77th anniversary of Aktion „Erntefest”

Today we commemorate an anniversary of massacre of over 18 thousand of Jews, among them Polish POWs, in the Majdanek concentration camp in Lublin. 77 years ago, almost all the Jews held in KL Lublin and it working parties, were murdered. Among them were about 2 thousand on prisoners-of-war.

The fate of Polish soldiers was decided on the 3rd of November 1943, soon before the execution. As it is reported from an interrogation of the commander of SS and Police in the Lublin District, Jakob Sporrenberg, the concentration camp authorities received a reply to their wire to Heinrich Himmler regarding the way of action towards Polish POWs. It said:  "All Jews are subject to liquidation without exception". Nevertheless, a group of 120 POWs were excluded, to be employed to burn the bodies of the murdered. Among these people was  Józef Kalismann, a platoon leader, who we quote on the museum's Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CMJWLambinowiceOpole

The action ,,Erntefest” was carried out on 3 and 4 November, 1943. It was an organized action decided by the highest authorities of the Third Reich. In mass executions conducted on 3 and 4 November in Majdanek, Trawniki and Poniatowa camps, and also in a few other less known places of the Lublin district, it is said, there were killed a total 42-43 thousand people. Most of them were the Jews from the Warsaw ghetto. 

Already today, requested by the Warsaw Ghetto Museum, we would like to inform you that on November 16 this year, ceremonies will be organized to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the closing of the Warsaw ghetto (https://1943.pl/en/artykul/there-was-a-wall-80th-anniversary-of-the-closing-of-borders-of-the-warsaw-ghetto/ opens in a new tab).

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