Today, all church bells in Warsaw will toll at noon as a tribute to Warsaw Jews who on April 19, 1943 started the uprising in the ghetto – the very first act of armed resistance against the Nazis in occupied Europe.
2018 marks the 75th Anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. It is most likely one of the last anniversaries attended by those who were witnesses and survivors of the Holocaust.
The uprising in the Warsaw ghetto was an act of desperation of the last Jews of Warsaw – all of them were young people whose families were deported to Treblinka the previous summer. Free from family obligations, knowing they were to be killed anyway, they decided to choose their death themselves. Not to be gassed but to die like human beings, in a dignified way.
As Arie Wilner, a poet and a liaison between the Jewish Foghting Organization and the Polish Home Army, put it: "We do not wish to save our lives. None of us will come out of this alive. We want to save the honor of mankind".
Wilner died in the mass suicide of the leaders of the Jewish resistance on 18 Miła street at the end of the uprising.
The state ceremony will be held today at noon in front of the Monument to the Warsaw Ghetto Heroes and the Polin Museum.
It will be followed by a concert Remembering Together in the same place, at 8 pm. During the whole day, over 1,500 volunteers will be distributing paper daffodils – the symbol of remembrance of the Uprising - in the streets of Warsaw.
Schools, libraries and other institutions (over 1,000 altogether!) from all over Poland joined the campaign, organizing various activities related to the commemoration of the outbreak of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.
Currently we are running three more guided tours of Warsaw in English: