|Title||:||A Private War: Surviving in Poland on False Papers, 1941-1945|
|Number of Pages||:||285 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
A Private War: Surviving in Poland on False Papers, 1941-1945 Reviews
A series of incredible episodes in the life of Bruno Shatyn. He made the decision that he would rather risk living as a Pole outside the ghetto than face what he saw as certain death if he remained as a Jew in the ghetto. Over time, he convinced several family members to join him and they all survived. Shatyn survived the war, received his doctorate from UC-Berkeley, and lived for many years in California.Here's how his story begins ... The war broke out at dawn … in Crakow, all officials left and all trains stop running … the streets were chaos, with horse carts, trucks and automobiles all trying to leave … people shouted, vehicles collided, horses were whinnying … the streets were blocked by broken down automobiles, stalled streetcars, and throngs of people, staggering along under huge bundles, pushing and shoving ... I walked along the tracks toward Tarnow ... It was a motley throng ... few were prepared for walking through open fields, forests, and sand ... As the day wore on bundles and suitcases were abandoned, and others sifted through them hoping to find something of use ... Many had no food, and there was no place along the way to purchase anything to eat ... Some turned back ... Others sat down with their bundles, unable to move any further ... I passed trains standing idly on the track ... I heard the chatter of a machine gun ... The pilot was firing into the crowd of civilians ... People fell and the plane flew on ... then it returned ... four times it returned to the slaughter ... Later that day, I was walking with another man ... Again a plane and a machine gun ... I hid behind a tree ... My friend poked his head out and bullets tore through his entire body ... It was clear that walking near railway made me a target ... So I switched to country roads and small villages ...
This was a pretty good, if atypical, Holocaust story. The author and his family lived in relative comfort throughout the war, thanks in large part to his resourcefulness and sheer brazenness. He obtained false papers for himself, his wife, their children, and various members of their extended family. For much of the war he had a nice job administering a Polish nobleman's estate. But he and his loved ones were never far from danger, and he knew it. They had many close calls and had to rely on the kindness and discretion of a lot of gentiles to survive. However, in the end, everyone who agreed to go along with Shatyn's plan survived the war, except his mother who died of natural causes.The primary fault in the memoir is that it begins too slowly. Shatyn spends, in my opinion, way too much time going into his background and his prewar education and legal career. The Nazis don't invade Poland until around page 120.