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Polish partisans.
Source: USHMM
WHAT is a Partisan?
WHAT defines resistance?


A partisan is a “member of an organized body of fighters who attack or harass an enemy, especially within occupied territory; a guerrilla.”

During World War II, the majority of European Jews had no idea that the Nazis were conducting a meticulous disinformation campaign to convince them that they were going to work camps instead of being exterminated. Yet more than 30,000 Jews escaped from Nazi ghettos and camps to form or join organized resistance groups.
These 30,000 Jews joined hundreds of thousands of non-Jewish partisans who fought the Nazis, but they had to worry about local antisemites. Often they formed all-Jewish groups to protect themselves from their old neighbors.


Resistance took on different forms. Physical resistance by the partisans was something that hurt the Nazis. Spiritual resistance may not have affected the Nazis directly, but it was important to the Jews, since the Nazis wanted to take away their dignity and self-respect.

In defiance of the laws, the Jews held prayer services, or taught children to read Hebrew; those who performed in theater groups or in concerts, who painted pictures and wrote poems, were part of the resistance, though they had no guns.
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