It was made in the Belarusian office of famous Russian newspaper «Аргументы и Факты» (Arguments and Facts). Following the web-link below you can find original text of the article in Russian: http://aif.by/ru/news/item/12140-partizan.html
It's English translation you can read here:
Newspaper «Arguments and facts in Belarus»
Article written by Anton Trofimovich
The largest Jewish partisan detachment was in Belarus
Team of the international project «Official Remembrance of The Bielski Brothers in Belarus, Poland and Israel» has made a conclusion that Belarus provided most suitable conditions for existence of Jewish partisan detachments.
Hollywood didn't help
The Bielski Brothers were founders and leaders of the partisan detachment near Navahrudak during The Second World War. They created partisan detachment that united more than 1200 people (in partisan village called «Jerusalem in the forest» were bakery, metalworking and leather-working shops, bath, medical clinic, school, there took place even wedding celebrations). What's more important, partisans rescued 1230 people from ghettos. This is the world famous fact, however it's was «silenced» for a long time in the Soviet Union. In Poland they were considered to be «soviet invaders» and were blamed for the massacre in the Naliboki village. There were several foreign scientific studies dedicated to the Bielski Brothers including publication of their own memoirs. In 2008 Hollywood film director Edward Zvic made the movie about the Bielski Brothers called «Defiance». Only in Belarus, where such a phenomena took place, there is still no any certain vision of this issue. The reason is obvious - almost nobody know about it. Team of the project decided to make things clear and to study the difference in remembrance of this partisan detachment in Belarus, Poland and Israel as well reasons for «ignorance» of the issue in Belarus. The project sponsored as part of the funding programme «Geschichtswerkstatt Europa» with grants from the foundation «Remembrance, Responsibility and Future».
- We chose this issue because before our project only few people in Belarus studied it. They did it mostly the level of WW11 history. But we are focused on another level of the issue: how people in Belarus, Poland and Israel evaluate those historical events nowadays, - told to AiF Nikita Dunets, member of the project representing Belarus,
Phenomena of Navahrudak (Novogrudok - Russian variant is also possible)
Researches have made a conclusion that in Belarus where at that time lived near 1 million of Jews were most suitable conditions for their living. Manager of «The Shoah Victim's Names Recovery Project in the FSU» in the Yad Vashem, Boris Maftsir, tells that in Belarus were around 10-12 Jewish partisan detachments. It's was unique situation for the whole Europe. Director of the «Museum of Jewish Resistance in Novogrudok», Tamara Vershitskaya, explains why the largest Jewish partisan detachment could appear near Navahrudak. According to her opinion the main reason for this is the unique atmosphere of the town where Adam Mickiewicz was born and grew up. Local Poles respected Mickiewicz very strong, but his mother was from the Jewish family (at that time Mickiewicz himself also supported the idea of creation The State of Israel in public). So positive attitudes of local Poles toward Mickiewicz provided their good relations with Jewish community of Navahrudak. When in Białystok region incident of Jedwabne (where local citizens burnt Jewish population of the village without Nazi's assistance) was possible, in Navahrudak during the first year of occupation the Bielski Brothers and other local Jews could hide in houses of Poles and Belarusians.
Still without any official evaluation
Prof. Zoellick Pinhasik, Deputy of dean of the «International relations department» in the «Belarusian State University», considers that issue of the Bielski Brothers is not very popular in Belarus because in Belarusian society there is still no concrete vision of how to evaluate it. That's why it's very important to cover this topic in art and mass media. This project is significant step in initial «popularization» of the issue.
-Our project and the brochure (as its final result) are only initial steps in this direction, - tells Nikita Dunets. The project could and should be developed. For example, the issue of «soviet myths about Jews» seems very interesting to us. I don't even speak about phenomena of Jewish partisan resistance and Jewish family partisan detachments. Our project could be developed both in close (narrow-subject) and more general directions. Don't you agree that it's interesting and unknown page of our history? Despite different national visions we think that the Bielski Brother deserved at least place in school history textbook.
06.09.2010 00:04 (0 comments)
In search of Belarusian expert on our issue we visited small Belarusian town of Novogrudok. We lingered there in the local «Museum of Jewish Resistance» over coffee while Tamara Vershitskaya, Director of the museum, was telling us a lot of interesting not only about the reception and critique of the Hollywood movie «Defiance» in...
23.08.2010 23:17 (0 comments)
Prof. Zoellick Pinhasik: Expert in Judaism, researcher of the Jewish history and culture in the Eastern Europe in the "Jewish Heritage Society"; Professor, PhD, Deputy of dean of the «International relations department» in the «Belarusian State University» - Good morning, Zoellick Moiseevich. We would like to...