Am Yisrael has lost one of its great modern heros this weekend. Marek Edelman who, at the age of 24, served as the deputy commander of the ZOB, a Jewish resistance militia that helped launch the Warsaw Ghetto uprising, and its last surviving leader, has passed away at the age of 90.
Having survived the Nazi repression of revolt, which began in January, climaxing in the weeks between April 19th and May 16th 1943, Edelman joined the wider Polish resistance against the Nazis in 1944. He lent himself to the cause of Polish freedom against the Soviet backed regime as an unofficial part of Lech Walesa's Solidarity Movement. Upon hearing of his death, Walesa said:
"He was an upright, unequalled human being. There are no words to express the loss."
In a statement, the Israeli Foreign Ministry said:
"The Jewish people and the State of Israel are mourning the death of the last surviving leader of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. Marek Edelman was one of the commanders of the heroic rebellion of Jews against Germans; a rebellion which salvaged human dignity at the Holocaust's time of complete darkness. Half a million Jews were held prisoners in Warsaw Ghetto, the largest ghetto in Europe built by the Germans."
He became a trained cardiologist, and worked at the hospital at Lodz, saving lives until the end of his days.
As Prime Minister Netanyahu pointed out in his address to the UN General Assembly last week, we live in a world where leaders still purvey the insidious lie of Holocaust denial and, as was demonstrated by the whining liberal ladies at the River of Vomit blog, we live among those who feel that there's been enough talk about the Holocaust. Seeing Schindler's List ought to cover it. As he was told by the Lubuvicher Rebbe, the only way to dispel this darkness, this disease that attempts to tell us that the Holocaust never happened, or that we have learned its lessons (so stop talking about it you annoying Jews...it's so emotionally manipulating), is to tell its stories AGAIN and AGAIN and AGAIN and AGAIN until there is no one left on this earth but the ultimately immoral who will deny it; until every man woman and child on this earth comes to grips with the greatest depths of human cruelty; and until every Jew in Israel and in Galut understands that survival of the Jewish state is not enough, that Israel's leadership must embrace the Jewish people's unique role in the world, embrace and defend all of its lands, and that Am Yisrael must understand the divine dictum that when an enemy plots to come and kill you, you kill him first; that even on the Sabbath, when your enemy merely comes to glean the leavings of your fields it is incumbent upon you to attack him and drive him off because first it will be the leavings, then an animal, then a child, then a family, then a town and on and on and on until the entire nation is threatened.
It is happening right now with shootings, fire bombings, thefts, and knife attacks from Arabs against Jews on the rise. And it is Am Yisrael that is to blame because it continues to tolerate leadership that denies its Jewishness, that denies, its unique relationship with G-d, that denies its unique relationship to the Land of Israel as its indigenous people.
Marek Edelman possessed the finest qualities of what it means to be a Jew; taking up arms to defend his people against the Nazi genocide rather than being led like a lamb to the slaughter (Such passivity is Chilul Hashem, an affront to G-d for which there is no excuse in a post Holocaust world, when there is a Jewish nation, with a Jewish army.); and then dedicating his life to being a beacon of morality, telling his story to whomever would listen, lending his considerable authority to crusade for a just cause, and embracing a career of p'kuach nefesh, saving lives.
Honor this man, this Jew, this precious soul by reading his story, in his own words. Share it with your friends and loved ones, so that his life, his story, his heroism, and his dedication to his people are never forgotten, and so that no one will ever be able to deny that it happened.
And just so my fellow Jews in America understand exactly the nature of the government that is controlling this country, here is the official statement from the Department of State's Ian Kelly:
On behalf of the Department of State I wish to express our sympathy and solidarity with the people of Poland upon the death of Marek Edelman, the last surviving leader of the 1943 Warsaw Ghetto Uprising and an activist in the Solidarity movement. We extend our sincerest condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Edelman and salute his life dedicated to the defense of human dignity and freedom. The United States stands with Poland as it mourns the loss of a great man.
This is the nature of the government of the nation in which you reside. Like the memorials erected by the communists at places like Babi Yar, not one mention that Edelman was a Jew; there is not even an expression of sympathy to our people.
Wake up Juden! It's time to go home.
Baruch Dayan HaEmet. Blessed is the Judge of Truth.