Jewish National Fund - We Only Have ONE ISRAEL

Letter to the Editor

Dear Editor:

My name is Viktor Lewin. I am the son of a survivor of the Holocaust, Jakob Lewin. My father and his family lived in the small town of Losice, Poland, and so it was for many generations. My father was only 21 years old when the Nazis invaded Poland. He and two brothers and a sister saved themselves, but were never to see their parents and give other sisters again.

Next year will mark sixty years since the liquidation of Jews from the town of Losice. In 1941 the Nazi military occupied a building at #2 Mickiewicza Street. In 1942 the Nazis stole 100 headstones from Jewish cemeteries in Sarnaki, Mordy, and Losice, itself. These were brought to this place to be used as the pavement for the courtyard. Over the years there have been many attempts made to reclaim these holy symbols, but all have met with the same fate: failure. The Losice town council did allow the placement of a commemorative plaque, which I understand was brought from Landsleit in Israel, but it had to be removed because of repeated instances of vandalism and graffiti.

Breaking this down to its simplest elements, what we have is this: 1) the barbaric extermination of thousands of innocent men, women, and children; 2) grave robbing and the desecration of holy symbols; 3) further humiliation by using the headstones for personal pleasure, and remaining for this very purpose for sixty years; 4) a Jewish cemetery that has been neglected and left to decay; 5) nothing of a "concrete" nature that will remain as a reminder that here once lived a people who were a vibrant and integral segment of Polish society.

The Polish government talks about reconciliation, but does action only take place in high profile cases. There are more than just a handful of cases just like Losice, so how can healing/reconciliation take place when so many "wounds" are left unattended. I have a petition in the works that will end up at Losice town council when it is completed, so if you are interested in this cause then please contact me at the following number, or better yet, phone the Jewish Observer, Los Angeles at (818) 981-1244, leaving your name and your concern about this issue. You may encounter an answering machine but leave the same information as just mentioned. Thank you for this opportunity. With regards,

Viktor Lewin
30 Abraham Bay
Winnipeg, Manitoba
(204) 692-3532

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