Alicia ApplemanJurman Survival And Heroism Of A

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Alicia Appleman-Jurman: Survival And Heroism Of A Young Girl During The Holocaust Essay, Research Paper When the Holocaust began, Alicia Jurman was a young Jewish girl growing up in the southeastern Polish city of Buczacz. In that city, about a third of the population was Jewish. Even though there was anti-Semitism in Poland, as there was anti-Semitism nearly everywhere in Europe, Alicia with her parents and four brothers led relatively peaceful lives. This all changed with Germany’s invasion of Poland…the infamous blitzkrieg of September 1, 1939 – Alicia was only 9 years old at the time. On this day, Poland began its slide into the annals of history of which never before has there been anything to compare: for within the boundaries of this eastern European country, the

stage was about to be set for the systematic annihilation and slaughter of all the Jewish people. Only the strong and resourceful would be alive at the end of the war. For a Jew to survive this slaughter – it was very difficult – nearly impossible. However, there are those who not only survived, but who also rose up and saved lives and even fought back. Now for a child, a young girl to survive and save lives and fight back – it is truly awe-inspiring. Alicia is that person. Alicia, who is among the women heroes of the Holocaust. Alicia the child hero. Alicia Loses a Brother Alicia’s older brother Moshe was the first to die. The Germans worked out a deal with Stalin and they divided Poland between themselves. Buczacz fell under Russian occupation. A few weeks after the

Soviet/German treaty was signed, the Russian army entered Alicia’s city and occupied it. The Russian communist regime brought down all religious icons, including those of Christianity (Polish residents were Roman Catholic and Ukrainian residents were Greek Orthodox) and the pictures of Lenin and Stalin replaced them. The communists began removing so-called “Enemies of the Soviet Union” from the area in their effort to “Russianize” this new territory. With the Russian occupation, Moshe decided to go to Leningrad for an education as this was being offered to the students – both Jews and non-Jews. Moshe had determined this would help him and his family. Over time, letters written home from Moshe were strange and seemed cold – something was not right. Within a year, he

returned, looking gaunt and frightened…he had “escaped” from his “school”. He told his family how he was forced to write what he had in those letters. He had been terribly treated and the situation in Russia was very bad, he explained. He had been made do hard labor every day after school. He had decided to escape from this “education” and come home. Within a few weeks, the Russians were looking for him. They did not want anyone spreading rumors of how bad it was in Russia. Moshe knew the truth and therefore he was caught and imprisoned. Within a few more weeks…while in prison under hard labor, Moshe became the first of the Jurman family to die. Alicia’s Father Killed by the Germans Suddenly in June of 1941, the Germans broke their pact with the Soviets and

swept through eastern Poland on their way to Russia – Operation Barbarosa had begun. Unlike the Russians, the Germans had a plan for the Jews: Endlosung- “The Final Solution”. The plan was to kill them all eventually. In Buczacz, a decree was made that all of the Jewish men were to go to a central place and “register”. What actually happened to these 600 leaders of the Jewish community was that they were detained and then taken out to a large meadow called the Fador and killed by firing squads. Alicia had now lost a brother and her father. Before they found out the truth though, the Germans pretended the men were still alive and demanded ransom payments for their release. Alicia’s mother gave the Germans all the money and jewelry she had. Alicia would not know the