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Resistance and Revenge: The Warsaw Ghetto Revolt

Jewish resisters hide in camouflaged bunkers and sewers during the ghetto revolt. CL:NARA

"There is no longer a Jewish Residential Quarter in Warsaw" was the title of SS General Stroop's report on the suppression of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising.

"They (the Jewish Fighting Organization) considered it a victory if a part of those imprisoned in the ghetto were able to escape: it was a victory in their eyes if the forces of the enemy were weakened just a little: and finally-it was a victory in their eyes to die while their hands still grasped arms." Biuletyn Informacyjny, No. 17 (the underground Information Bulletin), April 29, 1943

Inhabitants of the Warsaw Ghetto are arrested during the 1943 uprising. CL:BPK

German soldiers and SS patrol Warsaw Ghetto streets after the uprising in May 1943. CL-BPK

The ruins of the Warsaw Ghetto. CL:Joe Heydecker, Vienna and Sao Paulo, Brazi



"The Germans ran twice from the Ghetto....The dream of my life has risen to become a fact....Jewish armed resistance and revenge are facts. I have been witness to the magnificent, heroic fighting of Jewish men of battle."
Mordecai Anielewicz, Warsaw Ghetto, April 23, 1943


Desperate and with few weapons, the remaining Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto rose in revolt on the eve of Passover, April 19, 1943. For the first time, the entire ghetto resisted the Nazis--those who had arms fought, and even those without arms refused to surrender and improvised Molotov cocktails and other weapons. For three weeks the ghetto's inhabitants held out, until SS General Stroop ordered the burning of the ghetto to force out all resisters and remaining inhabitants. After the war, Stroop was tried, sentenced and hanged for "crimes against humanity" committed during the destruction of the Warsaw Ghetto.

Women and children surrender after the Warsaw Ghetto uprising is suppressed in May 1943. CL:NARA


SS Major General Juergen Stroop commanded the German troops in the Warsaw Ghetto in April and May 1943. CL.NARA

"Not rarely, the Jews stayed in the burning houses until the heat and fear of being burned to death caused them to jump from the upper floors....With broken bones they would then try to crawl across the street into buildings which were not yet. or only partially, in flames...we succeeded in capturing altogether 56.065 Jews. i.e. definitely destroying them. To this figure should be added Jews who lost their lives in explosions, fires, etc."
SS General Stroop, Warsaw Report, May 16, 1943

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