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David (Dawid) Wdowiński (1896-1970) was a psychiatrist and doctor of neurology. He was a member of the right-wing Jewish organization Hatzohar and political leader of the Żydowski Związek Wojskowy (ŻZW: Jewish Military League) resistance organization before and during the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.

Before World War II, Wdowiński was a chairman of the Zionist Revisionist party in Polandmarker. Together with many Jews in the Polish Army and the Polish-Jewish political leaders (Dawid Apfelbaum, Józef Celmajster, Henryk Lifszyc, Kałmen Mendelson, Paweł Frenkel, and Leon Rodl), he founded the ŻZW group in the Warsaw Ghetto. He was never a military commander, but served as political head of the ŻZW. In 1963, he published his memoir, in which he told about his involvement with the ŻZW, and the Warsaw Ghetto uprising.

Following the war, the literature on the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising appeared filtered through former members of the leftist-leaning ŻOB. These writings, adopted as well by the post-war Polish Communist State diminished both the role and importance of the contribution of the ŻZW and Wdowiński. One writer, Israel Guttman was an activist of Ha'Shomer Ha'Tsair. Guttman's perspective continued as authoratative citations of Barbara Engelking-Boni and the Polish Center for Holocaust Research who described Wdowiński as, "A senior activist of Revisionists' movement (formed by Ze'ev Jabotinsky's New Zionist Organization); revisionist leader in the ghetto, he attributes himself to the command of the fighting organisation of this political movement. After the war he prepared his memoirs." Another ŻOB fighter, Icchak Cukierman wrote, "The Revisionists had seceded from the World Zionist Organization; and before the war, all socialist movements, including the Zionists, saw them as the Jewish ebodiminent of Fascism." Wdowiński candidly noted the pro-Sovietmarker political orientation of the leftist Jews: "The second, the confused political orientation, was largely due to the fact that many Jewish leaders were reared in the spirit of the Russian Revolution, and they thought they could translate the ideas of the class struggle into Zionist terms."

References

  1. Chaim Lazar, Matsada shel Varsha (Tel Aviv: Machon Jabotinsky, 1963)
  2. Note: Chariton and Lazar were never co-authors of Wdowiński's memoir. Wdowiński is considered the "single author."
  3. Israel Gutman Walka bez cienia nadziei (Struggle Without a Ray of Hope), 166, 224
  4. Warsaw Ghetto: Details of Chosen Records
  5. , pp. 226-27, n.
  6. Wdowiński, p. 5


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