These are stories that were supposed to remain untold as the witnesses weren't supposed to survive.
Not wanting to make this site a political one I have only included a very small percentage of the stories of the survivours of the destruction of the Polish villages. These stories are NOT fiction nor are they made up, these are actual incidents that did occur and the people and Military Units did exist.
Czerkaszczyzna - Village that lost its Polish population
This was a village with mainly Ukrainian population, with about 10 Polish families. One young Pole Kowalczuk married a Ukrainian girl Oleska Alexandra. During the Ukrainian unrest the rumours abounded that the Poles will be 'disposed' of, all the Polish families disappeared into the woods with the exception of Kowalczuk, he hid in the attic and his wife being Ukrainian didn't think that any harm would bestow on her. The "Banderowcy*" came to their house and he forewarned by his wife hid in the attic and watched them as they raped and then hung his wife. He escaped by cutting a hole in the straw roof and crawled on his stomach to my grand father's house with the news. His hair turned white with the experience and he temporarily lost the power of speech. He was my grand father's very good friend, and the terrible story was told once he regained composure he told of the horror that happened at his house.
Jagielnica - Their fight, our payment
The UPA(Ukrainskaja Powstancza Armija), raided a small train that was taking arms and munitions towards the main fighting line on the Eastern Front. The German crew were shot and the train was ransacked and all the weaponry was taken. In reprisal the Germans surrounded Jagielnica which was Polish and slaughtered all the occupants. The houses were wooden with straw roofs, so when they were set alight with it's occupants still inside their death was terrible, any that tried to escape the flames and tried to hide in the nearby woods were shot. The whole village men, women and children paid the ultimate price for the Ukrainian attack on that train.
Units of Shame
These units of the so called Ukrainian Army fought against the inhabitants of the same lands that they originated from, they fought alongside the German armies to exterminate the Polish, Jewish and Ukrainian populace that didn't conform to their ideals. These units were formed exclusively of Volunteers, and were totally useless against an armed force, but as instruments of terror they excelled in killing and maiming innocent civilians. The initial influx of volunteers was of the criminal kind.
Battalions - Nachtigall, Roland, 201st Battalion Schuzmannschaften.
14th SS - Division "Halyczyna", This Division was involved in some of the atrocities inflicted to the Polish, Jewish and other races of occupied Europe. Units from it were involved in a massacre of 800 inhabitants in a village of Huta Pieniacka on 28th February 1944 where the inhabitants were taken either individually or in groups to a barn, where they were tortured and then had petrol poured over them and then they were set alight. They were also involved in a destruction of a village called Chlaniow where children under three years old were killed. The remains of this Division escaped to the West where they claimed to be Polish Nationals after their capture by the Allied soldiers in 1945 and majority of the soldiers had discarded their identity papers so that their true nationality couldn't be proven, this was done to avoid being sent back to the Soviet Union where they were classed as Traitors by the authorities. Hence the murderer tries to become the Victim.
Few of living members: see Named OUN/UPA Members
A book by Witalij Maslowski was published in 1997 and the so called Ukrainian "Brotherhood" didn't like what was written in that book as the author was a witness to many of those atrocious deeds, decided to "get rid" of him. The first attack was unsuccessful and the author was taken to a hospital where he recovered, the second attack unfortunately was successful and he was killed with a metal crow bar. The author was 64 years old and the murder happened in 1999.
Books on the sad subject
Authors Note: I have tried a number of times to get any details or information on the above towns and no matter where and to whom I write to in Ukraine about them the normal reply is autonomous silence. I can assume that they are surprised that someone at this time still know about them, and they whoever they are are doing their best to make sure that we know as little as possible about them.
**/*** for the terminology see the explanation
© Copyright 2003; Paul Havers