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The Pogrom of Kielce

On 4th of July of 2006 the catholic people of Kielce in central Poland
were again intimidated by the alliance of Jews, liberals and
postcommunist. They were humiliated because of the unvailling of a
monument which falsely accused their ancestors of having acted as an
“infuriated mob” and commited hideous crimes on the same day sixty years
on some 40 Jewish victims. Ten years ago on the same day on the 50th
anniversary of the “pogrom of Kielce,” the town had to listen in
presence of a postcommunistr prime minister Cimoszewicz, to verbal abuse
by Elie Wisely, the resident clown of the Holocaust Industry, as Norman
Finkelstein appropriately nicknamed him.

Now another supporter of the Holocaust Industry, named Jan Tomasz Gross
, published a book “Fear: Anti-Semitism in Poland After Auschwitz”
(Random House), which is a part of the offensive by the Jewish World
Congress to make Poland pay 65 billion dollars in damages to the Jews
through JWC. The tactics of JWC were stated by Izrael Singer in Buenos
Aires in Argentina on April 19, 1996 according to Reuter (14.50.17 PDT).
Thus according to a false mitolgy the Poles are accused of being
partners of German Nazis in the killing of Jews.

Gross, the Polish-born American academic who’s books were never reviewed
by the scientific community became successful when he joined the Hocaust
Industry and made the Jedwabne massacre a notoriety in Poland and abroad
with his book earlier book “Neighbors.” He then recycled a Nazi
propaganda scheme and now he recycled a Soviet scheme designed to
justify Soviet postwar pacification of Poland in the book “Fear.”
In both his books, Gross, more a sociologist than historian, attributes
guilt for the crime not only to the perpetrators, but the Polish nation
generally. Gross falsely claims that "it was widespread collusion in the
Nazi-driven plunder, spoliation, and eventual murder of the Jews that
generated Polish anti-Semitism after the war."

Gross claims that Poles feared the return of Jews from Nazi camps,
hiding or exile, and wanted to eliminate them because they had witnessed
“Polish betrayal of Jews” and could expose the "pure, unregenerate evil"
that according to Gross separates the Poloes from civilization. The
Jewis reviewers then exhort Poland to face up to its history and come to
terms with its past and pay $65 billion damages to Jews. Gross offers
little historical data to support his theory on the source of postwar
anti-Semitism in Poland. Gross ignores a recent scholarly work on the
same subject, “After the Holocaust: Polish-Jewish Conflict in the Wake
of World War II,” by Marek Jan Chodakiewicz (East European Monographs,
2003). Gross neglected to mention Poland's dire state in 1946. The
brutal Soviet pacification of Poland at a cost of 25,000 to 50,000 lives
and deportation in excess of 100,000, while at thet time the Jewish
losses are estimated at 800 to 1500, some victims of common criminals
and some killed as Soviet collaborators.

Some Jewish reviewers of “Fear” assert that simply observing the
genocide of the Jews made one guilty of "passive complicity." Wartime
destruction of the Polish nation is not mentioned by Gross.

In Reality “Pogrom of Kielce” of 4th of July, 1946 was one of some 16
pogroms staged by the NKVD in the satellite states in 1945-47 as a
result of Stalin’s decision do use Zionists in establishing the state of
Israel after the Second World War, which would serve as a “bone of
contention in the oil rich Middle East. Thanks to the Soviet support for
the Zionists 711,000 Jews crossed the Iron Courting, in 1945-1947
supposedly in order to emigrate to Palestine. Given a chance ,vast
majority of Jews preferred to go to the United States or stay in France,
and only 232,000 Jewish refugees actually arrived to Palestine to be
armed by the Soviets with Czech weapons for the conquest of Arab land.
Zionists alone organized pogroms in the Arab states and caused exit of
547,000 Jews from Bagdad, Damscus, etc. in 1950-1951. In sum some
1,250,000 Jews were brutally chased from coutries of their residence in
Soviet satellite states and from Arab countries. Some 779,000 Jews
actually arrived in Palestine.
In actual well-documented fact, Polish gentiles helped Jewish people in
Poland extensively during World War II. This assistance included the
hiding of tens of thousands of Jewish people in the homes of Polish
gentiles, which put the gentiles' entire families at risk of death.
Several thousand Polish Christians, including men, women, and children,
were burned alive or otherwise summarily executed for the crime of
hiding or assisting Jews. In no other country during the war were people
subjected to death in this way for providing assistance to Jewish
people. Three million Polish Christian deaths during the occupation
constitute a part of the Polish aspect of the Holocaust.
An exhibit in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington,
D.C., falsely presents events that occurred in Kielce, Poland, in 1946
as part of the Holocaust. It refers to the clearly Soviet-staged
violence in Kielce as a "Polish pogrom." To many visitors of the
Holocaust Museum, the exhibit by its very inclusion seems to suggest
that after the end of World War II, a liberated Polish populace chose to
continue Hitler’s work of exterminating Jewish people. The suggestions
of a Polish-led extension of the Holocaust are patently false. The
Kielce Pogrom had nothing to do with the Nazi German-engineered
Holocaust. It had everything to do with the Soviet-engineered
strangulation of the Polish nation.
Like all effective myths, those related to World War II have some
elements of truth underlying them. In conjunction with the construction
of these myths, though, actual facts and events have been distorted or
misrepresented, and certainly the contexts within which they occurred
have been falsely stated. Sadly, the distortions, misrepresentations and
falsehoods are sometimes purposely and systematically advanced by those
who feel a need to humiliate the Polish nation and members of the Polish
ethnic group from around the world. On the flip side of the coin bearing
the image of anti-Semitism is the image of anti-Polonism. The coin of
anti-Semitism cannot be melted down and destroyed without also melting
down and destroying anti-Polonism.
I will state up front that I have a vested interest in the truth about
World War II and its aftermath being clearly illuminated. I am a veteran
of 64 months of imprisonment in Gestapo prisons, concentration camps,
and death marches. My own ordeal, and the suffering and death of many of
my Polish and Jewish friends and prison-mates, not to mention the
sacrifices made by the young men who fought and died as soldiers, will
have been rendered meaningless if the hatred of Jewish people by the
Nazi leadership is simply replaced by hatred of Polish people by Jewish
people, or vice versa. Those who even today perpetuate myths and
misconceptions about animosities associated with World War II and its
aftermath are not merely bearing false witness—they are willing
accomplices to the spirit of hatred of World War II.
I have seen, first hand, the disgusting, murderous results of ethnic
hatred. I have devoted the latter part of my life to writing about the
long-term coexistence of Polish Jews and gentiles within Poland, and am
committed to trying to help diffuse animosities stemming from World War
II. In this spirit of friendship and respect, I wrote and had published
earlier this decade a documentary history entitled Jews in Poland: The
Rise of Jews as a Nation From Congressus Judaicus in Poland to the
Knesset in Israel. If World War II presented any lessons to the people
of the world, it showed what can eventually happen if ethnic animosities
are allowed to fester and grow.
I will take the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the Kielce
Pogrom to discuss this event in detail and use it as a basis for
discussion of the larger geopolitical situation. This study deals
primarily with the results of Soviet-institutionalized hatred and the
Soviet crime of provoking situations purposely designed to sour
Polish-Jewish relations and was used make Poland a Soviet satellite state.
For this study, the book Poland: Communism, Nationalism,
Anti-Semitism by Michael Checinski (New York: Karz-Cohl Publishing,
1982) is an important source of information for the Cold War period. I
will use Checinski's book as a resource to help illuminate the events
and situations in the aftermath of World War II that relate to
Polish-Jewish relations. Checinski's book details the relations between
Poles and Jews in the postwar "People's" Republic of Poland and the
damage done to these relations under the conditions created by the
Soviets. Checinski was an insider of the Soviet-controlled terror
apparatus. As a Jew who survived the _ód_ Ghetto, Checinski (Chci_ski)
was naturally very sensitive to Soviet policies which fomented and used
anti-Semitic excesses in the satellite empire to serve Soviet purposes
of the time. Checinski's book shows Soviet methods used to bring the
destruction of law and morality to Poland and other satellite states. I
also draw heavily on material from a book by Krystyna Kersten, Polacy
_ydzi-komunizm: anatomia pó_prawd 1939–68 [Poles, Jews, Communism: The
Anatomy of Half-Truths 1939–68] (Warszawa: Niezale_na Oficyna
Wydawnicza, 1992) and also from Pogrom _ydów w Kielcach 4 lipca 1946
[Pogrom of Jews in Kielce, July 4, 1946] by Bo_ena Szaynok, (Warszawa:
Bellona, 1992). Along the way, I will include some necessary background
information relating to World War II.
The Kielce Pogrom in a Nutshell
A "pogrom", a Russian word that translates to "devastation," is
defined as "an organized massacre, especially of Jews in Russia, such as
1881, 1903, and 1905." (The New Lexicon Webster’s Dictionary of the
English Language, 1989.) Anti-Jewish violence in Russia was usually
started with a false accusation that a ritual murder had been
perpetrated on Christian children by local Jews. Violence directed
against the Jews that occurred on July 4, 1946, in the town of Kielce,
referred to as the Kielce Pogrom, is aptly named for several reasons.
For one, it was indeed organized. And as it will be explained in detail,
it was organized by the Soviet-controlled terror apparatus in Poland, a
captured country which was under Soviet occupation at the time. This
pogrom, although not on Russian soil, was arranged by a totalitarian
leadership centered in Russia and it was started with the same technique
of planting a false accusation that a ritual murder had been perpetrated
on Christian children. And as even the common dictionary definition
shows, this is not the first time Russians have instigated this type of
In the Kielce Pogrom, an uprising occurred over the span of eight
hours that resulted first in the death of 41 Polish citizens: 39 Jews,
and two gentiles and then I ashow trial and execution of nine Poles, who
were not present at the site of the pobrom. It was a horrible crime, and
regrettably, there was some complicity among a very small number of
gentile Poles in this inexcusable violence. Some of these Polish
criminals, as will be pointed out, were tried and convicted for their
crimes. The reports, however, of the involvement of a mob of 15,000
cheering Polish citizens are completely untrue. Also, the idea that the
uprising was of a spontaneous nature is also untrue. As it will be shown
in this study, this event was carefully provoked and staged by the
Soviet occupiers at that time. This event was staged to achieve specific
political purposes dictated by Moscow's global strategy including Europe
and the Middle East.
The Soviet-Nazi Partnership
Why would Soviets want to stage an uprising that would embarrass
Poland? After all, didn't both Poland and the Soviets fight alongside of
Britain and the other allies in World War II? Didn't Hitler's German
army invade both Poland and the Soviet Union, and isn't "the enemy of my
enemy my friend?"
There is general public awareness that the United States and the
Soviet Union were World War II partners in the Allied fight against Nazi
Germany. Many fewer, however, are aware of the nearly two-year
Nazi-Soviet partnership embodied in the German-Soviet Boundary and
Friendship Treaty, which was signed on September 28, 1939. It divided
all of Poland between Germany and the Soviet Union and contained secret
provisions for the mutual extermination of potential Polish opponents of
both Germany and the USSR. Both Germany and the USSR agreed to control
their respective parts of Poland. This meant taking all necessary
measures to contain and prevent the emergence of any potential Polish
actions toward either Germany or the USSR, and then communicating with
each other on the progress made toward the goals of the treaty. The
treaty lasted until Germany invaded the Soviet Union in 1941. Soviet
hostility toward Poland and the desire of the USSR to control as much
Polish territory as it could continued beyond the German invasion of Poland.
The Soviets implemented their part of the German-Soviet Boundary
and Friendship Treaty by executing 21,857 members of the Polish
leadership community including a number of Jewish people. Katyn
contained the graves of 4,443 such men and became a symbol of the mass
execution of members of the upper echelon of Polish society in the
Spring of 1940. At the same time Nazi Germany ran a parallel operation
with the code name Aktion AB (Außerordentliche Befriedungsaktion, which
translates to “extraordinary pacification”), culminating in the
execution of about 20,000 Polish professionals.
Because of the German-Soviet Treaty to divide Poland among
themselves, the Eastern half of Poland was under Soviet, not German,
rule from September, 1939 to mid-1941. During that time, there were many
Jewish people who collaborated with the Soviet terror apparatus against
the conquered Polish state. Among the many eyewitnesses to those events
is the famed Polish courier Jan Karski, who was made an honorary citizen
of Israel for his efforts to warn an unresponsive West about the fate of
Poland and Polish Jewry. In February 1940, Karski reported: "Jews are
denouncing Poles to the secret police and are directing the work of the
communist militia from behind the scenes... Unfortunately, one must say
that these incidents are very frequent." (Report to the Polish
Government-in-Exile in London.)
Hundreds of published accounts, including Jewish ones, confirm
that Jews were involved in the roundups of Polish soldiers and officials
(e.g., at Ro_yszcze, Kowel, and Brze__), the jailing and executions of
Poles (e.g., at Lwów, Tarnopol and Czortków), and in policing the
deportation of Poles, by cattle car, to the Gulag (e.g., from Gwo_dziec
and Jedwabne). By the time the Germans attacked their erstwhile Soviet
ally in mid-1941, over one million Poles had been deported to distant
and probable death from towns like Bra_sk. All of this occurred before
the Jewish Holocaust got underway. Naturally, these events had a
significant impact on Polish attitudes, though that was not the only
factor influencing them. Conditions in Bra_sk under Soviet occupation
were detailed in a recent study by Zbigniew Romaniuk, titled "21 miesi_y
w_adzy sowieckiej w Bra_sku", in Ziemia Bra_ka, volume 6 (1995)—it does
not make pleasant reading.
German Occupation of Poland and Control of Jews

By mid-1941, Nazi Germany gained control of all of Poland and the
Nazis continued the establishment of Jewish ghettos that they had
started in 1939. German Nazis formed the Jewish ghettos by evicting
hundreds of thousands of gentiles from their homes and then crowding
many more Jewish families there than the space could reasonably
accommodate. There were no Jewish ghettos in Poland before Germany
started creating them in 1939. It is ironic that some people not well
acquainted with the history of the ghettos have mistakenly thought that
the ghettos were formed by a bigoted Polish population who spitefully
wanted to segregate the Jewish population to selected areas. Instead,
the real truth is that Polish people were unwillingly removed from their
homes by the German Nazis to form the ghettos, and then the Polish
people illegally aided the Jews by bringing them substantial amounts of
food and other supplies.
The Polish Armed Resistance reported that 500,000 Jews were crowded into
the Warsaw Ghetto: 600 people per acre. Hunger, and unspeakably poor
hygienic and sanitary conditions resulted in the spreading of
tuberculosis and other contagious diseases. The Polish Underground
reported: "The isolated ghetto is restricted to internal trade,
consisting of people's private property, clothing, and household goods
which are sold at low prices for extremely expensive food.... There is
no heating fuel in the ghetto.... The health and sanitary conditions are
beyond description—there is a monstrous hunger and poverty....
Overcrowded streets are full of aimless, pale, and starving people....
People die in the streets.... An orphanage is being overcrowded with
daily arrivals of newborn babies.... The plunder of once-affluent Jews well as the treatment of Jews in an exceptionally brutal
Each ghetto had its own Jewish Council (Judenrat) which oversaw
day-to-day affairs and a Jewish police force which carried out
German-Nazi orders to supply laborers and, as pointed out by Jewish
historians such as Isaiah Trunk and Hannah Arendt, to round up Jews for
deportation to death camps. Thus, relatively few German soldiers were
needed for such "Aktions," or official actions by the German government
against the Jewish people. Nor did their success involve any type of
cooperation from Polish gentiles. Because the system set up by the
German Nazis did not rely on Polish police, even the opportunity for the
Polish police to aid the roundup of the Jews was marginal or
non-existent, as pointed out by Raul Hilberg, the foremost Holocaust
historian, in his important work, Perpetrators, Victims, Bystanders: The
Jewish Catastrophe 1933-1945 (New York: Aaron Asher/Harper Collins,
1992). Conditions in the Bra_sk ghetto have been described in Isaiah
Trunk's Judenrat: The Jewish Councils in Eastern Europe Under Nazi
Occupation (New York: Macmillan, 1972), pp. 380, 502; in Brainsk: Book
of Memories (New York: Shoulson Press, 1948); and in a recent study by
sk i okolice w latach_Zbigniew Romaniuk, titled "Bra 1939–1953:
reminiscencje zdarz_", in Ziemia Bra_ka, volume 6 (1995), pp. 3-32.
Bra_sk also had its corrupt Judenrat and ghetto police, and the
liquidation of the ghetto was carried out by German SS divisions and
non-Polish auxiliaries (Ukrainians and Lithuanians). A death penalty was
imposed on any Pole who dared to assist a Jew (though many did in fact
do so notwithstanding.)
Polish gentiles certainly were not the masterminds who formed the
ghettos nor collaborators with the Germans in the brutal treatment of
the Jews. To the contrary, Polish gentiles sabotaged German plans for
the starvation of ghetto inmates. The Polish gentiles made illegal
deliveries of food to the ghettos— including about 25 tons of flour per
day in Warsaw alone. Many Poles were shot by the German soldiers for
making such deliveries. When the daily food ration in Warsaw fell to 184
calories for a Jew, 669 for a Polish gentile, and 2,613 for a German, 80
percent of the food consumed in the ghetto was smuggled in by Polish
gentiles. The supply of raw materials into the ghetto was forty times
greater than that officially permitted, according to the records of the
Jewish Council of the Warsaw Ghetto. (Pogonowski, Jews in Poland, pp.
After Germany's invasion of the Soviet Union and especially after
the defeat at Moscow, Hitler verbally ordered the "Final Solution of the
Jewish Question," namely the extermination of eleven million European
Jews. To work out and communicate the details of implementing the "Final
Solution," the Wannsee Conference was held in Berlin on January 20,
1942. At the conference the Polish leadership community was replaced by
Jews as the main target of the Nazi extermination. Then, the leaders of
the German civil service established the specific means by which the
genocide was to be conducted. As a direct result of the conference, the
Nazi government announced an invitation for bids from German industry to
purchase equipment for an industrial process to exterminate eleven
million European Jews. According to plans developed at the conference,
terrorized Jewish personnel were to be used in the extermination
process. Also, the plans further directed that the extermination camps
were to be isolated from the Polish population for maximum secrecy. For
this reason, the camp guards were recruited from Belarus, Latvia,
Lithuania, and Ukraine. Despite German terror and German attempts to
keep Poles in the dark about the Germans' actions, radio broadcasts made
by the Polish resistance regularly informed the West of German
atrocities in Poland. (Pogonowski, Jews in Poland, pp. 110, 119, 120,
121, 124, 125).
Massive deportations from the Warsaw ghetto in the Summer of 1942
(to the Treblinka death camp) were not carried out with the assistance
of any Polish agency. Indeed, in German-occupied Poland, there was not
even a vestige of a Polish government at that time. Instead, the
deportations were organized by the Jewish police in coordination with
the Judenrat and the occupying German forces. Horrifying descriptions of
this Aktion are found in the diaries of Emanuel Ringelblum, the
chronicler of the Warsaw ghetto, and elsewhere. These sad events are
only a part, but a significant part, of the eventual roundup and
execution by the Germans of a large proportion of Poland's Jews in what
later came to be referred to as the Holocaust.
On April 19, 1943, a Jewish uprising began in the Warsaw Ghetto
as Germans started the final liquidation of the Jews there. The massacre
ended on May 8, 1943. Professor Marian Fuks later wrote: "It is
absolutely certain fact that without help and even active participation
of the Polish resistance movement it would have not been possible at all
to bring about the uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto." (Biuletyn _ydowskiego
Instytutu Historycznego w Polsce/Bulletin of the Jewish Historical
Institute in Poland, January-March 1989, p. 44.) Marek Edelman, the last
surviving leader of the revolt, shares this view: "We didn't get
adequate help from the Poles, but without their help we couldn't have
started the uprising.... You have to remember that the Poles themselves
were short of arms. The guilty party is Nazism, fascism—not the Poles."
(The Canadian Jewish News, November 9, 1989.)
It should go without saying that the German-Nazi occupation and
brutal control of Poland was not welcomed by the Polish people.
Unfortunately, neither could the Polish people find solace in the
eventual Soviet re-entry into Poland and their consequent program of
brutal control. Upon Soviet re-entry into Poland in 1944, the Soviet
terror apparatus was systematically liquidating the remnants of the
Polish Home Army and any perceived Polish opponents of a Soviet takeover
and control of Poland. It is an undeniable fact that many Jews, usually
communist functionaries, were collaborating with the Soviets in
denouncing, jailing, and executing Poles. (See for example, Wanda
Lisowska's 1946 account on conditions in Ejszyszki, another town in
Eastern Poland featured in Shtetl, found in Zeszyty Historyczne, no. 36
(1976), and reproduced at page 29 of this book.)1 Poles suspected of
having either collaborated with the Germans or of being anti-Semitic
could be, and were, executed with impunity. For example, in Drohiczyn,
not far from Bra_sk, nine Polish gentiles were murdered by local Jews
because they were falsely suspected of killing a Jew, a crime in fact
perpetrated by the Soviets [Archiwum Polski Podziemnej: Dokumenty i
y, 1939–1956 (Warszawa, April 1994), volume 2, p. 80.]_materia
Tens of thousands of Polish gentiles were executed in repressions
that affected the lives of hundreds of thousands of innocent Polish
gentiles. The foregoing are not invented facts: both Simon Wiesenthal
(see below) and Stanis_aw Krajewski, vice-chairperson of the Polish
Council of Christians and Jews, among others, have publicly admitted
their shame on this account. Under these types of wartime circumstances,
where Jews were successfully encouraged to betray Polish gentiles to the
Soviet authorities, animosities toward Jews in the general population
were not a matter of anti-Semitism, but simply a matter of survival.
Active Jewish collaboration and popular support for Soviet forces
invading Poland occurred from the beginning of the War. In the book
Poles, Jews, Socialists: The Failure of an Ideal, edited by Antony
Polonsky et al. (London: The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization,
1996)—Polin: Studies in Polish Jewry, volume 9, Dov Levin writes: "The
Red Army entered Vilna [Wilno, Poland] early on the morning of Tuesday,
19 September 1939, to an enthusiastic welcome by Vilna's Jewish
residents, in sharp contrast to the Polish population's reserve and even
hostility. Particular ardor was displayed by leftist groups and their
youthful members, who converged on the Red Army tank columns bearing
sincere greetings and flowers."
Despite these enormous obstacles, and the fact that Polish
gentiles also were undergoing their own Holocaust which consumed several
million victims, hundreds of thousands of Polish Christians risked their
lives to help Jews. In Warsaw alone, before the uprising of 1944 which
resulted in its total destruction, some 15,000 Jews were being
sheltered. Emanuel Ringelblum estimated that as many as 60,000 out of
the city's 900,000 Christian residents were involved in the rescue
efforts. Assistance has been documented at more than 600 Catholic
churches, monasteries, convents, and church-run orphanages throughout
Poland. Poles form the largest group recognized by Yad Vashem as
"Righteous Gentiles," as many as 40 percent of all those recognized. Yad
Vashem is an official Israeli institution devoted to honoring those who
saved Jews from the Holocaust.
Just as there were some Jewish collaborators during World War II,
small numbers of Polish gentiles also collaborated with the Germans.
There is no justification or excuse for their actions, and neither was
this conduct condoned or tolerated. With the active support of Polish
public opinion, the Polish Underground passed and carried out many death
sentences against anyone found collaborating with the Nazis. It is
regrettably true that collaborators, whether with the Nazis or the
Soviets, whether Polish Christians or Jews, were an effective force to
contend with. But at the same time, they were tiny, marginal and
unrepresentative groups in their respective communities.
Simon Wiesenthal has advocated the following wise and balanced
assessment of that tragic period which consumed millions of Jewish and
Polish lives: "Then the war came. It is at times like these that the
lower elements in society surface—the blackmailers who would betray
Jews... On the other hand, the 30,000 or 40,000 Jews who survived,
survived thanks to the help of the Poles. This I know." During the five
years of German occupation many of the efforts to shelter Jews ended
tragically for the Jewish victims and their Christian friends. Most
instances of sporadic assistance are seldom remembered and taken into
What do the leading Holocaust historians have to say about
alleged Polish complicity in the Holocaust? Yisrael Gutman, director of
research at the Yad Vashem Institute in Jerusalem and editor in chief of
The Encyclopedia of the Holocaust (1990), has stated authoritatively:
"All accusations against the Poles that they were responsible for the
'Final Solution' are not even worth mentioning. Secondly, there is no
validity at all in the contention that Polish attitudes were the reason
for the siting of the death camps in Poland." And again: "I want to be
unequivocal about this. When it is said that Poles supposedly took part
in the extermination of the Jews on the side of the Germans, that is not
true. It has no foundation in fact. There was no such thing as Poles
taking part in the extermination of the Jewish population." Professor
Gutman stated that the percentage of Poles who collaborated with the
Germans was "infinitesimally small." Richard Pipes, of Harvard
University, wrote in the introduction to Pogonowski's book, Jews in
Poland, published on the fiftieth anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto
Uprising: "It must never be mistakenly believed that the Holocaust was
perpetrated by the Poles. Nor must it be ignored that three million
Poles perished at German hands." Szymon Datner, longtime director of
Warsaw's Jewish Historical Institute, has been equally blunt: "Poles are
not responsible for the crimes of the Holocaust."
Events Following World War II
Only Soviet-trained intelligence agents were trusted by the
Soviet government among Polish prewar Communists. Among those "the
Jews...were...considered less susceptible to the lures of Polish
nationalism, to which even impeccable Polish communists were not thought
immune." (Checinski, op. cit., p. 71.) During 1945, the Soviets
recruited to the Office of State Security a very large number of Jews.
Mostly Jews, including Holocaust survivors, were assigned to carry out
the Soviet policy of de-Nazification in the former German territories
which Poland was to annex on the basis of the Potsdam Agreement in
compensation for her Eastern Provinces lost to the Soviet Union in 1939.
After the War, over 1,200 former Nazi camps were used to hold
German nationals, 99 percent of whom were noncombatants. Under the guise
of de-Nazification, members of the pro-Western Polish resistance and
their families were processed together with the Germans. In a brief
period of time between 60,000 and 80,000 people died in the
de-Nazification camps. Starvation diets, typhoid fever, and mistreatment
caused the high death rate. Torture was commonplace. Jewish officers of
the UB (Urzad Bezpiecze_stwa—Office of State Security), including those
who themselves survived unimaginable suffering at German hands, were now
used by the Soviets to inflict the same on others. Again, to quote Simon
Wiesenthal, "I always say that I know what kind of role Jewish
communists played in Poland after the war. And just as I, as a Jew, do
not want to shoulder responsibility for the Jewish communists, I cannot
blame 36 million Poles for those thousands of blackmailers."
Polish gentiles bore the brunt of the killing force unleashed by
the Soviets while they established their totalitarian hold on Poland and
the Polish people. Checinski cites a study based on party and security
archives that estimates 80,000 to 200,000 Polish gentiles were killed by
the Soviets during their takeover, while approximately 1,600 Jews were
killed at the same time. (Checinski, op. cit., p. 64.)
John Sack, a former CBS News bureau chief in Spain and a
journalist for 48 years, spent seven years doing research and conducting
interviews in Poland, Germany, Israel, and the United States to document
the story of Jewish actions taken directly after the end of World War II
in response to the wartime atrocities. On November 21, 1993, the CBS
program 60 Minutes presented an interview with Mr. Sack and footage of
interviews with the survivors who testified to torture and killings in
those camps. A Polish woman, Dr. Dorota Boreczek, former inmate of the
_wi_tochowice camp, testified that she was arrested (at age 14) and
tortured together with her mother. Her father, a member of the Polish
Home Army, was executed. [See John Sack, An Eye For An Eye (New York:
Basic Books/Harper Collins, 1993), pp. 163–165.]
The Sovietization of Poland

It is important to remember that the end of World War II did not
mean the liberation of the Polish people or of Poland, in any sense of
the word. After World War II, Poland did not have self-determination.
Its government, police, and military were under the complete and
absolute control of the Soviet Union. Poland was forcibly made to be a
communist state that was not formally a part of the Soviet Union, but a
"satellite state" that was tightly ruled as part of the Soviet empire.
Several months before the July 1946 events took place in Kielce, Winston
Churchill eloquently articulated the realities for the Soviet Union's
satellite states. On March 5, 1946, Churchill made his famous "Sinews of
Peace" speech in which he popularized the term "Iron Curtain" originally
coined by a Yugoslav writer:
"From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an Iron Curtain
has descended across the Continent. Behind that line lie all the
capitals of the ancient states of Central and Eastern Europe. Warsaw,
Prague, Vienna, Budapest and Sofia, all these famous cities and the
populations around them lie in...the Soviet sphere.... I do not believe
that...Russia desires war [but] the fruits of war and the indefinite
expansion of their power and their doctrines.... There is nothing they
admire so much as strength and there is nothing for which they have less
respect than weakness, especially military weakness."
The Soviet strategists who were in control of Poland saw
significant advantage in fostering an animosity between Jewish and
gentile Poles. This animosity was used as a tool to aid in the
subjugation of Poland early in its capture into the Soviet empire in
1944. After World War II, Soviet machinations in this regard succeeded
in converting the image of Jewish victims of German-Nazi genocide into
the image of Jewish oppressors. (Kersten, op. cit., p. 130.) This was
purposely done to put the Polish gentile population between "a rock and
a hard place." Polish gentiles were left with two options: either don't
respond to the Soviet oppression, or respond to the Soviet oppression
and thus appear to be anti-Semitic.
Although the image of Jews as oppressors was spread beyond
Poland, this phenomenon was very noticeable in Poland, where there was a
steady flow of news and often well-substantiated (if sometimes
exaggerated) rumors of executions of anti-communist Poles by Jewish
executioners serving in the Soviet-controlled terror apparatus. Kersten
describes this unfortunate development when Soviet policies created the
conditions that Jews played the main role in the subjugation of Poland
and other satellite countries to the communist system. At the same time,
the communist propaganda machine equated opposition to the "socialist"
regimes with anti-Semitism. So, if a Polish person opposed the socialist
Sovietization of Poland, that person was branded as an anti-Semite. This
smoke screen was used successfully to obscure the reality of the Soviet
subjugation of Poland by the Soviet Union.
The Soviet terror apparatus in Poland included the so-called
Polish military counterintelligence. It was initially integrated with
the Soviet Smersh (Death to Spies) organization directed against German
spying and subversion. However, when the front crossed the prewar Polish
territory, Smersh was used increasingly against the significant Polish
resistance to Soviet domination. In November 1944, the Polish section of
Smersh became renamed Informacja, in which many Jews like Col. Ch_ci_ski
served for 10 years. Informacja remained under the close supervision of
Smersh and was at first headed by Soviet Maj. Pyotr Kozhushko. Soviet
officers assigned to the Polish army were considered vulnerable to
Polish influence and were under close surveillance by a special
Informacja department. Informacja was clearly a Soviet-led force, with
Jewish officers disloyal to Poland.
At the time of the most intensive terror, between 1944 and 1955,
Smersh used its Informacja branch to have agents pose as members of the
military prosecutor's office. They used this apparatus to conduct
political trials in military courts in Poland. Tortured witnesses were
"prepared" for these trials and later were secretly executed "to remove
any trace of the provocation." (Checinski, op. cit., p. 57.) In that
period, of the 120 officers serving in Informacja, only about 18 were
Polish-born. Most of these 18 were Polish Jews and the rest were Soviet
citizens, many of them Jews.
The Soviets were creative in inventing their own opportunities to
manufacture conflict between Polish Jews and gentiles. For example, it
was Soviet policy in Poland to change Yiddish names of Jews into
Slavic-Polish names. This practice was resented by both Jewish and
gentile Poles. An American journalist, Samuel Loeb Shneiderman, who
visited Warsaw in 1946, wrote in his book Between Fear and Hope (New
York: Arco, 1947) that under the cover of Polish names Jews were
continuing their ethnic identity and must have felt like their ancestors
forced into conversion to Christianity during their persecution in
Spain. (Kersten, op. cit., pp. 77, 108.) The name-changing became
widespread. It served to deprive the Jews of their cultural heritage in
order to form a "progressive Jewish nation," to use Stalin's expression.
Checinski describes how Stalin ordered the NKVD to prepare a
civilian network of police terror and repression, called the UB, to work
in parallel with the Informacja in Poland. The "Polish intelligentsia
boycotted the security service, which was treated with universal
contempt as an instrument of foreign domination." (Checinski, op. cit.,
p. 61.) Thus, the NKVD, despite its deep-rooted anti-Semitism, "could
not do without Jews. Jewish officials were often placed in the most
conspicuous posts; hence they could easily be blamed for all of the
regime's crimes." (Checinski, op. cit., p. 62.) The Soviet strategy of
using people with striking Semitic features as the most visible
executioners of Soviet policy in Poland was also aimed at presenting
understandable anti-communist feelings within Poland as anti-Semitism.
In 1945, the upper echelons of the terror apparatus were staffed with
Jews. Many Jews in Poland were members of the Soviet-controlled terror
apparatus. A public proclamation, made at a convention of Jewish members
of the ruling communist party (Polska Partia Robotnicza—PPR) on October
7–9, 1945, stated that in postwar Poland, conditions were created for
the Jews to find an outlet for their political, social, and national
ambitions. Needless to say, neither Poles nor Jews trusted this official
statement. The Zionists openly advocated a massive emigration to
Palestine (Kersten, op. cit., p. 80), which for the purpose of creating
conflict in the Middle East was also desired by the Soviet leadership.

Soviet Aims in the Middle East
In Soviet Cold War policy, the Middle East was very important
because of its vital oil reserves. It is well known that after World War
II the Soviets systematically used to their advantage the desire of Jews
to fight for the establishment of the state of Israel. Bernard Lewis of
Columbia University (Semites and Anti-Semites, New York: W.W. Norton &
Co., 1986) as well as other Jewish historians state that, until the
creation of the State of Israel, the only source of weapons for the Jews
fighting for their independence was the Soviet Union and its
Czechoslovak satellite. Early in 1996, Ezer Weizman, the President of
Israel, officially thanked Prague for these weapons, while on a state
visit to the Czech Republic. In 1946, the United States government was
in possession of "a number of official and semi-official indications
provided by the [Soviet-controlled] Warsaw government that it is
encouraging the migration of [a major] part of its Jewish population."
[George Lenczowski, The Middle East in World Affairs, Second Edition
(Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1956), p. 330.]
The Soviet postwar aim was to get rid of the British mandate in
Palestine and play a more active role in the strategically vital Middle
East while consolidating their grip on the newly acquired satellite
empire. Toward this end the Soviets committed numerous acts of terror to
pressure Jews to emigrate out of the satellite states to be able to join
the struggle for Israel. However, once they were out of Soviet control,
only about one third of Jewish emigrants were willing to go to
Palestine. About two thirds preferred to remain in the West and go to
the United States, France, or other Western countries. This high
attrition rate from what the Soviets hoped would be a large Jewish
exodus to the Middle East resulted in Soviet efforts to intensify Jewish
emigration. They did it by staging pogroms in all of the satellite
states in order to deliver the largest possible number of able-bodied
men, many of them trained soldiers, to the Palestinian battlefield where
the Jews were short of manpower.
The year 1946 was one of intensification of Soviet-sponsored
anti-Jewish violence throughout the region. The Soviets staged several
anti-Jewish riots in Poland, including the one in Kielce. In nearby
Czechoslovakia, a two-day anti-Jewish riot was staged in Bratislava and
simultaneously in _ilina. The Soviet-provoked riots at these localities
occurred on August 2 and 3, 1946, during a convention of the Slovak
association of former guerrillas controlled by the Soviets. Scores of
Jews were injured and Jewish apartments were ransacked. In _ilina alone
15 Jews were severely wounded. So the occurrence of Soviet-provoked
anti-Jewish riots was not unique to Poland. What was unique to Poland
was the additional necessity felt by the Soviets to severely embarrass
Poland, primarily because of the significant Polish resistance the
Soviets encountered during and after the War. The Bratislava riot served
its purpose to frighten the Czechoslovak Jews so that they would depart.
Since Czechoslovakia was permeated with communist influences predating
World War II, there was no significant Czech resistance to the communist
takeover by the Soviets like there had been in Poland. Soviet news
releases of the pogroms in Hungary followed a policy similar to that
used in Czechoslovakia. There were four pogroms were staged in Budapest
but they received relatively low or non-existent amounts of promotion in
the Western press.
Actually the 1946 wave of anti-Jewish riots under Soviet
occupation was preceded with an earlier similar wave in 1945 in all
areas that the Soviets had occupied and converted into their satellite
empire. The earliest was on May 2, 1945 in Ko_ice, Czechoslovakia, which
was followed on September 24, 1945 in Velké Topolany in eastern
Czechoslovakia, where a riot was perpetrated by uniformed police and
military under the Soviet control. It lasted 6 hours and wounded 49
Jews. The riot engulfed neighboring villages. Anti-Jewish riots followed
in the Czechoslovakian towns of Chynorany, Krásno on the Nitra River,
Nedanovce, etc. [Kersten, op. cit., pp. 134–135; see also Martin
Gilbert, Atlas of the Holocaust (London: Michael Joseph, 1982), p. 241.]
No show trials were staged after all the pogroms in Czechoslovakia,
Hungary, Poland, and Ukraine. An exception was made of the riot of the
July 4, 1946 in Kielce which was advertised as much as possible in the
media because the Soviets wanted to accomplish more in Poland than
simply to press Jews to emigrate. The Soviets wanted to present Polish
people to the world as anti-Semites in order to strengthen the Soviet
totalitarian hold on Poland without arousing pro-Polish sympathies in
the West.
The Eruption of Violence in Kielce
The Kielce Pogrom was an event provoked by the Soviets in
conjunction with their attempt to Sovietize Poland that started in 1944.
They were successful, but not flawless, in making it look as if there
was just a random uprising of Polish gentiles against Jewish citizens.
Although the Soviets took pains to destroy much specific evidence
relating to this event, they made a number of mistakes that clearly
reveal that this was a staged event, one that could only be provoked and
carried out by the Soviet authorities in charge. To this day, the Soviet
Union (and now Russian) authorities have refused to release their
official files containing information relating to these events, files
that would corroborate other indications that this was a Soviet-provoked
Some of the Soviet mistakes in staging the Kielce Pogrom will be
discussed. In particular: (1) Twelve of the victims were found to be
killed by gunshot wounds, though the general Polish citizenry alleged to
have randomly conducted the violence did not have guns, as was admitted
in the show trial which followed. (2) Soviet authorities had firm
control of the populace; there was no right of free assembly, including
the formation of crowds in the streets, in Soviet-occupied Poland. (3)
Soviet security leaders thwarted efforts by the local district attorney,
who wanted to take actions to stop the violence and officers of
Informacja stage managed the pogrom. (4) After the initial violence by
soldiers of the “blocking company” was ended, it was re-ignited by
secret police agents who apparently attempted to pose as steel mill
workers. (5) Normally stern and brutal security police turned
temporarily friendly as they spread false rumors of ritual killing of
Christian children by Jews. (6) A selected group of people were
permitted to cross a perimeter of sentries that surrounded riot area in
Kielce; Catholic priests attempting to break up the violence were not
allowed to pass. (7) A clumsy Soviet-style show trial was hastily held
five days after the event that purported to show the complicity of the
general Polish population in this event; the inconsistencies in the
conduct of the trial itself provided ample evidence of the Soviet plot
to institute the violence in Kielce.
The focal point of the Kielce Pogrom was a residential compound
at 7 Planty Street. Most of the occupants were Jewish, and many were
members of the communist party. Among the residents were members of an
armed "kibbutz" composed mainly of people who had recently arrived from
the Soviet Union. Some were former German prisoners, and others had
escaped captivity by hiding in forests or in homes of Polish Christians.
The kibbutz members were undergoing military training and thus had
permission from the Soviet-led authorities to own and use firearms. This
fact was well-known in Kielce, because the kibbutz members would
occasionally parade through town with their firearms. The only other
Jedwish residents who had permission to be armed worked for the Soviet
terror apparatus in Kielce. Ordinary residents of Poland, people who did
not work for the Soviet terror apparatus, were not allowed to be armed.
There was a death penalty for the illegal possession of firearms.
On July 3, 1946, a cobbler and secret police informer, Walenty
B_aszczyk, whose UB code name was "Przelot," reported to the local
police that his eight-year-old son Henryk was missing. The boy had been
given a ride out of town on July 1, 1946, and upon his return was
abducted by Antoni Pasowski, a Jewish agent of the Office of State
Security, the UB. Henryk was taught by Pasowski to say falsely that he
was kidnapped and held at 7 Planty Street. Further, he was coached to
say that he saw dead bodies of recently missing children at that
location. (Kersten, op. cit., p. 129.) On the day of the 4th of July,
the boy was released by Pasowski and returned home. He went with his
father to the police station to cancel the missing child report and to
tell the false story of his abduction, the story that was edited by
Next, the boy was manipulated by Pasowski to falsely identify a
passing Jew as his abductor who, the boy was made to say, held him in
the basement of the compound at 7 Planty Street. There was one critical
problem with this completely false accusation: 7 Planty Street in
actuality did not have a basement! Meanwhile, a crowd was permitted to
gather and a rumor was planted about the attempt of "another" ritual
murder of a Christian child in addition to the supposed murders of
previously missing children. A small crowd was allowed to form in the
streets. Later communist propaganda expanded the number to 15,000
people. A few people in the crowd were allowed to move toward the
compound at 7 Planty Street. The staged riot in downtown Kielce was
under tight control at all times by the Soviet-led police force.
At 10 a.m. on July 4, before the crowd members reached Planty
Street, 15 to 20 police officers, including five or six officers of the
Informacja arrived at the compound. The officers of the Informacja were
men unknown in Kielce. Once there, they were in control of who could and
could not approach, enter, or leave the compound in which Henryk
aszczyk claimed to have beenlB imprisoned. The uniformed police were
ordered to enter the building but were met with automatic gunfire from
the Jewish occupants. One officer and one patrolman were killed, and
several uniformed men were wounded. After the gunfire from the compound,
the security officers and policemen attacked and began shooting the
trapped Jews and expelling them out of windows into the street. In
Soviet-controlled Poland, of course, the uniformed military, the secret
police, and the local police officers were Soviet-controlled forces, not
independent Polish forces.
An interesting thing happened at about 11 a.m., one hour after
the start of the riot. The local district attorney, Jan Wrzeszcz made a
plea to those in charge of the security forces to allow Wrzeszcz to work
with the local police force to put an immediate end to the violence.
(Szaynok, op. cit., p. 37.) Those in charge of the security forces
rejected his plea. The plea was made to NKVD supervisor Col. Nathan
Shpilevoi a Jew and to Maj. Sobczy_ski-Spychaj, head of the local
security forces. Shortly after the plea was received, telephone calls
were made to key security leaders in Warsaw. The office log of
Sobczy_ski-Spychaj contains notes of his telephone conversations with
Stanis_aw Radkiewicz, who was the Minister of Public Security, and with
Jakub Berman, a Jew who was at the time the main Soviet agent in the
ruling Polish Politburo in charge of all security matters. Clearly, the
Soviet agents wanted the provocation to continue, and wanted to thwart
all efforts to stop the violence.
Despite the best efforts of the Soviet agents to keep the riot
going, the violence stopped on its own before noon. The riot was
restarted at noon when a hit squad of secret police agents disguised as
workers arrived from a local steel mill. Many of them were hired shortly
before the pogrom and of course, since they were not real steel mill
workers, did not report to work after the 4th of July pogrom. They came
to the site of the violence armed with pieces of scrap steel, which they
were ordered to leave at the murder site as tangible evidence that steel
workers were involved in the violence. Before departing the hit squad
was addressed by Antoni B_aszczyk, an older brother of Henryk (who was
used to provoke the riot). The departure of the storming party from work
was organized by the personnel manager in the steel mill who at the same
time served as the district head of the voluntary riot police, the
ewski,oka"ORMO" and was an agent of the UB. [Krzysztof K Umarly
cmentarz: Wst_p do studiów nad wyjasnieniem przyczyn i przebiegu
morderstwa na _yydach w Kielcach dnia 4 lipca 1946 roku (Warszawa: von
borowiecky, 1996), pp. 96, 142–143.] The riot was allowed to spread in
the form of sporadic killings and robberies. Shortly after 2 p.m. a
train was attacked at a station, Piekarzowa, near Kielce. Several Jewish
passengers were killed by secret police agents provocateurs who
controlled the railroad personnel during the attack.
In the meantime, a crowd of onlookers was allowed to gather in
the streets. The security men were repeatedly spreading a rumor that a
"Jewish ritual murder of another Christian child" might be in progress.
Police and military men spoke to the crowd in an unusually friendly
fashion and abandoned their usual stern and authoritarian demeanor.
(Szaynok, op. cit., p. 62.) The rumor that the Jews were murdering
Polish Christian children was connected with earlier reports about
missing children who were allegedly kidnapped to be used for blood
transfusions and then murdered. These rumors were spread by agents
provocateurs, who thus kept attracting people to the scene of the riot.
After 6 p.m., the pogrom came to an end as security forces arrested 62
rioters. In all, throughout the city of Kielce and its outskirts,
thirty-nine Jews and two gentiles were killed. Other deaths followed
among the wounded.
Some of those wounded but not killed by the security officers
were killed by the mob of the bogus steel workers. The question is, who
was permitted to cross the perimeter of sentries around downtown Kielce
at that time? Krzysztof K_kolewski, an investigative reporter and
writer, determined that it was a hit squad of secret police agents in
civilian clothes. These people pretended to be a mob while in reality
they were agents acting under strict orders. The few bystanders who
joined the fake mob of disguised secret police agents were marked with
chalk on their backs by two secret policewomen. Those marked bystanders
were later put on trial along with others including uniformed men who
were not a part of the UB operation. Secret police agents disguised as
civilians were exempt from any charges in exchange for strict secrecy
about their mission and were permitted to keep the items stolen from
Jewish victims. Obviously, if they broke their silence, they would
incriminate themselves in the murders and robberies of Jewish victims.
(K_kolewski, op. cit., pp. 92–94, 143–144, 149–150, 159.)
Some of the murders in the Kielce violence were committed by
common criminals who robbed and murdered their victims as the riot was
permitted to spread. However, many of the murders could only have been
committed by members of the security forces. In particular, bullet
wounds were discovered in twelve of the murdered Jewish victims. Bullets
could originate only from the uniformed police, soldiers, and
functionaries of the security forces as the mob members did not have any
guns (as was admitted in the show trial).
Dr. Seweryn Kahane, the head of the local Jewish association, the
"kibbutz," was murdered by an Informacja officer who shot him in the
back of the skull. He was executed because he became an inconvenient
witness to the provocation. A few days later, another inconvenient
witness died under unexplained circumstances after he testified about
the violence staged in Kielce. He was Albert Grynbaum, a Jewish officer
in charge of a county office of the UB, who helped to organize the
defense of the kibbutz and testified about the provocation.
Early in his book, Checinski identifies a highly-ranked Soviet
intelligence agent, Mikhail Aleksandrovich Dyomin or Demin (Checinski,
op. cit., pp. 25–26), who was assigned in 1946 to Kielce, a relatively
unimportant town in central Poland. This apparently inconsequential
location was hardly consistent with his rank and qualifications. From
all indications, Dyomin's assignment was to bolster the Soviet pressure
on the Jews to emigrate and at the same time to create a dramatic
diversion to draw attention from the Soviet falsification of a crucial
Polish election referendum, which was to "legitimize" the communist
government in Poland.
Why was it necessary for the Soviets to draw attention away from
the election? The Soviets considered the conquest and control of Poland
to be one of the most important Soviet gains of World War II. The Yalta
Accord made by the Allies was a cornerstone of the post-war Soviet
empire, an accord that the Soviets liked very much because it gave them
the biggest empire in Russian history. However, the Soviets were
concerned that the United States could back out of the agreement at any
time, since the Yalta Accord's status in the United States was only as
an executive agreement and not as a Congressionally-ratified treaty. The
Yalta Accord gave the Soviets a number of rights, including the right to
control Poland and other so-called "satellite states" in the form of a
Soviet "zone of influence" that was accepted and recognized by the
Western Allies. The same Yalta Accord demanded that the Soviets
guarantee free elections in Poland. The Soviets desired to illegally
control the elections in Poland, confirm a previously-installed
Soviet-controlled communist puppet regime, and thus solidify their
political strangulation of Poland, while simultaneously not provoking
the sympathy of the American public. The Dyomin assignment was therefore
crucial: to engineer a series of situations in which the Poles could
appear to be persecuting Jews, Nazi-style, so that a fed-up American
public would welcome or ignore Soviet attempts to clamp down on Poland
and stop the apparent persecution of Jews by the Polish gentile
population. The Soviets realized they had an enormous amount to gain by
prominently portraying Polish people as anti-Semitic to the American and
West European public.
It is speculated by many, including American Ambassador to Poland
at that time, Authur Bliss Lane, that the Soviets purposely chose the
exact date of the United States Independence Day holiday to stage the
provocation. This choice would serve to maximize press exposure and
associated public attention on what otherwise would be a slow news day.
Also, it was a day when people did not go to work and could react fully
to the dramatic news of the bloody riot. Bliss Lane was among those
aware that the 4th of July pogrom was staged to overshadow the Soviet
election-tampering in Poland and to serve Soviet schemes in the Middle
East. The American Ambassador also noted that its purpose was to
discredit Polish opposition to Sovietization "especially among Jewish
circles in the United States." Both communist and non-communist sources,
in Ambassador Lane's words "admitted that it was not spontaneous, but a
carefully organized plot." [Arthur Bliss Lane, I Saw Poland Betrayed
(Indianapolis: Bobbs Merrill, 1948), p. 249.] In spite of U.S. Embassy
reports that were cognizant of the realities of the situation, the
Soviet aims were achieved because American public opinion was swayed
against the Polish people, which was the aim of the Soviets.
The Kielce riot was not the first time that the method of
provocation used in Kielce was employed by the Soviets. A year earlier,
in June 1945, Sobczy_ski-Spychaj was in charge of the UB in Rzeszów
where the Soviets attempted to provoke violence by alleging that a
ritual murder had been committed by the Jews. A police patrol falsely
reported an arrest of a rabbi wearing a bloody apron and standing next
to what was alleged to be the body of a girl hanging on a butcher's
hook. The false story maintained that behind the rabbi, on the floor,
were the dead bodies of 16 children. The provocation did not work
because the few Jews in town were forewarned and left Rzeszów. Since the
provocation didn't work and those who had bungled the scheme were
potentially embarrassing witnesses, the members of the police patrol who
reported the allegation against the rabbi were arrested and never seen
again. (Kersten, op. cit., p. 110.) A year later, the same man in charge
of the security force that attempted to provoke an incident in Rzeszów,
SobczynskiSpychaj, was in the identical position of being in charge of
the security office in Kielce in time for the occurrence of the Kielce
riots. Sobczynski-Spychaj reported to the Soviet authority Dyomin during
the time of the Kielce riots.
In Kielce, the agents who staged the violence on July 4 were paid
to do so. According to the deposition of the widow of Col. Wiktor
Kuznicki chief police,Kielce a man fitting the description of Dyomin
delivered to Kuznicki's apartment the money (in foreign currency) for
paying off the agents provocateurs needed for the eruption of violence
in Kielce. Kuznicki died on December 26, 1946 under unexplained
circumstances. He was most likely killed on NKVD orders as he became
inconvenient because he knew too much about the Soviet provocation in
Kielce. This style of eliminating inconvenient people was a familiar
pattern in the Soviet terror apparatus. To make sure that the traces of
Soviet provocation were eliminated the files of the Informacja attached
to the 2nd Infantry Division in Kielce were recently destroyed by fire
in November 1989 (it was near the end of communist rule in Poland.)
(Szaynok, op. cit., p. 93.)
Some of the specifics of Dyomin's intelligence career are
well-documented. Dyomin was the key Soviet agent in the 1946 Kielce
provocation, and stayed in Kielce only long enough to accomplish his
assigned task. He arrived three months before the outbreak of the riot.
He stayed through the riot, interrogated witnesses of the riot, and then
two weeks later he left Kielce. Later in his career, Dyomin was
stationed in the Soviet Embassy in Tel Aviv in 1964–67 as a specialist
in Jewish matters and in 1969 was assigned to the Soviet Embassy in West
Germany. In the American literature he was described as a high-ranking
officer of Soviet military intelligence, the G.R.U. [John Barron, KGB:
The Secret Work of Soviet Secret Agents (New York: Macmillan, 1974), p.
Military Trials Following the Pogrom
The murders and other crimes committed by the non-Soviet
participants during the pogrom were within the jurisdiction of the local
civilian court. Instead, the Supreme Military Court, closely supervised
by the Soviet Smersh, was selected to try civilians designated as
perpetrators of the pogrom. The show trial was preceded by Soviet-style
investigations, during which tortures were often used to extract
confessions. The role of uniformed men and armed security agents who
inflicted bullet wounds in Jewish victims was excluded from the
investigations and the show trial of the rioters.
The show trial was conducted from July 9 to July 11, 1946. Though
they acknowledged that an organized provocation had occurred (Checinski,
op. cit., p. 23), the military court did not reveal who was responsible.
Of the mob, 12 men were tried of which nine were sentenced to death.
These included seven were described as onlookers who joined in the
murders conducted by agents of the terror apparatus, and two as
uniformed men who were not a part of the UB operation. Those who did
most of the killing were never tried. The prosecutor, Kazimierz
Golczewski, a Polish Jew known as an old NKVD hand, consistently
violated all normal legal procedures during the trial. He did this with
full approval of the three military judges, namely, Marian Barton,
Stanis_aw Baraniak, and Antoni _ukasik. [Antoni Czubi_ski, Dzieje
najnowsze Polski: Polska Ludowa (1944–1989) (Pozna_: Wielkopolska
Agencja Wydawnicza, 1992), p. 113.] At one point during the trial,
Golczewski went as far as to threaten a defendant with additional bodily
harm when the man was complaining about tortures inflicted upon him
during the interrogation.
The entire show trial was a mockery of the law. It was a
Soviet-style show trial conducted in Poland to fulfill political and
propaganda purposes. The very conduct of the show trial was proof of the
complete Soviet domination of life in Poland. It was absolutely
impossible for anyone other than the Soviets to provoke and stage a
pogrom in which security forces either directly participated in the riot
or stood by and let the pogrom go on under their noses for eight hours.
The sentries who were posted around the riot area did prevent Catholic
priests Roman Zelek and Jan Danilewicz from reaching the places of the
violence, because it was their intention to try to pacify the mob.
[Kersten, op. cit., p. 128; also Stanislaw Meducki and Zenon Wrona,
eds., Antyzydowskie wydarzenia kieleckie 4 lipca 1946 roku: Dokumenty i
materialy (Kielce: Urzad Miasta Kielce and Kieleckie Towarzystwo
Naukowe, 1992), volume 1, p. 94.] Because of Moscow's control over the
Polish communist government, the global Soviet policies determined the
events in Poland. This explains why a high-ranking intelligence officer
like Dyomin, who was also a Jewish specialist, was sent to Kielce and
stayed there only long enough to supervise the staging of the riots,
then to interrogate witnesses, and then departed immediately as soon as
his short assignment was completed.
The weaknesses of the show trial created a need to announce the
arrest of the officers who "did not show enough resolve during the
riot." Military and police officers associated with the pogrom were
arrested and were given very light sentences by the Military Regional
Court in Warsaw on December 16, 1946. (Kersten, op. cit., p. 128.) The
most immediate instigator of the Kielce violence, Antoni Pasowski, a
Jewish member of the Public Security Agency, was never tried. Henryk
Blaszczyk was not asked to testify. Other less-advertised trials were
held in Kielce on September 24, October 10, December 3, 1946 and March
1947. (Szaynok, op. cit., pp. 74–93.)
Maj. Sobczynski-Spychaj, the head of the Kielce State Security
Forces, was promoted to head the regional Informacja soon after the
Kielce event. This promotion was typical, for he was in the middle of a
long career of being used by the Soviets to betray Poland. According to
testimony of Józef Swiatlo (former NKVD and UB agent who defected to the
West), Sobczynski-Spychaj was the Soviet agent who was parachuted to
Poland during the war and brought with him instructions for the
communist underground to collaborate with the Gestapo in betraying to
the Germans the organization of the Polish Home Army controlled by the
Polish Government-in-Exile in London. While in Poland,
Sobczy_ski-Spychaj worked as radio-code operator for communication with
Smersh under the command of Gen. Ivan Serov. Sobczy_ski-Spychaj was
flown to the USSR in 1944 by a special NKVD plane. (Kersten, op. cit.,
pp. 96, 129.) Later in his career, in the Summer of 1950, he was
appointed to head the passport office in Warsaw. As the head of the
passport office Sobczy_ski-Spychaj persecuted Jewish applicants for
passports. He was reported to have used foul language and threw a number
of persons down the stairs. At the request of the Soviets,
Sobczynski-Spychaj was promoted to the rank of colonel and was elevated
to the head of personnel office of the Ministry of Defense. He was kept
in sensitive posts as a useful agent of the NKVD. In June 1958 he earned
his high school diploma. He died in 1988 in Warsaw. (Szaynok, op. cit.,
p. 92.)
Widespread awareness of the Soviet provocation of the riot caused
protests against the death sentences. Demands were made for a full
investigation into the affair. Catholic clergy, including then absent
Bishop Kaczmarek of Kielce, the opposition parties as well as General
Wladyslaw Anders and other leaders of Polish political emigration were
named during the show trial as anti-communist conspirators behind the
Kielce violence. The show trial could not substantiate any of these charges.
The hurriedly-organized show trial did not give any chance for
the defense lawyers to prepare themselves. There was, however, plenty of
effort made to bring a large crowd of Polish and foreign news
correspondents. The communists counted on the ignorance of foreign
reporters of Soviet show-trial techniques and they assumed that Polish
newsmen would be too intimidated to report on the abuse of the law. It
was clear that for the Soviets, anti-Semitism was a convenient political
and propaganda tool used to disrupt Polish society. It also served to
identify anyone smeared with anti-Semitism as a "fascist" guilty of
collaboration with the Nazis during the war.
Disbelief, Pain, Shame
In Poland, the news of the details of murders in Kielce caused
first disbelief, then pain and shame that a Polish mob could be capable
of such horrible atrocities and brutal killing frenzy no matter whether
the crimes were provoked by the Soviets or not. Throughout Poland
meetings were held condemning the pogrom of Kielce as a horrible
atrocity. Stanis_aw Miko_ajczyk, the leader of the opposition Polish
Peasants' Party, immediately condemned the pogrom. However, reports of
his condemnation in the media were censored. The demand for a
parliamentary investigation of the pogrom was rejected by the communist
government. The Soviet-led government promised the formation of an
investigative commission composed of all political parties. It never
Since one of the aims of the Soviets was to cause an exodus of
Jews from Poland, the Soviet authorities took actions to make the exit
from Poland as easy as possible. A few days after the funeral of the
victims of violence staged by the Soviets in Kielce, Soviet General
Gvidon Chervinsky, the chief of border guards, called his Jewish
assistant, Michal Rudawski, and ordered him to establish two more
"illegal" crossing points for Jews on the Czechoslovakian border.
(Kakolewski, op. cit., p. 191.) These crossing points were supposedly
illegal, but in reality they were purposely established by the Soviets
and allowed free egress for Jews but not for anyone else. The new
crossings were added to those existing already in Szczecin (Jewish code
name Khyzar, or bristle in Hebrew, because Szczecin in Polish means
bristle market) and in K_odzko (Jewish code name Dorom). The southern
crossings were to serve Jewish emigrants going through Austria to
Palestine and the northern crossing at Szczecin served those Jews who
travelled to West German displaced persons' camps and from there south
through Austria or Italy to Palestine. As stated before, about
two-thirds of the Jewish emigrants preferred to go to the United States,
France, or other western country. As a result of Jewish emigration, by
the end of 1946, there were 100,000 Jews left in Poland of the quarter
of a million that were there at the beginning of the year. At the same
time, over 200,000 Polish Jews were in West Germany and Austria waiting
for further migration. The Anglo-American Commission promised admission
of 100,000 Jews to Palestine. In the West German D.P. camps, Jewish
socialists advocated returning to Poland while Zionists insisted on
immigration to Palestine. (Pogonowski, Jews in Poland, p. 349.)
A Polish documentary, The Witnesses [swiadkowie], illustrates the
feelings of pain and shame inflicted on the Polish society by the Kielce
Pogrom. Many realized that the Soviet provocation succeeded in damaging
the good name of the Polish people by cynically staging the vicious
pogrom and playing up the card of anti-Semitism. The Soviet occupation
and policies conditioned a limited number of people in Kielce to respond
to the provocation. Also, no one familiar with the Kielce Pogrom claimed
that it was a spontaneous violence. (Kersten, op. cit., pp. 96, 130.)
The Catholic Church clearly stated that the provocateurs and
perpetrators of the murder in Kielce must be absolutely and without any
reservations condemned in the light of God's and human laws and that all
rumors about Jewish ritual murders are lies. (July 7, 1946, Bishop
Teodor Kubina). Cardinal Hlond, the Catholic Primate of Poland, stated
on July 11, 1946: "The Catholic Church always and everywhere condemns
all murders. It also condemns those that take place in Poland regardless
of who commits them and regardless of whether they are committed against
Poles or Jews, whether in Kielce or elsewhere in the country. The way
the unfortunate and deplorable events unfolded in Kielce demonstrates
that they were not spurred by racism. Their basis was entirely
different, and both painful and tragic. These events are a hideous
calamity which fill me with sadness and sorrow." Czeslaw Milosz, Nobel
Prize laureate for Polish literature, called these tactics "socialist
terrorism." Among victims of the Soviet or socialist terrorism were many
Polish democratic leaders who were neither anti-Semitic nor reactionary.
Unfortunately, the Moscow files on the Kielce violence have never
been opened. These perhaps contain the reports of NKVD/KGB Col. Nathan
Shpilevoi and G.R.U. high ranking officer Mikhail Dyomin, who apparently
was in charge of choosing the site and staging the provocation in
Kielce. Thus, in the absence of direct evidence from Moscow, the Soviet
provocation remains the most likely hypothesis, one that is corroborated
by all of the available evidence. Clearly, the presence and activities
of these two Soviet officers preclude any possibility that the violence
in Kielce erupted spontaneously, and exactly on the 4th of July,
American Independence Day, when many people have a day off and can pay
more attention to the news than during work days, as was stated by the
American Ambassador to Poland Bliss Lane.
Conclusion, the 4th of July “Pogrom of Kielce”
The tragic events known as the Pogrom of Kielce of 1946 are
demonstrably a part of Soviet postwar global strategy. The Soviets
ruthlessly exploited Jews for Soviet political purposes. The pogroms
staged behind the lines of the Red Army were provoked or condoned in
order to generate an exodus of Jews who otherwise would not emigrate.
The migration of Jews to Palestine was needed by the Soviets to abolish
the British mandate there and profit from Arab-Israeli conflict in order
to interfere with oil supplies to the West. Meanwhile, a minority of the
Jewish population was used by the Soviets to establish communist regimes
in the satellite states, while some sixteen pogroms in satellite states
resulted in exit of 711,000 Jews of whom 230,000 went to Palestine and
fought there with weapons provided by the Soviets through
Czechoslovakia. Struggle between Jews and Arabs for the possession of
land was exploited by the Soviets against the USA in the strategic oil
rich Middle East. In March 1947 Andrei Gromyko of Soviet Union moved in
the United Nations to recognize Jewish state in a part of Palestine. In
1950-51 Zionist pogroms and provocations in Arab countries brought
additional 550,000 Jewish refugees to Israel (see: Naeim Giladi,
“Ben-Gurion’s Scandals: How The Haganah and the Mossad Eliminated Iews”
Dandelion Books Publiction, ,2003)
The Pogrom of Kielce was ignited by the Soviet introduction of an
organized provocation based on planting false reports of ritual murders,
a method of provoking violence originally started by the czarist
governments. As was detailed, a very similar provocation was staged a
year earlier in Rzeszów by the same NKVD agents. The Pogrom of Kielce
was timed for anti-Polish propaganda purposes to persuade the Western
powers that Poland should remain a colony of the Soviets, rather than
being allowed to return to freedom as did other Allied nations. For that
reason it was singled out for extensive news coverage which was to
convince Western politicians that "Polish anti-Semitism" could only be
tamed by the Soviets and that allowing Poland to become free would cause
another wave of anti-Semitism and murders of Jews.
The Kielce Pogrom, perhaps more than any other historical
occurrence, has been used to falsely show evidence of Polish actions to
exterminate Jews. This view, clearly put forward by a 1940's Soviet
establishment keen to subjugate Poland, has been allowed to become the
commonly accepted "conventional wisdom." In this case, the conventional
wisdom is wrong: it does not square with the historical facts. Those who
can examine the historical record but then choose to ignore it and
purposely libel an entire nation and ethnic group are on the wrong side
of history: they are using the methods of Hitler and Stalin.
It is sometimes said that throughout history people and their
nations are inclined to gear up to fight the last war. So it may be with
attempts at ethnic destruction. In the Information Age, new Holocausts
may be possible not so much by gas chambers, the technology of genocide
for World War II, but by printing presses and their modern-day
electronic equivalents. Is hatred for a person simply because of his
ethnicity more acceptable today, as long as the object of the hatred is
a Pole rather than a Jew? And once it is decided that it is important to
instill hatred against members of a given ethnic group, can there be any
limit to the perpetration of lies, myths, and mischaracterizations to
drive the hatred home? And once ethnic hatred is started and nurtured in
a people, where will it end? The Holocaust itself unfortunately provides
one answer, one such ending point.
Clear and reprehensible evidence of anti-Polonism can be seen by
inclusion of the events at Kielce, horrible though they were, as a
Polish continuation of Hitler's evil work of the Holocaust. This
defamation of Polish people can be seen in downtown Washington, D.C., at
the Holocaust Museum. This type of anti-Polonism can be read in
occasional press accounts that slur the Polish people and sometimes can
even be heard in informal discussions. Despite these open sores, it is
not too far-fetched, I think, to imagine that Jews and Poles, two
peoples who survived a twin Holocaust perpetrated by the same country,
could develop a new relationship based on friendship and goodwill. It
may well be time, fifty years after this tragic event took place, to put
the Kielce Pogrom in its proper perspective as an event unconnected with
the Holocaust and an event not conducted by a free and willing Polish
population, a population that in actual fact abhorred this violence. The
Soviet design to falsely discredit the Polish people through this staged
event has amazingly outlived even the Soviet Union itself. The spirit of
hatred of World War II and the associated Holocaust, and the habit of
hate against Poles promoted by the former "evil empire" of the Soviet
Union will still exist among the Holocaust profiteers of the Holocaust
1 lipiec 2009

Iwo Cyprian Pogonowski 





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