Jewish memorial in Poland vandalised

From the AP

Vandals destroy a Jewish memorial in Poland, memorializing the pogrom in Jedwabne. Vandals painted on the memorial,, "I'm not sorry"and "they were highly flammable".

The memorial was put up to remember the 1941 pogrom, where Polish residents in Jedwabne killed their Jewish neighbors.
In 2001, Polish-American historian Jan Gross published his widely controversial book, Neighbors, which exposed and documented the massacre, where in 1941, after the German occupation of the town Jedwabne, under German encouragement, the Polish residents violently massacred 1,600 of their Jewish neighbors. Ending the pogrom, the Jews were forced into a barn and burned alive.
Gross' book spurred a Polish-wide discussion and soul searching, as previous beliefs that Poles were only victims during the Nazi war were dissolved. Jedwabne has since become both a symbol and a sign of the cataclysm of Polish-Jewish relations during the war
While leaders and dignitaries gathered in Jedwabne for the ceremony, the atmosphere inside Jedwabne was tense, as many residents felt blamed for a massacre that their grandparents or parents had been apart of. Few residents attended the ceremony.

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****Update from Jan Meisels Allan

The following was sent to me by Witold Dzielski, First Secretary, Embassy of the Republic of Poland  to the United States. I am sharing this with you for informational purposes. Note at the time of posting the English version of Poland's President's message was still not posted.

Sent: Friday, September 02, 2011 2:46 PM
Subject: Reaction of the Polish government to the incident in Jedwabne

Dear Friends,
·         Poland's President and Minister of Foreign Affairs released statements condemning the vandalism of a Jewish massacre memorial in Jedwabne. Both expressed strongly that such incidents are completely unacceptable in Poland. For further information, please take a look at the following links:

I assure you that this crime it being treated in a very serious manner by Polish authorities. Both state and local governments are involved. Please let me know if you have further questions.

Best regards,

Witold Dzielski, First Secretary
Embassy of the Republic of Poland
2640 16th Street, NW, Washington DC 20009
Telephone: (202) 234 3800, ext. 2108

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