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The Warsaw Ghetto: Call to Armed Self-Defense

(March 28, 1942)

..We know that Hitler’s system of murder, slaughter and robbery leads steadily to a dead end and the destruction of the Jews. The fate of the Jews in the Soviet Russian areas occupied by the Germans, and in the Warthegau, marks a new period in the total annihilation of the Jewish population. The huge murder machine has been turned against Jewish masses that are weak, unarmed, brought low by hunger, camps and deportations. With satanic methods it liquidates the Jewish population centers one by one. The victory over the Jews will have to serve the Germans as recompense for the losses they have suffered at the front. Spilling the blood of defenseless Jews will have to take the place of Hitler’s great dreams that failed to come true.

We also know that the march of Hitler’s troops has been halted by the heroic Red Army and that the Spring Offensive will see the beginning of the far-reaching destruction of the Nazis in Europe. For the Jewish masses this will be a period of greater bloodshed than any in their history. There is no doubt that when Hitler feels that the end of his rule is approaching, he will seek to drown the Jews in a sea of blood. Jewish youth must prepare in the face of those difficult days. There must therefore be a start to the recruiting of all creative forces among the Jews. Despite the destruction many such forces still remain. For generation upon generation passivity and lack of faith in our own strength had pressed upon us; but our history also shows beautiful pages glowing with heroism and struggle. It is our duty to join this period of heroism....

Yad Vashem Archives, JM/1178/1.


* From Ha-Shomer Ha-Za’ir newspaper in the Warsaw Underground Jutrznia ("Dawn"), March 28, 1942.


Source: Yad Vashem