It’s pretty easy to hoax people. We all want to be deceived, but only up to a point. Some hoaxes are fun and pleasant, others malicious and unpleasant. We’d like a way to tell the difference (Robert Carroll).

May 27, 2012

Warsaw Ghetto Uprising is Over-Reaction – NY Times 1943

Based on the Urban Legends, this image started it circulation as email attachment from 2006. From some reason, it was just last week, when I got it. This image is of the front page of the New York Times dated May 10, 1943. The banner headline read "Warsaw Ghetto Uprising An Over Reaction: European Leaders Blame Jews for Disproportionate Response". Frankly for several minutes I actually thought this was real until I noticed the header describing the page as what the paper would have looked like had today's NYT editors been in charge in 1943. The header in my email made the hoax recognition easier, if it would not be there, the satirical doctored newspaper front page would be easy to consider real.

Why is that? Let’s first review the brief history of Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.


Following the German conquest of Poland at the start of World War II, they began relocating the nation's Jewish population into enclosed ghettos. Situated in major cities, these ghettos soon held the bulk of Poland's 3 million Jews. The largest of these was located in Warsaw and contained around 300,000-400,000 people. Through 1940 and 1941, the ghetto's inhabitants suffered from starvation and disease while under the oversight of SS and Police Leader Odilo Globocnik and SS-Standartenfuhrer Ludwig Hahn. In the wake of the January 1942 Wannsee Conference, efforts began to deport the ghetto's residents to death camps.

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On July 23, 1942, Nazi German forces began Operation Grossaktion Warschau called for the mass deportation of the Warsaw ghetto's population to the Treblinka II extermination camp. The day before, they met with the head of ghetto's Jewish Council (Judenrat), Adam Czerniaków, and informed him that the Warsaw Jews were to be resettled in the East. To facilitate this movement, the council was to provide 6,000 people per day for deportation. Quickly learning the Nazi's true intentions, Czerniaków committed suicide rather than comply.

Over the next two months, approximately 254,000-300,000 Jewish residents of the ghetto were sent to Treblinka at the order of SS-Oberführer Ferdinand von Sammern-Frankenegg. When operations concluded on September 21, only around 60,000-70,000 Jews remained in the ghetto many of which were in hiding. In response to the German efforts, two resistance groups, the Jewish Military Union (Zydowski Zwiazek Wojskowy, ZZW) and the Jewish Combat Organization (Zydowska Organizacja Bojowa, ZOB), formed in the ghetto during the summer of 1942. These groups soon united to oppose the Germans.

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In 1943, Heinrich Himmler wanted to give Hitler a particularly nice birthday present. He decided that in honor of Hitler's birthday on April 20, he would eliminate the entire Jewish Ghetto of Warsaw, which had been causing trouble in the early months of 1943. The idea was to eliminate a group of uppity Jews and please Hitler in the process.


On April 19, 1943, the eve of Passover, German forces entered the ghetto with the intention of resuming the deportations. Pushing into the ghetto, Sammern-Frankenegg's men came under heavy fire from Jewish fighters led by ZOB commander Mordecai Anielewicz. There were over a thousand fighters, including children. They used pistols and Molotov cocktails against the Nazi weaponry. Stunning the Germans, the Jews forced them to retreat from the ghetto that morning.

By the end of the first day, Stroop reported a loss of twelve men. Continuing the campaign the next day, the Germans returned to the ghetto. Some of the heaviest fighting occurred around the ZZW headquarters in Muranowski Square where large Polish and Jewish flags flew as symbols of resistance.

This time Germans brought major fire power. They started to destroy buildings, bit by bit by bit, knocking everything down. After about a day, they broke into the hospital, shot everyone in their beds, and torched the place.

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These Polish and Jewish flags flew for four days until German forces overwhelmed the defenders. Bringing an average of 2,000 men to bear, Stroop began systematically razing the ghetto and using flamethrowers in an effort to root out the defenders. Within a few days organized resistance was broken and the Jewish fighters were forced to conduct limited raids before retreating to their bunkers. When the Nazis reached the air-raid shelters, they drilled down, and gassed the people inside. Some fighters escaped to the sewers, and the Germans raised the water levels.

German forces continued operations in the ghetto until declaring the uprising suppressed on May 16. While sporadic raids continued, the final battle with Jewish fighters occurred on June 5. Jewish losses, as reported by Stroop, numbered around 7,000 killed and 56,065 captured. Those Jews who were captured were deported to various camps later that year. While the Germans had anticipated clearing the ghetto in three days, the Jews successfully held out for over month.

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Although the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising was not really very successful, it was the first time in all of German-occupied Europe that there was any organized uprising against the Nazis. Word got out, and it set a climate. And afterwards, there was Jewish resistance in many other places, including some of the camps.

While the Warsaw Ghetto was fighting for its life, the world had called another conference. They met in Bermuda and, again, absolutely nothing was done to help.

Over Reaction?

Now, when we have refreshed the historical facts, let’s get back to the fabricated image. Yes, it was definitely fabricated, and there is no doubt of it.

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It is hard to see some of the text, so there is some transcribed posts below:

European politicians avoid apportioning blame
BRUSSELS, April 30, 1943 — European leaders today expressed their “acute concern” over the intensifying conflict between Jews and the Gestapo in Warsaw, which they fear may further deteriorate fragile peace in Europe. Foreign ministers of the few remaining independent European powers adopted a declaration calling for an immediate end to the hostilities. Reflecting differing views among European nations, the document appears worded to avoid apportioning blame. It notes the Nazi Resistance must immediately make the operation of their gas chambers more transparent, while adding that Jews must show “utmost restraint” and not resort to “disproportionate action.”


League of Nations anti-bias panel accuse Jews of racism
Members of a League of Nations anti-bias panel criticized Warsaw Jews on Thursday for violating humanitarian law and racially targeting the Nazis.


Jewish Uprising Triggers Humanitarian Crisis
16 Germans dead and 85 wounded In Warsaw Slaughter
Europe’s call for an end to hostilities in the Warsaw Ghetto raises questions over how long Jews can stave off international pressure to end their three-week offensive in Warsaw, which has claimed hundreds of lives and created a refugee crisis. While moderate politicians are urging Jews to exercise “restraint” in their retaliation against the Nazis, most European leaders are denouncing Jewish retaliation as “disproportionate.”


Goebbels: Jews must be held accountable for war crimes
Joseph Goebbels, a charismatic spokesman for the popular National Socialist German Workers Party, described the aftermath of Jewish strikes as “dramatic” and said Jewish forces had struck “very important elements of infrastructure,” demanding that perpetrators be brought to justice at a press-conference in Berlin on Wednesday. “Jews must be held accountable for their war crimes, terrorism, and systematic human rights violations committed against the Aryan people,” Mr. Goebbels said.


How could both sides have blundered so badly?
Miscalculations by Jews and Nazis have weakened Europe’s fragile unity. A ceasefire is needed immediately. Where is Zionist exit strategy? Jewish hawks have started a war without any plausible objectives, any viable plan for disengagement, or any rational assessment of costs and benefits. Are they ready to absorb damage on the home front?


Poll: The tide of public opinion has shifted in the direction of Gestapo
The Jews’ bloody response to concentration camps has united their enemies and divided their friends, the results of a current poll show. Atrocities committed by the Zionist militants in Warsaw and elsewhere have appalled Western opinion. The stature of the Gestapo grows, and the uprising has succeeded in discrediting moderate Germans and silencing the Nazi leaders in Berlin who were ready to start talking instead of killing.



So, what is all about? Why take the Holocaust tragedy as the background for the political satire?  The fabrication is directing on world critics of Israel resistance approaches in the modern situation, accusing the country of a "disproportionate use of force" during its recent military conflicts with terrorists from Hezbollah and Hamas.

Sources and Additional Information:

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