POST DEPORTATION.

On the 12 September 1942 the first aktion came to an end. The period of mass deportation was over. The remaining Jews were granted respite of a few months. The Nazis intended that this be a temporary phenomena. They intended for the 10 percent of the population to remain.

The Pace of the, acute shortage of labour and the desire to pillage the remaining property and assets of the Ghetto were the primary principles of the decision. In October 1942 Himmler explained that, "Our aim is to replace this Jewish manpower with Poles while consolidating the many Jewish K.L. (Konzentrationslager) firms into a few large Jewish K.L. enterprises in the eastern Generalgovernment. For whatever happens, the Jews will have to disappear from there, too, someday in accordance with the Fuhrerís will.".

After the period of mass deportation, the remaining Jews in the Ghetto did not resume the former way of life.

The Ghetto became essentially a mass labour camp. The remaining Jews were concentrated in four specific areas of the Ghetto. With all movement between the areas prohibited. the areas were,

1 "General Ghetto" Within this enclave live employees of the Judenrat and diminished police force plus labourers transported to work outside the Ghetto. Over 50 percent of the remaining Jews lived in this area.

2 The "large shops" with 20,000 Jews living in housing blocks attached to factors.

3 The "Brushmakers shop" with 4,000 Jews.

4 The "little Tobbers" with 2,000 Jews.

The physical composition of the Ghetto was now such that of the 36,000 Jews officially in the Ghetto at the end of November 1942, the majority were male, the total number of youngsters up to the age of ten and elderly over the age of sixty was less than 1,000.

On the 14 September 1942, Von Sammern was made the commander of the SS and of the police in Warsaw. Then on the 30 of November the death sentence was introduced for poles hiding Jews. Jews could now be shot on sight. Levin recalls that on 11 January 1943, "On Friday afternoon there was an uproar in some of the streets of the Ghetto. The Jewish police warned the population not to rove around outside. At 4.30 p.m. I was in Roosters Street. . . The Policeman shouted "Donít bring a calamity down on yourselves and on us. People were saying that Himmler is in Warsaw. Jews started to run for cover. After a few minutes, I made my way on to Muranowaka (Street). . . and three (Limousines) passed by me. It may well be that the chief of the murderers passed through Warsaw to see for himself the fruits of his labour, the destruction of the largest (Jewish) community in Europe. He is undoubtedly satisfied with his work. . . It is best that we face up to the awful, bitter truth, the prospect of total annihilation constantly hangs over our heads. "They" have evidently resolved thoroughly to wipe out European Jewry !".

Towards the end of October 1942 the Z.O.B was reconstituted. The "new" Z.O.B was to be united with the majority of political groups in the Ghetto with the exception of the Revisionists, that formed a separate fighting organisation. The "new" Z.O.B had internal conflict, should the Z.O.B be just military or also political and with one or two institutions.

Berlinskiís memoirs relate that, "We of left Poíalei Zion believe that any armed operation in the Ghetto must first be evaluated and carefully considered. We cannot allow for impetuous moves that might lead to the premature destruction of the Warsaw ghetto. A group or organisation formed solely for the purpose of fighting trains weapons and waits for the "felicitous" moment when it can put those weapons to use. We view as an absolutely essential condition the establishment of another authority that will judge with keen political sense when the time is ripe to debut as an armed force. We do not want someone to place stones on our graves as a result of ill considered moves. If you do not agree that the political parties will supervise the fighting organisation, you are presenting us with an unacceptable condition that will prevent our joining the organisation..." .

I the end the establishment of political authority was assured and two bodies were formed. The public and political, Jewish National Committee, (Z.K.N) and the Jewish Fighting Organisation, (Z.O.B). At this point they entered discussions with the Bund. Marek Edelman recalls that, "at the beginning of October 1942, discussions were held between the heads of the central committee and the command of the pioneering fighting organisation regarding the establishment of a joint organisation. The issue had been discussed at length among our members and was finally decided at a meeting of the Warsaw activists on October 15. We decided to form a joint fighting organisation with the aim of putting up armed resistance to the Germans in the event that the liquidation aktion is resumed. We understand that only co-ordinated work and a supreme joint effort will yield any results whatsoever." The Bund participated in the Z.O.B but not in the Z.K.N and set up a second joint political body, the Jewish Co-ordination committee, (Z.K.K).

It is important to distinguish between the initial structure of the Z.O.B from the end of July 1942 and the expanded and more comprehensive Z.O.B at the end of October 1942. The initial nucleus of 250 youth members for self defence was isolated from the population and even much of the underground, the latter was more representative.

The Z.O.B sent a declaration to the Polish Home Army, (A.K) that stated its intentions. "The purpose of the Co-ordination Committee is:

A. Organisation of the defence of the ghetto in the event of a renewal of the deportation.

B. Defence of the Jewish masses in the ghetto against the conquerors agents and collaborators.

C. The co-ordination committee is the founder of the fighting organisation, determines its course of action and supersedes it.

D. The co-ordination committee will comprise of one representative of each political faction."

The Z.O.Bís declaration was accompanied by a request for assistance.

"1. A greater quantity of arms, because the ten revolvers that were received are not sufficient to organise armed resistance or any other campaign of a group or individual nature.

2. The option to purchase arms, since we are examining the possibilities of raising money for this purpose.

3. Instructions and instructors, since the combat element received some paramilitary training in Poland before the war, but the only ones with proper training are serving in the police force and do not enjoy the confidence of the Z.O.B members."

Wolinski the Z.O.Bís Polish contract explains the reaction of the Home army to the request, "After urgent requests, ten revolvers and a small amount of ammunition were turned over to the Jewish Fighting Organisation by order of the Supreme Command. The weapons were in a very bad state and only a few of them were fit for use. The Jewish Fighting Organisation saw this gift as satisfying only a fraction of its needs. It therefore demanded considerably more effective aid and offered to set aside a substantial portion of the funds at its disposal for the purchase of weapons. This demand could only be filled to a very small extent. Before 17 January 1943 (the date of the next aktion) the Jewish Fighting Organisation received an additional ten revolvers, directives for sabotage actions, a recipe for the manufacture of (Molotov cocktails) and guidance in military actions. In the period up to January 17, 1943, the Jewish Fighting Organisation devoted itself to frenzied preparations for the struggle as well as to unrelenting stubborn appeals to the army (A.K) which reacted to all their appeals with scepticism and with a great measure of reservation."



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