POLAND - Considers Exhumations at Pogrom Site

Arno Froese

The Polish government is reconsidering whether to exhume human remains at a World War II-era site where Jews were burned alive by Polish neighbors, though the country’s chief rabbi says the work would violate Judaism’s prohibition on disinterment under most circumstances.

Some Poles want the massacre site excavated to uncover possible evidence that Germans ordered Polish villagers to do the killings. The work was started in 2001 and stopped by the justice minister after several days due to Jewish objections.

Chief Rabbi Michael Schudrich said exhuming the place where the barn stood “would desecrate the memory of those who were buried there.”

“It makes moral sense that we should follow the religious traditions of those who were buried there,” Schudrich told The Associated Press. “Jewish law hasn’t changed in 2,000 years, and what we said in 2001 remains the same now.”

The Jedwabne pogrom was one of several massacres carried out by Poles during the German occupation. Many historians see it as evidence that anti-Semitism existed in a significant part of the Polish population.

Poland was occupied by Nazi Germany for more than five years during World War II. Nearly 6 million Polish citizens died, some 3 million Jews and almost as many non-Jews.

That the question of exhuming remains has resurfaced reflects the pressure on Poland’s ruling party from far-right groups that call historical evidence of Poles doing the killings to be a “Jewish lie.”

The ruling Law and Justice party is led by the twin brother of the justice minister who stopped the earlier exhumation, Lech Kaczynski. He was killed along with 95 others in 2010 when the Polish air force plane they were on crashed in Russia.

The surviving brother, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, has taken the party on a more nationalistic course in recent years.

-apnews.com, 6 March 2019

Arno's commentary

In the meantime, news has come out that the exhumation has been canceled.

The Second World War ended with the estimated deaths of 70 to 85 million people. That’s about three percent of an estimated 2.3 billion population of the earth in 1940. The most horrendous loss of life was recorded by Russia, with 8.6 to 10.6 million lives lost.

This article concerns itself with Jews who, apparently, were not only killed by the German Nazi forces, but also by Polish citizens. It is most difficult to establish facts on the ground after a person has been buried for over 75 years. But it does show one thing clearly: the overwhelming responsibility for the Holocaust is placed on the shoulders of Nazi Germany, with many collaborators from various nations throughout Europe and even the rest of the world.

Above and beyond the facts on the ground about the Holocaust, we have Holy Scripture making this statement: “And the Lord shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other; and there thou shalt serve other gods, which neither thou nor thy fathers have known, even wood and stone. And among these nations shalt thou find no ease, neither shall the sole of thy foot have rest: but the Lord shall give thee there a trembling heart, and failing of eyes, and sorrow of mind: And thy life shall hang in doubt before thee; and thou shalt fear day and night, and shalt have none assurance of thy life” (Deuteronomy 28:64-66).

What about today? Here we should read Isaiah 40:1-2: “Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.” That’s the reason why Christians, born-again of the Spirit of God, practice an affinity for Israel and the Jewish people. Because they indeed have “…received of the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.”

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

Read more from this author

ContactAbout UsPrivacy and Safety