aiding the Germans. The role of the Judenrat and Jewish police is examined. Also "Group 13", named after the number of the street in the ghetto that their headquarters was based in, and Zagiew or Torch organisation. The Gestapo ran a network of about 1000 Jews to discover hiding Jews and the Poles who were helping them, and spy on and discover Polish or Jewish resistance members.
Authors writing about the Ghetto Uprising describe how they had to combat these organisations and the Jewish police, before they could take on the Germans.
Other ethnic groups are also put under the spotlight, including the Poles themselves.
The author is impartial and devotes a seperate section to each group and examines the evidence available and sources. The time frame is not limited to WW2, but includes the periods before and also the imposition of Communist rule in Poland post 1944.
The book fills out the events that took place in Poland and is not limited to just the genocide of the Jews, but describes each of the minorities in Poland and their relationships between each other and the occupiers. This is something I find lacking in more well known works or readily available texts.
There is a massive list of referances for further reading if required.
Very painful, but necessary reading.