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The Polish Deportees of World War II: Recollections of Removal to the Soviet Union and Dispersal Throughout the World Paperback Edition

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ISBN-13: 978-0786432585
ISBN-10: 0786432586
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Well-written, well-researched...moving --History: Reviews of New Books

Excellent...of great interest --Journal of Cold War Studies

About the Author

Tadeusz Piotrowski is a professor of sociology at the University of New Hampshire in Manchester where he also teaches courses in anthropology and the Holocaust, and where he served as the Associate Dean of Faculty. He has received many awards including the Outstanding Associate Professor Award. He is also the author of The Indian Heritage of New Hampshire and Northern New England (2002), Genocide and Rescue in Wolyn (2000), Poland's Holocaust (1998) and Vengeance of the Swallows (1995). He lives in Manchester, New Hampshire.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: McFarland; Paperback edition (September 14, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786432586
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786432585
  • Product Dimensions: 9.9 x 7 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,304,063 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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61 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Jan Peczkis on November 17, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Piotrowski, the author, dedicates this book: "To the victims of Soviet crimes against humanity". Everyone has heard of what the Nazis did to the Jews, but who ever heard of the 2-3 million Polish gentiles also murdered by the Germans? Even fewer have so much as an inkling of the millions of victims of Communism. The Soviet genocide directed against Poles, reliant as it was on shootings and especially mass overwork and starvation, does not capture the imagination as much as the assembly-style gassing and cremation performed by the Germans. But it was no less real, and no less effective.

All the while, Britain and America were silent and indifferent to Poland's fate. They were in the throes of a Stalin-appeasing mentality, and increasingly saw Poland as a nuisance that undermined Soviet-western relations. As Piotrowski makes it clear, "Appeasement only emboldens the aggressor". Judging by subsequent events of the Cold War, did it ever!

The deportations were the Soviet Union's attempt to gradually destroy the Polish population of the eastern half of Poland that had been conquered in 1939 (Nazi Germany conquered the western half). Piotrowski estimates that 1.7 million Poles were deported to Siberia and other inhospitable regions of the USSR. About half the deported Poles died a slow death there. Only the unexpected German attack on its erstwhile Soviet ally in July 1941 limited the scope of this genocide by putting a halt to further deportations and eventually prompting the release of the emaciated but still-living captive Poles.

Piotrowski describes the harrowing experiences of the Poles in Soviet captivity through the eyes of several eyewitnesses, including "Eva", my aunt.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By proz on October 7, 2012
Format: Paperback
My Grandfather and his family were also "guests" of Stalin and sent to Siberia in 1939. What people forget is that the Poles, Russians, and Germans were enemies well before the Second World War. In fact, the the animosity goes as far back as the late 18th Century.

Another fact that is lost is that the Poles continued to fight for their country well after their initial defeat in 1939. They fielded the 4th largest Army against the Nazis during WWII and helped liberate France and Italy. My grandfather ended up with the Polish Second Corps after Poles were released from Siberia to fill the depleted ranks against Germany. However,

Glad to come across this book.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jen R. on December 1, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this book. It is absolutely heartbreaking, but it shed light on a part of WWII history I was not familiar with. I loved reading these new insights (new to me at least) about life for these refugees. The story is overall a sad, but hopeful one of suffering combined with a beautiful resilience.
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12 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Ad Rem on April 30, 2009
Format: Paperback
Another account on the de-humanization of a people.Gee, I wonder why there aren't any films on this?
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful By krysiap on April 28, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book is easily written and is based on recollections of deportees, I would recommend this for descendants of the Poles who were deported, and any one who would like to understand life during the WWII deportations.
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