U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Covid-19 Information Page
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > History
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 09-17-2012, 07:06 PM
 
264 posts, read 241,577 times
Reputation: 108

Advertisements

Witold Pilecki - Polish army officer who during Nazi occupation of Poland decided to infiltrate Auschwitz concetration camp.

After Israeli newspaper Haaretz:

http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/...ities-1.462687



"[...] Pilecki was 38 when Germany invaded Poland on Sept. 1, 1939, triggering the start of World War II. He helped organize a resistance campaign during which many fellow fighters were caught and sent to Auschwitz, which in the early war years served more as a camp for Polish resistance fighters than Jews. That inspired him to hatch an audacious plan: He told other resistance commanders that he wanted to become an Auschwitz inmate to check on rumors of atrocities.

Carrying documents bearing the alias Tomasz Serafinski, the Catholic cavalry officer walked into the German SS street roundup in Warsaw in September 1940, and was put on a train transport to Auschwitz, where he was given prisoner number 4859.

He was "exceptionally courageous," said Jacek Pawlowicz, a historian with Warsaw's Institute of National Remembrance.

Pilecki is the only person known to have volunteered for Auschwitz. His terse dispatches to the outside world were slips of thin paper stitched inside clothes of inmates leaving the camp or left in nearby fields for others to collect. They included only code names for inmates who were beaten to death, executed by gunfire or gassed. As sketchy as they were, they were the first eyewitness account of the Nazi death machine at Auschwitz.

Pilecki survived hard labor, beatings, cold and typhoid fever thanks to support from a clandestine resistance network that he managed to organize inside the camp. Some of its members had access to food, others to clothes or medicines.

He plotted a revolt that was to release inmates with the help of an outside attack by resistance fighters; it was never attempted because considered too risky, Pawlowicz said.

Pilecki escaped in April 1943 when he realized that the SS might uncover his work. With two other men he ran from a night shift at a bakery that was outside the death camp's barbed wire fence.

After his escape, Pilecki wrote three detailed reports on the extermination camp.

One describes how his transport was met by yelling SS men and attacking dogs: "They told one of us to run to a post away from the road, and immediately sent a machine gun round after him. Killed him. Ten random colleagues were taken out of the group and shot, as they were walking, as 'collective responsibility' for the 'escape' that the SS-men arranged themselves."

Pilecki's heroics were for the most part in vain. Even though his accounts of gas chambers made it all the way to Poland's government-in-exile in London and to other Western capitals, few believed what they were reading.[...]"

Unbelievable story, anybody ever heard about it???

Here is wikipedia's page dedicated to Witold Pilecki, which corroborates the story as presented by Haaretz:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Witold_Pilecki

Last edited by noworneveragain; 09-17-2012 at 08:25 PM..
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 09-18-2012, 08:38 AM
 
264 posts, read 241,577 times
Reputation: 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by noworneveragain View Post
Witold Pilecki - Polish army officer who during Nazi occupation of Poland decided to infiltrate Auschwitz concetration camp.

After Israeli newspaper Haaretz:

http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/...ities-1.462687



"[...] Pilecki was 38 when Germany invaded Poland on Sept. 1, 1939, triggering the start of World War II. He helped organize a resistance campaign during which many fellow fighters were caught and sent to Auschwitz, which in the early war years served more as a camp for Polish resistance fighters than Jews. That inspired him to hatch an audacious plan: He told other resistance commanders that he wanted to become an Auschwitz inmate to check on rumors of atrocities.

Carrying documents bearing the alias Tomasz Serafinski, the Catholic cavalry officer walked into the German SS street roundup in Warsaw in September 1940, and was put on a train transport to Auschwitz, where he was given prisoner number 4859.

He was "exceptionally courageous," said Jacek Pawlowicz, a historian with Warsaw's Institute of National Remembrance.

Pilecki is the only person known to have volunteered for Auschwitz. His terse dispatches to the outside world were slips of thin paper stitched inside clothes of inmates leaving the camp or left in nearby fields for others to collect. They included only code names for inmates who were beaten to death, executed by gunfire or gassed. As sketchy as they were, they were the first eyewitness account of the Nazi death machine at Auschwitz.

Pilecki survived hard labor, beatings, cold and typhoid fever thanks to support from a clandestine resistance network that he managed to organize inside the camp. Some of its members had access to food, others to clothes or medicines.

He plotted a revolt that was to release inmates with the help of an outside attack by resistance fighters; it was never attempted because considered too risky, Pawlowicz said.

Pilecki escaped in April 1943 when he realized that the SS might uncover his work. With two other men he ran from a night shift at a bakery that was outside the death camp's barbed wire fence.

After his escape, Pilecki wrote three detailed reports on the extermination camp.

One describes how his transport was met by yelling SS men and attacking dogs: "They told one of us to run to a post away from the road, and immediately sent a machine gun round after him. Killed him. Ten random colleagues were taken out of the group and shot, as they were walking, as 'collective responsibility' for the 'escape' that the SS-men arranged themselves."

Pilecki's heroics were for the most part in vain. Even though his accounts of gas chambers made it all the way to Poland's government-in-exile in London and to other Western capitals, few believed what they were reading.[...]"

Unbelievable story, anybody ever heard about it???

Here is wikipedia's page dedicated to Witold Pilecki, which corroborates the story as presented by Haaretz:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Witold_Pilecki
C'mon guys? Deliberately entering Auschwitz as a prisoner, organizing resistance group and then escaping?
This is bigger than all James Bond movies together...
Nobody finds this story as exceptional as I do?
No single comment.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-18-2012, 11:01 AM
 
14,781 posts, read 38,570,217 times
Reputation: 14496
I just saw the thread. I had heard of the story before and it was the source of information that was sent to the Allies regarding the camps. Definitely James Bond to the extreme kind of stuff. I'm not really sure what to add to your posts other then, thanks for bringing this story to more peoples attention.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-18-2012, 01:04 PM
 
264 posts, read 241,577 times
Reputation: 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
I just saw the thread. I had heard of the story before and it was the source of information that was sent to the Allies regarding the camps. Definitely James Bond to the extreme kind of stuff. I'm not really sure what to add to your posts other then, thanks for bringing this story to more peoples attention.
I am probably more surprised I never heard about it before. I think this guy should get much more recognition for what he did. I don't want to see a Hollywood version of events but according to Haaretz, and to the best of my knowledge, nobody ever did anything similar in Auschwitz or any o largest concentration camps in occupied Europe. I definitely warrants an inclusion in history books.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-19-2012, 04:43 PM
 
9,965 posts, read 15,593,724 times
Reputation: 9193
Quote:
Originally Posted by noworneveragain View Post
Witold Pilecki - Polish army officer who during Nazi occupation of Poland decided to infiltrate Auschwitz concetration camp.

After Israeli newspaper Haaretz:

http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/...ities-1.462687



"[...] Pilecki was 38 when Germany invaded Poland on Sept. 1, 1939, triggering the start of World War II. He helped organize a resistance campaign during which many fellow fighters were caught and sent to Auschwitz, which in the early war years served more as a camp for Polish resistance fighters than Jews. That inspired him to hatch an audacious plan: He told other resistance commanders that he wanted to become an Auschwitz inmate to check on rumors of atrocities.

Carrying documents bearing the alias Tomasz Serafinski, the Catholic cavalry officer walked into the German SS street roundup in Warsaw in September 1940, and was put on a train transport to Auschwitz, where he was given prisoner number 4859.

He was "exceptionally courageous," said Jacek Pawlowicz, a historian with Warsaw's Institute of National Remembrance.

Pilecki is the only person known to have volunteered for Auschwitz. His terse dispatches to the outside world were slips of thin paper stitched inside clothes of inmates leaving the camp or left in nearby fields for others to collect. They included only code names for inmates who were beaten to death, executed by gunfire or gassed. As sketchy as they were, they were the first eyewitness account of the Nazi death machine at Auschwitz.

Pilecki survived hard labor, beatings, cold and typhoid fever thanks to support from a clandestine resistance network that he managed to organize inside the camp. Some of its members had access to food, others to clothes or medicines.

He plotted a revolt that was to release inmates with the help of an outside attack by resistance fighters; it was never attempted because considered too risky, Pawlowicz said.

Pilecki escaped in April 1943 when he realized that the SS might uncover his work. With two other men he ran from a night shift at a bakery that was outside the death camp's barbed wire fence.

After his escape, Pilecki wrote three detailed reports on the extermination camp.

One describes how his transport was met by yelling SS men and attacking dogs: "They told one of us to run to a post away from the road, and immediately sent a machine gun round after him. Killed him. Ten random colleagues were taken out of the group and shot, as they were walking, as 'collective responsibility' for the 'escape' that the SS-men arranged themselves."

Pilecki's heroics were for the most part in vain. Even though his accounts of gas chambers made it all the way to Poland's government-in-exile in London and to other Western capitals, few believed what they were reading.[...]"

Unbelievable story, anybody ever heard about it???

Here is wikipedia's page dedicated to Witold Pilecki, which corroborates the story as presented by Haaretz:

Witold Pilecki - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
I read in a book about the Polish Resistance some mention about how they were the first to inform the outside world what was going inside of Aushwitz, but I never actually knew much about the details of who infiltrated the camp. Good information--thanks for posting that. Now I'd like to read more about this story.

Some people seem to forget that despite the fact that Poland was among the most brutally occupied of all countries during World War II, the Polish people had one of the most active resistance movements--and that many members attempted to save Polish Jews---despite some of the anti-Semitic biases evident prior to the war in Polish society. And the Poles didn't have a cozy collaborationist government like many other German-occupied nations during the war--they never really stopped fighting.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-12-2014, 05:33 AM
 
1 posts, read 1,675 times
Reputation: 10
For further reading I highly recommend this:

http://culture.pl/en/article/the-man...-for-auschwitz
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-15-2014, 08:28 PM
 
1,604 posts, read 1,599,539 times
Reputation: 2058
As far as I know, Armja Krajowa (Polish non-communist resistance) was the only resistance movement to have a specific branch designed to save Jews from Germans.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-16-2014, 07:34 PM
 
1,385 posts, read 1,305,873 times
Reputation: 1720
Given the circumstances "too risky" seems like an oddly lame excuse... Every day thousands of Allied soldiers were dying in "too risky" situations because this is an inherent aspect of war.

Quote:
Originally Posted by noworneveragain View Post
He plotted a revolt that was to release inmates with the help of an outside attack by resistance fighters; it was never attempted because considered too risky, Pawlowicz said.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-17-2014, 10:56 AM
 
14,781 posts, read 38,570,217 times
Reputation: 14496
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken S. View Post
Given the circumstances "too risky" seems like an oddly lame excuse... Every day thousands of Allied soldiers were dying in "too risky" situations because this is an inherent aspect of war.
They theorized the plot in early 1943. They would risk the entire resistance movement for a small chance of escape of some prisoners and damage to the camp. Even in war, one needs to make calculated choices and risking all for a small temporary gain is not the way to win.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > History

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2021, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top